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5 Mistakes Independent Authors Make That’s Costing Them Money

By November 21, 2016August 14th, 2021Blog + Business

Being an independent author is one of the most freeing experiences of my work history.

…and perhaps in general.

Writing books, short stories, prose, poems, editing, and ghost writing create opportunities for me to meet with all of my personalities regularly to discuss thousands of conversations that we have daily. I get several opportunities to drift off into a space that’s private, except for the voices, to build characters, create chaos, see drama manifest, and tailor an ending that will make most squirm for days.

..and you know what

“What”, you ask?

I’m not the only independent author on the planet.

“You’re not”.

Nope, I know it’s hard to believe.

There are thousands of independent authors with treasures in their literary bounties. However, we rarely get exposed to these authors because they are not using these 5 essential tools to get eyes on their work and cash in their pockets.

  • No Social Media

Many of my colleagues and craft mates are out here in these literary streets without any social media presence. They don’t have a Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, Periscope, or even a personal Facebook spot. This behavior must stop immediately. In order to get your work out to the masses, you must work social media like the rent is due; because it probably is.

If you’re new to using social media for promotion, try this quick algorithm to get started.


  • Lack of Mentorship

I first started writing and sharing publicly in the late 90s. Outside of my then college professors, I did not have a mentor or a “business bestie” as many are called now. Because of that, I was all over the place and gravely inconsistent with my work. Though I had notebooks of poems and stories, I couldn’t gain the momentum needed to truly establish myself. Once I solicited, paid mentorship, I gained focus and direction. Mentorship does not have to be a paid relationship. Find a few authors that you enjoy, reach out to inquire about their interest and availability in guiding a budding star.

  • No Industry Research

Being a good writer is one thing but being a well-informed writer with an arsenal of great work is another. The internet is full of information regarding writing, editing, publishing, and all topics related to being an independent author. Whatever information is cloudy, chat with you mentor to gain clarity.

  • One Source of Income

Independent authors are a lot alike. We may work full-time and we write thereafter. In order to truly catapult your income, maximize your talents and expertise. Position yourself as an expert through blogging, speaking engagements, or offer a complementing service such as editing.

  • Selling solely on Discount Sites

I get it. Selling on Amazon is quick, easy, and painless.


the thought of giving 30% of my income away doesn’t sit well with me. So, I don’t sell all of my items on Amazon or similar sites. I’ve created an eCommerce outlet here on my site. Now, there’s no waiting to meet a specific threshold or worrying about the ever changing rules on via discount sites. If you have, and your should, a website, create a store to sell your items directly from your site.

Got it…

now get busy.

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