Sunday, May 26, 2013

My Thoughts On KDP Select

I started publishing ebooks as far back as 2009. One of the many questions I had was how on earth would I be able to gain enough exposure and sell more copies? The biggest suggestion is to offer your books for free. So I have. I have taken full advantage of both Smashwords and Amazon when it comes to giving away free books. The only problem I thought I had was the exclusivity agreement that Amazon proposed. Three months is a very long time to wait to put your ebooks up on other sites. But, nevertheless, I tried it.

I tried it with all six of my titles.

Here's how many copies I've given away in all:

Smashwords - 4,274 copies
Amazon - 2,023 copies

Total: 6,297 copies

Does giving away free copies translate to actual paid sales?

In my opinion - Nope!

If anything, I think this helps you lose money. Both Free and 99 cents used to be good tactics to get your books out there. Sadly, that's not the case anymore. Sure, it is fun to get that little bit of an ego boost when you see your free title climb the charts...but that euphoric high is short lived once the promotions end.

The only thing that carried over was that I recieved one or two extra reviews and that's pretty much it.

So, for now, I think I'm going to drop out of KDP altogether and consider it just a simple experiment that didn't quite work for me.

After all, if exposure was key, I think I've exposed myself enough already.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Writer Milestone: 300,000 words!


*This is the number of words I have published so far. 6 titles... 340, 016 words. I found this out while creating an Excel writing program for my past and future projects. Call it a Writer's Queue

I still can't believe it. 

What a milestone! 

That's over a quarter of a million words. 

So far I put up 25 separate writing projects to organize.

Got three more short stories lined up in the queue. 

I think every writer should make an excel program to keep them on track. What better way to organize your titles, see what date you published, and your word progress so far? I find myself checking and tweaking the program here and there just to see the word count climb.

Just had to share this.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

The Self Publishing Podcast

During the night, I write. During the day, I consume all things writing-related. That includes How-to books, popular and classic fiction, audio books and the like. But I also listen to writing podcasts. I was a big fan of I should be Writing with Mur Lafferty. Shows like Writing Excuses and The Dead Author Podcast became new and exciting voyages into the thick art and craft that is writing.

Then, about a month ago, I stumbled upon The Self Publishing Podcast. The hosts are Johnny B. Truant, Sean Platt and David Wright  -  three eccentric writers who talk non-stop about not only the creation of a story idea but the business and marketing side of self publishing. It's one of the most valued free podcasts I listen to on my iPod. The shows run an hour long. These guys have 55 episodes and I've listened to all of them. 

So, when the time came to ask a question, I jumped at the chance.

Be warned, these fellas are mighty explicit...but very funny as well. I was thankful for their advice and decided to change the pricing on some of my ebooks. For the longest time, I've been using the 99 cent price model as a crutch. But seeing as how that isn't netting me much, I've decided to take the chance and put the books up with a standard $2.99 price.

You can hear my voicemail question at the 54 minute mark.

Hope you enjoy these guys and check out some of their books.

I've already read Fat Vampire, halfway into The Bialy Pimps and almost done with Unicorn Western. And, if you're in the mood for a The Stand-like series, check out Yesterday's Gone. Not only are these guys a blast to listen to but how can you not be impressed by their prolific drive and their gargantuan library of titles?