One Year In

Nearly one year ago (actually about 358 days) I published my debut novel, Into the Badlands. I started out with the modest expectation that I’d sell 50 copies in the first year. I set a goal of selling 100 copies in the first year, though I found that a stretch.

One year in, Into the Badlands has sold over 5,000 copies.

To say I’m surprised would be the understatement of the year. I’m still flabbergasted by this brilliant stroke of timing and luck. It’s changed my life. I’m living a dream I never thought possible.

I’ve sold over 5,400 books including my short story collection and my newest novel, The Desolate, which has been on sale for about a month or so. I’m overwhelmed with the knowledge that so many readers have taken a chance on me. It’s more than I could have ever hoped for. Continue reading

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“The Desolate” After One Month

My latest novel, The Desolate, has now been available for about a month, so it seemed a good time to talk about how it’s doing. The book sold a few copies right out of the gate and then went dead very quickly. By the end of July, after being on sale for ten days, The Desolate had sold 10 copies, averaging 0.9 copies per day, broken down as follows:

  • 8 copies via Amazon US (Kindle reader)
  • 2 copies via Barnes and Noble (Nook reader)

It wasn’t exactly tearing up the charts, but it was moving a few copies. It stayed this way for a solid couple weeks, selling barely anything. I have noticed a gradual increase over the past couple weeks, particularly over the past seven days or so. If I didn’t know better, it seems to be building momentum with a bit of a snowball effect.

We’re now 20 days into August and here are the sales thus far: Continue reading

A Change In Direction

I’ve been doing a segment on this blog for the past nine months or so called Transparency in Indie Publishing. In these posts I discuss sales counts and royalty earnings, I analyze the data and I make decisions on what my next move will  be. I also make a few predictions.

My reason for doing this was simple: to help other writers. I figured if they could see what I was doing based on the data I had available it might help them make their own decisions. I think anecdotal information can be useful, provided it’s not take as gospel and is tempered with other data.

Unfortunately talking about sales can come off as either bragging or whining. I’m purposely doing neither, but interpretation is up to the reader. I can only hope that some found the information useful or inspiring.

That said, I’ve decided to shelve this segment of the blog for the foreseeable future. I’m heading into nearly a year of self-publishing and I’ve provided more data that I think most indies ever would. These posts will remain for posterity. I think it provides a good picture of what can happen when one indie writer gets lucky. It shows potential, in real-life numbers, which I still contend is valuable. Continue reading

My Brand

Over the past few years I’ve grown a lot.

I shook off years of low self-esteem, finally realizing that I deserved the same things in life that everyone else deserved.

I’ve learned that more “stuff” doesn’t bring more happiness.

I’ve learned that pre-occupation with negative thoughts and ideas were wasting my valuable time and were making me unhappy.

I’ve discovered that most folks are motivated by fear and that this drives much of their bad behavior.

I’ve deconstructed much of what I was taught as universal truths to determine if they’re truly valuable to me anymore (or if they ever were).

In short, I’m changing. Continue reading

Right on the money (as usual).

David Gaughran

In the third of a series of increasingly misguided essays for The Guardian – Why social media isn’t the magic bullet for self-epublished authors – Ewan Morrison builds a bonfire of self-publishing straw men.

Morrison is convinced that “epublishing is another tech bubble, and that it will burst within the next 18 months.” The reason given:

epublishing is inextricably tied to the structures of social media marketing and the myth that social media functions as a way of selling products. It doesn’t, and we’re just starting to get the true stats on that. When social media marketing collapses it will destroy the platform that the dream of a self-epublishing industry was based upon.

Where do I start? Perhaps I should first point out that Morrison has made this prediction before, in the second essay in this series: The self-epublishing bubble.

Given that it is now August, and the bubble essay…

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Transparency In Indie Publishing, July 2012

In this installment of my “Transparency” series, I have quite a bit to talk about, so let’s get down to business.

Into the Badlands

First off, let’s analyze sales of Into the Badlands, my debut novel and hands down my best seller. Sales were up over last month, marking the continuation of a three month trend. Badlands sold 491 copies in the US, compared to 449 copies last month. I’m still confident that $2.99 is the sweet spot for this book and plan to leave it there for the foreseeable future. Badlands continues to perform solidly, providing very steady sales income.

In other positive development, Badlands saw four new reviews this month; two 4-star reviews and two 5-star reviews. The book now has 37 reviews with an average of 4.5 stars. I’m very pleased with how well it’s been received, particularly for a debut novel. To date, Into the Badlands has sold 4,391 copies in the US (4,533 copies overall). Continue reading