Green-light Your Book with Brooke Warner and Crystal-Lee Quibell discusses how to navigate the publishing world as an indie author. How should you promote your work? Learn how to succeed in the new era of book publishing without breaking the bank.

Brooke Warner is the publisher of She Writes Press, a writing coach at Warner coaching, and devoted ally to aspiring writers. Brooke is the author of several titles including How To Sell Your Memoir and, her latest Green-light Your Book.

Brooke and I had the opportunity to discuss everything from promoting your work to building a long-term career as an author and expert. This interview is packed full of information you don’t want to miss. Listen to the show in the player below and check out a few of the additional after the show questions Brooke answered below!

After The Show Q&A with Brooke Warner

How important is it for authors to keep track of their meta-data listings and their accuracy?

I have a whole chapter in my book that addresses metadata, which is data about data. It’s really important that authors follow the rules of metadata, and that they enter the data in a consistent way, with an eye toward keywords and searchable terms. It can drastically impact the discoverability of a new book, so it’s worth brushing up on the topic.

How long do authors under a traditional publishing house have to earn back their advance in book sales? Does this happen often or is it pretty common not to meet the goal?

Traditional houses are aiming for authors to earn back their advance within a three-year period. That’s how they think about it. Of course they want the book to earn out in Year 1, but that’s not very common. It’s said that 90% of all books fail, which means that they fail to earn out their advances. So that’s a pretty high failure rate. It’s a competitive industry.

How long do authors of self-published titles have to earn back their investment?

It’s different for self-published authors because there’s no higher power to be accountable to other than themselves. I still think setting a benchmark for three years is a good idea, but since self-published authors have to pay for everything—editing, production, printing, publicity, I would also say that the likelihood of earning back an investment on the first one or two books an author publishes will be pretty low. Most authors start to recoup their investment around the publication of books three and four.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received about writing?

Butt in chair. Honestly, it’s that simple. It’s so easy, especially in our fast-paced world, to be waylaid by distractions. It’s difficult to keep writing appointments and to be as prolific as we want to be in order to have the kind of success we hope for. Make and keep your appointments. Write a lot. Publish often.

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