Recently, I posted something on LinkedIn called Author, Entrepreneur, or Authorpreneur? My point was that, if you’re interested in breaking into the top 100 in your Amazon category, you’re probably going to have to spend some time acting like a businessperson when it comes to book sales.

Those three titles – author, entrepreneur, and authorpreneur – all represent potential business models, and I guess the question is, which one is the best, and why?

If you’re an author with a traditional publishing contract, you don’t really have to be an entrepreneur as such; the publishing company does the marketing and PR for you, though you have to do a little of it. But mainly, you can get on with the next book. It’s your publisher’s job to get you into the top 100 of XYZ category.

If you’re an independent author like myself, you are by definition an entrepreneur…maybe a great one, maybe a terrible one, or maybe somewhere in between. But one thing is for sure: you have to run your author business like a business.

The distinction between author or entrepreneur and the relatively-recently-coined word authorpreneur is an interesting one. I suppose the emphasis for an authorpreneur really depends upon the individual. Are you more interested in the business side of things, making money from a variety of merchandise? Or are you primarily interested in writing?

I found a neat article by Joel Friedlander for aspiring authorpreneurs, and he said something very important: Every book is essentially a mini startup business. That really says it all for me. Sure, I’m in business, and sure, I want to sell as many books as I can. But the goal is to buy time to write more books. It’s a vocation, not an avocation. To me, being an “author” isn’t nearly as important as being a writer…but if I want to have the chance to keep writing, I have to sell books.

Right now I’m offering a free book to anyone who purchases the Kindle version of my first novel, Brothers’ Hand, which is currently hovering around the top 100 mark in its Amazon category. Buy it within the next 24 hours, email the receipt to me at info@msahno.com, and I’ll personally send you a free copy of either my second novel, Jana, or my third novel, Miles of Files. These novels each took about seven years to write, so it’s just about the most substantial offer I can possibly make. Take advantage of this limited offer tonight!

repetition

Insanity: Writing the Same Thing Over and Over?

Sometimes I feel like I’m standing at the bottom of those steps. I’ve been really lucky: I’ve had the good fortune to publish and sell four of my novels, and I run a freelance writing and editing business as well. I have great clients who love what I do and send me...
identity

Who Are You? And What Do You Want?

Readers of this blog who are also movie buffs may be able to help me out today: tell me where I got that title about identity! I’m fairly certain there was an old movie or TV show where a character said, “Who are you? And what do you want?” But for the life of me, I...
patchworks

Patchworks: A Book Review

Today I woke to the all-too-familiar tragic news of yet another mass shooting. Sadly, we all know what will happen next: politicians will sputter, talking heads will bloviate, and the next thing that gets done about gun control will be – absolutely nothing. Such is...

What If I Don’t Want to Sell?

Yesterday I had the pleasure of giving a talk called Marketing Your Novel that was hosted by the Orlando Public Library. A good twenty people or so were kind enough to show up on a blazing Florida Sunday afternoon to hear me speak. The talk went well: I gave the group...

Facebook vs. Twitter

The news that Microsoft will be acquiring LinkedIn just sent shockwaves through the social media world, immediately leading to speculation about Twitter. Is it going to be next? We all assume that Facebook is not for sale, but in our topsy-turvy media world, I suppose...
writer

Are You The Kind Of Writer Who Reads A Lot?

When I was in high school, I had a real dilemma: I loved the books the teachers assigned us, and as a result, the teachers loved me. Naturally, that meant some of the other students hated me. Now, I should clarify this by saying that I didn't always love what I was...
disturbances

New “Writer Problems” Series, Topic #9: Distractions, Disruptions & Disturbances

This week's blog post has three sections: distractions, disruptions and disturbances, as if they were three unique items—which, of course, they can be. There’s a common “writer” meme that reads, “Being a good writer is 3% talent, 97% not being distracted by the...
artists

Calling All Artists

This week's blog post is going to be super short: if you've ever read the blog, you’ll know I'm posting often about my upcoming book launch. I’m releasing my fourth novel in 2019, and I’m putting a lot of emphasis on finding artists first. I put out a call for graphic...
creativity

New “Writer Problems” Series, Topic #5: Creativity vs. Money

One of the most daunting questions amateur writers face is whether they can make money following their most creative pursuits. Are they too non-commercial? Will an agent be interested? Will my work sell at all? The question of Creativity vs. Money isn’t relevant for...
IngramSpark KDP

Using IngramSpark and KDP Print For Your Paperbacks

This week's post is about using two different companies for Print-On-Demand publishing—IngramSpark and KDP. Ever since Amazon began offering services to authors, there's been a question in the indie author community: should I use them? My answer, initially, was a...