Do you have a writer in your circle of friends? Very likely!

How you can assist your writer-friend with selling books?

The Amazon “predator” (the seller with the monopoly for selling anything online) has the power to make or break a writer’s new novel. As I understand it with my limited knowledge of it, the algorithms systems of the world wide web hunt for the most clicked-on titles. Amazon then suggest readers to click on my book (with their comment in searches: ‘if you like this—you also might like this), based on how many people already clicked on it and searched for it. For your writer-friend’s book to succeed, it is important for you:

  1. As soon as the book it out: Search for the book on line (Amazon or other book sites) and if your friend sent you the link already, click on the book, and order it soon after publication.


  1. When your friend sent you the link and asked you to forward it, you could help send the book into the big wide world and generate more interest: click on the link, copy it, past it into an email or i-message, and forward the news to your friends and family, so that your friends can click on it, and forward it to a friend….. well, you get the picture.


  1. When your friend asked you to write a review on Amazon, write a review. The first reviews in turn generate more clicks and possibly more orders. To do that, go to the Amazon site and search for the book in the search window with the name of the writer and the title of the book. When it appears, click on the novel. At the bottom of the novel’s Amazon page is a product content section with a box: add a review. Click on it and add a review. Save it.

You may have to register with Amazon as an Amazon user to be able to do this.


So, now you can do your writer-friend a favour and assist with the sale of her new novel. I thank you very much. You are the one to send the new novel off. You are the one that makes sales possible. You are the link in the chain that makes a novel a success.


Does your writer-friend really need your help?


You bet!

A lot of work and money goes into writing a novel. To rise above the terrible quality of many on-line self-published novels, a writer has to invest time and money:

  • On learning the craft, taking courses, and re-writing many drafts, while their work is being professionally edited, for a fee of course.
  • After many re-writes and edits, the wallet must open again for the cover designer and interior designer of the book. We are now already two or three years further after the start of it all.
  • If the book is not advertised, the book will just sit there and do nothing at all. Advertising is expensive. The minimal support with low costs on-line advertising by requesting reviews from readers for the costs of a free book through the publisher is also costing money by missed revenues. The writer generally has a website and/or a blog which cost money to operate and maintain on an ongoing basis.


So far, money goes in and not coming out. Most writers do not make money on books, only the most successful writers do. Writing is a calling, a passion, not a money-maker.

With the publisher I used, of a price point of US $9.90 for a digital novel, 50% goes to the writer. Many writers reduce their prices to generate more sales, as some writers offer their digital books on line for free—but don’t ask about the novel’s quality. For a printed book @ US $12.08 per book, I get a lot less than that percentage, more like $2 per book. I easily spent already more than $6000 in addition to the website costs, so it’s not likely I will ever break even.


About BABYBOOMER johanna van zanten

My name is Johanna van Zanten. I am a baby boomer, interested in writing and connecting with other writers and readers to engage in discussions and information sharing, to share a point of view about current global issues, writing, and publishing, diversity, immigration, travel, music, life, specific baby boomer issues, and dating/relationship issues. I have written a novella, ON THIN ICE about baby-boomer Adrienne and will link this blog with the information website for this novella. Right now, I am trying out the blog.
This entry was posted in Agents, Author circles, Blog Hop, book give-away, book review, Canadian publishers, Short story, Uncategorized, Writing life, Young Adult books. Bookmark the permalink.

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