I’ve seen quite a few authors make the New York Times bestseller list and/or the USA Today bestseller list so I wanted to know what all was involved in doing such a thing. Lots, of course. Lots of sales, lots of promotions.
Lots of everything.
But one author did it by putting together her stories with other authors in in anthology.
Ooh, that’s interesting…
Now, it’s not like they broadcasted the information that subsequently got them the title of USA Today Bestselling Author. I had to friend one of the authors on Facebook under a fake name (I pretended to be a mid-twenties female fan on FB) so she’d have a conversation with me – and eventually, after a few weeks, in bits and pieces, she gave up the goods.
And what she said opened my eyes.
(Yours, too. Right now you’re thinking: Dan’s a sneaky fucker.)
When it comes to promotions, pull out all the stops. If somebody won’t tell Dan the author/blogger, let them tell somebody they think is a fan. (And I was a fan. Right after I friended her for being a USA Today bestselling author. I just used a fake personality. Is that wrong? It’s like being an undercover cop.)
What did I learn?
In the USA Today bestselling author’s case, what happened was she contributed a story to an anthology along with 8 or 9 other authors, and they all promoted the book.
It did well and made the USA Today bestseller list! USA Today uses e-Books; at that time the NY Times didn’t (it still may not, I don’t know.)
Think about it. WHY DID THAT WORK?
9 authors promoting the book
9 authors tweeting about the book
9 authors running ads
9 authors utilizing their different ad resources
9 authors blogging
That’s GOTTA be better than you going it alone, right?
What did the anthologies have in common? The book had a theme. They all, more or less, were based around that theme. And by more or less, I mean less. It was a loose interpretation of anthology, but whatever. The goal was to bind together and make a splash with quality stories.
And they did.
They made a splash.
They wrote QUALITY stories.
It was a legit endeavor. They worked together and got themselves onto the USA Today bestseller list – meaning each of the authors involved gets to claim the title of USA Today Bestselling author. Like a Olympics gold medal winner, you don’t have to win it again each year to still be called an Olympic gold medal winner. Once is enough, you get the title for life.
Think about the power of that on all your marketing efforts going forward…
They all get to claim it, because who can say which story is the one that did it? They all did.
I wonder if WE could do that?
I wonder if we have enough clout here for each of us to contribute a short story that goes into an anthology that we all subsequently promote and have it make it to the New York Times bestseller list or the USA Today bestseller list?
Let’s say we did, and it worked. How much better does it make your pitch when you go to meet an agent/publisher/publicist/etc., to say you are a USA Today bestselling author?
Sounds nice, eh?
That goes on every book cover from then on
That goes in every bio from then on
That goes in every interview you do from then on.
You get the idea.
Just by show of hands, if you’re interested in trying something like this, comment below or send me a message. If you have my email, use it; if not, try the Contact Me button and let’s see what kind of group we can assemble. There’s a lot of talent that reads this blog there’s certainly a lot of smart people here. I think it really might be doable.
And that’s a phrase you’d get to use on every story you put forth from then on. Plus, I believe if you can do it once, you can do it again – but by doing it once you’ve leverage your ability do it again!
Maybe this goes somewhere, maybe it goes nowhere. One anthology I saw was a sample from each of their books, taking segments that could be stand-alones. That might just piss people off, though… Maybe an anthology of short stories we write just for this book, with a legit common theme designed to appeal to a large genre’s audience, is better.
What do YOU think?
Would we be better doing it as a bunch of short stories, with a theme? Probably. But I’m open. Give me your thoughts. Let’s see what we come up with! (If it’s a bad idea, ask yourself why you read the post. Maybe the title? Those publications are powerful, eye catching things!)
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Got a QUESTION? ASK IT! Hit the Contact Me button and I’ll see what I can do. (I have lots of smart friends.)
Dan Alatorre is the author of several bestsellers and the hilarious upcoming novel “Poggibonsi: an italian misadventure.” Check out his other works HERE