Let’s play a game of pretend. You’ve been writing for a while, and you can write and edit to a reasonable standard. You have maybe 500 social media followers from your author persona, but you are a newbie author. You know nothing about self-publishing, but you’ve invested time (and money if you have any) into producing your book. It’s good, the cover, the blurb, the content, it’s your best work.
How are you going to release it?
Rapid Release is for authors who have either a large backlist waiting to be published or can write rapidly and either afford professional editing or are really quick and good editors themselves.
The theory is that if you release a book every month, Amazon will keep your book listed. All new releases get a first-month boost on where the book is listed.
- You get plenty of books out quickly and thus grow your backlist rapidly
- You get an “Amazon Boost” every month
- Readers don’t have to wait long for the next book
- Helps pre-orders of the next book (because readers aren’t waiting long)
There are probably a few more reasons for rapid release, but we can’t think of them at the moment.
- Managing release dates, book launches, etc., on a tight schedule
- Meeting release dates (Amazon gets upset if you have a pre-order up and you cancel, shift the date, or miss the deadline for uploading your manuscript). We believe you get one free pass without penalty, but rules change rapidly.
- Maintaining a life (work, family, hobbies)
- Managing contractors and ensuring they can meet deadlines.
- Realising you have a major structural issue (across the life of the series)
Maximising your successes.
KJ Matthews is set up for a 6-week rapid release cycle. It was meant to be 4 weeks, but she struggled with many of the aspects above. What we encouraged her to do was.
- Give herself a bit extra time between launches
- Use that time for a day off occasionally. She works full-time, plus runs her writing business for about 20 hours per week
- Schedule social media posts but don’t get locked into marketing book 1
- Don’t stress about low sales on book 1. (We have a strategy in place for Book 4!)
What KJ Matthews did before she decided on the rapid release schedule:
- Finish all novellas in her “The Odyssey of the Seven” Series
- Structurally edit all novellas
This allowed her to then treat each book as an individual entity.
Rapid release works for KJ because she writes novellas. Jayne Thornber is a one-book-a-year writer, and we aren’t even going to suggest rapid release for one book a year.
As always, happy writing.