Every second Wednesday of the month those taking part will post something related to indie life, such the highs, lows, triumphs, struggles, and milestones of going it alone.
Today I'm going to talk about my first experience of indie publishing.
Passing Time One Month On
It's been just over four weeks since Passing Time: Nine Short Tales of the Strange and Macabre was published on Kindle Select. It's been quite a journey, and full of many highs and lows. As I like making lists, I'm going to break down my experiences thus far into two groups - the good and the not-so good.
- The joy of seeing my finished book on Amazon, after all the hours of work spent preparing it.
- Affirmation that paying for a professional edit, format, and cover design was worth every penny.
- Only having to worry about one sales format - Kindle.
- Waking up on day two and finding my book at number seven in Amazon's Bestseller Horror Short Stories, alongside Stephen King. Then seeing it climb above the master of horror.
- The amazing feeling when I received my first review and 5-star rating.
- Signing into my author account and checking sales.
- The amazing support and good wishes from my friends.
- The willingness of my blogging and writing friends to promote Passing Time.
- Spending two weeks on a blog tour, and reading all the positive comments my book received.
The Not-So Good
- Feeling totally out of my depth when it came to organising and maintaining a book tour, or using social media in general. I thought I had the time to do everything myself. I didn't.
- Watching my book slide down the ratings, and seeing my sales diminish by the fourth week. If you're at number 112,000 in Amazon rankings, you're not likely to sell a lot.
- Knowing offering it in more eBook formats than Kindle (such as Barnes and Noble and Smashwords) might have brought more sales.
- Realising that whilst paying to promote some of my Facebook posts brought me new followers, it did not equal a rise in sales.
- A confirmation of my belief that short story collections simply do not sell as well as novels, and that to make it as an indie writer you need volume.
So what now? And what, if anything, will I do differently next time around?
Passing Time is signed up to Kindle Select until early June. After that I can sell it elsewhere. I'm not yet sure whether I will take it off select or not. I am undecided. Though I have another short story collection coming out in July, I shall be focusing my attention on longer projects. I have a novella planned and a novel to finish. I will be looking at offering these both as an eBook AND in printed form.
I will definitely be using the services of a blog tour organiser. Other than writing the posts, I want to take away the worry and time needed to organise a tour. Instead of just two weeks of posts, I will go for a big release day and then a couple of guest posts a week over a longer period, hopefully sustaining interest.
So are you an indie writer? What was your first time like? What advice can you offer to first-timers like myself?