Marketing / writing

Writing Wednesday: So, How’s that Marketing Going?

Last week’s goals:

I made my three blog posts and my comments on others’ blogs. (I would make a goal to GET comments on my blog, but that wouldn’t be a goal – it would be a milestone, because I have no control over that, dear readers… see how craftily I worked that request in there? Probably not…)

I’m keeping my available stories in circulation. I still haven’t deciphered how to record submissions in Literarium, so it is still only useful for finding markets – I still have to keep track of submissions and results in my spreadsheet (which I would do, anyway; it would just be useful to record in Literarium because it would then stop suggesting markets I’ve already sent to and make my life a little easier. But heck, the tool is free…)

I continue to re-listen to Writing Great Fiction (James Hynes lectures in Great Courses); since I’m not in the car as much between no DAY JOB and Covid-19, I don’t listen to audio-books as much. I’m only half listening to Writing Great Fiction the 2nd time around and hoping that osmosis helps it set in my mind (it actually does work for me – like a soft form of subliminals.)

I spent a little time redoing the cover for “Purr Mission” (you can see it further down in today’s post.) The new one is nothing fancy, but it’s more in line with the rest of the series now (the original was one of the first covers I ever did – eight years ago, and another year before I actually completed the 2nd Herc Tom story (so I wasn’t even thinking series at the time).)

I boosted my fiction production to 3,898 words last week (over my 3,000 word quota), all of it on Swordsmaster’s Sequel (now at 9,900 words);that was writing on six days, with about 1/3rd of the count on a single day, so I know I could still do better. But maybe this is going to be my NEW NORMAL – inconsistent production and writing times while dealing with LIFE.


So, this marketing thing I’m trying to get a handle on…

I now have the new edition of “Purr Mission” (Herc Tom’s first story)  at all my retailers for FREE (including Amazon, which will only allow FREE through price-matching; they want to make money, but they also want to be no more expensive than anyone else so they can dominate the market.) The special edition contains a link that takes the reader to a subscription page in MAILCHIMP that offers a FREE copy of “Nipped in the Butt” (the 2nd Herc Tom story) in exchange for a voluntary email submission.

So far, I have no takers on the email subscription, but it’s been less than a week, so be patient, Bill.  

(if you want to subscribe, you can do it HERE)

Meanwhile, making the story free on Amazon has resulted in some downloads (most of them in the U.K., for some reason. It’s too early to tell anything yet about whether or not the change in cover is having any impact – don’t know if I’ll ever be able to tell, but at least the new color is more suggestive of the nature of the story.

Part of what I learned is that a new release gets an advantage in Amazon’s algorithms (not sure how to manage that on a story ePubbed eight years ago.) There are other tricks of the trade that I need to figure out – how to pick the right categories and keywords that will make “Purr Mission” draw the type of readers who would be naturally inclined to read it. One of the problems with FREE is that people who are out grabbing FREE books don’t necessarily care about the book they just downloaded. They may never start to read it, or if they do, they aren’t invested in the genre or the style. Speculative fiction is a broader category than most people realize, and people who are PAYING for what they download usually pay more attention to whether it’s something they care about reading.

I’ve heard that there are ways to manipulate the algorithms, like getting your book into a less-populated subcategory so it shows up near the top in certain searches. I know I can’t make myself write in the big money genres (like ROMANCE) – I have enough trouble getting mu=y stories to go anywhere near where I want them to go as it is. Dictating GENRE or formulaic writing? I don’t think so.

I don’t think I’ll ever get that sophisticated at this – but I need to improve some if I want to make a go of it.

But hey, I’m trying. Just saying…


William Mangieri has written several pieces of short fiction, but he also has two series of short stories.

The first series is Herc Tom, Champion of the Empire; the inaugural story – PurrMission-MainTall_025“Purr Mission”, won him the first of his Honorable Mentions in the Writers of the Future contest.

Major Tom’s cub is dying of the Morient Virus, and he knows their sworn enemies the Baastards are responsible, but bureaucats order him not to go to their planet to recover the antidote. Easier to beg forgiveness than to ask purrmission. Ready for heroism, space, spies, and lives in the balance? 

“Purr Mission” can be found FOR FREE at various retailers, including, but not limited to: 



(AND – there’s also a link inside for the opportunity to receive “Nipped in the Butt” – the 2nd Herc Tom, Champion of the Empire tale – for FREE as well!)

InAFlashJimmyCoverHis second series is Detective Jimmy Delaney, with “In a Flash” as the first story.

Jimmy was a good cop, but age and changing times were getting the better of him. If he could only get an edge – what would be the harm? I mean, everybody cheats a little, don’t they? Read “In a Flash” to see Jimmy get himself out of trouble.

“In a Flash” can be found at several online retailers for FREE, including, but not limited to: 



Go out and give them both a read (and a review would be appreciated, too – thanx!)


Fate is neither something to run away from, nor something to run towards.

The first bright-eye to be seen on the mountain in living memory, Swordsmaster4Sandrik didn’t want anyone to think of him as they did the ominous Aurae of legend, so he had worked hard to keep his special abilities hidden. But there was more to Sandrik than even he knew. Now that it was time for him to enter the ancient ruins of Taernfeld and be declared a man, what other changes might he be forced into?

Swordsmaster is a fantasy novel, and is available at several online retailers, including, but not limited to:




William Mangieri’s writing has been published on Daily Science Fiction. His eighty or so short fictions and related collections can be found at several online retailers, including, but not limited to:
• Smashwords:
• His Amazon Author page:
• Barnes & Noble:


• His site on WordPress:
• “William Mangieri’s Writing Page” on Facebook at:
• His Goodreads author page:
• Or on twitter: @WilliaMangieri

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