Kindle Unlimited Makes Sales For Authors

Kindle Unlimited Makes Sales For Authors

I shared the story of my ill-fated “let’s not publish new stuff in KDP Select” experience on my Just Write a Book Blog. I definitely lost money with that little experiment. All the ebooks I which I hadn’t enrolled in KDP Select, and which were therefore not available in  Kindle Unlimited, are selling well now that I’ve enrolled them.

It’s amazing to me that I’m making many, many sales, just because the ebooks are free to Kindle Unlimited subscribers. Not what I would have predicted, but there it is.

Here’s one more author’s experience, Let’s Talk Numbers: It’s official! If you write novels, the new KU is AWESOME!:

“Not too shabby! As you can see, I was averaging about 15-20k pages read per day for a monthly total of 604,268 pages read in July. Multiply that by the official $0.0058 per page payment, and you get $3504.75 for the month.

“Thirty five hundred bucks!!! That’s almost twice what I earned from sales in the same time period!! And keep in mind that OGDDA didn’t come out until August 1, so these are earnings from only one title in one month.”

It’s not just novels, of course. I write a lot of short fiction, because I like to write, and short fiction is fun, and the read-throughs are there as well.

What I take from this: Amazon wants people to read. When people read, authors make SALES.

Test, to see what works for you

When Amazon changed the Kindle Unlimited (KU) rules, and decided to pay authors by pages read, the shrieks of doom abounded.

A couple of my Serial Fiction Bonanza students asked me whether Kindle Unlimited would still “work”. I told them that I trust Amazon to look after their customers — readers. And what’s good for readers is good for authors.

I’m a reader first. From the time I became aware that people wrote the stories I loved to read, I decided that one day I’d write books too.

As a reader, I adore Amazon. I can order as many books as my wallet will accommodate, whether the books are recently published, or were published years ago. Amazon is heaven for people who love to read.

It’s my experience that Amazon is heaven for authors, too. Your mileage may vary of course; everyone is different.

Test. See what works for you. If you decide that you don’t want to give Amazon exclusivity, that’s fine. You don’t have to, but if you haven’t tried KDP Select, test it. You may be surprised that it sells ebooks for you.

Have fun. :-)

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Serial Fiction Bonanza: Get Readers, Get Fans — Make A Solid Income From Your Fiction FAST

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, on Twitter: @angee, and find Angela on Pinterest, too.

How to profit from your writing: online store.

Market Your Ebooks To Get Out Of Keyword Hell

Market Your Ebooks To Get Out Of Keyword Hell

Authors complain about marketing, but it’s necessary, otherwise you won’t make sales. There are endless ways to market your ebooks.

Sadly if you’re relying on tags and keywords to make your ebooks discoverable, you’ll hit a snag. Some authors on Amazon cram their titles with a dozen keywords, so your book is pushed back ten or 30 pages deep in the search results.

Authors have complained about keyword-cramming for years. Sooner or later Amazon will conduct a purge. In the meantime, do some easy promotions yourself. It’s not difficult, and it needn’t take much time.

The process I share in Ebook Dominance works. And yes, it takes just 15 minutes a day. Be consistent; do a little each day. You’ll start selling, and then you’ll sell more.

What if you can’t spend 15 minutes a day?

For most of my pen names I can’t spend 15 minutes a day either. I’d be lucky to spend 30 minutes a month promoting most of them.

There’s a solution — your readers’ list.

The marketing key: your readers’ list

As soon as I set up a new pen name, I set up a readers’ mailing list for that name. I add the signup code to a page on Facebook, or on a blog. Then I add the signup page’s URL to the back matter of each ebook under that pen name.

Try this simple strategy yourself.

You’ll slowly get subscribers. To build subscribers quickly, make an ebook free, and then promote it on one of the many “free ebooks” promotional websites. Or run some Facebook ads.

Be patient: everything you do counts, it’s cumulative

I discuss consistency in Ebook Dominance . Keep up your marketing chores. You’ll see results.

The other day I burst out laughing when I read a gleeful email message from a student. She forwarded her message of her pending payment from Amazon, and told me how much the payment was. The sum made me blink. I laughed because this was student who “hated” marketing. Her message ended with: “you were right! I’m glad I didn’t quit.”

Don’t you quit either. Market your ebooks. It doesn’t take much effort.

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, on Twitter: @angee, and find Angela on Pinterest, too.

How to profit from your writing: online store.

Writing Journal 65: You CAN Self-Publish

Writing Journal 65: You CAN Self-Publish

My writing journal for Thursday, October 16, 2014. You can find all the writing journal entries here.

I woke up early this morning, at 4.30AM, with some clever twists for the mystery novel tumbling through my mind. I created a cluster diagram, then wrote it up, and started my daily stint on the novel a few minutes early. I managed 3,200 words, before I wound down. After yesterday’s dithering, I was pleased that the writing flowed this morning.

Without any doubt, this is one of the easiest novels I’ve ever written. Hmmm… the universe might be trying to tell me something.

An aside to the universe… if you want me to write mysteries, PLEASE drop an intriguing sleuth into my brain. I’ve been rereading Phil Rickman lately. I’d love to be gifted with a sleuth like Merrily Watkins.

Onward with the two nonfiction books. I forced myself to work solely on the ebook, rather than the print book, and achieved 1,800 words.

Breakfast. It’s cold this morning, so Honey limped a little. I hope her arthritis will improve as the weather warms up.

I ate my toast while reading and responding to email messages from clients and students. I make notes for Julia to type up.

More work on my new website

Progress on the new website. I’ve got some lovely goodies lined up for readers. More on that soon.

