2015 Story Set
Date: November 1, 2015
BISAC Subject Codes
Or - How Does Anyone Find my Book?
How will people find your book?
I went to Amazon one day and typed in Regency and got overwhelmed. So I resorted to searching for authors I KNEW. Well, we just have to hope I am a rare bird, don't we? Or, perhaps I was overreacting. So I went to Amazon and typed in Hot Cops. And got overwhelmed again.
This time I see My Hot Cop, Hot Cops: Gay Erotic Stories, The Cop (Tall, Dark...) and Hot SWAT---MY BOOK! (A second book of mine, Sinkhole, also showed up. Meyer Park appears to be missing.) There were also K-9, humor, and on and on books. A wide range and variety of "Hot Cop" stories.
Obviously, a little refinement is needed in both searches.
Well, Amazon isn't Amazon if it doesn't do everything possible so you can sell your book, since they get a cut of every book you sell. They didn't big-foot this industry being lax. Nor do they stand on their laurels. (OK---for you young ones---that means that once you've achieved an accolade, milestone, whatever, you shouldn't stop trying to achieve another. Fame is fleeting.)
yep - they explain all this. Sort of.
They suggest TWO categories for your book. They tell you to search other titles.
There's an interesting thing that the industry has run to. Here's successful writer A and new writer B. New writer B claims to write "like" the successful writer A. If fact, new writer B MUST write like SOMEONE established. Because you will be ASKED who you write like.
I have a Typographer who just asked me who I write like. That answer depends on the day of the week and the genre (I write in several), the time of the month, and the phase of the moon. But I have to grab one or two names out of a hat. Well, not really. I grabbed books by a bunch of newer and successful authors and read them. Then examined them. Do I write like this one or that one?
Well, in truth you don't really write "like" anyone else unless you plagiarize, but you may write with a certain matching tone. Certain similarities. Snarky? Gentle? Hard-ass? Pick features that are similar. Go from there. A Karin Tabke book will not be like a Molly Harper book, but mine might have elements of both. I've been told that my "blog" (I NEVER called it a blog) was like Erma Bombeck with a harder edge. I'll take that. I loved her!
We'd all like to write fiction like Bella Andre because she's now sold five million books. Talk about raising the bar. I have four of her books to read shortly. Who am I kidding---my TBR pile is over 1,000 books deep, 300 on my Kindle. I will die before I catch up! But some books are on the "Hot" list. Bella's is. On that list.
All this requires you to READ. Which you should be doing anyway.
Once you have figured out what authors are your role-models, that you aspire to be as good as, may write sort-of like, write in your genre of the moment, and whatever screening you use, these then become the key to finding your BISAC code.
Thought I went off topic, didn't you?
Once you pick out your wanna-be-like authors, and I recommend at least three, five is better, maybe a coven, hunt them down on Amazon. (I have no doubt that you could do this on the other platforms, but Amazon makes it easier.) (Another reason they have big-footed the industry.)
For Bella Andre The Way You Look Tonight - book 9 in the Sullivan's Series, let's peek. (This is a snapshot in time - the book just came out - calm down.)
Well - that's more than TWO categories.Actually, these are the LISTS that the two categories you chose put you on.
What jumps off the page here are these categories
Well, let's check - this is what my distributor said to use: (predefined list - headed to a LOT of platforms)
See "General"? Amazon said Don't use General - refine it - just wait.
Do my books match this list? Yes, surprisingly.
OK - go find yours and then pick TWO.
Pick two that do not overlap in searches. In other words, are not redundant.
Refinement - And then there's this
Science Fiction & Fantasy Keywords
"In order for a title to appear in the Romance sub-categories below, the title's search keywords must include at least one of the keywords or phrases listed next to the sub-category. These categories and subcategories are specific to books listed for sale on Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk; other marketplaces may not support these keywords."
I am not ready to get into that. I also didn't see "Police" or "COPS" or "FIREMEN" or...
OK - let me look at an author who writes Firemen.
These are the same lists as were popping above.
DO THIS FOR YOUR BOOK
Examine a few (2-3-4-5 ) books that are in the category you are writing in
Pick two category descriptions.
Here's what comes up for my Hot SWAT book. So the two things they told me to use? Seems to get me where I need to be. (Hot SWAT is 3 short stories - book is just over 25K words - first book - not out long)
FINALLY - WHAT IF YOU WANT TO CHANGE?
Some people have tweaked and tweaked their listings - unless you totally failed the first pass, don't do this. Certainly not more often than once a year. Stop wasting time and write something else. The more you write the higher you climb.
Your latest book will sell your earlier books. Ten is the magic number to see this. Thirty is better. So go write.
Hot SWAT, Meyer Park, Sinkhole, and coming shortly Collateral Damage are written under my pen name, Caliente Morgan. On Amazon, Nook, iTunes, and KOBO and a slew of other distribution sites.
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