I have published a book of short stories but there is no sale yet in any of the market. My Book is also showing very low on Amazon search. What should I do?
The name of the book is "The String of pearls by Navneet Anand"
What am I doing wrong?
The book cover has no images
The paragraphs are too long (western markets don't like walls of text)
The word "the" is misused or misplaced more than once (for example we don't say "the dusk")
There is no table of contents
But the biggest problem is that the story / stories of the book and genre are not clear. Generic books don't do well in genre fiction markets.
The same problem happens with my book 'The King's Kumite.' I don't know what the problem really is. I have a good book cover and I have my book edited by an English professional editor. There are still no sales. Sometimes I cannot help thinking if there is a prejudice against my book. Maybe it is because of my name... Maybe I am totally wrong. I don't know... But I strongly believe that people don't see my book. However, I don't give up and keep on the struggle. I believe that God will help me one day.
The problem is the book. You have a nice cover, but it looks like a romance title for western audiences, and suddenly the main character starts talking about kung fu. It is not clear what the market is nor who the book is for.
The writing is okay, but there are short choppy sentences and you rely too much on narrative summary. Published stories are no longer written like this.
Hope that helps. Authors with foreign names sell lots of books and you can too, but you need to write for the markets which expect specific content.
The fact that you've posted the title of your book, I've taken to mean that you've invited feedback. So, here goes...
Firstly, I don't think your name or prejudice have anything to do with your lack of sales.
I had a quick look at the 'Look inside' of your book, and it struck me that I wasn't sure who your target audience is. Are you aiming the book at adults or children?
The reason I ask, is that whilst your translator did a much better job than the majority I've seen, the way it's written still doesn't quite flow naturally. It's as though it was written to be read to a group of young children, using very simple, small words, and short sentences. (I could imagine myself reading it to my kids when they were younger, putting on silly voices for the characters.)
Now, that may be what you intended, as it appears to be a fairy tale of sorts, but if it is, I would make more of the fact that children are your target audience in the blurb.
But if it's aimed at adults, then it doesn't quite hit the mark in the way the sentence structure flows, and, if I'm honest, I would leave it on the shelf as I found the language somewhat jarring and stilted.
The fact that at the moment it doesn't seem to fall into one category or another, might be a reason for no sales. There's no right or wrong direction when it comes to which genre you pick to list it in, as both children's books and adult fantasy are difficult genres to sell your book in. My advice, for what it's worth, is that you need to pick one, as you're obviously not doing very well where you are.
You also might want to take a look at your blurb again, as it comes across as being written by a teenager. Your reference to 'lots of awesome fights' sounds like something my 13 year old would say.
Apologies if my criticism seems harsh. It's intended to be constructive not destructive, as I can tell you've put so much hard work into getting your book published.
I don't normally critique books as I am also a fairly new writer.
I downloaded the sample and only made it through a few pages.
The first thing I noticed is there is no copyright page on your book.
The beginning page was rather confusing to me but I may not understand some things.
The first story had the word fishes when you speak of types of fishes. We normally just say types of fish.
It took me a few minutes to realize what hawker is as they don't normally exist in the United States.
Other things that are not common are samosa, and wala. I am still not certain what a wala is.
I also republished one of my books after I read it online. It has not sold anything yet either. Just because you publish a book does not mean it will sell. You also must market it.
You must realize that when you write a book based on your experiences in your country, it may now be understood in another country. There are differences in the way we say things that are different. I know this from experience from traveling and living in a foreign country.
In the United States you can disagree with someone with no consequences. Here you may get shot and killed.
I hope this helps.
As a suggestion I would say, read a lot of English written fiction books. Read some short books on Show vs. Tell. There is a book titled Showing and Telling by Marcy Kennedy that is very good. She has a complete set of books on writing short stories.
The final piece of advice is most important.
Write every day. Write something, even it it is just a paragraph. Write , write,write. That is the only way to get better. You may fail but you will always get better if you don't quit.
Finally, forget the part about your heritage. I never noticed you as foreign until you mentioned it. I read titles, not author names.
Hope this helps.
Thank you very much kencoon for your insight. Will try to work on that. I have included all kind of stories in the book i.e every genre. If you will look further you will see that. Thanks for the feedback