This is one way to do it. (Much of this is also written in my Frustrated! post about looking for an agent. It didn’t get read much so I wanted to put this information as a stand-alone post.)
A very successful, but not famous self-published author, graciously explained the system he uses. He has thirteen novels in his series and a short story published, over the last six years.
-There is a system to make money writing novels if you write a series.
-Read the book, Write, Publish, Repeat by Platt.
-This author has been writing his series for a few years now; he started making $100,000 a year by his fourth year. Because of his success, he was approached by a publisher and offered a deal. He thought he’d make less and did not want to give up his freedom, so he declined.
-For the best results, you should plan to write two books a year for your series. While his books are about 80,000 words each, I found another author following the same blueprint. His novels are only 60,000 words. I was surprised he could get away with the shorter books, but it does not seem to have hurt him and his books are priced the same as the other author.
-You need to collect people, a list of readers who like your books.
-You need to write a good short story as a give away to sign up on your website. This is the main way you will build your list.
-You must use the free tools that Amazon provides you as an author, for free giveaways and reduced prices on your books, again this is to build your audience, your list.
-You won’t make much of any money the first year, but you have written a short story and your first two novels. The machine is set, but not ready to take off, you need about 4 novels to really get the machine moving. And then keep writing.
-Your second and third year you need to keep writing two novels a year. You still will not make much money the second year, the third year will be pretty good, by the fourth year with any luck and a decent storyline you could be making over $100,000 a year.
1) Get my revision done on Kill Crime, then another line edit, a proof or two and self publish. My new goal is 2 months (probably take longer, it always does). (Update 18 Jul 2019- Kill Crime got some additions and changes. It is now in a final edit-I hope.)
2) Get my short story giveaway written and published so I can use it to collect names and build my list. It will be done and posted as a free giveaway on my website before I release Kill Crime. (Update 18 Jul 2019- The short story prequel, Life-Changing Money has been written and proofed. It will be available with a couple of weeks (Free)at www.mikeslavinauthor.com)
3) Get Kill Crime II (working title), which I have already written, edited and published in the fourth quarter of 2019.
4) Try hard to get the third and fourth books written and published in 2020.
5) Keep getting two books a year out in my series.
The Big Message
I guess I knew this, but for most authors, the path to success is more about volume than anything else. You still must write good books, but stop trying to write the great American novel (unless you want too). Also creating and writing a series lets you keep the same people coming back.