Tuesday, March 13, 2012

March 2012 Happenings

Goodness, a number of things happening for me the past couple of weeks.  Let's dive right in!

First, I just completed my first radio interview this afternoon.  It was a lot of fun, even though it will only be about 8 minutes long.  Hey, can't shake a stick at publicity, so I was all for it.  In case anyone wants to listen to it, I'm expecting it to air on Friday the 23rd or the following Friday the 30th.  It is on Wisconsin Public Radio, on a show called "Spectrum West".  The show airs from 5-6pm Central time on Fridays.  What you should learn from this?  It never hurts to ask.  I learned about this show and what it covers, then fired off an email to the show host to see if he would want to interview me, a local author.  Turns out they did, so here we are.  Always ask, you never know where the publicity might lead.

Next, audio books.  I've mentioned about doing audio books in the past, but I just learned of something that should add a little "Oomff" to my message.  Author Barry Eisler does audio books, and he is the narrator.  Check out Amazon and search his name for audio books, and you'll see that he has plenty that he narrates.  It can be done, people!  Why are you neglecting this important avenue to reach more people?  If you're writing for a hobby, that's great, but I don't have time for you (I know that sounds harsh).  If you want to do writing as a business, as a career, don't overlook a huge chunk of the reading public who prefer to listen to their books rather than read them.

Google ebooks.  I'm not sure where this might lead, but I wanted to give it a shot.  I just setup an account and uploaded my first novel to them.  I've heard people say that Google isn't even on the radar for ebook sales.  That might be true now, but if they get their act together (and by moving to the Google Play platform, I think they are starting to) they could be quite formidable - possibly being able to challenge Amazon for ebook dominance here in the States.  I'm not sure where this might lead, but I'll try to give you an update down the road on its success or failure.

Ebook sales.  I hear so many people either striking it rich or striking out.  What I haven't heard much of, but which I suspect is actually more the norm than is reported (for perhaps obvious reasons) are those people who just go along and sell a dozen or so copies each month of each of their titles.  Especially non-existent are the stories of the person who put out just one novel and is selling perhaps a dozen copies a month on a good month.  No one wants to talk about those (well, almost no one, but Dean Wesley Smith has always advocated that a writer put out a lot of work and be happy with a dozen or so sales a month for each title; it all adds up to solid income) for some reason.  Well, I'm here to report on my sales thus far for my first novel "Coordinates For Murder".  I must say that I'm actually pretty happy with what I've gotten so far in sales.  For the month of February, which was really only half a month since I put the book up on the 18th of February, I sold 9 copies of my ebook.  So far for the month of March, I'm up to 5 copies sold.  I quickly tapped out friends and family in the first month, so I know that these sales in March are from people that I haven't personally talked with about my novel.

Now, you might think these are small sales, and I will agree with you.  What you don't know is that I really haven't done much promotion of my novel.  I did send out a press release to local papers, some of which carried it.  I did send out press releases to radio and TV, none of which carried it.  I did do a radio interview, which hasn't aired yet but I don't anticipate that it will break any records.  And I did do a single post on Facebook to let my fans and family know about the book release, plus a little on Twitter and LinkedIn.  Other than this, I haven't done anything for promotion, and I don't intend to either.  I really need to be focused on my future writings and getting my name out there more.  If you like one of my stories, odds are you want to find out if I have other writings, and I don't want to disappoint my readers.  So, all in all, I'm happy with my sales results so far.  If it could keep on this way for good, and I could add in more stories that did the same, I'd be able to quit my day job and do writing for a living.  Ah, the dream...

Why are you still here?  Go write!


Jeremy Bates said...

I am with you on the Google thing. They (?) seem to have their hands in everything and doing well on all fronts, thus I would suspect that it is only a matter of time before the ebook avenue kicks in.

Congrats on the radio interview. I can't recall who said it, but it went something along these lines, 'All publicity is good publicity.'