Self Published Australian Authors Make This Much Money on Amazon?
The pandemic has put a strain on the income of a lot of people, which is why many people have turned to creating alternative income streams that can take the financial burden off. A lot of people have turned to writing in the last two years, for some this decision was based on stringent circumstances while for others the ample amount of time the lockdowns provided was the perfect opportunity to explore their creative side by turning into part time authors.
Whatever the case maybe, it is important to understand that writing books can be a very lucrative career if done right. But like every other profession there is no sure shot guarantee that you are going to succeed. Even the most well known writers had to go through an obstacle course in life before they got success while some like Kafka got fame for their writing posthumously.
Before we talk about how much a successful self published Australian author can make, it is important to understand what writing entails.
What Does Writing Entail?
Writing needs passion. Even the most brief self help book has around 10,000 words and writing 10k words requires a plan, knowledge and the passion to see yourself through it. It may take years to write a book and you can spend hundreds of hours and possibly some monetary investment too.
To be able to make money as an author, there are some aspects that you need to know. You need to understand that writing a book is more than a hobby and can be a business as well. There are many different genres to write a book in and they can each be lucrative in their own ways. You can write a book about your personal experience, fiction, non-fiction, technical books, or self-help books.
But there are two paths that you can adopt. You can either answer your true calling and write whatever you desire to. Or if you are looking to make money smartly, you can carry out a keyword search to find out what the readers usually look for when they search for books on KDP or the internet and then write your book based on what the market demand is. Now some authors may object to this way of writing and may consider this as not being faithful to your true passion but this has been proven to be a very simple way to write books that end up making a decent amount of money.
So if you are writing as a hobby and your aim is not to earn but to write something for your readers, you should answer your true calling but if you want to make money by writing books then the most effective way is to follow what the consumers want. Once you develop your own following, you can then explore the genres you want, knowing that you have a following of readers who will buy your books.
Success Story – Matt Rogers
Let us now look at the story of one of the most prolific and successful self published authors of Australia, Matt Rogers who lives in Melbourne and at the young age of 23, earns over 500,000 AUD through his self published ebook series on Amazon KDP.
Source: Financial Review
In his interview published on Financial Review, Matt Rogers explains his journey to become a self published author.
Matt Rogers left his law degree at the age of 19 to complete his novel. The motivation to make such a big career move came from his mother who also designs his covers and helps him with the editing. Matt says that early on in his law degree, he realized that a career in law isn`t what he was looking for. So he decided to take a gap year and in that gap year he completed his novel.
Matt says that publishing on KDP is a very streamlined process, once you have the manuscript and cover art ready you just have to upload it. KDP cuts out the middleman and the headache that comes with negotiations with a publishing house. To top it all off, you get to keep a large chunk of the royalties as a self published author, whereas a publishing house would keep most of the royalty if you are a young author with little or not following or leverage.
In a span of four years, Rogers has written 25 short stories based around his original idea for a thriller book called “Isolated” which covers the story of a U.S special forces operative. Once his first two books took off, Matt decided to create spin offs involving the characters in the original novel.
Matt has sold over 200,000 copies of his books and accumulated over $1 million in royalties in just four years. If we analyse the success of Matt Rogers we can see a few contributing factors.
If you are going to churn out 25 story books in 4-5 years, you definitely need to be highly motivated.
Writing requires passion, creativity, knowledge and hours of research. If you think that you have the talent and creativity to become an author then you should write as much as you can. As Stephen King says, if you want to be a good writer, you must read a lot and write a lot!
3- Marketing Strategy
To attain the level of success Matt Rogers has had, you need a solid marketing strategy for your books. If your marketing for your first few books is on point, you will be able to create your own fan following who will market the book for free through recommendations, reviews and word of mouth.
4- Quality and Quantity
While the quality of your writing surely matters, we have seen that if your aim is to make a lot of money through self publishing like Matt Rogers, then you need to put out book after book. Think of this as diversification. When you create your financial portfolio, you try to diversify it with stocks of different companies to minimise the risk of loss. The same rule applies to publishing books. Write multiple books so that you have multiple streams of income. Then there is the concept of economies of scale. If you have multiple books in the market and publish one more new book then you are going to market your new book but the marketing for your new book will automatically help the books you have already published because new readers will want to read whatever you have already published.
When you put all of these factors together, you get the perfect combination to make you a successful author.