I just finished one of the best books on indie publishing that I’ve ever read, and two successful independent authors may have just picked up a new reader.
I’ve never read the fiction of Johnny B. Truant and Sean Platt, but I did recently acquire their guide for indie authors titled Write. Publish. Repeat. (NOTE: There are affiliate links in this post. This is one of them.)
I’m not going to bore you with a lot of words in this post. I’m going to tell you why I like Platt’s and Truant’s book then I’m going to tell what I don’t like about it. Before I do either of those two things I’m going to say this: I was skeptical when I first heard that Platt and Truant wrote 1.5 million words in one year. How can you write that fast and be good? By conventional wisdom, you can’t.
However, this duo (and their partner David Wright) work as a team. One individual putting out that many words is suspect. Two individuals can establish a system based on division of responsibilities that might make it possible.
Another thing Platt and Truant have in their favor is that both were prodigious Internet marketers before turning to writing fiction. Truant was a popular blogger and Platt was a search engine optimization specialist and online copywriter. So their success can be attributed more to their abilities as marketers rather than as fiction writers. Again, I haven’t read their fiction so I don’t know if it’s any good, but I can say that they are expert marketers.
Now for the nitty gritty.
As someone who has been ghostwriting online content for seven years, I agree with a lot of what these two authors say about marketing in Write. Publish. Repeat. Probably all of it.
You have to understand this: Write. Publish. Repeat. is not a book about writing fiction. It is a book about publishing and marketing your writing. It’s primary target is fiction writers, but any author can learn from it. No matter what you write, to succeed, you need a marketing system. That’s what Truant and Platt have given you in Write. Publish. Repeat.
That might not be a ringing endorsement from a guy who hasn’t proven himself, but their message resonates with me for three reasons:
If you haven’t figured out what the message is by the title, let me spell it out for you …
Write. Publish. Repeat.
Truant and Platt are consistent with this message throughout the book. Your job as a writer is to write. When you’re done, take off your artist’s hat and become a business person (i.e. publisher). Now, repeat the process.
Readers familiar with J.A. Konrath, John Locke, and other indie authors already understand the importance of marketing as a writer-entrepreneur. What makes Platt and Truant different from the rest is their emphasis on the “repeat.” They are known for writing and publishing multiple serial novels, which is brilliant because if the first story is any good then you’ve got readers hooked on crack. And their discussion on sales funnels is an absolute must-read for every author (fiction and nonfiction).
In short, they motivate me to do what I should have been doing for the past 20 years.
This is going to be short.
There isn’t much I don’t like about Write. Publish. Repeat.
But … I do think they spend way too much time talking about themselves early on. I know why they do, though. They’re establishing their authority (and their voice). However, their section at the beginning about who they are and who their audience is, yadda yadda yadda, is a bit wordy. If their fiction is anything like that, I’ll be disappointed.
But I’m willing to give them a try. I did download a couple of their free books, which I’ll read when I have the time. If I like them, I’ll buy more. That’s their plan. It’s worked for them before and I’m sure it will work again.
I can’t recommend Write. Publish. Repeat. more, but only if you’re serious about your success as an independent author.