Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Wrapping Up 2017 in Book Sales

Last year was not a bonus year for selling books, lemme tell ya.  And, from what I've heard, I wasn't the only one.  All I can say is we have to keep motoring along and hoping for the best.  The alternative is unacceptable. 

Okay, now for the wrap-up. 

In 2017, sales (through individual sales and Kindle Unlimited page reads) were as follows:

All books: 261.95
Dying Embers: 37.01
Accidental Death: 16.78
Wish in One Hand: 45.53
Blood Flow: 3.05
In Deep Wish: 48.16
Fertile Ground: 17.01
Up Wish Creek: 41.68
Natural Causes: 13.65
Wish Hits the Fan: 38.16

Umm, yeah.  I did say it wasn't a banner year.  Of course, it also wasn't a big year for advertising.  I only spent $111 on ads.  Which might have something to do with the lack of sales.

Outgo for the year was just over $1500.  Income for the year was just over $300.

For all three years of publishing, I've sold 1971.40 books.  I had hoped to clear the 2K mark this year, but that wasn't to be.  The grand totals for each book are:

Dying Embers: 851.66
Accidental Death: 485.50
Wish in One Hand: 263.13
Blood Flow: 72.60
In Deep Wish: 98.61
Fertile Ground: 82.28
Up Wish Creek: 65.81
Natural Causes: 13.65
Wish Hits the Fan: 38.16

And because I sat down and did the numbers, here's how the finances have worked out for the entirety of my publishing journey thus far...

Spent about $8600 and made about $2500.  As Hubs likes to put it, that income means Dying Embers and most of Accidental Death are paid for.  Thinking about it this morning, it's more like a Ponzi scheme - with newer members paying older members, so it looks like it's funding itself when it's not. 

Anyway, I don't mean for this to be discouraging or sound like a whine.  It is what it is.  As long as I find the funds to publish books, I will continue to publish books.  Right now, that means working part time as a contract computer person.  I do spreadsheets and troubleshooting, and most of the money I make there goes into an account to pay for editing and cover art.  Whatever it takes, right?

But if you're thinking about doing this self-publishing thing, understand that it isn't a get-rich-quick endeavor.  It isn't even a get-rich-slow one.  It's a labor of love, perhaps.  It means finding satisfaction in knowing people out there are reading your books when they weren't able to before you self-published.  It also means finding satisfaction in knowing you've done this thing.  You.  Not an agent.  Not a publisher.  You.  And yes, it is pretty satisfying.  Heh, it kind of has to be, doesn't it?

For the year ahead, I have plans to publish 4 books.  Right now, they will be Blink of an I (due out in February), Early Grave (hoping for May or June), Sleeping Ugly (August or September), and either the fourth book in the Dennis Haggarty series or another dystopian (November or December).  This is pretty firm in my head, but as always, it's subject to change.

Any questions? 


  1. Last year was a bad one for sales so yeah. You are far more organized than I am. I just dump my royalty statements and receipts on the CPA and let him figure it out. I'd be too depressed otherwise. Still, I can't imagine NOT writing so there's that. At some point, both of us will hit on an idea that catches fire with readers and then it will all be okay. I'm convinced of that because the alternative? Nope, not goin' there. Positivity. That's my touchstone this year. *nods* Hang in there. I'm looking forward to a new set of books from you this year!

  2. I didn't count KU pages read, so my fiction sales look even more pathetic than they were (which was pretty sad). But money-wise, I made half as much again as last year, counting both fiction and nonfiction. I'll take that! :-)

    Here's to much better sales this year! Bottoms up! (No, not that kind. Sheesh. ;-) ...)