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How Fiction Profits Academy is changing the face of publishing

People working in just about any job under a boss often look enviously at the small businesses popping up online. But Karla Marie wants those people to know that they, too, can make money on Amazon.

Photo by Karla Marie, Fiction Profits Academy
Photo by Karla Marie, Fiction Profits Academy

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People working in just about any job under a boss often look enviously at the small businesses popping up online. But Karla Marie wants those people to know that they, too, can make money on Amazon, and they don’t even have to sell physical products. How? By selling Kindle ebooks.

Objections are probably rising up in readers’ heads right now: “I’m not a writer; I’m not a designer. That’s not for me. That’s for someone else.”  Marie has heard them all, but Fiction Profits Academy can show anyone how to make a living creating and marketing ebooks.

“One of the main skills that I’ve always focused on is the importance of mindset,” Marie says. “The importance of always believing in myself, that I have the power to change my life and to shape it into what I know is best for me and what’s in alignment with my potential.”

Marie began selling ebooks on Amazon in 2013. She took a short online course about publishing ebooks on Amazon, and she joined online communities and learned about what worked and what didn’t with selling ebooks. And she searched for more information online.

“An article came up about ebook publishing. And I started to learn that you don’t even have to write the books. You can hire ghostwriters to do it. And so that’s what I did, I started to hire ghostwriters to write ebooks and started publishing them on Amazon,” Marie says.

Using ghostwriters is a common publishing practice that allows owners to keep 100% ownership of the book. Ghostwriters are extremely happy to work under this arrangement.

At first she put out ebooks on miscellaneous nonfiction topics. Progress was slow and hard. Other people were succeeding. Marie wondered what she was doing wrong.

“And I started doing deeper research into things like, what are people reading and what’s selling? What does the market actually want?”

Marie discovered that fiction, specifically romance, was what sold the best. When she changed directions. She started to succeed, and she shared her knowledge with other emerging entrepreneurs.

Due to ethical considerations and/or religious convictions, some people are worried about romance being too steamy for them. But with self-publishing, it’s like using hot sauce on your dinner. You can use as little or as much as you’d like. Whatever you’re comfortable with. You can even use none at all. Authors can focus on what is called “sweet romance” where there are no adult-themed content.

“People asked me to teach them and coach them. That’s when my Fiction Profits Academy was born, in 2015, because I just started doing small group coaching and just kind of grew from there.”

Marie always felt called to be a teacher. She taught yoga full time, and she enjoyed the one-on-one impact she had in people’s health and their lives.

“I was teaching over 20 classes a week. I had a young child 18 months old. And I was buried under a ton of debt,” Marie says. “And I just knew there had to be a better way to live my life. I wanted to travel more. I wanted to be home with my son. I wanted to not have my body in pain. It’s crazy because people do yoga to feel better. But when you teach 20 classes a week you don’t feel good.”

Even though the Fiction Profits Academy is not limited to women, they do make up the majority of students, and Marie feels she’s designed it with a woman’s touch, because it can be seen as an ecosystem of teaching and support.

“We truly care about the results our students get. And that’s the whole tone of our program. Maybe it’s because it’s led by Dana and me and other women, so it’s caring and nurturing,” Marie says. “There’s a vibe here that our students are seen and heard and understood and taken care of. And that goes a really long way to people getting results, feeling better, and feeling safe in the program. With most other online programs, you feel like a number, like no one really cares about you.”

Every single person who buys a course gets a success coach, Marie says, who sticks with them throughout the course to make sure that they’re making good progress. That’s the first thing that comes to mind for many students, what sets this Academy apart.

There’s also no other course that teaches people how to publish fiction this way. Part of the curriculum involves students learning that the new AI technology is not something to fear, but a tool for everything from book cover designs to images for advertising, as well book descriptions for sales listings. What’s ahead? Marie says “AI is the future of publishing.”

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Written By

Jon Stojan is a professional writer based in Wisconsin. He guides editorial teams consisting of writers across the US to help them become more skilled and diverse writers. In his free time he enjoys spending time with his wife and children.

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