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Messages - CJArcher

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Writers' Cafe / Re: Audio Book Sales?
« on: March 14, 2018, 02:55:45 PM »
Audio sales are like ebook sales - some authors are making a lot, some very little. Mine is steadily increasing each month. The series that sells the best in ebook is the series earning the most in audio. I've had one audiobook take as long as 11 months to earn back what I paid (nearly $3k) while my latest release looks like it already earned back its cost (nearly $2k) and I only released it 10 days ago.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Audio Books - Do they sell?
« on: February 22, 2018, 05:48:59 PM »
I had all my own audiobooks done via ACX. They are done to a good standard, but because they were not done by Audible Studios or any other well-known studio, they don't ever seem to get any internal push or free publicity.

Mine are in a 1st-in-series promotion to Audible members right now and they were done by me through ACX, not by Audible Studios. I'm sure I'm not the first or only author who's had an Audible push and not had audiobooks produced Audible Studios.

I think audios are worth doing if your ebooks sell well. I like Annie's figure of 500-1000 sales per month as a guide. Every author is different, and even series by the same author behave differently. I produce two series through ACX, and one series is more popular than the other. Each book in the popular series pays its cost in less than 2 months, while the other series takes several months to earn back out. One book in that series took 11 months.

I do think audio is becoming more popular. Here in Australia, I see Audible's ads everywhere. They're doing a big push to get more members.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Going wide - the first month
« on: February 18, 2018, 07:44:23 PM »
Nope, there are others, but they don't come to KB because it's all KU KU KU KU so it can feel hostile at times. But I do know of others.

Just over $6k is about to land in my bank account from Kobo. It's my equal smallest retailer (with Google Play) by a long shot but I'll take it. My income has slowly increased at Kobo over the years, but it takes time. There's no secret sauce, just keep plugging away and sometimes something sticks, just like sometimes a book sticks at Amazon, iBooks etc. I don't know why. I find their inhouse promos help books that are already doing well there which makes sense - the more popular the book is, the more visible it will be in their emails or promo pages because the kobo folks already know it's a safe bet. Bookbubs help too.

Good luck with the your wide journey, Pauline.

Writers' Cafe / Re: The AUSTRALIAN writer's support thread
« on: January 10, 2018, 03:00:21 PM »
Hey guys, do any of you have books that are, or could be, free or 99c from 25th to 27th January? A friend and I are doing an Australia Day promotion featuring Australian authors OR books with Australian characters/settings.
If you're interested we have a sign up form at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSc-LVrokezv1VLpNnb7SX1MR9oT6-hn5Z4MfP-ETsca3nYPCA/viewform

Done! Thanks for the opportunity, Selina.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Planning ahead
« on: December 01, 2017, 03:13:12 PM »
I've planned up to and including the first quarter of 2019. I'm someone who needs to plan ahead and have deadlines, but just writing 2019 is a little shocking.

Writers' Cafe / Re: How many sales does one need to get on the USA Today?
« on: November 09, 2017, 03:06:11 PM »
It surprised me too as I'd heard the same thing about reaching 500 sales on at least one other channel than Amazon. I checked my numbers twice, I swear!

Writers' Cafe / Re: How many sales does one need to get on the USA Today?
« on: November 09, 2017, 01:14:16 PM »
I was told by someone in another group that I will never get on a list because I don't have ISBNs for my ebooks
This isn't true. I've made the list twice without ISBNs.

You do have to sell at least 500 on B&N / Nook though. Even if you sell 20,000, if you don't sell those 500 on Nook you won't list.
This also isn't true. I've made the list twice without selling 500 on B&N/Nook. I didn't sell more than 500 on any store other than Amazon (I did sell more than 500 across all territories at Apple, but not 500 in the US alone).

I made the list in October 2016 with between 5k-6k US sales in the week, and again this year in August with between 6k-7k. I think the reason one author makes it and another doesn't, despite selling the same or more, is curation. It's the USA Today's list and if they don't want it flooded with 99c books they'll pick and choose which ones get on and which ones don't. Mine were priced $4.99 so maybe that's why I got on with quite low figures compared to others.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Question for Australians direct with iTunes/iBooks
« on: October 31, 2017, 01:41:29 AM »
I got my account set up even longer ago than Patty  :o  Digging through my hazy memory, I don't think there's a way around it, but I was already set up for GST due to previously being a contractor. Sorry for the lack of help.