Next, some on-going copywriting for a couple of retainer clients.

A short interruption, while I go for my walk. The storms of the night before last don’t seem to have done any major damage; we were lucky.

You CAN Self-Publish

I had lunch while reading social media, and found this gem from Hugh Howey, Group Hug.

Had to snicker at this one:

3) It will end your writing career if you self-publish.

Actually, it’s just as likely to start your writing career. A friend of mine just sold his self-published book to a Big 5 publisher for several hundred thousand dollars. It may have been true at one time that publishers only looked at material if it had never been published anywhere else before, but that was laid to rest a long time ago. The stigma is gone within publishing houses. 50 Shades of Grey selling a bazillion copies changed all that.

Yes, it’s fascinating that all the “you’ll be ruined!” screams about self-publishing have died down. Now the screamers just bash Amazon. (Sigh.)

Of COURSE you can self-publish. You can do whatever you please. And take it from me, if you knew how frustrating it is to deal with middle-people like agents and editors, you’d run away screaming from anyone who offered you a traditional publishing contract.

Self-publishing gives you freedom, above all. Yes, it can be scary, and yes, you’ll make mistakes. However, at least you’re not paying for others’ mistakes. Once you sign away your rights in a piece of writing you can’t easily get them back.

Blogging…

Next, blogging. I need to organize content for clients’ blogs, and do some research. That takes several hours.

Finally, I have a few minutes to check how many draft posts I have on my own blogs. I need to write more draft posts, so I’ll do that tonight.

It’s after 4PM, which means that I need to catch up on phone calls and email messages.

The bullet journal Kickstarter campaign was a roaring success

The campaign raised over $79,000.

I started using the bullet journal system on September 18, so I’ve been using it for just on a month. Why, oh why didn’t I start using it earlier? It combines perfectly with Evernote and Things, and makes it wonderfully easy to track goals. I love it; I decorate my pages with stickers and Washi tape, so I can see how close I am to a goal at a glance.

Your bullet journal can make it hard NOT to do things, because those items you’ve migrated keep staring it you. It’s easier to do them, than it is to keep looking at what you’re avoiding. Fun.

With all my calls returned, I do my daily review. It’s the end of another writing day.

, and on Twitter: @angee.

You can find Angela on Pinterest, and on YouTube, too.

Writing Journal 46: Surviving the Content Flood

Writing Journal 46: Surviving the Content Flood

My writing journal for Saturday, September 27, 2014. You can find all the writing journal entries here.

I started the morning off with the novella, working with the character arcs, so that they make sense. You need to show the characters’ changes as a logical progression.

Here’s why this is important. If your characters don’t act like real people — even if they’re little green men from the planet Zotekar — your reader gets bounced out of the story. Not only that, you can annoy the reader profoundly. He’s upset, but he’s not sure why, and he won’t buy anything else you’ve written. This will annoy you. :-)

So it’s worth getting the characters right. Mystery author Donald Westlake wrote a very funny novel called The Hook, about a bestselling novelist. From memory, in the first few pages, the main character can’t get his book character to behave logically. It’s worth reading; sadly there’s no Kindle version, so you’ll need to find it in your local library.

I need to get the novella done, so I can send it to the contract editor next week. Never mind. I’ll let it go; with any luck I may get a sudden flash of inspiration.

Onward, with the company history I’m ghostwriting. I manage another 1,300 words on that, and then it’s time for email. First Honey’s breakfast, and then my own, while writing email messages. Mailbox is amazing. I’m very pleased with it, because you can choose “Later” and set a time/ date for messages you don’t want to handle immediately.

Next, a little work on the ebooks I’m ghostwriting for a client. These are nonfiction, and their goal is promotion for the client. I need to write a couple more ebooks of my own, for the same purpose. When you’re ghostwriting, you’re like the shoemaker whose kids go barefoot. I manage 1,800 words. It’s going well.

Time for my walk. I need to clear my head of worries about the character arcs. The “boys in the basement” can handle it.

I’m back. I’ve been chatting with some authors who are trying to market their books, and are complaining that it’s hard. Yes, it’s hard. And it will get harder.

Book marketing: surviving the content flood

Bob Mayer talked about the “content flood and authors whining”. and I think he’s right. There’s more and more content (the Web, ebooks, television, games, movies, and on, and on.)

Your content, and mine, gets diffused if you like Mayer’s term, and I do. So how do you survive?

You start with the mindset that you’ll adapt. Unlike Hachette. Too many authors believe Hachette’s line of BS. This is fine for the whales. The big names will survive, no matter what. Lee Childs responded to Konrath, yada, yada. If you haven’t been keeping up with the Hachette/ Amazon thing, don’t bother. It’s tedious, watching publishers and their authors act like it’s 1994. Or 1954.

So, how will you adapt? Every author, and every writer for that matter, is different. What works for someone else may not work for you. Remember that the content flood won’t stop. Adapting to it means looking at what you want to achieve, at what you’ve got, at what you could develop and create, and making a plan. Then start working the plan. Adapt as you go along.

Realize that you can’t turn back the content flood. Once you’re convinced of that, adapting becomes much easier.

Back to real life. I need to read through the company history, and see what I have, and what else I need from the client. So I do that, and make some notes. Julia can arrange for a chat with the client next week.

Time for lunch, and for Saturday’s errands. All in all, it’s been a productive morning.

Back again very late. Time to do the daily review, and the word count.

I’ve got a couple of coaching sessions tonight, so it’s time to prepare for them.

, and on Twitter: @angee.

You can find Angela on Pinterest, and on YouTube, too.