Monday, 23 September 2013

601 Sales - How Will A Kindle Nation Daily Ad Affect My Sales?

I saw 500 sales as a big milestone and should have written this post then. But now I'm at 601, so I thought I'd report how the sales have been going.

I have an advert with Kindle Nation Daily due out at the end of this week (27th September). I've opted for the Kindle Daily Deal at $99. My sales are pretty poor in the US so I'm hoping this advert will give a boost to them. To break even at my current sale price, I need about 250 sales.


It seems to me that visibility is the most important thing with Amazon. I talk about Amazon because I've had three sales on Kobo and none anywhere else.

From release, Crash has been in the top 50 for post apocalyptic Kindle books. This seemed to help the book tick along nicely and was generating sales of one or two copies a day. Halfway through August I dropped my price to $0.99 and £0.99. You can see the impact below on my sales figures and visibility. I've been in the top 10 post apocalyptic kindle charts and the top 50 for horror overall for about a month now. This extra visibility has coincided with a huge leap in figures. Although I have to sell lots more copies to make the same money, that's currently happening. So my book is being seen by more people and I'm making more money. I don't plan on keeping my price this low forever, but while the sales are good, I'll leave it as it is.

This screenshot was taken this morning (this is relatively low for my average):

My highest rank for each category has been 6 for post apocalyptic, 23 for kindle horror and 30 for horror overall. This is on the UK site. 

I also wanted to report a detailed breakdown of my sales figures because I've not done that yet - August was when I dropped my price. I decided to drop my price while I already had some chart visibility. I could see Crash slipping out of the charts and I hoped it would give sales a boost.


I released my book towards the end of June.
UK site - 16 copies sold.
US site - 13 copies sold.


UK site - 35 copies sold.
US site - 28 copies sold. 


UK site - 154 copies sold.
US site - 24 copies sold. 

September (so far)

UK site - 314 copies sold
US site - 14 copies sold


I've never had the chart visibility in the US and my average reviews aren't enough to get me much attention. I assume this is why my sales on aren't great. 

Next Blog Post

In my next blog post I want to show the figures after a Kindle Nation Daily ad to see if it was worth the $99. 

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Nearly Three Months as a Self-Published Author - Sales Figures Included

So it's coming up to three months now as a self published author and I thought I'd continue to track my progress.

I've made a few changes in the past few weeks that have massively affected my sales figures.


After watching my book get into the top thirty on the Post Apocalyptic and Dystopian charts on Amazon, I realised that the categories were so close I should probably change one of them. I figured that I'd be catching a lot of the same audience with those categories, so I changed Dystopian, because I was scoring slightly lower in this one, and moved it over to horror.


I also noticed that my sales had started to plateau. I decided that I want my first book read, and while I'm not prepared to drop it to free, I dropped it to $0.99. This made a huge difference. My sales figures took off. I've made more money than before over the past few weeks and my book is reaching a lot more people. In the past two weeks, I've sold over 100 copies each week.

I've obsessively watched my book climb into the top ten and it's into its third week and it's still there. My peak was chart position no.6. I'm currently at no.9 on Post Apocalyptic (Amazon UK).

Negative Reviews

This is predominantly UK sales. I've had a few negative reviews on that have almost ground my sales to a halt. I've written a very violent book so I'm not surprised that it's polarised opinion. Despite the negative reviews, I have been contacted by readers to say they enjoyed the book and can't wait for more.

I also did something I thought I'd never do this week. I responded to negative criticism. I've had several negative reviews and most of them have been the reviewers opinion. For me, it's fine if someone doesn't like the book. Everyone sees the world through their own lens and enjoyment of a work is entirely subjective. However, I received this review from one person:-

As I understand it, there should be a plot and a theme to a novel. This book had none and was also lacking in depth, meaning or reason. I get the impression that the author just wanted to get feedback (any feedback) to try and get his book spoken about...if that was the reason for it, then well done! If it was to write something worthwhile, then I feel this failed totally. Not an enjoyable read.

To which I responded:-

Thanks for reading my book and leaving your thoughts. I don't normally reply to reviews because everyone sees the world through their own lens and enjoyment is a subjective thing. It's not my place to tell people they are wrong or to defend my ego. 

However, on this review you have asked if there is a point to this book so I wanted to take the time to explain why I've written it. 

This book is about the social construction that is money and how insubstantial it is. The only value it has is what we attribute to it as a society and it could easily become worthless. 

It's a look at how the poorest in UK society are being punished and blamed by the contemporary media for the state of things at present. Labels like 'Good hardworking families' are banded about as if those who can't be measured by their financial contribution are worthless. It takes this venom and turns it around on those they perceive to be the ones laying blame. Although the main looter, Dean, is a psychopath using a cause to vent his violent tendencies - Much like some of the EDL members have been doing of late and other hate groups. 

It's also a look at how class identity isn't a reflection of those within the class, more a group identity that is based on judgments and prejudices - from both sides. It doesn't reflect the individual, yet sweeping generalisations are made. Those being punished - Like Michael - don't deserve it, but we live in a polarised society where these judgments are made. 

Finally, the level of violence is a look at developing countries, such as The Democratic Republic of Congo, and the atrocities happening there on a daily basis (while I accept this book is very dark, I couldn't go as far as what's actually happening in places like the DRC). It's a look at how low humans can go when there is a motivation to control and dominate - as many wars have demonstrated. (See the UK and US bombing of Dresden as an example). In The DRC's case it's for minerals. In Crash's case, it's for food. 

Again, I can't speak to whether you enjoyed the book or not but I'm thankful that you read it and took the time to review it. You asked the question, so I wanted to give you the answer.

Thanks again


Should I have responded? I don't know. It's not something I plan to make a habit of. 

Sales Figures so Far - Since June 20th:-

Amazon - 446 copies sold. 
Kobo - 3 copies sold.
Smashwords - 0 copies sold.

I'm pleased with my figures for less than three months. The negative reviews sting but I'm developing a thick skin pretty quickly. Again, I expected it with this book. My next one is much less violent, so it'll be interesting to see if it generates the same reaction.