Author Topic: Are you an author? Add yourself to our KB AUTHORS PAGE!  (Read 313828 times)  

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Are you an author? Add yourself to our KB AUTHORS PAGE!
« on: June 28, 2013, 03:37:56 PM »
Update! Authors can now add themselves to our KB Authors page, regardless of your current sales level.

Go to http://kboards.com/authors to see a list of KB authors, sorted by estimated sales.



Near the top, there's a link for you to add your own sales data. Each author can only add/edit his own sales data.



For those of you who use pen names, or who have author names different from your KB names, there is a place for you to list up to five of those.

Please give it a go and let me know your feedback. Thanks!


**************************
Help!

Over the years, we've had several fascinating threads showing KB authors who have reached sales milestones (e.g. this outdated list of authors selling 50,000 books or more, and Hugh's thread about authors paying the bills through their book sales, to name just a couple.

We would like to create an official KB list of best-selling authors, which lists KB authors based on sales milestones. This would be something we would maintain in this forum, and post periodically in our blog. I expect it could get a fair bit of publicity if it's done right.

I envision this as a listing of authors who have reached the various sales levels of:
10,000
50,000
100,000
500,000
1,000,000

Some questions, though...

1. How would we make this a reliable (i.e. verifiable) source of info? Ask for screenshots of Amazon KDP sales data?

2. How to handle factoring in sales from BN, Kobo, Smashwords, Apple, etc? Or should it be based just on Kindle sales?

3. Indie (self--pub) only? Indie and small-pub? Or any authors of e-books, whether they're indie, small-pub or big-pub?

4. Include freebies or only paid books in the milestone thresholds?

5. Any other thoughts/ideas? Is this an achievable idea?

« Last Edit: July 11, 2013, 11:48:57 AM by Harvey »
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Offline Zenferno

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2013, 04:02:18 PM »
Great idea, I would love to see this.  I wonder if it could operate on a gentleman's honor level, since most of the ones doing well are very visible on the boards anyway.  It might also mean a higher level of interest, esp. from the superstars who might not want to post screenies from different sources.  Or maybe make it a condition that to get listed you need to provide a little back story of the journey (I love the success stories! - the failures, the false starts the surprises, the elation etc).

The first draft is a huge pile of clay that you've laboriously heaped on your table, patting it into a rough shape as you go along. From the second draft onward, you'll cut away chunks, add bits, pat and punch and pinch, until you finally have a gorgeous figure of, oh, Marcus Aurelius. Or a duck. But a damn fine duck. - Phaeal

Offline Vivi_Anna

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2013, 04:07:30 PM »
I too think its a great idea.

I think the honor system should be in play here.  Also, sales (not freebies) and from all sources, not just Amazon. And I'd say indie is indie not small press or traditional.

Now are you looking at 10000 in a year? 

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Offline Wingpeople

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2013, 04:07:51 PM »
I like this concept. I don't think freebies should be counted, however. Beyond that, I'd support including sales & borrows of e-books from any platform, by any author who would like to share their story (as Zenferno suggested).

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Offline Carol (was Dara)

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2013, 04:08:09 PM »
I envision this as a listing of authors who have reached the various sales levels of:
10,000
50,000
100,000
500,000
1,000,000

Any chance of adding a level for 25K? I ask for purely disinterested reasons, of course. ;)

1. How would we make this a reliable (i.e. verifiable) source of info? Ask for screenshots of Amazon KDP sales data?


I'd be inclined to take the authors' words for it. Otherwise the only proof I can think of would be screenshots of retailer sales reports or photos of yearend tax papers with any sensitive info blacked out. But that'd be a lot of effort and would make the numbers very outdated by the time you got them.

2. How to handle factoring in sales from BN, Kobo, Smashwords, Apple, etc? Or should it be based just on Kindle sales?

I'd leave it optional for the authors to include sales from all retailers or just Amazon.

3. Indie (self--pub) only? Indie and small-pub? Or any authors of e-books, whether they're indie, small-pub or big-pub?

I'd make it self-pub ebooks only to limit the scope but that's just my personal preference.

