I’m what’s known as a hyrbid author. I have books released through publishers and I also self-publish. I had a publishing contract first, but back in the day when self-publishing first came to prominance, I made the decision to take my first paranormal series–Moonstruck–through KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing) and I put them all, as they were released, into what was Kindle Unlimited and might be called Kindle Select now. In the past two years, I’ve watched the number of my page reads dwindle to the point that the royalty from selling 1 book was making me far more than several books combined under KENP (Kindle Edition Normalized Page–which means you don’t actually get paid for the number of pages in the book but by the number of pages that the ‘Zon decides is in your book). For example, the other day, I sold 2 books and received $2.07 in royalty. The same day, I had 73 pag reads for a royalty of 29 cents. It’s been like that for at least the last 9 months. So, this fall, I decided to get proactive. As my self-published books came up on their KU renewal dates, I took them out, updated their back matter to fit a wide variety of online bookstores and put them wide. In the midst of this, the Universe hit me with the following:
Life is a chance to do things your way, Silver; not the cheapest way, not the most popular way, and not how others think you should.
And a very, very, very precious chance, at that.
Keep calm, Silver, and get Notes from the Universe.
Yeah. It gave me the impetus to keep going. I need to find a wider audience. It may take awhile, and the ‘Zon certainly does no favors for authors who aren’t excusively in their sphere but hey, deep down, I know this is the right thing for me. Part of the decision stemmed from the fact my backlist has been out there awhile. Part of it was the chance to find new markets and new readers who aren’t dialed in to the ‘Zon. So, I’m staying calm. I’m making plans and changes because I had the chance to do so. I feel lighter, having made the decision and carrying it through. Most of my books are wide now. I have 5 more that come off this month and that’s the last of them. Anything new I publish will be wide. I such at marketing so I’ll probably never hit a best-seller list but that’s okay. I may not make the bucks I made back in the beginning before everyone and their aunt and uncle decided to self-publish. There’s a lot of…books out there. I’ll just leave it at that. So, the Universe hit me with some good advice and I followed it. I thought some of you might want to know why I made the decision I did. And now you do. So, what about y’all? What chance would you like to take but you’re hesitating over it?
I hope the wide thing does wonders for your sales. (And mine, too.) My decision to leave Amazon’s KU program came after Amazon sent me an email basically saying ‘you know those page reads you had in September? Well, they weren’t really real page reads so we aren’t paying you for them’. Bah and feh. I have two books left to drop off the program and one other I’m not taking wide until the book preceding it in the series is available. Everything should be wide by the end of the month. No wide sales yet, but I’m that’s not really much worse than Amazon sales, and I’m hopeful.
What I’m hesitating about now is getting out there and being more active on social media. I feel like I’m late to the game and will come off as a fake, suddenly showing up and being all social butterfly and junk. :shrug:
I hear you on the whole social thing, as you klnow from my comments to you yesterday. On a hopeful note, I’ve seen my Apple sales grow exponetially. They still aren’t huge but I figure the more books I get live wide, the bigger sales. I’ve had Hoopla and Overdrive royalty. And the Apple. I still get sales from the ‘Zon but they’ve dropped steadily over the past year. So, yeah. No more monopolies and sales will be what they will be.
Here’s hoping we both figure out sales and marketing–how to do it better, not harder! ❤