My Self-Publishing Update

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Good morning everyone. It’s been one month since I first embarked on my journey of self-publishing with For Love of an Angel, Book 1 of the FALLEN WARRIORS series. Since I promised to keep you all updated, here are my sales figures:

Total Books Sold to Date (1 Month and 2 Days): 124

Amazon: 85

B&N: 35

Smashwords: 4

Total Sold at $1.99 Vs. $0.99 Price Point

Amazon: 34 / 51

B&N: 17 / 18

Smashwords: 4 / 0

I kept the price at $1.99 for about 16 days before temporarily dropping the sales price to $0.99 on May 27th.

What have I found? Well, so far it doesn’t seem that the $0.99 price point has radically increased sales. That’s a bit of a surprise. But then I considered the fact that I’ve done very little guest blogging in the last two weeks (compared to the first 2 weeks of release). Touring and doing guest blogs is a huge factor in sales and I plan to do more of it, but I’ve been heavy in edits and writing Book 3 of my DEMONS OF INFERNUM series. Book 1 of the series, Blood of the Demon, is scheduled to release from Entangled Publishing in August 2011, and I can’t wait to give you a peek at the cover. Squee!!

I’m not sure how much longer I will leave the price of For Love of an Angel at $0.99 before bringing it back to $1.99. I would like to keep it as is for at least the first few weeks I release Book 2 of the series, Angel’s Desire. I initially planned on releasing that title on June 15, but the aforementioned edits have pushed back my edits for this story. I’m now hoping to release it on July 1. It will be interesting to note what happens to sales of Book 1 once Book 2 is released early next month.

So far I’d say my foray into self-publishing is going rather well. Have I made enough money yet to recoup the expenses of editing and cover art? No. But I’m getting there. I’m really excited to see what the future holds for the FALLEN WARRIORS series and for self-publishing in general.

Anyone else experiencing some measure of success with self-publishing? Or not, and trying to figure out why? If so let’s chat about it. Smile

I’ve got an excerpt of For Love of an Angel posted over at IRMC Books today. Please do pop in: http://www.irmcbooks.com/?p=167

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33 thoughts on “My Self-Publishing Update

    Steve Konkoly said:
    June 13, 2011 at 7:50 am

    Rosalie,

    That’s really a fantastic start. Seriously, and I’d love to know how you have captured a respectable B&N Nook following. My sales ratio is so lopsided toward Amazon, it’s ridiculous. Over 20:1!

    You’re in a great position, going for it in both the traditional and self-published realm. Very enviable.

    And, your book’s performance on Amazon is even more impressive, given the Summer Sizzle sale that has really cut into Indie sales…according to numerous Kindle Board posts. I think you are well positioned to see a boost in the latter half of June.

      Rosalie Lario responded:
      June 13, 2011 at 8:20 am

      Thanks, Steve. I’m quite optimistic about my sales figures so far, especially given how little marketing I’ve done *hangs head in shame*. But then, if writing the next book really is the best marketing strategy, I guess I’m right on track. I’ve got four more releasing this year! (Book 2 of the FALLEN WARRIORS and Books 1-3 of DEMONS OF INFERNUM).

      As for how I got high Nook numbers, I have no clue! From what I’d heard, I expected figures there to be rather low. I’m sure glad for what I’ve gotten there so far. 🙂

    Jenna Storm said:
    June 13, 2011 at 8:56 am

    Hi Rosalie,

    Great sales numbers! You must be pleased with all your hard work. Hope you don’t mind but I’d like to pick your brain a little. I noticed you mentioned guest blogging…did you guest on several blogs to promote? How else did you promote? I’m working on writing the next book in my series (book one releases in March 2012 and I have another series w book one published). Have you actually been told that one of the best marketing strategies is to get the next book out?

    Thanks for your post and I look forward to your reply. Best of luck with sales and writing!

      Rosalie Lario responded:
      June 13, 2011 at 9:09 am

      I’ve done about 6 guest posts so far, which is not a lot. But I do also have my own blog. In addition to the blogging, I sent review requests to about 20 sites (so far I’ve gotten 2 reviews and another is in process). Having more books out increases an author’s visibility while keeping their marketing fresh. That’s definitely the most important part of the equation.

      Good luck with your series!

    Nina Pierce said:
    June 13, 2011 at 9:04 am

    Thanks for sharing your numbers Rosalie. Mine haven’t been so stellar, but they grow slowly every week. I have only one book up at this point and I’m working to get the second book up. Although it was previously published I’m doing quite a bit of tweaking to make it even better. I’m hoping the second book will boost sales for both.

