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Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Looking Back A Year Ago...

Something happened on Facebook the other day that kind of bummed me out, and I've been trying not to let it get the best of me, but it's hard. So Facebook does this thing where it shows you posts  from back in the day of the exact day it is in the present. I hope that makes sense. It goes something like, 'This is what you were doing 1 year ago'. Anyways, normally those are pretty cool, sometimes they are lame, and sometimes they aren't that easy to see. Today was one of the latter. 

This is the exact post from May 3, 2015:

It's almost been a year since I began publishing my books. I remember my royalties for the first month: $3.06. I sold 9 copies of my books. Last month I sold 637 total books, the month before I sold 510 total books. 

I have sold just over 2400 books this past year. It's nothing huge by any means, but my books are selling. 

I have published 8 books in 1 year. I will be releasing my 9th novel, A Date with the Devil on June 5th. 

I've written an ugly cry novel, I've written a zombie series, I've written a romantic thriller. I don't like to be confined. I have so many other genres I can't wait to try out.

I'm still nowhere near where I want to be, but this shows that persistence pays off.

Pretty cool post, right? I'm still sticker-shocked that I was doing so well back then. Wondering why I would be upset about seeing something like this? Because I haven't been selling well for over 9 months. I went from selling 500 books in a month to 15-25 if I'm lucky. I went from having people read 2000+ kindle unlimited pages of mine in a day to anywhere from 0-500 most days. I wish I could say I don't know what happened...but deep down I do. 

I started back up at a full-time job in March of 2015, and it took away a lot of the time I used for marketing, writing, implementing edits, etc. I used to be so much more hands on with my brand, and I used to release a new book every 3 months...but I haven't been able to catch up. Throw in the fact that I have chronic gastritis, which is exhausting in of itself...I haven't been able to find my balance. I used to make it a point to promote myself on Facebook in groups every other night. I would make it a goal to post in at least 25-50. I never thought it made much of a difference, but maybe I was wrong.

My street team, my beta readers, my reviewers, hell, even my fans used to be so much more engaged, but now I rarely hear from them. I'm worried it's because I can't stay relevant. It's hard because I know all of my street team members still love me, I just can't figure out what I'm doing wrong there. 

I would love to hear from some other indie authors who self-published, if they've ever had a dry spell like I am having? I went 17 days recently without 1 sale or 1 page read through KU. It was absolutely devastating. 

Lately, I've been wondering if I'm not selling well because my books are available on every pirate site known to man. It's inevitable as an author, and as much as I'd love to send every single person my novel direct to their kindle, it's not always that easy, plus I don't like limiting my readers. In the end I think it's better to have the visibility. That doesn't mean I'm okay with all of the people stealing from me, but as JA Konrath has said over and over, it's better that they know about you than not. 

My mom keeps saying this is just my downswing and it won't be long before I have my upswing. I'm not sure she's right, but that would be amazing if she were. I'm still working as hard as I can to get new material into the hands of my readers. I hope I find the recipe to my success soon. 

(Don't ask me why my post is in 3 different colors. Blogger is just being a bitch. Excuse my language.) 


Shirins Book Blog and Reviews said...

I Love your books. You are a very talented and amazing author :)

Ashley Kemp said...

Dry spells have unfortunately been hitting a lot of best selling authors lately. Piracy is one reason, advanced review groups are another. while they are absolutely great for getting release day reviews, if you have 100 people in your arc team then you might lose most of those release day sales bc those people wait to buy the book since they got a free copy. I think another issue is all the changes FB continues to implement, making it harder to reach readers. Keep trying new things, and using the book newsletters when you have a sale is a great way to reach out to new people. Continue to engage on your fan page and just be yourself. You are not losing readers for your own faults. Life has it's ups and downs and I know you'll get through the rough patches and come out on top :)

Krystal Smith said...

I am sorry I missed this post. I don't know what to say to make you feel better other than I think yoy are an amazing author and I think that yoy get better every time you publish a book. Dry spells happen and life gets in the way of things we are passionate about and then we have to find a way back. I found a tattoo I really want, it says "live the life you love, love the life you live". I know it's not that simple but I find that reminding my self of that helps sometimes.