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Discussion Starter #1
  I'm finding that, for the sake of my sanity, I am trying to wean myself off checking my royalties page and I was wondering if anyone else had to do the same. Is it different if you regularly sell books in large quantities? As I sell very few, checking becomes a rather dispiriting exercise peppered by false hope when a few units shift and yet there I am, checking in the morning, in the afternoon, in the evening, as if some crazy flood of activity will have happened. I find the same annoying compulsion in checking if I've had any reviews!
 

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You're not alone. I have beaten myself into the habit of only checking KDP after a promo has concluded. Otherwise, I too find it entirely too depressing. My sales went off the cliff back in 2019 and have yet to recover since I don't have the income to do more than just one promo a month.

As for reviews, pffffft, now that bad habit I still haven't licked. I can't help it. I check for them daily. Every once in a while, I get lucky, but mostly, nothing. Amazon switching to allow ratings only instead of reviews is both a help and a pain. It helps boost the number, which makes it easier to secure promos, but it means a frustrating lack of feedback from readers. I suppose they wanted it to be more like Goodreads, which is fair. For instance, I have freaking 692 ratings on my debut permafree novel on Goodreads, but only 148 on the Amazon page. Boy, would I like it if they reached those kinds of numbers on Amazon, but at the same time, there's also only 156 actual reviews from that 692 on Goodreads. Definitely a trade off.

I salute you, weary author. Hang in there. Try to resist the temptation. Morale is very important given the state of things. Try to keep yourself in good spirits, and if not checking sales/reviews helps, then do it less.
 

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Yes, I check way too much, and now I've gone wide with a bunch of my titles, which gives me even more places to check!  It's just this constant desire for that dopamine hit.  I'm trying to wean myself off the web as much as possible, but it's a constant battle.  Sometimes I tell myself that I can't check it between, say, 10 am and 5 pm.  Then I'll need to look something up to research whatever I'm writing and the next thing you know, it's on down the rabbit hole.  I'm going to log out now, and try to stay away for the rest of the day!
 

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I used to be bad--many many times a day, but I've consciously reduced it now. I checked KDP maybe three or four times a day (maybe that's too much too, but I'm on the way!) and I've stopped checking for reviews. I check my goodreads number once maybe every alternate day, and I don't check Amazon at all.
 

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Ha, it depends on how busy I am.  I'm definitely more neurotic when I have too much time on my hands.  But if I have a million things to work on, then I almost never check.  Guess the trick is to keep myself occupied  :D
 

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I try to keep it to once a day, at the start of my writing day, but even that can be a problem--if there's no sales, I go into my writing already feeling discouraged. If there are a lot of sales, I immediately start trying to figure out why I've suddenly had a boost, and then I go into my writing being distracted. Probably better to keep it to the end of the writing time, and not every day!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Excellent replies and I'm glad I'm not the only one. I've gone a few days without checking and it is rather liberating.
 

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Nope, I'll continue checking at all times of the day and I have zero shame or regrets ;-)  Same for my AMS ads dash and the sales rankings on the new author page.

With the amount I'm currently spending I want to know where it's going and whether it's having an effect.

I really am a figures & data guy. I've written my own software to analyse/chart/compare figures from the reports, and I need my daily running total for ad spend vs royalties.
 

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I don't think there's a right or wrong amount to check as long as it's 1) enough you have useable data and b) not so much it's interfering with your life and well-being.

I used to check a few times a day but now I only check sales about twice a week (sometimes only once). I look at everything Monday or Friday (ads, revenue), reassess, tweak, give ads time to improve sales or not, repeat.

If I'm running many campaigns on a new release, I'm checking most days (though I'm probably checking rank more often than sales, since KU pages tend to lag a few days). If I'm basically running old campaigns ("if it's working, don't touch it" is my policy), I'm only checking once a week.

I used to check all the time but it was too much data for me. It's easier to look at trends if I only check once a week and with KU (and the lack of hard data; we can't really trust affiliate link info, for ex), I look at trends.

In terms of checking less, it's a combo of habit, anxiety, and dopamine feedback loop. Kind of like social media. I find it's easiest to stay away the longer I've been away, but it can be hard to break the pattern.
 

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I check once a day. That's it, really. If sales slag off more than usual, it prompts me to get on and finish the next book. It also helps to know where my audience are located.
 

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I checked last night before I went to bed and saw a little boost in sales that came out of nowhere, so that was nice to go to bed on. I think that might be the best time for me, because if it's depressing, I can go to sleep and forget about it! On the other hand, it did give me a dream that I'd had 1m clicks through to my book and I was waiting to wake up to check how many sales that had resulted in...

I don't know how often the sales actually update, so a lot of peeks at the chart are probably pointless anyway. I suppose it's just whatever works for each person, as people have said.
 

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I usually do it twice a day-- once first thing in the morning, to see what happened overnight, and again before I go to bed, to see what happened throughout the day.
 

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In the beginning, like 6 months, I checked it like every hour. Every new release feels that way too, but then the disenchantment of the unmet expectations will set in and you’d be too lazy to even check it, and when you do, and you have a sale/activity, you’d go a do the happy dance. Hmm, some form of these stages every author out there will experience one way or the other.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
These replies have been encouraging, thank you. Not just that I am not the only one with this strange compulsion, but I'm not the only one seeing days of inactivity on my kdp account. I broke my own rule earlier as I was checking advertising costs v sales - the results made for depressing reading, but having weaned myself of the checking and any kind of expectation, I'm rather sanguine about it.
 
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