4. Include freebies or only paid books in the milestone thresholds?

I'd make it optional for authors to mention their freebies too if they like, on the condition they aren't lumped in with paid sales, as that'd make the numbers wildly inaccurate.

5. Any other thoughts/ideas? Is this an achievable idea?

Sounds very achievable to me. It'll be a lot of work for you or whoever compiles it but I like the idea.

Offline MegHarris

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #5 on: June 28, 2013, 04:12:30 PM »
People don't usually include freebies in their milestones, only paid sales. Freebies are a whole 'nother animal. And people here usually seem to limit their announced sales to indie-only. There are a growing number of hybrids, but writers do get indie sales numbers a lot faster than we get publisher numbers, in many cases.

Asking for screenshots could be a big pain. I am pretty sure I've finally reached 150K sales (though I need to sit down and calculate it out to be sure), but that's over three and a half years at two retailers. (I have more at Apple, but I'm never going to sit down and try to figure out Smashword's data reporting.) Does anyone really want to look at that many screenshots? :D We don't all hit big numbers quickly; some of us are just plugging along.

Offline Hugh Howey

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #6 on: June 28, 2013, 04:36:39 PM »
Great idea! I would include a lot more milestones, though. More chances for people starting off and more opportunity to celebrate moving up a level. Someone mentioned 25K. I would add 250K and 750K. And start as low as 10, 50, 100, 500, 1,000. Those are the hardest milestones to hit, in my opinion.

Some questions, though...
1. How would we make this a reliable (i.e. verifiable) source of info? Ask for screenshots of Amazon KDP sales data?
2. How to handle factoring in sales from BN, Kobo, Smashwords, Apple, etc? Or should it be based just on Kindle sales?
3. Indie (self--pub) only? Indie and small-pub? Or any authors of e-books, whether they're indie, small-pub or big-pub?
4. Include freebies or only paid books in the milestone thresholds?
5. Any other thoughts/ideas? Is this an achievable idea?

My opinions:

1. There's no good place to screenshot lifetime sales in KDP. Not sure how you would do this. I recommend the honor system. Don't know why anyone would lie about sales. It would feel like a helluva jinx to me (and I don't even believe in those things!)
2. I would include them all, as hard as this is to tally. Let those who want to do all that work be rewarded with an honest accounting of their sales.
3. My vote would be to only include indie sales. But I don't feel strongly about it.
4. Only paid.
5. Badges would be great for people's blogs/sigs. Again, I would recommend much lower thresholds and a lot more of them.
 
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Offline ellenoc

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #7 on: June 28, 2013, 04:42:44 PM »
I started over 3-1/2 years ago. It seems I'd have to have screenshots of each book each month to prove anything that way, and I don't. Do those Author Central graphs cover that much time? I admit to never looking at them. Another way would be to send copies of reports to the author from Amazon and other vendors, and quite frankly, I'm no more willing to do that than send someone my income tax returns. (Of course if your politics are correct, IRS might be happy to share.) Would I be willing to provide one of those reports with personal info blacked out just to give some evidence that figures for older books that are no longer selling like hotcakes aren't an invention? I don't know. I'd have to look hard at one of those reports and think about it and since they're spreadsheets, I rather think one could be faked anyway.

So it seems to me an honor system is all that would work, and since if someone really started making up figures, someone else would point a finger....

P.S. I seldom disagree with Hugh, but KBoards made me aware of his post before posting mine, and I do disagree with the suggestion of more and more "milestones." The more there are, the more the importance of any one is diluted.

Offline Not Here

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #8 on: June 28, 2013, 04:43:12 PM »
5. Badges would be great for people's blogs/sigs. Again, I would recommend much lower thresholds and a lot more of them.

