In this rapidly changing industry, writers must adapt on a near-daily basis and continuously search for new ways to reach new readers. In that mode, I’ve decided to re-brand my Detective Jackson series by listing Secrets to Die For as the first book and creating a new cover for it. The old cover was never meant to be the final product, but that's another subject.
For those of you who have read and loved The Sex Club, first I thank you for your support, and second, I ask your forgiveness… for pushing this story into my standalone thriller column. I do it reluctantly after much consideration and many discussions about changing the name. After thousands of people have read it though, changing the name was not an option. And a new title wouldn’t alter the content.
Which brings me to the Why? There are many readers who will never try my series because they can’t get past the name, and others who can’t get past the provocative subject matter. So now that I have five other Jackson stories, I’m setting The Sex Club apart from the series. The truth is when I wrote the novel, it was intended to be a standalone with dual protagonists.
Then at some point, it occurred to me the detective would make a great series character. I wrote Secrets to Die For three years later, based on the Jackson character and thinking I’d try to make a series of it. So Secrets is really the first book I intended as a series. Of course, readers can start with either one. But right now as part of this effort, Secrets to Die For is on sale for $.99 at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
In this very competitive market with ebooks selling for $.99 and $2.99, I can’t afford to alienate thousands of potential mystery readers with one little word. Don’t worry, The Sex Club isn’t going away. I’m very proud of this book and will continue to sell it as a standalone thriller.
Also, as part of my whole re-branding project, I’m also launching a new website that will be more search-engine friendly and will accommodate my growing number of books. I’d hoped to announce these things at the same time, but the website is a little behind schedule. It should be up and running in another two weeks.
One other bit of news: I finished the first draft of the new Jackson story, and I’m working on the rewrite. If my editor and formatter both do their part on schedule, I’ll have the ebook ready by Christmas and the print book shortly after.
So what do think of this re-branding decision? Brilliant or cowardly? Worthwhile or waste of time?