Writers' Cafe / Re: The AUSTRALIAN writer's support thread
« on: October 26, 2017, 03:34:10 PM »
Welcome new authors to the thread. Fire away if you have any Aus-specific questions. Or just discuss the weather, like we usually do here  :P

Writers' Cafe / Re: Kobo Payment?
« on: October 26, 2017, 03:33:04 PM »
I received my payment on the 20th Oct. It was for the month of August. Hope that helps.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Site for linking your books to all Amazon storefronts
« on: September 17, 2017, 07:56:02 PM »
KBoards has a worldwide Amazon link for your books using their Link-Maker.

But there is another Linkmaker site that automatically takes you to the correct Amazon storefront to buy. I'm trying it out, so if you wouldn't mind clicking on it to let me know if it is in fact taking you to where it's supposed to, I would be grateful. I'd like to put it on my Facebook page and Twitter.

This is the site if you don't already know about it. https://www.booklinker.net/

The link didn't work for me. It took me to the .com site and I'm in AU. It's not the first Booklinker link I've tried - none have worked for me.

Writers' Cafe / Re: The AUSTRALIAN writer's support thread
« on: September 14, 2017, 09:47:40 PM »
But Createspace still send cheques, which is a pain. I asked them when they were going to wire their payments and they said 'soon', so it's on the cards but could be 'whenever'.

Don't hold your breath. It's been "soon" ever since I started 6.5 years ago. I hate going into the my bank with createspace cheques. Last week it took them 10 minutes to find someone who knew what to do with them. KDP Print bundles payments with your ebooks but you can't distribute outside Amazon. Sigh.

Writers' Cafe / Re: How do you kill it (or do well) on Kobo?
« on: September 14, 2017, 04:15:49 PM »
I echo what everyone said about doing their internal promos - but submit your very best selling 1st-in-series book for one of the best promos, something where they say they're going to advertise a lot and offers a steep discount to entice readers. Don't be afraid to put in your bestseller. The better it's selling at full price, the higher up in their promo materials it will appear, and that's what you want - higher visibility. Low selling books will only get you a low position in the promo. You want to get onto page 1 if you can, not page 15. If the book is any good, readers will spill over to the rest of the series and that's where you'll make your money. I made over $12k on Kobo in April using this strategy.

Writers' Cafe / Re: The AUSTRALIAN writer's support thread
« on: September 08, 2017, 05:24:43 PM »
Welcome Anita. Glad you found us. There aren't many Aussie-specific discussions to have anymore, so I guess that's why the thread isn't all that active. Most of our issues are the same as indie authors living elsewhere and get discussed in other threads. We can always discuss the weather or the football :)  I personally don't come to Kboards as much as I used to, and rarely post.

Writers' Cafe / Re: BookBub and the Free 100
« on: August 12, 2017, 03:36:47 PM »
My book got to #15 earlier this week in the US store without any promo from me. I think I retweeted a tweet and told my FB followers, that's it. It got picked up by various websites without me notifying them. It was the first time it has been free and has sold well during it's paid lifetime, so that put it on the radar of those sites. So yes, it's definitely possible to get into the top 20 without the magic of Bookbub. Books by popular authors in more popular genres than mine should get into the top 10 without Bookbubs.

I think it's a good idea to keep the same pen name and leverage your historical romance readers. I wrote historical romance and transitioned to romantic historical fantasy under the same name. It was painless and I brought some readers across with me. Many who are new to me go back and read those HRs and enjoy them. No gets confused because the covers are clearly one or the other, and the blurbs make it obvious too. Good luck!

Writers' Cafe / Re: Faith in human nature - restored.
« on: May 06, 2017, 04:41:37 PM »
Pre-ordered and shared your post. You're doing a wonderful thing, Mark. Hugs and best wishes to your friends.

You can also make the USAT bestseller list without:
a) Selling your book for less than full price.
b) Spending a fortune.
c) Using unscrupulous methods.

I did it in October with a new release book priced at $4.99. I didn't advertise, I just did a long pre-order, then sent out my newsletter on the day of release and posted to socials. Didn't spend an extra cent. Plenty of authors do it but because they don't post here, we don't hear about it.

Just keep writing books people want to read and TALK ABOUT. The readers will build over time, one by one. And if you don't make the USAT/NYT list, so what? I can tell you, it hasn't made a difference to my ongoing bottom line. Build your backlist of unput-downable books in a commercial series that fans are gagging to get their hands on and the money will come. Writing those books is the hard part, and the X factor that I, for one, can't identify (even in my own books). The point is, you never know which of your books/series will take off. So this one isn't selling too well? Try again with another idea. Maybe that's the one that will hit.

