Making Money Mondays – Ebook Box Sets & Loss Leaders

Hey there, gang, it’s time for another moment of honest truth and business talk from Uncle Johnny.

Yes, I will absolutely punch you in the nose if you ever call me Uncle Johnny. There are about five people in the world who call me “Johnny,” and if you’ve never done it, you’re not on the list, so don’t start.

Just needed to clear that up before anyone got injured. But anyway, I’m running a little late today because my dad had a doctor’s appointment and real life interfered. Sorry about that.

Today’s topic is pretty timely, given that Gail Z. Martin and I are working frantically toward the launch of our first ebook box set collaboration, and we’re almost as excited about it as we are terrified! The set is called Modern Magic, and it features some incredible books by some of today’s best Urban Fantasy writers. It will release […]

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Yog’s Law—It’s More of a Guideline

You’ve no doubt heard of Yog’s Law. It was coined by James D. McDonald and advises ‘money always flows toward the author.’

That’s generally good advice when you’re dealing with scam agents who want to charge ‘reading fees’ or vanity publishers with contracts that steal your rights and obligate you to buy thousands of dollars worth of your own books for the ‘privilege’ of publishing with them.

It’s also a relic of a time in distant memory when big publishers fully underwrote all the costs of publishing their authors—including promotion, tours, advertising, giveaways, and full-service editing. Nowadays, like the pirate code, it might be best to consider it more of a guideline, really.

(John Scalzi and John Hartness have already done excellent discussions on how when you self-publish, there’s ‘Writer-You’ and ‘Publisher-You’ and you pass the wallet back and forth. You can read those here and here for their […]

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Do Launch Parties Work?

Launch parties seem to be everywhere nowadays: at bookstores and libraries, at conventions and on Facebook. Costs range from minimal to pricy, and the effort of planning, promoting and hosting a party is one more thing that takes a writer away from writing. So, are they worth it?

I’ve held and attended a lot of launch parties. On the whole, I’d say that they help to sell books, especially to people who might not have otherwise purchased that particular book. The party atmosphere lends itself to making an impulse purchase amid the food, decorations and festive atmosphere. There’s also a touch of guilt involved; after all, the author is your host, and it would be nice to buy a book to thank him/her. But I think that the real incentive to purchase comes from the ability for readers to feel like they’ve gotten to know the author through the personal […]

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The Daily Deal – big deal?

The Black Knight Chronicles Omnibus is the Kindle Daily Deal for Science Fiction & Fantasy today. That means that you can pick up the first three complete volumes of my Black Knight Chronicles for just $1.99 on Kindle, which will likely be price-matched across other formats. If you don’t already own the book, please take a moment to click the link below and go buy it.

Thanks. So why is the Kindle Daily Deal a big deal? There are several reasons, some of which are general and one is very specific to me and my world at this point in time.

Specifically, this is very important to me because I have a new book coming out June 30th. Even more specifically, I have the fifth book in this series coming out June 30th. So my sincere hope is that the visibility of the entire series will get a boost […]

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New Literate Liquors & John’s Going Straight to Hell

I’m going straight to hell,

just like my mama said,

I’m going straight to hell

– Drivin’ n’ Cryin’

Anyone who was in college in the early 90s in the Carolinas probably had Drivin’ n’ Cryin’ and Hootie & the Blowfish playing the bars around their campus. It was a good time to be young, and an almost perfect time to be stupid. I was both, and I was really good at being stupid. I flash back a little to my college years in Straight to Hell, the new Quincy Harker novella that’s available for pre-order now.

And that’s what this week’s Literate Liquors is all about, the new Harker novella. I chat a little about upcoming events, but then I give you a free recording of Chapter 1. If you’re interested in checking it out, download the podcast here.

I’m also trying something new with this release. It’s […]

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D.B. Jackson: The Writing Life, part II — Living With Success and Failure

As I’ve mentioned before — and as Faith and others have mentioned as well — the release of a new book can be incredibly stressful. Of course there is satisfaction in seeing the finished product in print (or ebook format). Writing a book is a big deal. That completed volume represents a tremendous amount of work; it required a huge investment of time, and of emotional and intellectual energy. It represents as well, an admirable accomplishment, and there is nothing wrong with taking pride in that. The problem is, releases are fraught with additional significance. Right or wrong, the success of a new book is judged on a collection of external factors that have little or nothing to do with the work itself, and everything to do with how others receive that work.

Every writer, aspiring or established, knows what I’m talking about. How many of you have finished a […]

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D.B. Jackson: The Writing Life, part I — Say What?

This week, in my continuing gig as “guest” on this site, I’m supposed to write about “The Writing Life.” First of all, it’s just weird being a guest here — I mean, this place has been my literary home for six years. I feel a little like I went off to college and then returned home, only to find that my room was being used as a bed and breakfast. I guess now I know how my older daughter feels . . . (That’s a little joke. I promise.) But I also wonder if, after all these years, there is anything I could tell you about my writing life that you don’t already know.

And so I’m going to take this in a slightly different direction . . .

Being a writer can be a little weird. By which I mean, that people sometimes treat writers in odd ways. This […]

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