When I first began writing seriously, I never did it for the money. I wrote because I have something to say and, I hope, something worth reading. I’ve found I’m far more excited by a readers’ comment of staying up all night to finish my book than by any royalty check. I keep writing because I have more stories to tell and because another reviewer said my last work earned her highest rating—five stars.
But I’m also a realist. In 2018—the latest year we have figures—approximately two million (that’s 2 followed by six zeroes!) new titles were released in the US.
By last count, there were more than six million different titles available to download on Kindle with a click. To get readers to notice my work among this tsunami of books is a daunting task.
So, when I learned last month the first novel in my Haunted Shores Mysteries series, BLOOD ON THE CHESAPEAKE, had become a #1 best seller on both Amazon and
B & N, I was over the moon.
Of course, I’m not raking in the dough as the publisher had to discount the book and run a special promotion, but still. At a time when the average sales of most all titles don’t even make it into three digits, to see my work soaring into the thousands is, well, okay.
Of course, in this biz, any success brings more expectations, mostly self-imposed—Can I keep the sales moving up? Can I get readers to buy other titles in the series? Will the next entry do as well as the first?
But don’t look for me on the New York Times or USA Today Best Seller list any time soon. Those titles have a much larger publisher with a much greater marketing budget behind them—not to mention name recognition. Still, I’ll take what I can get…and keep pushing for more.
Speaking of marketing, my publisher is running a special on all three titles in my series for the next few days. The best-selling BLOOD ON THE CHESAPEAKE is on sale for only .99 (a steal).
CRIMSON AT CAPE MAY has been reduced to $1.99 and the third installment, SCARLET AT CRYSTAL RIVER (pre-publication) can be had for $2.99. In other words, readers can purchase all three titles for less than any one will cost after the sale. And they will be among the first to get SCARLET when it’s released on September 13.
In case you’re wondering, my royalties on these will be in pennies, not dollars, so I’m not getting rich on the deal. Maybe could I ask you to share this great sale with a friend or two. If a few more readers fall in love with my hero, Darrell, and his beautiful girl and later wife, Erin, I’ll receive more of those compelling readers’ comments. And that will keep me writing.
Which reminds me, I have to get back to my current writing effort about another educator trying to stop a drug dealer in a middle school.
I’m on chapter 44 and I think I know how I’m going to catch the bad guy.