There are many threads on the community on this very topic. I suggest you use the search bar on the main page and look up either 'advertising' or 'promotions' and see what advice has been given to other authors. Try some of those, and if you still have questions, come back here with something specific and I'm sure one of the experts will help you.
Sadly, while I'm sure we're all very sympathetic to your situation, there isn't a magic recipe for sales, or we'd all be rich here, and as it's a community of authors, not readers, you're not going to find many people here willing to buy or review your book (as you requested in your last post).
That being said, I wish you good luck and send my best wishes. J
As Julia said, sympathetic as we may be, begging people on this forum to buy your book is not a practical method of getting sales. You might have better luck pitching your book at support groups where people may be in a similar situation and can identify with the problems you face.
Feina Merritt wrote:
I wasn’t aware I was begging? I was simply asking for advice on more sales ? How is that begging?
Cynthia wasn't being harsh or cruel, and she actually offered some useful advice. You may not realise it, but your posts do come off as though you are playing on people's sympathy, trying to drum up sales.
You have to appreciate that we're not your target audience, and many people here already have their own issues, including lack of money and sales.
You'd have still been given the same advice even if you hadn't given us your backstory. We do want to help you, but you've asked us the million dollar question - how do you get sales? If we all knew the answer to that one, there'd be nobody here to help anyone.
When you've had a chance to read the threads, come back if you want to clarify anything, but check the dates on what you're reading, as things are constantly changing. Best to stick with the newer threads.
Your description lacks paragraphs. When it does have one near the end, there's no white space before it. The entire thing looks like a block of text which is exhausting to try reading.
You capitalize Doctors throughout but this is not a proper noun.
You are missing commas in some places while using commas to connect sentences that shouldn't be joined that way.
The doctors had to be wrong? isn't a question.
mums partner is missing possessive apostrophe - mum's partner.
I couldn't lose her to. The word 'to' should be 'too'.
been cared for, We have witnessed -- that comma should be a period.
The thanks to all the care givers should be in your dedication in your book, not in the blurb. Readers don't care about this.
You go on about the trouble your mom experienced but don't say what the book is really about. Is this story going to talk about your mom's troubles in the hospital, or does it cover a wider time span?
Also, what makes this a compelling story for people to read? What should we get out of it? Is this a How To for recognizing intelligence when a patient has been diagnosed a vegetable? Is this an uplifting story about using prayer to make it through the rough parts? Or is this the strength of family unity to make it through? You need to give readers a reason to buy your book other than as a means of donating so your mum can eventually come home.
And about that plea. It made me think you should start a GoFundMe fundraising campaign and use the book as a gift for people who donate. I really doubt you'll get enough sales of the book to get anywhere close to the funds you'll need to take care of your mum. But if you could polish this description and put it up on the GoFundMe site, you might get donations.
Also, if this is a one time writing a book deal, it will be nigh impossible to make a lot of money from a single book. Typical marketing strategies involve having numerous books out there so if one attracts a reader, they might buy the others. The only thing I could suggest is to try getting involved in social media to connect with others who have been in this situation and might be interested in reading your book.
$6.57 (odd pricing) I assume this is a currency conversion issue? $5.99 or $6.99 or whatever is appropriate for biographical stuff at this length is more typical pricing.
Poor formatting. You should have indents for new paragraphs and 1.5 lines of spacing, not double spacing. If you are fond of block format, then you need to put blank lines between paragraphs so it doesn't look like a wall of text smacking the reader upside the head. I double checked with Bruce Dickinson's autobiography just to make sure there wasn't anything weirdly different about biographies vs fiction. (I don't normally read biographies, but his hooked me in with him being a pilot as well as a rock star. Sounded really interesting!)
You need an editor badly. There are multiple sentences strung together using commas instead of periods and you have She, She, She at the beginning of several sentences in the first paragraphs. Try varying the sentence format to liven things up.
That's all I can think of for now. I wish you the best of luck!
Try to decide exactly what type of book it is. Is it a memoir? If so, focus it on your mother's plight (theme: devastation). Is it an exposé? Focus that on the medical system that has been failing her (theme: outrage). If it's a personal journey story, focus on how this situation have turned your life upside down (theme: heartbreak).
