Well, April was….a month. I’m not sure how it went for you, but mine was a roller coaster of amazing highs (not the substance-induced kind), weird moments, and the lowest of lows.
I cover all this in my writing update video below (yep, more video!), but if you want the less rambling version (or simply can’t bear to watch my ugly mug…I don’t blame you), here’s a semi-quick summary.
Ups, Downs, and All Arounds
In the first couple weeks of April, I got my first COVID vaccine (yay me!) and also wrapped up the final draft of the final book of The Cassie Black Trilogy (The Untangled Cassie Black). I was then super excited about being done with that project…for about a day.
When I set to work in the third week of April, I felt completely lost. It was bizarre not to have a Cassie book to work on. And when I took pencil in hand, dread set in. Would I be able to write anything new? Was the creative well dried up?
None of this was helped by the fact that during that same week, a full freaking week after getting my shot, I suddenly developed side effects. Very scary side effects. Side effects that had me — someone who avoids the doctor like a grimy toddler avoids a bath — rushing to the doctor’s office.
Luckily, although miserable and worrying, the side effects were well within the “normal” range. So, mild relief, then a family tragedy hit, throwing my brain a bit more off kilter.
But I pushed forward and finally got a chance to work on a short story for the first time in months. It was a much needed escape from reality. And yes, the story ended up being quirky, it does play with mythology, and it is darkly humorous.
Writing Update, The Video
For a little more detail on everything that’s been going on this month AND my plans for the future (no, a DeLorean is not involved), here’s the update video I threatened you with. If my face gets to be too much, remember you can always just listen.
Enjoy…if you dare!!
The Crazy Amazing Numbers for April
So despite the weirdness of April, things went off the charts as far as sales go. Early in the month I snagged a Kobo promotion for The Undead Mr Tenpenny and within only a couple weeks it quickly became my top seller and top earner of all time. Thanks, Kobo!!
Not only that, but people were buying up The Uncanny Raven Winston too, which means my read-through rate is looking phenomenal.
Apple, well, Apple just continues to blow all my other sales numbers out of the water. It made up more than 60% of my sales for the month, Kobo was second thanks to that promo, Amazon was third (just can’t seem to get that motor running), Barnes & Noble was fourth, and Google Play limped along in a very distant fifth.
And I won’t get into the actual numbers, but in April, in one month alone, I ended up earning almost more than I made in all of 2020.
Without any advertising whatsoever.
A very good month indeed.
A Little Word of Encouragement and Reality
I don’t post any of these numbers details to brag. It’s more of my way of 1) tracking my own progress on this journey and 2) letting other indies know that while you do often hear of writers making thousands of dollars in the first couple weeks of their very first book release, the reality is that this is a slow game with slow increases over time.
But if you keep at it, if you work at learning the ins and outs, if you keep trying, and if you take every opportunity that comes your way (within reason), you will see improvement. It might be slow, but any improvement in this tough business should be celebrated.
Sure, it’s not the glamor story everyone wants to hear, but most glamor stories have something else going on in the background you simply can’t repeat.
Onward and Hopefully Upward
Anyway, fingers crossed for May. The Untangled Cassie Black comes out 18 May, but you can pre-order a copy any time you like…well, not after release day, that would just be weird.
I do have several promos lined up around the release, so it will be interesting to see if I can get those Amazon numbers up a bit. And hopefully I can keep my numbers steady (if not better) with the other retailers. Except for Google Play. No idea how to crack that safe.
Again, I’m Begging You…
Although those sales numbers are impressive, I can’t get my review numbers up on Amazon. I don’t know if they’re rejecting reviews or readers are just busy, but my review number over there is stuck at 6 reviews. Arggh!!!!
While I was able to secure some smaller promo spots for Book Three’s release, I couldn’t take advantage of larger promo spots because I need at least 10 reviews to snag them.
Again, these promo spots are a VITAL component of my marketing plan, so I REALLY need just a handful of additional reviews.
You may think your opinion doesn’t matter, but believe me, it does…at least as far as books are concerned. I can’t guarantee it mattering in any other aspect of your life. Sorry.
So please please please, if you have read The Undead Mr Tenpenny, leave a review. PLEEEEAAASSSE!
To do so, just head to one of the Amazon links below and share a sentence or two about how you liked the book. Even a star rating would be appreciated.
For other Amazon locations (or if those links above send you somewhere wacky), just head here, select the Kindle icon, and the magic of Interwebs will take you to your region’s storefront.
What about you? How was your April? Productive? Lackluster? Be sure to drop a comment below and let me know what you’ve been up to!
Let’s Stay in Touch!