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Staying the Course

This might be my last post for the next three months, as my fifteen new author BFFs are going to be taking over my blog. (Maybe, we’ll see how long I last before I have to blog. It’s almost a compulsion now.) Today I wanted to talk about staying the course.

I made the conscious decision to go with Smashwords AND Amazon, because it affords me the opportunity to have my book in almost every single e-bookstore under the sun. Amazon, as you probably can guess, doesn’t want me to use any other e-bookstore but their own, and because I’ve opted to go multi-channel, they’re punishing me.

Not really, but kind of.

By not going with Amazon’s Select program, I am unable to offer my book for free (without a whole bunch of hullabaloo) and I can’t enroll it in Kindle Unlimited. Beyond that, because my book is not included in this program, I am penalized in their ranking system.

For someone who lives and dies by metrics, being in the three digits (instead of the six) would be monumental.

But – 99% of the people I’m jealous of who I’ve seen in the top of their market have offered their books for free, and are enrolled in KDP Select.

I’ve sold less than twenty books using Smashwords (which includes iBooks and Barnes and Noble), and now almost twice that on Amazon. Does it make sense to pull out of Smashwords completely and go to Amazon?

No, and here’s why Whitney,

While it’s true I’ve sold more on Amazon than on Smashwords, I’ve made twice as much money selling books out of the back of my car. I’m attending Baltimore Comic-Con next weekend, and bringing 50+ books. Same goes for Annapolis and then ShatterdomeCon. I will have unfettered access to hundreds of nerds my target demographic, and be able to unload a bunch of books (I hope).

The other thing I’m struggling with is that my book is not in a genre that sells well in the e-book market. Almost every single one of Smashwords bestsellers are romances. Not only that, but because my themes are kind of non-Sci-Fi (in that they focus on the personal journey rather than the human civilization journey), but it’s hard for me to grab the attention of sci-fi fans, and hard for non sci-fi fans to take a chance on me.

These are the thoughts that run rampant in my head from sun up until sun down (and then until I go to bed some time after sun down). It’s enough to drive me insane, to trigger my anxiety, to make me itch to overturn the apple cart and just go crazy.

Then I stopĀ (hammer time) and return to my intention, and breathe.

My intention is not to be a “bestseller.” If I see my name atop Amazon’s top Science Fiction novels, fantastic – but it’s what I want out of jealousy, not because it’s what I need. When I really sit down and think about it, these are the things I want to achieve:

1. I want to explore my soul, my neuroses, my anxieties, and my fears so that I may accept myself exactly the way I am.

2. I want to use my creative energy to please myself first, then others.

3. I want to earn enough money to secure food, shelter, internet for me and my dogs so I don’t have to do anything else but be creative.

Making my book for free, getting on the bestseller list, those are only some ways to achieve my goals. I’ve got others in the works – to include editing and marketing services from SGR-P – that will do it too. I’ve got three (THREE) comic-cons coming up, I’ve got a cross-country book tour that scares the absolute SHIT out of me. By next June, I may have three (!) books published, with a fourth in October, and perhaps a fifth (!) in December.

I’m on my way to achieving my goals.

It’s all perfect.

Just breathe.

Be patient.

Return to your intention.

And go write a book.

Published inPublishing Schtuff
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