It’s winter here in Australia right now, which seems apt as most ebook sales are down worldwide, so I like to think that ebook market really does follow the seasons here Down Under.
Winter (Jun-Aug) – Cold Sales
Spring (Sept-Nov) – Warming Up
Summer (Dec-Feb) – Hot! Everyone is out and buying.
Autumn (Fall) (Mar-May) – Sales start to slow again
And since it’s Spring here next month, it should mean over the next few months we should start to see an improvement across the board.
But even though my overall sales across all platforms was down slightly (by 6%), interestingly my Amazon sales – and in particular the fiction – is up by 18%.
Whether that’s due to the ever so slight increased exposure I’ve been doing, or the fact that the higher price IS actually attracting a few more sales, I still don’t know for sure.
Early Ezinearticles results
You’ll remember I said that I was going to write a few articles to help promote the fiction.
Over the past month, I’ve written 9 articles on EZA (ezinearticles) and 2 on Squidoo. The EZA articles are approximately 400 words each and the Squidoo lens about 1,500 words each.
Some of the articles lead to Pen Name’s blog but the majority of them point to the Squidoo lens. Why? Squidoo has good authority and can easily to rank for certain keywords. (And I don’t like the idea of sending ALL the articles direct to my website).
The articles themselves have only resulted in 4 clicks through to the website, but they’ve been placed on various other websites with (most of them) links intact which has increased some of the rankings very slightly.
Keyword 1 (easy) – was 1 now 1
Keyword 2 (easy) – was 2 now 2
Keyword 3 (med) – was 37 now 34
Keyword 4 (hard) – not ranked
Keyword 1 (med) – was unranked now 20
Keyword 2 (hard) – not ranked
Keyword 3 (hard) – not ranked
I think as the articles and lens age they may rank better, but for now I’ll slow down in this area until results pick up.
Short Stories vs Novels
Up until now I’ve been concentrating on short fiction. I still love the idea of short fiction, and will be doing more in the future, but there is still no question that novels do sell much better than shorts.
So I’m writing a novel. I’m hoping to have it finished by October – just before NaNo starts in November.
It’s been hard, challenging, but also lots of fun. And I can’t wait to see how it works out. It could bomb completely, or it could sell like a hot cake. I’m eager to find out.
0.99 cent price point eradicated
I think all my work now should be at the higher price points. I’ve now listed everything (including the short fiction) at $2.99 or higher.
The exception of course, is the few freebies that I have that are for promoting the others.
Kobo Writing Life
I really like the overall concept of Kobo. It has the potential to become a real player in the ebook market with its access to worldwide markets, many of which (such as Japan) it is a market leader in. While it’s probably no competitor to Amazon in the US, outside of that it could do well if it’s smart.
But it hasn’t been without teething problems. Out of fourteen books I’ve uploaded there so far, six are stuck ‘in publishing’. There have been many other authors who’ve experienced the same thing, and many have also reported sometimes they are able to get unstuck by uploading new epub’s, or new covers. Although it seems random as to what works. I’ve tried uploaded new epub versions but that didn’t work for me. So I’m going to try uploading a new cover (with slightly different dimensions) as someone said this worked for them. So far no dice, so I might try to tweak something else next.
I haven’t determined why some of the books went through without a hitch and were published within an hour or so, and why the others haven’t. I thought I did the same thing with all of the them. It’s possible it has nothing to do with me at all and it’s something random on their end. *shrug* I’ll keep you updated if I found something that works in unsticking them.
How to be a successful Kindle author (the Secret)
I put this last because I knew it’s the only thing you really wanted to read in this post. It’s like putting the milk at the back of the grocery store in hopes that you’ll notice all the other yummy food on your way.
I truly believe the way to be a successful author is never give up. Most people give up when it’s hard or they’ve experience a set back (bad review, no sales, your mum not liking your work << don’t laugh this recently happened to me), but if something isn’t working for you, then try something new. It’s why I’m writing a novel at the moment (something different), it’s why I’m experimenting with different marketing campaigns, and why I’m writing in different genres.
Mix it up. Make it fun. Write under a new pen name. Change up a cover. Write a new blurb.
But above all – don’t give up. THAT’S how to be a successful Kindle Author
P.S. While my mother didn’t actually say she ‘hated’ my thriller series, she did say ‘Hmm it’s not very clear who your audience is, is it?’ after just reading the first story and quickly abandoning the rest of the book even though I told her the later stories are much better.