What to do when your book is published (aside from marketing)
Even before your book is published, you’ll want to be marketing it, but there are a few things you should do once your book is published — small tasks you might easily overlook in the push to get your book read and reviewed — that may help your marketing efforts, but can also ensure you‘re getting as much out of your book as possible in other ways.
Here, then, are some suggestions of what to do after your book is published:
Add it to your Amazon Author page
First of all, if you don’t have an Amazon Author page, create one by going to Amazon Author Central. (The US version is at authorcentral.amazon.com, the UK version is at authorcentral.amazon.co.uk, and other country versions exist, too. You can set up an Amazon Author Page for each country where you sell your books.)
Amazon generates a basic author page anyway, but claiming it, and looking after it, means you can turn it from a generic search-results page to something a lot more professional: you can add an author photo, a bio, promotional videos, and you can make sure all your books are included on it.
To add your latest book:
- Log into Amazon Author Central
- Click the Books tab at the top
- Click the Add more books button
- Search for your book, either by title or ISBN, and click the This is my book button
- Do this for each edition of your book (Kindle and Paperback, for instance)
Amazon will process your request, and a little time later the book will appear as part of the books list on your Amazon Author Page.
Add it to GoodReads
Books eventually get added to GoodReads automatically, but doing it manually speeds up the process, and allows you to ensure there’s a cover image to go with the book (this doesn’t seem to happen as automatically).
First, you need a GoodReads account. (Signing up is easy. Just go to Goodreads.com.) To edit book details, you will need to apply for Librarian status. See this help article for how to do that. (You will need at least 50 books on your Goodreads shelves to become a Goodreads Librarian, but books are easy to add, so this won't take you long.)
Once you are a Librarian, you can add books and edit existing book details.
Check to see if your book is already on Goodreads by searching for it, either by title or ISBN. Then:
- If it’s not in the search results, you’ll see a Manually add a book link near the top of the search results page. Click that and enter your book’s details.
- If it is in the search results, click on the book to go to its page. Then:
- If any details are missing (including a good cover image), click the edit details link that appears below the book’s details (and just above the review section).
- If an edition of your book is missing (a paperback, Kindle, or ebook version, for instance), click the Add a New Edition link beside the Other Editions heading (by the thumbnail cover images of other editions).
- You can also combine editions, if, for instance, your book appears as two separate entries (a Kindle edition and a paperback, for instance). To do this, click the Combine link by the Other Editions heading, and you’ll be able to tell Goodreads that all the different versions of your book are the same book.
Goodreads is another way that readers can find out about your book, and making sure there’s a good cover image, and that the different editions of your book are grouped together, make their experience as readers (and potential reviewers) of your book all the better.
Sign up for Public Lending Rights
Some countries allow you to sign up for Public Lending Rights. This means that you will get paid each time your book is taken out of a library by a reader.
In the UK, go to the PLR page at the British Library website. This contains information on how to sign up for an account, and how to claim your right as contributor to a book. (Book payments can be divided among contributors by percentage; so, for instance, an illustrator or co-contributor can receive a certain percentage.) For more information, see the PLR FAQ page.
UK authors can also sign up to receive library-usage payments from other European countries, including Germany, France, the Netherlands, and Austria. See the Authors' Licensing & Collecting Society website for more about this.
To find out if there is a PLR scheme in your country, the best place to look is the Established Schemes page of PLR International, which lists all the countries with a PLR scheme, and the various websites to visit to sign up or find out more.