Friday, January 25, 2013

Trending Sales (i.e. It's WORKING)

When I launched my first eBook Got Ghosts? Real Stories of Paranormal Activity - I had no idea what to expect. It was my first "test" and I pushed really hard to get it out so it would be there in time for Halloween. It sat for the whole month of October and it did pretty good.

I made $54 bucks for just having one book out with little marketing. After October, I figured the roller coaster ride would come to a stop and I would have little to no sales. I was wrong. I made about $75 bucks in November. Okay, still not convinced it's a trend. In December, I decided to be nice and give my book away for FREE on all days - CHRISTMAS & NEW YEARS.

Wait, WHA?

I know, I know. Believe it or not, even with me giving it away, I made $105 bucks in December.!!! I'm like WOW. So I decided to launch the follow up book - Got Ghosts 2 - More Stories of Real Paranormal Activity and now that it's almost the end of January, I can safely say I'm already at $214 bucks!!! Crazy huh?

However, my fantasy book - Anica Storm & The Wand of Time is stagnant. It's not moving at all. Nix, Nada. It's not that it sucks... it's just not attracting people to buy it. I've tweaked the description, the cover, the title, and the categories and it's just sitting there like an Anvil.

The target audience I'm aiming at (Teens) ~ the beta readers all LOVED it so this is teaching me a valuable lesson, even though I don't want to be learning this lesson (I want to be selling because I think this book has a lot of potential.) The lesson is...


I'm 5 months into this journey with 4 books out (soon to be 5) and my two Got Ghosts are on FIRE and my fantasy book is idle. I've read that some books will sit and collect dust until one day *BOOM* straight to the moon in sales. I've seen it with others so it maybe possible. I'm going to look into maybe hiring a professional cover artist for that book and maybe hire professional book description writers too. We'll see.

But the point of this blog is that this journey I'm on is starting to become a reality. It's working but I need to keep at it. I'm still dependent on my day job but hopefully I'll sell enough books that I can stay home and write for a living. Wouldn't that be nice.  :-)

If you're a fellow writer, like me, hang in there. It's going to take a lot of work. Keep chipping away at it, one day at a time. It's going to happen. I see the numbers. It's working. Every year, 80 MILLION people are born on this planet. There's enough demand for our books for all of us to share in the piece of the pie. Let my numbers inspire you.  :-)

Steven W.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

The Journey Continues...

I'm happy to report a major milestone for me... Part 2 of The Journey of Anica Storm is released! It's funny that Anica Storm is still an unknown but I think in time it will take off. The fuse is lit, it's just slowly burning. This is good because it gives me time to work on the other parts. Part 3 of 3 still needs some tweaking and it will lead to BOOK 2 called Anica Storm and the Wand of Time.  :-)

If you're interested following the Journey, visit my author page to see my books:

I'm also working on Got Ghosts 2 - More Real Stories of Paranormal Activity, this time adding commentary and information for anyone interested in the paranormal. Coming Soon!  :-)

Steven W. 

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

The New Years Author's Guide For 2013

It's the year 2013 and 7" tablets are all the rage, as are eBooks. With that said, here's my New Years Author Guide for 2013 that I'm not only writing for myself but for everyone else who's inspired to be an author.

1.) WRITE IT DOWN - Don't talk about it, Do It! Writing is the easiest and hardest thing in the world. For some people it comes naturally, for others, one word in front of another is the hardest thing. If you have a story or idea in your head, write it down either on paper, on the walls, on a napkin, or digitally on your electronic device. Don't worry about editing or how it sounds if that's going to slow you down. Get it out of your head and down on paper. You can always edit it later.

2.) EDIT WHILE YOU GO - IF YOU CAN. That's the key word... IF you can but don't let it stop you if the words are coming out faster than you type or write. However, if you can, edit your words and sentence structure while you go - This will save you a lot of time later on in post production. Use a program that has spell check or alerts you that you might want to use a different word, comma, etc. 

