How To Be A Best Selling Author


how to be a best selling author image of books

By 2100, it has been forecast that the total world population went past the 11 billion barrier, so if there is one thing you should take away from this, it is that there is a never ending supply of new readers out there, and how to be a best selling author will get easier and easier.

Like life, nothing is static. As well as humans, new words and ideas are born every fraction of a second of every minute of every hour of every day. And that opens up new avenues for writers to explore.

Put all that together and you should be able to see the possibilities of becoming a best selling author no matter what genre you choose for your next novel (or subject for your next ‘how to’ book to promote you or your business).

Plots and Plans

Whatever you write about, fiction or non-fiction, you must have a compelling plot or plan. For fiction, this is easy. You have Shakespeare for a start. Choose any of the standard plots from there and you are away. Mix them together and you can’t go wrong if its intrigue and surprise you are after.

For non-fiction, there is only one way to break through, and that is ‘step by step’. People are inherently lazy and in our society of abundance, we have more free time, and we get lazier with it. That means you have to spell out exactly what to do if you want people to like and recommend your book.

Write Write Write

The most successful authors write. Period. They are driven by it and for it. If you are the sort of person who has plenty of ideas, but never start (or start and never finish), then hire a ghost writer instead.

The more you write, the more you can publish. And the more you do that, the better you get at it and the more your words (and message) get out.

Use the free publishing platforms to do it. A successful author is a successful author because that’s what they do. One novel will not make you a successful author.


Much the same as above. Don’t give up. If you give up, then that makes you a non-author! What do you want to be?

Set a Deadline

Above all else. Set yourself a deadline. It must be doable though. Don’t miss that deadline. Shipping, as Seth Godin says in his excellent book Linchpin is the difference between success and failure.

Not all successful authors do this of course, but to be an author means you write books. Not one, but many. Are you an author? Get writing and become one.

Tell Everyone You Know

Write the book first, then tell everyone you know. Friends, family and acquaintances. Join every social network you can find and setup a Facebook fan page so you can connect with your readers.

Get copies of your book out to all these people. Printed copies via Print on Demand (POD) publishers like if you can afford it, or PDF if not). Get feedback from them and rewrite sections if necessary (but always listen to your heart first – it’s your book).

Once you are happy, go ahead and publish it.

Go Global

Get it translated once it starts selling. There are numerous sites to get this done. Always test out potential translators (and only pick native speakers). Send test pieces, then ask other native language speakers what they think. Look at the feedback. Don’t pick the cheapest.

Being a Best Selling Author to Build your Business

If you just want to publish a book to advertise your expertise or life story to enhance your business, great. It is good marketing. If you feel you cannot write it yourself, then use a ghost writer.

Are you going to give it away or sell it? Placing it on Amazon at a premium price gives it value. It wont cost you any more to produce it, whatever the price (using POD services such as Kindle KDP or Lulu) so your prospects will feel they are getting something of value, and you will be enhancing your credibility.

Above all, never give up, and keep writing and publishing.

About the author 

Quentin Pain

Quentin Pain started his first business, a courier company aged 23. He sold it 4 years later and used the profits to start a recording studio. A couple of albums later, he started two software companies, the last one being Accountz, which he grew from zero to 36,000 customers and retired from in January 2013. He is a director of ProofMEDIA, a specialist digital consulting business. He's also a published author (including a Dummies title), and has won many awards including the IAB Small Business Mentor of the Year. Copywriting is his speciality and he runs 3 groups on Facebook under the Science of Copywriting brand, which combined has well over 100,000 members. Quentin is also Founder of the International Copywriters Association and SEO Lead for the UK's largest private hospital group.

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