Tag Archive: sales



First off, I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year’s Eve.  We’ve gotten through another year, and I hope that whatever you do to celebrate tonight, please be safe.

 

This past year has been another interesting one, especially with the release of the second novel in my Para-Earth Series.  “The Ship” has gotten a number of 5 star reviews and has been hailed as better its predecessor “The Bridge”.  Although both are connected, each novel stands on its own and can be sampled for free at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords.  For those wondering, I’ve made the first 30 pages of each novel available for sampling (that’s right, I don’t skimp).

I also created a new blog titled “The Vampyre Blogs – Private Edition” (link: http://thevampyreblogs.blogspot.com/), which serves as a preview of my next venture into the Para-Earth Series.  On this blog you can meet my first vampyre character, who shares many strengths and weakness of the creatures of legend, but is decidedly NOT undead.  I’ve been posting short story entries on that blog to help introduce him and several other characters who will appear in the novel itself.  However, none of the entries on the blog will be appearing in the novel.

Looking forward to the coming year, one of my goals is to release book #3 “The Door” which will reunite the characters from my first 2 books as well as placing them all in new dangers from old foes they thought vanquished.  Underlying mysteries and loose threads from the first two novels will also be addressed as one character’s entire life will be explained and changed forever.  I’m hoping to release “The Door” towards the end of May.

Also planned for release in October/December of 2015, will be “The Vampyre Blogs – Coming Home”, the first in that part of my Para-Earth Series.  *Note: I will continue to also release short stories which will act as supplemental material, on the blog site itself.*

I am also currently trying to decide whether or not to try placing “The Bridge” and/or “The Ship” into the Kindle Unlimited program.  Neither has been doing very well in sales for the past few months in spite of all my advertising.  A part of me is getting the impression that people are unwilling to take a risk on a little-known author.  Whereas in the Kindle Unlimited program, people can ‘borrow’ as many e-books as they like for a set yearly fee.  The author’s get a percentage every time their book is ‘borrowed’ earning more money and gaining new readers.

But the downside would be I’d have to remove the books I place into the program from Smashwords, Barnes and Noble and other non-kindle places.  So I really could use some feedback from all of you as to whether or not I should take such a drastic step.  Therefore I ask you all to leave your thoughts and feelings in the comment section below.  You are my audience and are very important to me.  I don’t want any of you getting short-changed because of any decision I make.  I’d also like to hear from any authors who are already in the program and wish to share their experiences.

Anyway, this is all I have to say for now as we all get ready to close out 2014.  I look forward to hearing from you all in 2015 as I continue to share my knowledge and experiences on this winding road of book publishing.

Take care, stay safe and keep writing everyone.

Recently, I tried to get some new reviews for my two novels on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords.  I even offered free Read-2-Review copies of the books to anyone who wanted to do a review.  The results… not a single bite.

I couldn’t believe it.  Giving away “FREE” copies of a book in exchange for an honest review is usually one of the very best methods known to get some reviews for a book.  But I wasn’t getting any takers.  In fact I actually heard back from a few people who had read the books and loved them.  Yet when I asked if they would be kind enough to leave a review this is what I kept hearing from a number of them..

“I love to read, but I don’t know what to say in if someone asks me to review their book…”

Does this sound familiar to anyone else out there?  If it does, don’t be embarrassed.  A lot of people feel that way.  Some don’t know what to put down because they see all these other reviews that are like several paragraphs long and go into great detail about the structure of the story, the plot, etc.  Or perhaps you just don’t have a lot of time to sit down and think, much less write up a big ole review.

These are all valid excuses.  But not every review has to be several paragraphs long.  Even the simplest review can be just two or three sentences.  And of course you’ll be asked to give a star rating usually on a 1-5 scale, with 1 being (why did I bother) and 5 being (dear God I want to read more like this).