Writers' Cafe / Re: The AUSTRALIAN writer's support thread
« on: March 30, 2017, 04:14:48 PM »
Genre Con


Anyone planning to go to this in November, or anyone been to past cons? Early bird registration closes today.

I've never looked into it before. Have you been before, Aderyn? Is it worth going for an indie? Particularly an indie with no interest in scoring a publisher or agent? What do you get out of it?

Writers' Cafe / Re: The AUSTRALIAN writer's support thread
« on: March 29, 2017, 05:29:47 PM »
Has anyone else's payment not turned up in their bank yet? It's the 30th and it normally comes in by the 29th.

According to the KDP dashboard Payments page, we're being paid on the 31st this month. I don't know why it's different this time.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Transistion of Indie author to Traditional
« on: March 28, 2017, 03:34:53 PM »
I had a big 5 publisher contact me and offer a print-only deal for one of my current indie series BUT they wanted to publish a future series in ebook, print and audio format. I turned them down even though there are risks that a future series might not do as well my current ones. Those e rights are way too valuable to me and I knew they couldn't offer enough money to compensate.

Big name agents and publishers aren't going to want to publish an existing indie book without a proven sales record behind it, but if you have a ton of sales why would you hand over the rights and any future earnings to a publisher? A brand new series is a different matter, however, and I can see why that would work for some indies and publishers - just not me.

Writers' Cafe / Re: The AUSTRALIAN writer's support thread
« on: March 28, 2017, 02:46:24 PM »
On Audiobooks, has anyone tried Author's Republic for audio books? If you can get them narrated/produced and own the files for distribution, it seems like a good option, but I've never talked to someone who actually uses them. I went with ACX/Kemah Bay, but my first trilogy is out of the exclusive period now (I did exclusive with upfront payment, not royalty share), so I could move, and it looks like a higher royalty and more channels...

Stay safe everyone in QLD!

I haven't used them but I did 2 audiobooks that way and distributed them through Listen2abook, so that's another option you may want to look at. The royalty rates are better than going through Kemah Bay/ACX, but their reporting is terrible and you only get paid every 3 months. I decided not to continue using them as I prefer the transparency of Kemah Bay/ACX. PM me if you want more details.

Writers' Cafe / Re: The AUSTRALIAN writer's support thread
« on: March 27, 2017, 03:14:57 PM »
Welcome to the new authors to the Aussie corner of Kboards!

To the northern Queenslanders - I hope you're staying safe. It looks really scary up there.

But I'll keep this post straightforward. In general, do many of you consider having audiobooks produced? Would you be interested in Australian production/narration? Most people don't realise you can publish/distribute through ACX via Kemah Bay.

Graeme, to answer your questions - I already am having audiobooks produced, some via Tantor (older series) and my 2 current series through ACX via Kemah Bay. I'm very happy with the way ACX and Kemah Bay work, but I wish ACX would open up to us Aussies directly so I don't have to pay anyone an extra slice of the pie  ::) I'm not interested in Aussie narration as my books are set in England and first person female POV, but it sounds like a good idea to keep to Aussies only if you can't do other accents. Good luck with your venture.

Hi Annie, I have nothing new to add to the awesome advice you've already received, except to say hang in there. I think your situation is very common, and it's not limited to indie authors. The truth is, it can be hard to back up a popular series with another and another. Readers move on, tastes change, or we can't capture what made our earlier books great, or we just get bored writing the same type of book. This business is SO hard and is full of ups and downs. I sincerely hope you're about to climb up again. Good luck!

I don't see anyone mentioning how iBooks get around this problem. When I upload my book to Apple, I choose 5 categories but my book will only be BROWSABLE in the store via the top-most category I chose. It can still appear as a "new" or "hot" book on the main promotional pages of categories 2 to 5 and I can still include it in promos (if asked) for categories 2 to 5 but for browsing the top-selling lists, it's only visible in the first category. So my book could be #1 in the entire store, but will only appear as #1 in the Fantasy category if I chose Fantasy as my primary category, not #1 in the Romance category even though Romance sub-cats were my second, third and fourth choices. It forces authors to think long and hard about the primary category.

Would this solve Amazon's problem? Or make it worse?

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