I think this is such a great idea! I know there are many who have posted numbers but I often forget. It's nice inspiration for the rest of us. :)

Offline Satchya

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #9 on: June 28, 2013, 04:46:08 PM »
I love this idea.  Also, are the sales numbers for each book?  Or for all of your books, total?  We've achieved one of those and then some, but to reach the second it will definitely take a combination of books.  So how are we counting?  By single book or all books by the author?
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Offline Ben Mathew

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #10 on: June 28, 2013, 04:47:43 PM »
Great idea. My suggestions:
- Paid sales only.
- Include all authors,  indie and trad, but subdivide sales into indie vs trad.
- No need to verify numbers with screenshots etc--too cumbersome.
- Include all outlets.

Offline Bria Quinlan

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #11 on: June 28, 2013, 04:47:55 PM »
Some questions, though...

1. How would we make this a reliable (i.e. verifiable) source of info? Ask for screenshots of Amazon KDP sales data?
 -- another vote for trust.

2. How to handle factoring in sales from BN, Kobo, Smashwords, Apple, etc? Or should it be based just on Kindle sales?
--- add them in definitely... not that my 28 BN sales on my YA ast week really move me much ;)

3. Indie (self--pub) only? Indie and small-pub? Or any authors of e-books, whether they're indie, small-pub or big-pub?
--- Hmmm... my initial thought is indie bc that's what I enjoy reading about, but I don't know

4. Include freebies or only paid books in the milestone thresholds?
---- Only paid books

5. Any other thoughts/ideas? Is this an achievable idea?
--- love the badge idea.
Also, are we talking per book, all your books, all your books per pen name?

I think this could be really inspiring, Harvey!

Offline Danni

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #12 on: June 28, 2013, 04:53:51 PM »
Include up to that point how many titles they had published to achieve those numbers.

Offline ChrisWard

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #13 on: June 28, 2013, 04:55:23 PM »
I would also add lower categories, otherwise it's the same old promote the big guns and ignore the rest.

Offline Joseph Turkot

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #14 on: June 28, 2013, 05:04:30 PM »
I agree with Hugh, mainly because I would get my 1,000 sale milestone. Plus, it does help you stay motivated early on when things seem daunting, like getting your first 100 sales.

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Offline David Wisehart

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #15 on: June 28, 2013, 05:22:12 PM »
Also, in addition to sales numbers, each level should have a unique name, from "Newbie" to "Howey."

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Offline scribblr

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #16 on: June 28, 2013, 05:26:37 PM »


5. Any other thoughts/ideas?


Comparing sales counts is like comparing apples to oranges or grapes to strawberries. By and large, most of it is meaningless, unless you define separate groups such as a) books to 20,000 words, b) books to 40,000 words, c) books to 80,000 words, d) books to 100,000 words, and e) books over 100,000. Everyone seems to agree that freebies should not be accepted as part of a valid count, but how about books that sell for 99 cents versus $2.99. And it's a lot easier to sell cheap books than books at publisher prices. John Scalzi took a book and broke it into 13 parts which he sells for 99 cents each. Should each of those parts count as a separate, full length novel when comparing it to books of 100,000 words that sell for $6.99 or $9.99. Cost to the reader must be considered as a valid measurement in talking sales.


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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #17 on: June 28, 2013, 05:27:39 PM »
Great idea. My suggestions:
- Paid sales only.
- Include all authors,  indie and trad, but subdivide sales into indie vs trad.
- No need to verify numbers with screenshots etc--too cumbersome.
- Include all outlets.

Love the idea, Harvey. I second Ben. Go for it!

Offline JRTomlin

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #18 on: June 28, 2013, 05:32:16 PM »
Include up to that point how many titles they had published to achieve those numbers.
I agree but not a huge number of categories. It would be nice to give some attention to the authors who don't a huge number yet and tend to be ignored. Make them high enough to feel like an achievement, say 100, 500, 1000, 2500, 5000...