Feina Merritt wrote:
Hi C. Gold, thank you for your constructive advice. I realise that my sentence structure and punctuation is poor, I have read and re read trying to get it to the point of making sense. I know I badly need an editor, again it’s probably a cost I can’t afford. I will listen to your points and amend the manuscript. Is there anyway I can get people to read and give advice as you have so that I end up with a readable and more saleable book? How about if I offered it for free in order to gain advice?.
The pricing was just a conversion issue, at my end it appears as £4.99 of which I receive £2.88 per copy.
My friends have often recommended crowd funding, it just does not sit comfortably with me, it feels like begging. I did not set out to try to sell my book to bring mum home, I initially wrote it for her because she asked me to. But as I need money to bring her home then it was only logical to link the two. I don’t need as much as you may think as I have already secured the care package for her, the issue is space. I need enough to build a small extension for mum to have a bedroom and wash area.
The story is about many aspects of my mums life, I talk about her before she was ill, the loss of her partner which was her ultimate downfall. She lost her business, remortgaged our family home to the point of breaking. Then four months later her brain went pop. A Doctor once told me it was like her blowing a fuse because she was under so much pressure.
I also detail the struggles I faced at being twenty years old and left to pick up the pieces of my mums broken life. I did not believe she was severely brain damaged, I spent nearly four months beside her in a coma asking her to wake up. Then we struggled to prove she was not vegetative. She has proved to the lord chancellors medical visitor that she has sane mind and capacity. The doctor said I had not allowed her to switch off with my constant talking, in a way I had kept her brain alive. There was no handbook to tell me how to behave and what to do, I just did what I felt I needed to. (Perhaps I should write a handbook).
To be blunt, you and your mother do not have the time it would take to make the money you need by selling your book. The book might never succeed to that point. I do know from experience the difficulty you face. My mother had a stroke that led to advanced dementia. Care at home, even with a family member living in the house was twice as expensive as a specialized facility. We made sure a family member was there twice a day, and we participated in the facility care, working with, not at them, in and effort to make the whole facility more effective in dealing with all the patients. We were "squeaky wheels" with a smile and a helping hand. Mother's decline slowed and there was an obvious level of quality of life in her last years. As for the Go Fund Me suggestion, there is no shame in admitting you need help. And for your book, I would suggest you give it the editing it needs, print it as a paperback as well as an e book and flog it locally to family groups and civic organizations - all those that can help in influencing the up grading of services in long term care facilities. There are few families without similar problems, now or looming in their future. Good fortune to you and your mother. B
The story also talks about my own demons, it details my fight with the bank when they tried to repossess our family Home, the panic attacks and anxiety I suffered as a result of the stress.
Finally it gives an insight into the shocking care in care homes, the daily horror of finding my helpless mum lying alone, hungry and dirty waiting for somebody to help her. The neglect and even abuse she has endured.
It’s hard to document what somebody may get from reading the book, I would hope it would encourage families in the same situation as us to never give up hope. To know that actually medical opinions can sometimes be wrong. I hope it may shame somebody in the care system into changing things so that nobody has to suffer like my mum has.
I also would hope that my experience of panic attacks and how I have overcome them would give others the strength to do so themselves.
Sorry for the long post, any attempts at a blurb for me would be appreciated. I will sit down later and try again.
Kind regards Feina
What you just replied to tell me sounds far more compelling than your current blurb. It talked about your mom's struggles to explain how she ended up in her state. It talked about how she was diagnosed as a vegetable when she really wasn't, it talked about your struggle with the shoddy care facilities, and your own hurdles at 20 in trying to deal with all of this. That gave me, the potential reader, MEAT to taste and savor. Use that as a basis for your blurb.
As for editing--know any friends or family members that are good at grammar and willing to help?
The reason I suggested the Go Fund Me was because you do have a book you can offer and it would get more eyes on it. Somehow it seems less like begging if you are giving something (your book) away for the donation. It's something to think about anyway.
You might also check on kboards.com in the Writer's Cafe and ask if there are biography people out there who wouldn't mind giving you a bit of help.