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  • Darren M. Palmer

6 Pitfalls That Dissolve Book Sales



Everyone experiences pitfalls, but what if you didn’t have to when it comes to being an author? I can’t tell you how many people I’ve run across that deal with the issue of not selling their books. I wanted to share some of the common pitfalls you want to avoid making your book a success.

Not Knowing Your TARGET Audience

Before you start writing your book (and mainly before you publish), you need to understand your target readers. If you don’t have any idea who your book is for, how will you sell it?

Sit down and think about the audience you want to reach. Then think of what you can share to help them. Also, think of something eye-catching for the cover that will grab their attention. It needs to align with your audience!

What is your passion? How can you help others? What is the reason you wake up every morning? Incorporate that in your writing, and you will discover your target audience!

Trying to do All the Work

If you are trying to do a children’s book and you can’t draw, chances are

you need to have a professional do the work! The same applies to every aspect of publishing.

You are not going to get ahead if you are not willing to invest in a professional. Yes, you can learn the process, and it may make it easier for additional books in the future, but I highly recommend knowing your strengths and operating in them.

Don’t be afraid to collaborate with others who offer services that will be beneficial to you.

Amateur Editing

A common mistake first time authors make is trying to skimp on hiring a professional editor. You can’t ask your friend, who is an English teacher, to do the work. You need a professional editor to edit your manuscript.

If there are a lot of misspellings, grammatical errors, and typos, readers will give your book a bad review. And it will affect your book ranking and sale.

To achieve long-term success with your publishing your book, you’ll need to hire a qualified and experienced editor. There are many different types of editing. Here are a few:

· Developmental Editing — A developmental editor will help you write your book, develop the characters, and make an improvement in the entire book.


· Substantive Editing — This editor will focus on making sure the scene flow well, clarify points, and remove awkward sentences.


· Copy Editing — A copy editor will help you to improve word usage and go through your manuscript line by line. They will correct grammar mistakes, spelling errors, punctuation errors, and capitalization mistakes.


A professional editor will provide you a fresh, objective pair of eyes, making sure that you have the best possible manuscript off to print. You can have a great message, but the readers will miss it if it is filled with inconsistencies and doesn’t flow well.

Horrible Book Description

Book description is another aspect that gets overlooked. It’s an excellent chance for you to take hold of the attention of potential readers. It’s your only chance to convince a reader to buy the book.

Most people don’t read your book descriptions; they just scan. Avoid making the mistake of pulling blocks of text from the back of your book without using any spacing, bullets, or bolding to highlight the text. Spend some time to work on your description; make it more visually appealing and error-free.

Unrealistic Expectations

While everyone desires to make a profit, you cannot let numbers hinder you from writing a book. You will never know how successful your book can be if you never write it! A book is another stream of income unless you are well known and recognized in the publishing industry or already have a large following and platform.

While it will bring in some income, the book’s purpose is to provide opportunities and get into rooms that will be beneficial. I don’t suggest being discouraged; however, you need to be realistic. Even if you did have a great book, it would take you investing in yourself and the passion behind your product to get it in the hands of potential readers.

Unrealistic: My Book Will Sell Millions of Copies!

Realistic: My book makes me money in other ways.

Unrealistic: My book will be a New York Times Bestseller!

Realistic: A book will get me authority and credibility in my niche.

Unrealistic: A book will make me famous.

Realistic: A book will raise my visibility and help me get media coverage.

Unrealistic: This book will transform my life.

Realistic: This book will open doors and create new opportunities for me.

You might be wondering, “What’s wrong with dreaming about hitting it big? Some books sell millions of copies and become bestsellers. Why not hope for the best?”

There’s nothing wrong with wanting your book to sell. The problem with unrealistic expectations is they make you write the wrong book.

Giving Up Too Easily

Overwhelm can cause people to quit! Just because you may not have all the answers or the book may not be selling how you’d like, that doesn’t mean you need to throw in the towel. If your first book doesn’t do well, don’t give up. You have to publish more. It’s not about the quality of your book that matters; it’s quantity too.

And the more you write, the better you become. Keep trying, keep testing, keep learning, and keep publishing. And it doesn’t add up, it multiplies.

When you learn a new thing, when you find a success formula, you connect it to all the things you learned before. Remember, the harder you work, the luckier you get. And if done correctly, I’ve never met anyone that has regretted becoming an author!

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