ETA: To answer Harvey's original questions, My opinion:

1. The honor system
2. Whichever the author wants to include
3. My vote would be to only include indie sales.
4. Only paid.
5. I'd as soon skip badges, but I have a feeling I'm in the minority.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2013, 05:35:51 PM by JRTomlin »

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Offline Monique

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #19 on: June 28, 2013, 05:35:25 PM »
1. Honor system
2. All outlets
3. Indie only
4. Paid only
5. No cute names for levels, add 100 and 1000, and perhaps add a field for number of books at the time milestone was crossed

I'm assuming this is lifetime sales?

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #20 on: June 28, 2013, 05:38:28 PM »
I tend to think that the natural levels are 500, 1000, 5000, 10K, 25K, 50K, 75K, 100K, 250K, 500K, 750K, 1 mil, 2, 3, 4, 5, etc.

Paid sales only. Honor's fine. Lifetime sales, or annual?

Unsure how you deal with .99 vs. $5 sales, since one is 11X more economically meaningful.





Offline KBoards Admin

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #21 on: June 28, 2013, 05:50:31 PM »
Thank you all for the helpful responses!  

Quote
1. How would we make this a reliable (i.e. verifiable) source of info? Ask for screenshots of Amazon KDP sales data?

Sounds like honor system is the only way to go. I would like to dissuade that very small minority of authors who might try to game the list by overstating their sales... but don't know how to do that. Perhaps the suggestion about having them provide their story about how they got to that milestone might be enough.

Quote
2. How to handle factoring in sales from BN, Kobo, Smashwords, Apple, etc? Or should it be based just on Kindle sales?

I think we have a consensus that it should be total sales from all outlets.
And, the milestones would pertain to *all* books from that author; e.g. combined sales.
The milestone would be lifetime milestones (i.e not yearly sales totals)

Quote
3. Indie (self--pub) only? Indie and small-pub? Or any authors of e-books, whether they're indie, small-pub or big-pub?

Most people seem to prefer it be indie-only. My own preference is that it include any author who is a registered KB member. Probably more discussion is needed on this point.

Quote
4. Include freebies or only paid books in the milestone thresholds?

The milestone number should *not* include freebies.

Quote
5. Any other thoughts/ideas? Is this an achievable idea?

- Add to the number of milestone levels - I think this could be done although if the number is low, like 10, I think it would be administratively onerous to keep the list current. But maybe we could add a few levels, like:

1,000
10,000
50,000
100,000
250,000
500,000
750,000
1,000,000

- Badges - I like that idea! I can play with a few designs and post them here for your review.

- As authors move from one milestone to the next, they would be deleted from the lower level list and added to the higher.

- Need to think about how to make it efficient for authors to report their milestones. Maybe a reply to this thread is all that is needed, for starters, with:
  * author name (and include pen names)  * total ebooks sold
  * date first ebook was sold
  * number of distinct titles
  * approx breakdown by outlet (Amazon, BN, Kobo, Apple, etc) if available
  * your story - a few words about how you reached that milestone

Thanks for the great ideas; please keep them coming and we'll get this implemented.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2013, 05:54:38 PM by Harvey »
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Offline jvin248

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #22 on: June 28, 2013, 05:51:53 PM »
.
More categories at lower levels as noted.
Bragging badges to put on blogs and books,
'NYTBS'? Nah, top of the cover shows 'kboards bronze star author' ... which also advertises klboards.
       

Offline KBoards Admin

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #23 on: June 28, 2013, 05:53:39 PM »
I tend to think that the natural levels are 500, 1000, 5000, 10K, 25K, 50K, 75K, 100K, 250K, 500K, 750K, 1 mil, 2, 3, 4, 5, etc.

Paid sales only. Honor's fine. Lifetime sales, or annual?

Unsure how you deal with .99 vs. $5 sales, since one is 11X more economically meaningful.

I think it's easiest to avoid the price point distinction, as the price can change over time. (I do agree it's meaningful economically!)
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Offline H.M. Ward

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Re: The Official List of KB Author Sales Milestones
« Reply #24 on: June 28, 2013, 05:53:58 PM »
Do it! And put a little cake or something next to the user name at certain milestones. :) it'd b cool to see it at a glance in the forum.
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