A New Month

Now that it’s February, it’s time to take stock of how January went.  It was, in a word, ok.  I guess.

As far as writing progress goes, it wasn’t my greatest month ever, only about 14 – 15,000 words.  But I came to a couple of important realizations.  First, remember that whole break up The Pericles Conspiracy into a series of novellas thing?  Yeah…not gonna happen.  I’m at about 41,000 words now, and am still not to the end point I’d figured for the first “novella”.  So this is going to end up being a novel after all (if I use the SFWA definitions it’s a novel already, if I remember the definition correctly).  So given that, I’ve decided to say screw it and just write the whole damn thing in one fell swoop.  So I’m back to my initial plan, and it’ll probably be a 100k+ work when I finish it.  Nothing wrong with that.

That means, of course, that my goals for the quarter are by necessity going to have to change.  Oh well.

Now I know what you’re saying.  41,000 words?  That means you’ve only gotten 2,000 or so down since last time you updated us on Pericles.  True.  But that’s because I got an idea for my Writers of the Future story and I’ve gotten started on it.  This story is, I think, very cool.  Mystical, magical, mysterious, adventurous.  Yeah, it’s going to rock.  So that’s what I’m working on right now.  Don’t worry, I’ve not stopped Pericles.  Just shifted gears for a few days.

So that’s how the writing’s been going.  How about the sales?  Well, December was my best month to date, if you recall, at 21 total.  But January was even better.  23!  20 from the various Amazon sites and 3 form Barnes and Noble (1 directly and 2 through Smashwords – I use Smashwords to distribute titles less than $2.99 because I get a better royalty rate that way).

I can hear the cheers now.  Wow, Kingswood, with numbers like that, you can retire!  Don’t I know it.  But don’t worry, I’m not in it for the money.  I’m in it for you, the great people out there who might like my stories, so I’m not going anywhere any time soon.  🙂  I know, I know.  Who am I kidding, right?  I am in it for the money.  This is a business, after all.  🙂  I’m just not only in it for the money.

And speaking of money, here’s how those sales translate:

$30.05.  Not too bad, by my modest standards.

Now there are a couple things to note with these statistics.  First, they are not complete.  Sony and B&N have updated their Smashwords numbers through the end of the month, but the other distributors are only updated to 31 December.  So it’s possible there may be one or two more sales here and there.

The second thing to note is I did a free day for Dragon in the middle of the month.  That helped Dragon‘s sales, but it’s hard to say if it helped anything else.

The final thing to note is I changed my pricing scale after the free promo.  I set Dragon and Passing in the Night to $2.99, and got five and 1 sale from them at the new price, respectively.  Why did I do that?  Well as I noted before, I had been advised to avoid the $1.99 price point – it doesn’t get the higher royalty rate, but it’s also not as uber-cheap as $.99.  I’ve thought about that advice for a while and also experienced a bit of frustration at watching all kinds of (relatively) good novelette sales with very little $ return.  So I said screw it and decided to put everything >10k words to $2.99.  So I’m going to try this now:

< 5,000 words – $.99

5 – 10,000 words – $1.99

10 – 40,000 words – $2.99

40 – 70,000 words – $3.99

70 – 100,000 words – $4.99

100 – 150,000 words – $5.99

>150,000 words – $6.99

We’ll see how that works out.

So that’s where things stand in my writing world at the moment.  Progressing along quite nicely, more or less.  And with that, I’ll get back to work.

Until next time, go Pats!  As a Redskins fan, I cannot root for the Giants, after all.  🙂