By the Numbers

by Ashlynmathews on October 2, 2014

By the Numbers

I can’t believe it’s already October. Where did the time go? For those who are interested in self-publishing, I thought I would share my numbers.

In September 2012, my debut novel, Shadow Watcher, was released by my then publisher, followed by another PNR (My Fallen) in January 2013 from the same publisher. I also self-published a novella, If Only, in November 2012. Yes, 2012 was a busy year for me.

From September 2012 to December 2013 I sold approximately 146 copies combined of My Fallen and Shadow Watcher. From November 2012 to February 2013, I sold over 20k copies of If Only. January 2014 to present time, I’ve sold 627 copies of 6 books combined.

These are MY results. Other SP authors may have different experiences. I don’t see the resultant numbers as a negative or a positive. The 20K copies of If Only were mainly giveaways, freebies. Logic would say “free” isn’t a “buy.” I see the 20K copies “sold” as 20K potential readers of my next book and the next. So how come I only sold less than 700 copies this year?

I believe the answer is time. What If, the second book in my Willowbrook series, just released a few days ago. That’s almost two years between books. Too long, in my opinion. If I had another book or two to offer in the series when the first book went free, I might’ve seen higher numbers for 2013.

However, as many of you know, I hit a proverbial wall and crashed in 2013. My Fallen (re-released as Never Forget Always Remember) was my last book release. Fast forward to 2014 and it’s like starting over again for me. I got my rights reverted for My Fallen and Shadow Watcher, and re-released the books with new titles and covers this year. I also released a PNR novella followed by two contemporary romance novellas about three months apart.

Word of mouth and sales takes a while. I have to keep reminding myself of that. It’s been two years since If Only was released, yet this short, mixed-review story still sells well. So what do the numbers mean for me looking toward the future? Experiment with price and different promotions, be active on social media, interact with my readers, keep on writing, and be patient.

Comments are welcomed! If you’re a writer, I’d love to hear about YOUR experience. If you’re a reader, I’d love to know what excites you about the current market—free reads, discounted books, box sets, subscription services.

Song on replay: Tove Lo ~ Habits (Stay High)

Quote: “Giving up on your goal because of one setback is like slashing your other three tires because you got a flat.” ~ Unknown. From my Pinterest board.

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