“Acceptance” sales Update

Here it is, the news everyone is waiting for: a sales update! It’s been nearly two weeks. How many books have I sold (and have I made my first million yet)?

I’ve “sold” 8 on Smashwords (all of those are from where I accidentally had the setting on “reader sets their own price,” which, incidentally, was free in every case), and I actually got paid for 3 e-books and 1 print copy on Amazon.

That comes to a whopping 12 copies and $11.57. But that means, after publishing my first novella, The Last Golden Dragon, in February, I will finally have enough money in my Amazon account to qualify for a payout (there’s a $10 minimum). Woot! If sales continue like this, I can expect about $20 by the end of the month, or enough to pay for dinner at the local Mexican restaurant (and if we opt for the cheap chicken enchiladas, we can even afford to share a fried ice cream for that $20! Double woot!).

Acceptance  is not in B&N online and other stores yet because Smashwords requires some formatting changes (note: Smashwords always requires formatting changes; getting your book vetted the first time is like getting a score of 10 at the Olympics–theoretically possible, but almost never seen). I had a sale of The Widow from B&N and have had a lot of downloads of The Bloodsuckers from there, too, so I really need to buckle down and do my corrections this weekend so I can get Acceptance selling there.

If I disregard the 8 free copies, and figure I can actually sell 4 copies of my book every two weeks, that’s 8 per month or 48 in a six month period.

Which sounds horribly depressing, but actually seems quite in line with a debut, self-published novel. Indie author Rachel Higginson said in an interview that she only sold 50 copies of her first book in 6 months. A year later, she is now selling thousands of copies every month. (One of the keys to her success has been releasing her second book and then offering the first one for free to get people hooked.)

I also need to get off my ass this weekend (well, um, actually, I need to sit on it) and write some newspaper releases. There is a small monthly paper in my town and a semi-weekly paper in the little city where I work. I should be able to get a release in both of them.

Fried ice cream, here I come!

Edited to Add: I found this statistic on Catherine Caffeinated’s blog: “80% of books published (not just self-published, but published period) in the U.S. sell less than 100 copies.”

So there’s a goal to reach for: sell more than 100 copies. Being in the top 20% of authors sounds successful to me (even if 100 copies won’t exactly pay for my vacation home on the west coast of Ireland).

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6 comments on ““Acceptance” sales Update

  1. cindymanis says:

    I bought a copy, it is scheduled to be delivered this week. Maybe that will help boost your sales.

  2. Congratulations, Keri. That’s a really good start. You’ve given me some good ideas lately. I definitely want to work on my pinterest pages over the winter, and we have some small local papers, too. I never thought to run a little ad. Thank you for sharing.

    • Keri Peardon says:

      I’m hammering out my press release now. I’ll post it next week and you can see what I’ve done (for what’s it’s worth; although I’ve read some boring press releases that didn’t seem well-written, so I’m not sweating writing my own so much now). I plan on sending them to the paper to release as news–not as a paid advertisement. I figure small towns are so desperate for new copy, they’ll probably publish it. Larger papers, though, are harder to get into because their book pages will devote a lot of space to well-known authors who are releasing books a lot of people are going to want to read (Dan Brown, Nora Roberts, Stephen King, etc.). But, as they say, it doesn’t hurt to try, so if you’ve got a larger city paper nearby, you can try sending your release to them, too. The worst they can do is tell you they won’t print it.

      And don’t forget hometowns. Although I no longer live in the town where I grew up, I’m going to send a release to that paper; I still have family there, and I’m going to drop names like it’s a wedding/birth/obituary announcement. Also, I’m going to send a more personal notice to my high school and college’s alumni news department.

      • Wallace says:

        Great ideas! Sort of like “Local woman makes good.” press for the hometown paper. Plus college alumni newsletters are always happy to get articles about what their alumni have accomplished. And if you send in a long post and give them permission to edit it, they are more likely to publish it since they can edit it to fit the space needed.

      • Keri Peardon says:

        I’m a little intimidated by the college alumni magazine, as my college has a strong creative writing program and a lot of published authors (Margret Wise Brown, who wrote “Goodnight Moon” was an alumni). They have a page in the magazine now just for alumni books. I couldn’t tell, but I think one or two which were listed might have been self-published.

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