This Week (technically the past two weeks)
Books sold: 10 ebooks (Amazon)
Money earned: $27.03
Money spent: $0
Books sold: 371 ebooks, 147 paperbacks
Volume 2 pre-orders: 28
Money earned (book sales): $1,469.85
Money earned (Patreon): $6,909
Money spent: $6,622.57
I skipped last week’s update because I had zero sales, zero expenses, and no news to report; this week I still have zero expenses, but I had a bunch of sales because I ran a BargainBooksy promotion on Saturday, March 17.
My previous BargainBooksy promotions had both been Sunday promotions, under the theory that people are more likely to make decisions on Sunday and Monday (I don’t know about you, but Saturdays are generally rest days for me, and Sunday/Monday are action days). Here’s a quick recap of the results:
First BargainBooksy promo (July 16):
Net royalties: $75.18
Net profit: $47.18
Highest Amazon ranking: #16,507 overall, #120 in litfic sagas
Second BargainBooksy promo (August 27):
Net royalties: $37.38
Net profit: $2.38
Highest Amazon ranking: #31,807 overall, #226 in litfic sagas
Third BargainBooksy promo (March 17):
Sales: 9 so far (my Amazon KDP report claims I got 9 sales on March 17 and none on March 18, which doesn’t match the sales ranking graph from Author Central; maybe the other sales will record later this week?)
Net royalties: $24.66 so far
Net profit: -$10.34
Highest Amazon ranking: #39,163 overall, and I know it hit at least the #300s in litfic sagas
It does look like my BargainBooksy promos are showing diminishing returns, although I’ll be interested to see whether I did have some sales on March 18 that haven’t yet been recorded on KDP. My Author Central graph, which you can view at the top of the post, suggests I should have made another 8 or 9 sales on Sunday, so… where are they?
If it turns out that I made zero sales on Sunday but my author ranking remained in the 30,000s because nobody was buying books that day (remember, Amazon is constantly comparing you to all of the other books being sold in real time) then it won’t be a terrible loss. The biggest reason I ran the BargainBooksy promo was to get new readers who would then pre-order Volume 2, after all — and my pre-orders did go up this week. Still, I’d like to break even on the cost of the promo, so I’m hoping I get a few more sales!
I sent Volume 2 to designer Veronica Ewing to start the “turn it into a paperback” process this week. We have a lot more time to get this done than we did last year, and (I hope) a lot less work; the interior design will follow the template Veronica created for Volume 1, so we don’t have to have a second conversation about layouts and typefaces.
I also asked Veronica to make a few changes to Volume 1; we need to edit the copyright page to reflect the new ebook ISBN, now that Pronoun is defunct (seriously, the fact that we all lost our ISBNs was one of the worst parts of the Pronoun shutdown), there’s one typo in the text that I want to fix, and I need to edit the back cover copy to include the Library Journal Self-E Selection honor.
This is where I want to add “and any other honors The Biographies of Ordinary People might receive in the next few months,” because AWARDS SEASON is starting, but I also don’t want to sound overconfident or presumptuous or jinxy.
Here’s a list of all the places I submitted Biographies Volume 1:
- The BookLife Prize: already announced, I did not win (though my Critic’s Report noted that I captured “with particular grace, the ephemeral essences of girlhood and motherhood”)
- Foreword INDIES: they’ll announce the finalists tomorrow and the winners will be announced in June
- IPPY Awards: winners will be announced on April 10
- IndieReader Discovery Awards: winners will be notified mid-May, although I don’t believe the formal announcement happens until BookCon on June 3 (the idea is that the winners will appear at BookCon, so you gotta give them time to book the flights)
- Pulitzer Prize: winners will be announced on April 16, and I’ve already explained why I submitted to, like, THE BIGGEST AWARD so go read that if you don’t remember
- Washington State Book Awards: last year’s winners were announced in October, but I am assuming I will no longer be eligible for this one since I no longer have Washington residency?
I got my IndieReader Discovery Award Verdict this week (it’s like the BookLife Critic’s Report, they review all of the books before they announce the winners, no doubt to get the extra publicity that comes when excited authors like me share their reviews), and my verdict included “The rather unassuming title doesn’t do justice to the beautifully written story of this typical American family.” So… no matter what happens with these awards, I can still tell people that IndieReader thought my writing was beautiful. ❤