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Interview Yourself #5: Shoutouts for Steph

Hi, folks! Today, I’m continuing with a new, unique series of posts. In the coming weeks, I’m going to be interviewing myself using pre-written questions from other blog sites, starting with these from Lawrence Wray.

It’s going to be a lot of fun, and a great way for me to reveal a little bit more about myself, my writing and my habits. Are you ready? Good – let’s get started.

 

Dane Cobain

 

Tell us about the cover/s and how it/they came about.

Most of my covers follow the same format – I work with a designer to come up with concepts, we start out with three different designs and then start to hone in on the final concept. The exception is the No Rest for the Wicked cover, which didn’t really need any amends on my end, and the Former.ly cover, which was part designed by Michelle Fairbanks of Fresh Design and half-designed by myself.

 

Who designed your book cover/s?

A very talented designer called S. L. Stacker, who’s also an author in her own right! I’d recommend checking some of her stuff out.

 

Do you think that the cover plays an important part in the buying process?

Yeah – it’s quite often what first catches the eye of potential readers, and you also need to drum it in to your regular readers until they see it in their sleep. Alongside the blurb, it’s the most important thing there is to get people to pick it up and start reading.

 

How are you publishing this book and why?

No Rest for the Wicked is published by Dragon Moon Press, an indie publisher. The rest of my books are self-published through CreateSpace.

 

What would you say are the main advantages and disadvantages of self-publishing against being published or the other way around?

I haven’t seen much of a difference between being published by indie authors and self-publishing. The main advantage of signing with a major publisher is that they’ll help with marketing budget and the like. As an indie, one of the best things I’ve found is that it can be pretty cheap to order physical copies – I make around a 100% markup for each copy I sell, much more than I make through royalties from online sales.

 

Dane Cobain
Dane Cobain

 

How do you market your books?

I do a little bit of everything – I’m all over the internet, me. I use social media sites, promote stuff through my book blog and have a mailing list, and I do a lot of blogger outreach as well. I also have a presence at some local events, including Sunday Assembly High Wycombe – where I’m the poet in residence – and at a monthly spoken word night that I organise.

 

Why did you choose this route?

I basically try everything I can think of to get the word out, so the main reason I try this route is because it’s an aggregation of every single different route that I can think of.

 

Would you or do you use a PR agency?

I do some of it myself. My first ‘realjob after finishing university was at a PR agency, and so I picked some bits up that I’ve been able to put into practice. I wouldn’t use an agency, though – too expensive for what you get, and PR coverage often doesn’t actually lead to direct sales.

 

Do you have any advice for other authors on how to market their books?

Try everything, and then try it again. Measure what works – in the form of getting your book into readers’ hands – and don’t discount giving away free copies if it’s likely to get the results you need.

 

What part of your writing time do you devote to marketing your book?

I use a productivity routine – called The Schedule™, which I wrote about here – and work it in alongside other stuff. It’s hard to tell exactly how much time I spend on marketing, but I suspect it averages out as at least an hour or two per day.

 

Dane Cobain - Come On Up to the House
Dane Cobain – Come On Up to the House

 

So there we have it – that’s the latest instalment of Interview Yourself over and done with! Thanks, as always, for reading, and be sure to keep your browser pointed to DaneCobain.com. You can also sign up to my mailing list, follow me on Facebook and Twitter or check out my books for further info. I’ll see you soon!

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