      Rosalie Lario responded:
      June 13, 2011 at 9:10 am

      That’s the thing, Nina. The numbers are steady, and even growing a little, and I can see that continuing. I can’t wait to see what happens when Book 2 goes up for sale. 🙂

      Good luck!

    Liz Crowe said:
    June 13, 2011 at 9:18 am

    I’m still teetering on the edge of this thing, having a small amount of success with one e publisher so far, and contracted to one other (and hopefully by week’s end, one more). But I am intrigued by the possibilities of this, and if there were a few more hours in the day, I would consider it more seriously. Thanks for updating us. it is very helpful! keep up the good work.
    Liz

      Rosalie Lario responded:
      June 13, 2011 at 9:23 am

      Thanks Liz, and best of luck to you.

    Terry Spear said:
    June 13, 2011 at 9:33 am

    I’ve had my books up since March, or I should say started to. I’ve been putting up a book a week (have tons of books) and one of them has been selling over a 100 copies a day on B&N! The Dark Fae has been out for about 2 1/2 weeks, and I’m now working on the sequel, The Winged Fae. It truly has been word of mouth. I sell between 30-50 of my other titles across the board. I also have them up at All Romance Ebooks, so you might try that.

    You never know when one of your books might take off, but I’ve found the biggest help to sales usually is offering another book. 🙂

      Rosalie Lario responded:
      June 13, 2011 at 9:49 am

      I saw your post on this last week, Terry; huge congrats! 100 copies a day is amazing!! For anyone reading this and interested in self-pubbing, I also want to point out that you have several self-pubbed books for sale; at least 10, right? That may be a factor in spreading the word; oh, along with the fact that you are a multi-print published author. 🙂

      BTW, I’m in the middle of Heart of the Highland Wolf, and it is a-maz-ing!!

        Terry Spear said:
        June 13, 2011 at 1:41 pm

        Thanks so much, Rosalie! Yeah, the highest was 134 sales of Dark Fae on B&N on Saturday. Plus a few more on Amazon and ARe and Smashwords that day. I just uploaded book number 22 yesterday!

        Like Debra Holland said, patience is the key..though it’s awfully hard at times. Most of my characters aren’t patient either. I think they might get it from me. 🙂

        I’m thrilled you’re loving Heart of the Highland Wolf!!! I think you’ll love Duncan in the next wolf tale!!! 🙂 And good luck! It’ll just get better!

        Rosalie Lario responded:
        June 13, 2011 at 4:22 pm

        Oh yeah, Duncan is hunky. Can’t wait to read his story, LOL!

    MonaKarel said:
    June 13, 2011 at 9:38 am

    This is fascinating, thanks so much to everyone for sharing. It’s a great insight into another aspect of publishing

    Debra Holland said:
    June 13, 2011 at 10:37 am

    Rosalie,

    I’ve been told from others in the SP business that are ahead of me in the process that patience is the key. I’ve seen a steady incline of my two self-published book sales since I published them on April 28. Both are “sweet” historical Westerns, which you think wouldn’t have much of a market. Yet I’ve sold 1300 books as of today. Wild Montana Sky, the first in the series is priced at .99. As an unpublished fiction author, I thought it was important to have a book that introduces readers to my writing. Starry Montana Sky #2 is priced at 2.99. Wild Montana Sky is outselling Starry Montana Sky at about 4 or 5 to 1. WMS has been on the Amazon top 100 list in historical and historical romance for about two weeks.

    I haven’t done much publicity. Only recently blogged twice and guest bogged once. Mostly a few mentions on Facebook and Twitter. Plus some of my friends have also posted/tweeted on my behalf. I’m about to start writing more blogs, but also want to get my fantasy romance series ready to go.

    For me it helps that Wild Montana Sky won the Golden Heart–way back in 2001–but I have that on the cover. Beautiful covers created by Delle Jacobs also help. I suggest that everyone use all the tag words you can think of. That’s were I think readers are finding me.

    5 star reviews are also important. When someone tells/writes me that they love the book, I ask them to write a review sharing what they just told me. With each 5 star review, the sales rise to another level. Not a lot a lot–about 5 a day. Good reviews reassure the reader that they’re not wasting their time and money on dross.

    For all of you thinking of self-publishing because you have a good book that you couldn’t sell (mine because they were “sweet”) but have gotten positive feedback on, jump on in! Make sure it’s professionally edited and you have a great cover. It’s SO much fun!!!

      Rosalie Lario responded:
      June 13, 2011 at 4:24 pm

      I so agree with you. I’ve had a blast self-publishing this book, because I get to implement my vision as far as cover art and I call all the shots. I really love my new publisher (Entangled Publishing is AMAZING, everyone) and I certainly wouldn’t want to go it alone for every book I write, but it’s a fun little side journey.

