I attended sessions at Book 'Em North Carolina in Lumberton this year, and somehow finagled my way into speaking on a panel at the book fair and writer's conference.
Seated with me on the "Making Money Writing" panel were several other authors, including Terri Reid, who I admire for her prolificacy in writing (14 books in 5 years!) and in life (she has 7 children).
This powerhouse author has sold over one million books.
Her advice? You'll get to read a bunch of it in my upcoming book about habits of successful creatives, which she graciously agreed to be interviewed for.
My essential takeaway from what she said at Book 'Em was to write and publish regularly. Once you have an audience, they want to keep enjoying your work. So give them what they want: new books. She publishes hers in a series. Check out her site here.
My other lesson learned from the conference is that traditional publishing is in a state of chaos. Self-publishing is probably the way to go, especially if you have some skills in social media and marketing.
I wrote this blog post about my path to self-publishing on Kindle. It's remarkably easy. The part that takes time is writing, rewriting, editing, and proofing your book. But once you've written your book with the help of a supportive group of beta readers, you can self-publish for free (or almost free) very easily via Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing.