Well that was an interesting 24 hours. In the first official day of being on sale, Goblin Tales sold a total of 66 copies. The breakdown between Amazon and B&N was:
That’s over $120 in royalties in one day. I don’t expect the book to maintain that level of course, but it’s not a bad first day at all, and far better than I’ve ever done with Goldfish Dreams. Goldfish Dreams has sold 52 copies on Amazon since it was first released in October of last year. I’m taking this as strong confirmation of the very reasonable assumption that authors will do better with self-publishing if they have a preexisting fan base. (Goblin fans I have; mainstream fans, not so much.)
I’m very curious to see the longer-term sales. And while I doubt there’s any way to figure it out for certain, I’d love to know whether Goblin Tales in turn leads to any extra sales of the other goblin books.
Lessons Learned Thus Far:
1. I checked the box for worldwide distribution at both Amazon and B&N. Despite this, I’ve gotten several reports that non-U.S. readers have to jump through hoops, or are flat-out unable to buy the books. Not cool. I’m looking into why this is happening and what I can do to make the book more accessible. (It sounds like getting the book posted on Kobo may solve some of this.)
2. I asked folks on Twitter how they felt about “Retweet this!” contests, as I was torn about trying it. Lots of strong, if mixed feelings out there. It might work with some people, but it will also piss off and get you blocked by others. (I decided against doing one.)
3. I have truly wonderful friends and readers. Thank you to everyone who blogged, Facebooked, and Tweeted about the book!
4. The immediate reinforcement that comes from being able to instantly track sales is dangerous, and I can understand why some self-published authors go overboard with promotional posts. “I posted a link on Twitter, and look, I sold three more books! I should do more of this!” Dangerous indeed.
5. The best Amazon rank that I saw was about 1700. I’ll have to sell a lot more copies if I ever want to crack the top 100 list for Kindle.
6. Anyone who says an e-book can be quickly and cleanly slapped together and posted for sale … let’s just say this does not match my experience. Quickly or cleanly, yes. (Lou Anders at Pyr blogged about this last week.)
Melanie Nilles interviewed me about the choice to e-publish.
Sherwood Smith posted a nice little review of the book.
And Sean Sweeney posted the first Amazon review. (He likes the libriomancer story 🙂 Yay!)