    Julia Rachel Barrett said:
    June 13, 2011 at 10:57 am

    Sounds promising, Rosalie. I think it’ all right to tone down expectations for the first book. Things will pick up after the second book. Please keep us informed!

      Rosalie Lario responded:
      June 13, 2011 at 4:25 pm

      I think publishing subsequent books is an important part of this strategy. Wish I could write faster!

    Cathy Yardley said:
    June 13, 2011 at 11:27 am

    This is fantastic, Rosalie! And I think as you build a following, you’ll find that your audience is going to be scooping up your backlist for years, so it’ll be a nice evergreen income (as well as give your readers something to read while waiting for your next novel… yay!) Thanks for sharing this info. 🙂

      Rosalie Lario responded:
      June 13, 2011 at 4:27 pm

      Exactly, Cathy! My original goal for the Fallen Warriors series was to give people a fun, quick read. For those who read and love my Demons of Infernum series (and I do think it’s a pretty fantastic series, if I may say so myself :-)), the Fallen books will be a fun sojourn from those stories.

    Julianne said:
    June 13, 2011 at 2:18 pm

    Any idea why the Smashwords sales are so few? I’m a Sony e-reader gal here, and if I were to self-publish something, I’d probably go to Smashwords first since they support the Sony e-reader. Do you happen to know why so few sales come from there? Did you promo one link more over another or was it just, you think, that people browsed Amazon and B & N more? This may be a stupid question, but I’m just curious.

      Rosalie Lario responded:
      June 13, 2011 at 4:28 pm

      Julianne, I think Amazon and B&N get far more views than Smashwords. From everything I’ve seen and heard by other self-pubbed authors, they have the same ratio of sales.

    Karen S. Elliott said:
    June 13, 2011 at 2:48 pm

    Very interesting figures. I’m a little surprised at the equality of it from one price to the other (generally). Thanks for posting – I think a lot of writers will find this most helpful!

      Rosalie Lario responded:
      June 13, 2011 at 4:28 pm

      Me too, Karen. That was unexpected.

    Lisa Kessler said:
    June 13, 2011 at 3:22 pm

    HI Rosalie –

    Very interesting stats!

    I put out an eBook short, Across the Veil for .99 in Mid-March and the first month sales total sales were almost indentical to yours! LOL

    Although, mine were skewed toward Amazon. After the first month I’d sold 125 on Amazon, 5 B&N and 4 Smashwords…

    Thanks for sharing your results! Weird that the total figures are so similar! LOL

    Lisa 🙂

    […] Comment! If you’ve been following the stories of the success of people like Amanda Hocking and JA Konrath (and let’s face it, in the writing communities who hasn’t been paying attention to them?) it seems like self-publishing is the new big thing. I myself know several writers who have done it–some for quite a long time, even before it was “cool”, and this weekend, I attended a workshop with none other than Best Selling romance author Maggie Shayne, who was herself all gung-ho on the subject. Certainly people are sitting up and taking notice. The numbers of people rushing on to the bandwagon are staggering to tell by the almost constant emails I get from writer-friends about this subject. For me, I still haven’t taken the plunge (due to several factors I’m not sure of yet), but never say never. My friend Rosalie has and if you’re curious, she’s put up a post on her blog concerning her observations. It, the link she links to, and the comments are all quite interesting. If you’re curious about this subject at all, do go pop by her blog here. […]

    Shelley Munro said:
    June 13, 2011 at 4:48 pm

    Thanks for sharing, Rosalie. I find all the information coming out is fascinating. I haven’t made the jump into self-publishing yet, but I will at some stage. I think you’ll find that once you have more books out, especially in a series, your numbers will grow rapidly.

      Rosalie Lario responded:
      June 13, 2011 at 4:53 pm

      Thanks what I’m hoping, Shelley. *grin*

    Nicola Marsh said:
    June 14, 2011 at 12:06 am

    Thanks for sharing the stats, Rosalie, really helps.

    I have a short I want to self-pub, have a cover, now need to find someone to format and upload for me (I’m totally a dunce when it comes to techno stuff.)

    Do you recommend anyone?

      Rosalie Lario responded:
      June 14, 2011 at 12:17 am

      I did it all myself but there are certainly people who will do it for you. I believe you can contact Mark Coker, the owner of Smashwords, and he will give you some recommendations (assuming you’re planning on doing Smashwords).

      Does anyone else know of someone who formats for self-pubs?

    Debra Holland said:
    June 14, 2011 at 12:40 am

    I used Bryan Coker. Bryansformatting@gmail.com $20.00 per book.

    Submit a story said:
    March 2, 2012 at 11:01 pm

    Submit a story…

    […]My Self-Publishing Update « Rosalie Lario[…]…

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