Posted on 2013-Jun-28
Todd Travis, a client of ours, is an author who keeps writing until he has reached a good audience. His Amazon Author page reveals his wide range of interests from conspiracy theories to movies of the 80s. Interestingly, it seems at times he’s part of the mystery in his own life story and no one is likely to find out what he is up to. Apart from that written statement that he is the author of two books available on Kindle Store, he keeps his personal information scarce. Unlike most author’s pages that feature friendly faces and approachable smiles, Todd’s is minimalistic to add allure to his genre of choice.
To be able to know who he is, you should read one of Joe Konrath’s latest blog entry. Mr. Travis discusses his fear-ridden journey to walk this road as a storyteller yet fears to talk about his story. Todd talks about his role models in thrillers (i.e. Stephen King and Thomas Harris) who have been one of his biggest influences to write about the things that can scare himself. His book, Creatures of Appetite, comes out of such a scare tactic.
Diving deeper into the ocean of fear, his self-confession seems to gain traction as he shows sign of dread against self-promotion. Although it is a necessary skill that every indie author must possess to make themselves heard. A list of self-governing duties raises his concerns how he must supervise the entire book production and marketing process alone.
As a self-published author, you carry the burden to make sure your finished product will be ideal for your reader ranging from editing to cover design. In the process, Todd realizes his transformation from a writer to a publisher and apparently the book requires his full attention to be seen and accepted by a league of extraordinary colleagues and readers. Todd’s fear in this case involves his own predefined version of rejection and one-sided what-ifs.
Had fear stopped him from writing, we would have never heard such a compelling story from Todd. I will come back to that point. Although fear is a recurrent theme in his book of life, its effect motivates him to iron out all of the stories kept in his head and work harder to reduce the chance of failure. “Fear forces me to face my mistakes and [it] makes me bust my freaking butt to do the best I can,” he said. The Flinch takes into account of how he befriends fear rather than fight against it. The Living and the Dead is his second project that tells horror stories available on Kindle.
Rejection Turns to Composition
Joe shares his struggle to overcome episodes of rejections. Although the rejection letters stung his heart each time mail was delivered to his home, they built a new immune system in his psyche to conquer his fear. Although promotion is not a piece of cake, Joe delineates all the best possibilities how authors can succeed in his previous blog and wittingly concludes the following:
“As writers, we’re expected to be our own promotional advocates. But it isn’t about what we sell. It’s about what we’re offering people who like the kind of thing we write.”
We reached out to Todd and asked for his comments on his success. Thanks to his prompt reply, he generously shares the methods that work for him. Having followed Joe’s blog, Todd maximizes his combination of promotion outreach enrolling in KDP Select, using BookBub, and asking for help from eBookBooster. The first promo period in March he did on Snick List, Goodreads, and Amazon, which merely boosted ~1,500 free downloads. But in April, when he used eBookBooster to promote one of his books only for two days, the number of giveaways rose to 12,000. For the current promotion plan, BookBub is his optimal choice. On Tuesday, he noticed a soaring spike in downloads after the ads were put in place. By far, the number of giveaways has reached >60,000 downloads and still counting. Being featured on Joe Konrath’s blog does also increased the number of free downloads due to the large amount of traffic. As a consequence of his hard work, this was the testimony of his achievement yesterday: #1 on Amazon Free.
Read Joe’s congratulatory response below:
Since then, I kept an eye on the best-selling books in Top 100 Free and noticed a strange coincidence. Despite the fact that several titles dethroned the former number one in the chart, Joe Konrath’s The List has been crowned as the highest entry winner today whereas Creatures of Appetite has still remained in Top 10 at #9.
Todd Travis’ writing experience reflects the courage he summoned to overcome his own fear of talking about his own creation. He was afraid to do so yet never gave up his own willpower to become a writer. Joe Konrath has been the inspiration for self-publishers and he made it clear that a writer needs to make others aware of their works. Each time you talk more about what you love to do, you become more fully aware of who you are and accept it with confidence. Being a self-publisher endows you with flexibility to choose which production process you are comfortable with. Todd is not afraid to try different promotional strategies and the result is more than pleasing. In Suspense Thrillers sub-category Top 100 Free list, his book merely comes in second right after his distinguished colleague.
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