Wednesday, 1 February 2012

John Locke - The Indie Paladin

I have just read John Locke’s, ‘How I sold 1 million e-books in five months’; a title destined for the same success story as the top ranking e-book series to which it refers - Donovan Creed. I’ve no doubt that this book has sold to innumerable Indie authors and will continue to do so as his target audience pay homage to it.

Mr. Locke is a superb salesman; sharp, intuitive, witty and ruthlessly focussed. I felt as though I was sitting in a room full of enthusiastic wannabes hanging on his every word, chuckling heartily every time I found myself obeying his commands to, ‘go back and read that section again - I’ll wait.’

His book promotion strategy is based on knowing your target and aiming for it, or finding a niche and writing for it, though his admission that he wrote five books prior to publishing the first, did slightly quell my enthusiasm in the beginning. I, like many Indie first-timers, wrote the book, dived headlong into self-publishing and only then discovered what the old hands knew: publicise the book for at least six months before your release date.

This little setback aside, Mr. Locke goes on to help repair the damage with a concise strategy to homogenise your book with an existing readership. He goes into great detail about how best to use social media and maximise your blog entries, without bombarding your followers with inane chatter for the sake of something to say - the fast route to instant deletion.

Mr. Locke’s indomitable spirit and self-effacing manner are prerequisite tools for a good salesman. But in fairness, he reiterates that he wrote this book with a view to helping other authors navigate the self-publicising minefield that probably eliminates many good writers at the outset. He plainly routes for the little guy over the big bully legacy publishers and would be delighted to learn that his marketing strategy has created similar success for other Indie authors. And he clearly appreciates his OOU’s (One Of Us) readership, to whom he pays devout respect.

I too love success stories of this nature, and despite the fact that John Locke doesn’t need the income from his book sales, I sincerely hope that he continues to be a trail-blazing, guiding light for the Indie publishing revolution.

I’ve not had the pleasure of Mr. Donovan Creed, yet, but if he’s anything like his alter-ego I’m sure I’ll enjoy his company . . .