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Sunday, April 21, 2013

Progress Report.

 One of my readers Greg, wanted to know how I was doing with my eBooks and my publishing career. Well, here’s a Progress report.

I started my summer campaign early this year and it was a tremendous success. My two new eBooks Manginas- They Look Like Men ButAct Like Ladies is a smash hit with a record 44 downloads in a day and over 16 Facebook Likes.

All About Nikki-Three Episodes from the SensationalSecond Season was also a solid performer with a record 30 hits in its first day of release and over 54 downloads in a week. It got 9 facebook Likes.  

Both titles look like they’re on their way to being a huge success.

I’m going to be doing something new this year for the Summer eBook exclusive series. Instead of just doing YA books, there’ll be a mix of titles for everyone. YA, screenplays, nonfiction, fiction and fantasy. Oh, and Hot N’ Steamy Shorts will be back this August for adults. Make sure you’re in an air conditioned room because these stories will literally MELT your e-reader!

There will be a Kindle exclusive eBook and there will be Smashwords exclusive eBooks, and there will be eBooks spread across all platforms. (well, the eBook platforms I know about) I’ve been asked to put books on Google Play, but I’d like to read a bit more about them before submitting a title there. Kindle gets the most traffic out of all the ebook platforms out there. That’s where I have the most readers.

My new novel The Thetas will be exclusive to Kindle for the Summer. I will offer it on the weekends throughout the Summer as FREE to KDP select readers. It’ll also be available for you to borrow if you have Amazon Prime.

And since no one on Kindle never read the Season 2 sneak preview of All About Nikki- KDP readers will get their own exclusive All About Nikki eBook! It’ll also be available throughout the Summer to KDP select readers or available for you to borrow if you have Amazon prime.

Smashwords readers got to read the first three episodes last year and they’re getting to read episodes 4-6 early because they gave me 34 facebook likes.

I’m experimenting with the summer campaign to see if I can get more new readers to try titles across both platforms.

The Isis series has been doing fairly well in its initial release on KDP select. Since the Black Friday Launch of Isis: Amari’sRevenge and Isis: The Ultimate fight I’ve gotten strong numbers on the free promotions. Over 260 people downloaded Isis: Amari’s Revenge and over 230 people downloaded Isis: The Ultimate Fight on Black Friday 2012.

A Christmas Day campaign netted over 150 plus downloads of Isis: Amari’s Revenge and over 120 downloads of Isis: The Ultimate fight.

Isis: Amari’s Revenge was a big hit on Black Friday with over 10 Facebook Likes in the first day it was downloaded. Isis: The Ultimate Fight had a strong showing as well with 6 Facebook Likes.

The latest Isis series ebook Isis: The Beauty Myth did fairly well on its first day on KDP select with over 115 downloads. But from the lukewarm response to the story compared to the other Isis stories, I may have to regroup.

Some might have been turned off by the nudity in Isis: The Beauty Myth. Even though I was trying to make a point about beauty, body image and how it relates to self confidence in that story, I don’t want to alienate readers. I’ll definitely try to keep things PG or even G from here on in.

I’ll also try to keep things on the lighter side with Isis. I kind of like the mix of action and comedy in her stories. No promises.

The Isis series has been so popular with some readers that after they read the new stories, they come back for the old ones! And some readers have gone deeper into the backstory picking up other stories in the Isis continuity like The Saga of MastiKatious, The Politics of Hell and Baptism of Blood-The Origin of E’steem.

Seeing how readers have responded to the Isis series has shown me that Jim Shooter’s business model for selling and cross-selling comic books actually works on novels and short stories. And it looks like the stories are so compelling readers are coming back for more.

All of the new Isis series stories were actually concepts I had for my hypothetical Wonder Woman run. If I wrote comics, those would be some of the stories I’d be submitting. I imagine Terry Beatty, Josh Howard or Bill Walko’s art as the pictures telling the story of my words in pictures…

I plan on continuing the Isis series this summer with a brand new eBook and a paperback. Still ironing out the storyline on it.

I also want to do some E’steem solo stories so people can see the heroic side of the former demoness. I have some great concepts for heroic E’steem and expanding her rogues gallery. Again, just ironing out the kinks in the storyline.

An Oscar weekend campaign where I gave away free digital copies of All About Marilyn was a blockbuster hit with over 280 downloads over two days. It was the number one free Screenplay on Kindle for all of Oscar weekend. In fact, every time I offer All About Marilyn for free on Kindle it always takes the top spot for screenplays and screenwriting.

I’d love to do a new Marilyn story. Something where we find out what she’s been doing. Something where she goes to the New York Comicon. I really would. But her “voice” has changed in my head. Instead of sounding like she used to, now she sounds like a super-mellow surfer chick version of Persia White and says “dude” all the time. I’ll figure out something.

The Temptation of John Haynes continues to sell decently in eBook format. While A Recipe for $ucce$$ continues to sell consistently. Recipe has sold over 2,000 copies over the last two years and continues to win over readers across numerous eBook platforms. Not bad for a book that I actually had given up on back in 2009.

I’ve been learning a lot over the past year about promotions and catalog management. Since my catalog of eBooks has grown to over 30 titles, I’ve had to do different promotions to get new readers to try my work and to keep interest in titles going. Each campaign shows me what works and what doesn’t. I’d like to get to the point where I don’t have to offer eBooks for free and they stand on their own two feet and readers start buying them.

Paperback sales are well…DEAD. I’m still looking for a way to recoup my Lightning Source Maintenance fees on All About Marilyn and The Temptation of John Haynes for this year. If it wasn’t for me doing Federal Jury Duty I wouldn’t even have had the money to pay to keep them in print. But Thank God he worked things out. If I can just get $24 worth of sales on these paperbacks I’ll break even for the year.

The paperback edition of All About Nikki- The Fabulous First Season will be going OUT OF PRINT this summer. So if you want to get a paperback version of Nikki, GET IT NOW. The book hasn’t sold a single copy since it was published in 2011.

Sad. I put a lot of work into that Nikki paperback and most will never see how great it is. I really wanted to share that book with readers but it seems no one wants a TV season in paperback.

Oh well, move on. Not every book finds an audience. Focus on the books that sell.

The blog has been doing blockbuster numbers lately. I’ve gone from 200 hits a day to 300 to 400. Lately I’ve been flirting with 500 to 600 hits a day and inching closer to 700. They say anything over 1000 hits a day means a blog is starting to get popular; maybe I’m building a following.

Blogs about the comic book industry are the most popular, followed by blogs about men’s issues. The least popular actually are blogs about African-American community and…book promotion blogs.

Career wise, right now I’m struggling to keep my eBooks and paperbacks in print. My savings are at their lowest (only have $300 in the bank) and sales have been slow this April. I really could use some sales right about now. With me being out of work these past few years, the only way I make money is with my books. So if anyone out there is reading this blog, it’d be greatly appreciated if you bought a paperback or an eBook. Will I get to the next level? I don’t know. I’m still working hard. Still making baby steps on that slow road. Every little bit of help people gives me gets me that much further towards my goal of becoming a best-selling author.

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