While you may feel like you cannot convey all you want to say in just a couple of sentences, but that rating and a few words can make a world of difference as to whether that book becomes a hit or not.  Every review added to a book can make it a sensation that spreads across the nation and even the oceans.  Most book buyers want to know what the book is about, which is the writer’s responsibility to convey in their synopsis.  But buyers also want to know what other people thought of the book, especially since we’re all so spoiled for choice these days thanks to Indie Authors, Kindle, Nook and other e-reader devices.

20-30 reviews, even if half or more of them are just a couple of sentences long can help push that book you just finished and fell in love with, to great heights.  The more reviews the better for the author and the book.  Amazon and other places base a book’s popularity through a logarithmic system that is based on the number of reviews a book is given.  If the book has a lot of reviews and ratings they’ll suggest the book to other buyers with similar interests creating more sales.

But if a book only has a handful of reviews, they won’t do much with it.  It’s not the length of the review but how many and how favorable they are.  So if you really want to see an author or a book get the recognition you think it deserves, please go ahead and leave a rating and just a couple of sentences.  The power to make or break an author and their works is in your hands.

So please, support your favorite authors and books by leaving reviews as well as spreading the word about them throughout your networks.  You could be helping someone become the next Stephen King or JK Rowling.  Remember, without readers, we authors are nothing.

Thanks so much for tuning in and please keep writing.


Well, as you all know last month I did my first free promo on Amazon, where 400 people snatched up their own Kindle copy of my paranormal/mystery “THE BRIDGE”.    Now, one of the things that inspired me to take that risk was the fact that I’d read in many different articles and blogs, that such a promo could help actual paying sales.  Those who grabbed a copy start spreading the word about how much they liked the book and tell others to get their own copy.  I can safely say, I’ve seen a slight increase in the number of actual purchased copies of the book, but nothing astronomical.

So this last weekend I did a special .99 cent promotion which netted about 5 or 6 sales total and that’s all.  Now a number of you may be thinking, “Wow, that wasn’t very impressive.”  And you’d be right.  But, it’s about what I expected because, “THE BRIDGE” is my first book.  I’m still an unknown author.  I did try and foster a following in advance and build up anticipation and interest in the book and look at the total results.  To date, about 500 copies of my book are out there, which to me is rather impressive for a first timer.  The book has been garnering mainly 4 and 5 star reviews, 13 on Amazon and 15 on Smashwords.  Now only 3 of those reviews came after the free giveaway.

That might sound discouraging to some people, but I’m not looking at it that way.  When you do a free giveaway, most people are loading up their Kindles with books that they will eventually read.  A lot of those people who downloaded my book, still haven’t had a chance to read it yet.  I know this, because a number of them have told me this is the case.  They message me and to say, ‘You’re number ( ) in my reading list, but I’m looking forward to your book and getting back to you about it afterwards.’

So, I have reason to hope for more reviews and that these folks will be so excited by what I’ve done, they’ll not only be dying to see the next installment (which is something I keep hearing from those who have read “The Bridge”).  But I’m also hoping they’re going to be spreading the word about it and the upcoming sequel to all their friends and networks, which will in turn translate into more sales.

Remember when it’s only your first or second book, you’re still building a fan base which takes time and patience.

Now, I do plan to do one more free giveaway on Amazon sometime in August, before my exclusive KDP Select contract expires.  Once it does expire, I’m bringing “THE BRIDGE” back to Smashwords, Nook, Apple and other e-readers.  I’ve already had a number of inquiries of when the book will be available in those formats, so I’ve still got more prospective customers to come.

On the other hand, I do have one concern and that is, “Have I hit my limit of possible customers in my current “sphere of influence?”  I’m always interested in getting the word out about my book out to more and more people, but I’m starting to run low on ideas of how to make that happen.  I’ve done LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, press releases, contacted radio and newspapers (with minimal results on these two but I’m still trying).

So, if any of you have suggestions, please leave them down in the comments section for me and other readers to learn from.  Remember, we’re all in this writing thing together and one of the main purposes of this blog is to share ideas and experiences.  So don’t be afraid to share or ask questions.

Until next time, take care and keep writing.

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