SPS 072: Writing Great Fiction Using Beta Readers…And How To Build An Author Platform On YouTube That Sells Books with Jenna Moreci

Today, joining me is Jenna Moreci, who is known as a YouTube star with a subscriber base of over 200,000 watchers. She is the author of two books. Jenna has authored The Savior Series with The Savior’s Sister edition debuting in September.

While she writes full-time, she is also a full-time caregiver. Jenna isn’t able to fully devote her day to writing. If you are writing fiction, a good goal is to release one book per year.

“For me, focusing on the quality of the story really matters. One way I make sure that quality is focused on is that I have a lot of people read the book before it’s out. I have critique partners, which are solo writers, who critique everything from the story to the grammar. I have beta readers who like reading.” She enlists 20 beta readers from very diverse sexual, ethnic, and demographic backgrounds. From this list of people, she collects market data, looks for trends within her betas, trends that they like and dislike.

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Jenna doesn’t sit around and wait for her beta readers to finish. While busy critiquing her work, she is busy working on her author platform, looking for cover artists and editors. Her time efficiency doesn’t elongate her publication date as these tasks are being done simultaneously with her beta testers.

She gives advice on which type of criticism is constructive “If someone gives you feedback that doesn’t stick right, sounds funny or doesn’t make sense, you have to discern that this may not be the best feedback to listen to.”

In addition to her writing, Jenna also has a YouTube channel. “In terms of reserving the creative energy, for me, that’s what I’m passionate about. That’s me being myself. It’s me expressing my personality.” Jenna explains how she manages scriptwriting for her videos without intruding on her book writing time.

Listen in to find out how Jenna uses the Rule of Three with her beta reading group, how she manages her beta reading group when someone reading her book is late, and why it’s essential to write what you’re passionate about.

Show Notes

  • [02:59] Quality and quantity balance of writing for a living.
  • [04:27] How to focus on the quality of your book. 
  • [05:25] Make sure to implement feedback given on your book.
  • [06:27] Streamlining and discerning the beta reader feedback.
  • [09:00] How Jenna uses the Rule of Three when writing a book.
  • [11:38] Recruiting people to read your book grassroots style. 
  • [12:20] Joining reading and writing groups are great places to find beta readers.
  • [15:08] Creating videos for her YouTube channel and balancing writing. 
  • [16:50] Differences in the creative process of videos and writing.
  • [22:39] What you should do when you get a 1 star review.
  • [24:18] Jenna gives tips on what works best when marketing your book.
  • [26:50] Advertising dollars that work for your book.
  • [30:33] How Jenna gets hundreds of reviews on her books with ARC readers.
  • [34:28] Pros and cons of building a platform on YouTube for book authors.
  • [40:33] The importance of paying attention to writing analytics and data.
  • [44:00] Pre-orders and giveaways and how they work for Jenna.
  • [45:47] Video creation dos and don’ts on YouTube.
  • [47:47] Reading your metrics on YouTube and what they mean.
  • [51:33] Advice Jenna would have given herself when she wrote her first book.

Links and Resources

Darrell Darnell

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