236 and counting! Did I Tell Ya I Hate Math? (Indie Writer Ramblings)

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Here we go, as promised– my sales numbers! Finally. I don’t really hate math. I’m just not a huge fan of doing anything that constantly raises a pointer to the limits of my intellectual capacity…sigh. Anyway, what I’m saying is — ya see any blatant errors, just kindly whip me out a private email and let a girl know if she’s got something obviously screwed up that most any elementary kid might have caught. Okay? Thanks!

I indie published BLACKOUT IN THE GARDEN OF LOVE on October 8th in 2012.  I honestly didn’t do much marketing. But I did hook up with a few Interracial Romance forums, and I think that helped me out a lot.  As a reader, I’ve discovered the IR genre is a small enough world that the news of new releases travels in a pretty natural flow, through word of mouth. It’s a great advantage when you’re writing to a niche audience if you know where to go to just get your face or words out there, fellowship– and make friends. I wish I had more time to do more of that kind of stuff, as I thoroughly enjoy chatting with other lovers of IRs! I especially love running into other readers and writers who are diggin’ and searchin’ for sweet IR reads.

Anyhoo—here’s what I sold:

On Amazon/KDP

October  — 68

November – 66

December — 28

January — 30

February — 15

207 sold @ .45 cents royalty per ebook = $93.15.

***

Barnes & Noble/Nook Sales:

5 sold @ .52 cents royalty per ebook  = $2.60.

All Romance Ebooks: (60% royalty)

(just started selling Blackout on that site on 1/8/13)

24 sold @.77 cents royalty per unit = $18.58

Total sales/profit for Blackout = $113.81

236 ebooks sold.

Now, have I gotten any of this money yet? Nope. I suspect a check from Amazon should be showing up someday soon here (I believe there’s some mention of 90 days turnaround). I’ll follow up on the payment part of this indie pubbing experience in another post one day soon. If anyone has any info about Amazon’s payment turnaround, I’d love to hear from you!

The money I’ve made covers the cost of cover art, proofreading and formatting for Blackout– and the lil bit leftover might put a few bucks in my pocket.  The experience is worth gold and so is all that I’ve learned. I’ve had the joy of finishing a story and sending  it out into the world, and mostly getting  very nice reviews (except for the single star one I got, which I want to talk about ‘processing’ that  bad rating  I received in a post here, too.  Probably it will be sporting a title like– “I Indie- Published and the Worst Possible Thing Happened and– How I Survived It” or “Oh Lawd– Whyyyyy???” Something like that.

So other newbies– like me, it’s possible your first publication may not stuff your bank accounts with the 50k or 100k you’ve heard others proclaim as their return on the hours spent writing a story. Yes, I know Blackout was a short story, I’m happy to have sold as many as I did, but my heart and writing spirit isn’t put off.  I’m ready for the next adventure and challenge of putting what I’ve learned about writing and publishing to work on my next project. Make it the best read possible, and okay, I might let myself fantasize – just a little bit– about making tens of thousands of dollars and moving up the ranks on Amazon– I’ve got that kind of imagination, ya see.

But–I’m not discouraged, and I hope that anyone that has a mind and soul to give their words to the world won’t be turned away from their dreams because their first book(s) didn’t sell in huge numbers. The thing is, I am finding quite a bit of comfort & satisfaction in the journey so far.  I made a move, put some  real action behind it, and made something happen! Very satisfying feeling, and now since I’ve honed my skills—hey, anything is possible for me. And—anything is possible for you, too! Let’s just keep it going, right?

Somewhere over the rainbow and all that good stuff!

🙂

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(Next time around- What Is My Next Project, Again?)

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A Little Encouragement … via a little original poem (My first ‘blog hug’)

So yeah, I’ve written a few poems, a few songs, too. I’m guessing many fiction writers have done the same. Of course, while I dabbled around with writing poetry, I never really bothered to brush up on what makes a poem a properly crafted piece of work– and I’m sure some that I’ve shared with others were quite a mess. But, I’m really not caught up in worrying if this one I’m sharing with you guys today is done just right, as I think the sentiment is strong enough to cover its faults.

I wrote this some time ago, but I find that it fits me even better today. We all keep searching for, waiting on, dreaming about, believing in, and some of us have been blessed enough to have found– ‘that place’. Wherever it is, for each one of us– great and wondrous things are there. While many of those wondrous things will be a hand’s reach away, some of that great wave of wonder has to be about what is happening within us.

My wish, my prayer today, is that we all keep moving toward ‘that place’.

If this poem is any bit of encouragement to you today as you make your way there, that would make me very happy.

Oh—and I’ve left a fill in the blank spot, you’ll see it. Feel free to call out one, or a few, of those BS judgments you’re slinging off your spirit!

My first ‘blog hug’.

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©2004

Write Something, damn it! (Newbie Indie Writer Ramblings)

Writing Pencil

Write something, damn it!

O…K…

Her breath hitched, then fluttered like butterfly wings against his neck where her lips grazed his skin.

Maybe that sentence is wonderful, maybe not.

The point is—the writing must NOT stop!

All that I truly know and want is rooted in the words, sentences, paragraphs, chapters and stories I put on a page.

So, why haven’t I been writing?

Stepping into 2013 has been an extended arm-flailing slide on the longest, unexpected banana peel ride ever!

The weekend after Christmas my dad had to go to the ER. Since then, he’s been in the hospital, had a brief, but horrible for his health, stay in a nursing home for short term rehab, then back to ER,  then ICU, and still is in the hospital.  That’s where I’ve been. While my dad’s 83, this turn in his health was totally unexpected. It’s been a whirlwind of crazy—specialists, test after test, sepsis, fevers, colds, catheters, dementia, allergic reactions, a weird bout of him not swallowing anything by mouth…sigh. But my dad is much loved, and me and my sibs are his advocates, which means lots of hours each day spent holding his hand, encouraging him, and wrangling docs and nurses for him to get the best care possible.  It’s been very hard to type or write while doing this.

But, I can’t be the first writer to have some unexpected real life stuff happen to them to mess with their writing.

I wish I could offer up in this post a list of 10 Ways to Keep Writing When the Unexpected Happens.

The thing is–I don’t know five ways, or three or two.

I guess I can only recognize a personal truth. All of my days of living, my personal truth and make up—my dreams, my journey– is connected to writing.

I can’t opt out of writing, no matter how challenging my days get. Writing should be like eating, and sleeping, because it’s as much food to the part of me I’m just now discovering, as a meal is to the part of me I’m used to paying attention to, and caring for.

There is a shift going on, and a call to me that I need to answer. Am I a writer? is the question it’s forcing upon me.

 How can I hope to grow, reach my potential, if I let everything, anything–big or small get in between me and the words on the page?

I believe I know my path, and putting in my best effort to write daily is the best way for me to stay on course. If I can’t get both hands on the keyboard of my laptop or my new ASUS Transformer tablet (my Christmas gift to me!), I’ll start carrying one of the many beautiful writing journals I’ve got in my collection and write with one hand if I have to. If I can’t move forward in a WIP that’s giving me trouble, I’ll sketch out some notes or scene work on another story I’ve got on the to-be-written list.

I must keep it movin’!!!

I’d love to hear the stories of how other people have gone through the unexpected and discovered that putting their writing on the shelf wasn’t the proper response to trouble.  So many of you probably already know what I’ve just discovered—writing is the release, the answer, the healing balm in times of trouble, not just another ‘task’ that can be put off until another day.

In life, I have to conclude– you may have stumbles or falls, but you don’t have to be thrown off your path.

Trail in Temperate Rainforest

And, I’ve missed blogging! Glad to be back 🙂