In this episode we’re going to talk about how to use the last few pages of your book to supercharge your marketing.

Why you should listen to this episode

Show Notes

What is Backmatter?

  • It’s everything that comes after the “the end”

This episode is not just for indies!

  • Trad authors have not because they ask not. There are often blank pages at the end of trad books and all the authors had to do was ask for something to be put on those pages.
    • Example: Jim’s new novel coming out in May.
  • The difference is that indie authors can make more frequent changes to the back matter.
  • Trad authors have a longer lead time. Figure out your back matter 6 months ahead of time.

Why backmatter is so powerful:

  • If your book is well written, the reader has just had a powerful emotional experience. (Thanks, Randy Ingermanson!)
  • The iron is hot. Downright sizzling if they’d loved your book. There’s no better time to ask them to take the next step in their relationship with you.
  • Don’t waste this opportunity!
  • Readers want help finding your next book.

How to Edit Your Back Matter

  • Vellum is best but Mac only. Some authors buy a mac just so they can use Vellum.
  • Draft to Digital will convert a Word docs into ebook formats.
  • Calibre is free and multi platform, but clunky.
  • Contractor (Affiliate Link + 20% discount)

Edit Your Back Matter Frequently

  • Your old books should promote your new books, so every time you have a new book come out .. time to update
  • Updates will be pushed out to all ebook readers and to all new POD readers.

What to include in your back matter

  • Ask for a Review
    • Link to the store they bought the book from. Amazon for Kindle, iBooks for iBooks, Kobo for Kobo, etc.
    • Perhaps also a link to GoodReads
  • Promote the next book in the series.
    • Book Cover
    • Blurb
    • Link to buy (Amazon for Kindle, iBooks for iBooks, Kobo for Kobo, etc.)
    • Link to your books landing page URL (Ex:
    • Buy the URL for your book if you can
      • Name Cheap
  • First chapter of your next book.
    • End on a cliffhanger!
  • Goodies
    • Photos that inspired the book
    • Photos where the book is set
    • Links to a splash page where have have deleted scenes (if they sign up for your newsletter, so this acts as a lead magnet)
    • Soundtracks you think are perfect to listen to your books to
    • Maps! Multiple … the world, the city, etc.
  • Credits
    • Editors Yes you want multiple editors see (Episode 71)
    • Proofreaders
    • Cover designers
    • Launch team members
    • Alpha readers
    • Beta readers
    • Page designer
  • Acknowledgments
    • Also good to put before chapter 1
    • The difference between acknowledgements and credits.
    • Credits are people who worked on the book, acknowledgements are people who helped you.
    • It is ok to list people in both places.
    • Thomas acknowledged the coffee shop he wrote at and put the launch team in the credits.
  • Letter to the Reader
    • Introduce the back matter.
    • Where to find you online.
    • Help me advance the cause online!
    • Let me know what you think.
    • How to reach me (email, phone number)
  • Lead Magnet
    • Fiction: Prequel or Short Story following the “The End” of this book. Deleted scenes, additional scene, Jim’ song idea, etc.
    • Nonfiction: Discussion Guide or Worksheet
  • Reading Group Resources
    • Mention where readers can find book club resources on your website.
    • For more about reaching out to book groups listen to Episode 165)
    • A link to you talking (video) about the book  
  • Social Media Links
    • Also consider making a book hashtag.
  • Author Bio & Photo
    • Endnotes & Appendix

    What Order to put your Backmatter in

    • Priority order. What is the #1 thing you want someone to do after reading your book? Have that be first.
    • Thomas recommends ask for reviews first. This will let Amazon know they liked your book.
    • Jim says newsletter/lead magnet first.
    • Promo the next book in series second.
    • Misc back matter
    • Sample chapter last.

    Featured Patron

    Peter DeHann and his book, “95 Tweets: Celebrating Martin Luther in the 21st Century” where Peter asks, “What would it look like if Martin Luther lived today, and TWEETED his 95 theses about the church? … And we can learn from a fresh look at them.

    Thanks so much, Peter!


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