I don't think I'm going to discuss numbers all the time here; I'm a writer after all, not a mathematician. However, I do want to talk about some very important numbers today: The Kindle eBook sales numbers.
Knight of the Living Dead (3 Strange Knights): Steve and I published this on May, 1st, Sunday morning of the Tulare County Renaissance Faire. We talked it up all day, and by the time I'd gotten home Sunday afternoon, we'd had 8 sales. Over the next week, we sold 38 copies of the eBook, the second week, we sold 20, third week 8, and finally rounding out the last week of the month with 10 sales. 78 copies in all. While some people might scoff and say that's not a whole lot, considering that our only expenses so far are the fliers I had photo copied before Tulare, that's actually pretty good. Also, I've done a bit of research, and those numbers are better than some eBooks do over their entire shelf life; granted, Steve and I have a bit more of a built in audience. I do honestly feel that our strong opening numbers had a lot to do with all the promotion we did at faire. It will be interesting to see how things look after two weeks at Valhalla.
Part of my morning ritual before I sit down to write is to check the sales numbers. Sometime between midnight and 5am when I open up my computer, someone bought a copy of "KotLD." Whoever you are, thanks for that bit of pleasantness. Looks like June is off to a good start.
The Dragon Bone Flute: Opened it's first wee with 19 sales. I'd hoped to have this one out much earlier in the month, but it took me longer to finish than I'd expected. Originally, I'd hoped to premier both eBooks at Tulare, but as it came closer to the deadline, I realized I could only get one ready. I decided to go with "KotLD" because that's what I'd promised Steve. Also, the cover took a bit longer than expected, which I'm totally okay with. I love the cover, and I've gotten lots of good feedback on it. Thanks Daniel for being awesome and not letting me have something half-finished. So, for a first week, and being out later than promised, I thing tDBF started pretty strong as well.
I did not see a copy of tDBF sold when I woke up this morning, but that's okay. Zombies are in right now. Dragons had their day. So I'll get over it. *sniff*
KotLD was #34,806 in the Kindle paid sales Lists. tDBF was #35,487. Those numbers might look pretty low and discouraging at first. However, when we consider that there are over 950,000 books available on Kindle, I think that's pretty darn good!
Aside from the afore mentioned photo copies, neither Steve nor myself have paid out any expenses in the publication of these books. The royalties we'll be getting is pure profit. We have not paid for printer ink, paper, envelopes, or postage - the foremost expenses of the writer's life. We did not suffer a long string of rejection letters. The stories are there, available to our fans whenever they like.
The size/length of both KotLD and tDBF make them extremely hard to publish in traditional markets. KotLD comes in at just over 25,000 words and tDBF comes in at just under 20,000 words. Most magazines would shy away from that length, and they aren't nearly big enough for us to try and sell them as actual novels. Kindle provides a perfect forum to put out stories of this length.
Thanks to everyone who has supported the books. I know some of you haven't gotten around to picking them up yet, and thank you guys in advance. Steve and I speak often about how blessed we are to have a loyal and dedicated fan base. Without you guys, we would be a pair of guys chasing a dream. Because of you, we're living the dream.
"In these pages many mysteries are hinted at.
What if you come to understand one of them?"
"Words let water from an unseen, infinite ocean
Come into this place as energy for the dying and even the dead."
"Bored onlookers, but with such Light in our eyes!
As we read this book, the jewel-lights intensify."