Starting From Zero – Great Advice for Aspiring Authors

Starting From Zero.


If you are starting from zero today (like I did 3 years ago), I suggest the following plan:

  1. Get 10 sales as soon as you can. Get those algorithms moving. Also Boughts only appear after 10 sales, and they are central to the Amazon recommendation engine in ways we only partly understand.
  1. Get 10-20 reviews as soon as you can. This will take a while, but it opens up a world of possibilities in advertising and adds social proof. Don’t buy any, obviously. There are lots of legit places to get reviews such as Goodreads and LibraryThing. Be willing to give anyone a free book in exchange for a review. Only ever request an honest review, and don’t offer anything other than a free book in exchange for same. Also don’t worry about cannibalizing your sales; you are building something much bigger. Finally, don’t let overblown fears of piracy prevent you from giving away copies of your work.


  1. Apply to BookBub once you have 20 reviews. They don’t have a minimum, but a new author probably needs that many before they’ll look at it seriously. If they reject, don’t worry. Happens often (to all of us). Reapply further down the line when you have even more reviews, and have padded out your blurb with some juicy pull quotes. Instead, book an ad at ENT, BookSends, or Kindle Books & Tips. Also submit to Pixel of Ink and The Midlist, both of which are free.

Read the rest at David Gaughran’s blog and get his books! Must-reads for all aspiring authors!

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