Last November, after years of bashing all forms of self-publishing and assuming the only reason anyone did it was because they just weren’t good enough for proper publication, I decided to do the awful deed myself and released my book, a travel memoir called Mousetrapped, into the world with the help of a Print On Demand (POD) service called Createspace. I also decided to share my self-publishing (or self-printing) experiences – the good, the bad and the tinged with crazy – with you, here on my blog.
I shared everything. My reasons for self-publishing, how I produced my little POD baby and the distinct scent of bonkers in the self-publishing world’s air. I told you how I promoted it, and many of you helped me to do just that. I ranted about the self-publishing evangelists and conversations littered with the word ‘gatekeepers’. I even blogged about the importance of industrial strength magic underwear in book launch success.
I quickly picked up some blog followers who themselves were venturing into the world of POD. They paid attention to my mistakes so they wouldn’t have to make them, and took note of what worked so they could try it too. Somewhere along the way I became – gulp – an example to other people. This was nice, if a little scary. Because what were my qualifications? Anyone can produce a POD book; that’s kind of the problem. You could look at my Amazon rankings or Twitter followers or Google search results and try to ascertain how well my book was doing, but what you really needed to know were my sales figures. And what you really wanted to know was exactly how much money I was making off of them.
And you’re in luck, because I want to tell you.
I’m going to tell you tomorrow, in fact. Sales figures in the morning and money matters in the afternoon.
Can you handle the excitement? I’m not sure I can, especially since I’ve already had three coffees today and my heart rate might not be able to take it.
But before I reveal all, I have a favor to ask. Two favors, actually. But don’t worry – they’re only ickle ones.
The first is that I’d love to know how well the reality of my sales and royalties meshes with any impressions you had of them. Did you think, from my gib-jabbering, Amazon sales ranks, reviews and coverage that I’d sold more, or less? Did you think my royalties would be better, or worse? Does it sound worth it to you, or do you think the endeavor is about on an even keel with sponging up the sea, trying to understand Lost, peeing in the wind, etc.? Kindly tell me by commenting on the posts.
That’s the first condition. The second is called No Further Questions. I’m going to tell you what my royalties (or profits, strictly speaking) are and how many books I’ve sold, but that’s it. No more, no less. So please, once we’re done here, I’d appreciate it if you didn’t e-mail me with questions like, How much does each book cost you? or, How much would it cost, hypothetically, to order 17 copies of a 284-page book measuring 6×9 with a full color interior and ship them from CreateSpace to Yemen by priority on a Tuesday in the middle of June? The reason being that my answers would be, It doesn’t matter because your book will be different to mine and, Are you f–king kidding me?!, and I find it kind of annoying. After all, I’ve self-published the sum total of one book and everything I know about doing it is already up here somewhere, on my blog. I also have a Frequently Asked Questions page so try checking that instead.
So do we have a deal?
Great. Just initial here ____ and then we’ll be good to go.
Check back tomorrow for all the scandal. In the morning I’ll be telling you:
- Exactly how many copies I’ve sold to date
- From where I’ve sold them
- How many were print editions and how many were e-books
- Some other stuff.
Then tomorrow afternoon it’ll be:
- How much money I get from each type of sale
- Print profits Vs e-book profits
- All the costs involved with publishing Mousetrapped
- Some other stuff.
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Catch up on my self-printing adventures on the Self-Printing page.
Read more about the book I self-printed, Mousetrapped.