Since you folks seem to like seeing the numbers, I thought I would give you an update. This is totally in the interest of helping others to see what indie-publishing has to offer and to encourage those who might be considering it. Or maybe this is a deterrent, depending on your expectations. Either way, these numbers reflect my personal experience and are being shared because I consider you all to be my friends. Without your help and support, none of this would be possible. So thanks a million guys!
While preparing to do my taxes (which is as far as I’ve gotten), I was adding up my numbers. Sales numbers that is. I reported back in November that I was pleased with the progress in my indie-publishing journey and that sales of HEAVEN IS FOR HEROES were on a steady path of growth. With the release of ON THIN ICE, and a few promotional efforts through the holidays, I’m happy to say that I’ve met one of my big goals for my first year of publishing. 1,000 books sold!
I’ve often heard the statistic that says most new writers will never sell more than a thousand books. Yikes! So when I heard that statement, I decided that would be my short term goal. I knew that if I could sell a thousand books, I’d be on my way. I originally gave myself a year to do this, but once I started seeing how the numbers climbed on my Amazon sales reports after each blog tour or advertisement that I did, I realized the potential to surpass my goal. It’s been a lot of work, but if I include January sales of 165 books so far, I’ve reached 1,000 books sold in four months!
I published my first novel on September 24th, and the second on December 15th.
Sales have gone something like this:
September: October: November: December:HIFH/OTI January:HIFH/OTI
Amazon 22 13 198 239/36 23/114
BN 7 3 29 14/5 10/5
Hardcopy 28 39 40 14/12 1/12
Createspace has sold a total of 28 copies in 2011 and 7 in 2012. Smashwords: 42 of HIFH and 59 of OTI since the books were released. In addition there have been 72 free downloads of HIFH and 29 of OTI. I’ve also donated books to libraries and sent out review copies and contest prizes.
Both books have received consistent 4 and 5 star reviews and I’m getting excited e-mails from readers who are looking forward to SAVAGE CINDERELLA in March. I haven’t yet figured the exact revenue from all of these sales because HIFH was up for sale for six weeks at .99 cents which I’m sure, in part, accounted for the boost in sales. I also advertised on Pixel of Ink, The Frugal E-reader, Super E-Reads, and a few free sites.
I found blog tours more successful than book signings, and cross-promoting with other authors for the Booklovers Buffet to be helpful. Although, at .35 cents a sale at the .99 cent price point, I would have had to sell a heck of a lot of books to make real money. I know I’ve made enough to cover the cost of the first book and some advertising, but my budget is still running in the red. My goal for this year: 10,000 books. That breaks down to about 900 books per month, or 225 books per week, or about 30-40 books a day. Sounds doable when I put it that way, right? I’m hoping the release of SAVAGE CINDERELLA in March puts that goal within reach.
I’m beginning another blog tour this week, and would love for you to drop by and leave comments, tweet, or share my posts to your Face Book pages if you find them interesting or entertaining. You can find out where I’ll be and what I’ll be talking about on my calendar page of my website. I’ll be posting the specific links to my FB Fan page as soon as I have them. If you want to follow along, just “like” my Facebook page or follow me on twitter @pjsharon. The tour starts this Thursday, Jan. 26th on Author Eileen Cook’s website where I answer interview questions that will definitely let you all get to know me a little better. Thanks for sharing the journey with me.