3.) MAKE THE TIME - You are ALIVE so you have 24 hours in a day, 7 days a week. You have the same amount of time as other authors. The difference is that other authors make the time in their day to sit down, even if you have a job. Some people come home after work and start writing. Others need a little time to unwind then they write... whatever works for you, MAKE THE TIME & WRITE IT DOWN.

4.) MINIMIZE DISTRACTIONS - That means log off of Facebook, Myspace, Instant Messenger, Turn your smart phone/electronic device OFF or on SILENT, etc. Go into a quiet room or part of the house where there's not a lot of distractions. Turn the TV off - unless you need the noise or ambient noise in the background. (Personally I use Spotify as background noise but I keep it on low and rotating shuffle.)

5.) BELIEVE YOU ARE WORTHY - You have to believe in yourself. Where would the world be if J.R. Tolkien, Einstein, Shakespeare, Stephen Hawking, Leonardo Da Vinci, Stan Lee, Jules Verne, Thomas Edison, etc. be if they didn't write or share their ideas with the world? Point being these people gave us so much... who's to say you're not the next best thing? Guess what? That's not up to you to decide... it's up to the world. The only thing you can do is .....

6.) WRITE THE BEST BOOK YOU CAN - Take your time, go over it a million times but eventually let it go. No book is ever going to be perfect but aim to write the best book you can. It doesn't have to sound like a word ninja or someone who eats, sleeps, and poops words. My strength is not words - my strength is imagination and creativity. I know that... and I'm constantly trying to work on improving my writing & education. It's okay not to be good at something but if you want your book to sell, you need to write the best book you can. Then those who read it will jump on board and become your #1 marketing team! They will tell their friends and family and soon people will be talking about your book. Trust me it will grow like fire.

7.) HATERS GONNA HATE - It's important to keep your chin up because there's going to be a lot of people happy to throw sucker punches at you. They will give you 1 star reviews, think you're the worst writer in history and just talk smack about your book that you worked so hard on. IGNORE THEM. You can't please everyone and only if they provide valuable criticism that you can use, should you even give them the time of day. Maybe they might point out something you might of overlooked or tell you something you might need to change like "OMG this guy's sentences run on and on... learn to use periods bro!" ~ Then maybe you should look into that because maybe he might be right? But if he/she is just being mean to be mean, ignore them. Your work is going to speak for itself.

8.) PEOPLE DO JUDGE BOOKS BY THEIR COVERS - which is why it's extremely important to find someone who has a good success track record making book covers. Guess what... It's going to cost you... on average $100 to $500 bucks... BUT if you have a sucky cover, guess what again? IT IS COSTING YOU... because you're not getting sales. Can you afford to not get any sales or bite the bullet and spend the money needed to make a kick-ass cover? Yes it might hurt financially but it'll pay for itself and then some.

9.) DON'T WORRY ABOUT MARKETING, BLOGGING, FACEBOOKING, ETC. - Wha? You heard me... Don't worry about it. Why? Because you're wasting your time (the time you don't have to write - remember?)  on doing something other than writing your book. That's defeating the purpose. Remember rule #6 - If you write the best book possible. it's going to sell itself, period. TRUST ME.... Just like there are millions of YouTube videos out there, It's the viral videos that get passed around and shared with others... It's the same thing in the book world. Focus your energy on writing the best book possible and use that time wisely.

10.) YOU ARE NOT AN ARMY OF ONE - Seek out the help and wisdom of others. Get feedback on what others think of your description but make sure it's not from family and friends because they are biased towards you. They want you to succeed and have the best intentions but sometimes you need an outside source to tell you what you might need to hear. If they have the qualifications or track record to back up what they're saying, it's important to listen, even if you disagree. Everyone has good advice, like me, but it's only good to you if you can find a way to use it to make yourself better. The Internet is full of information on how to do millions of things, but if you don't open yourself up to others and seek out others who might help you edit or tweak your book, description, wording or cover, then you maybe missing out on something that could be hurting your sales.

2013 is going to be a good year for me because I'm going to write as many books possible that are as good as I can do. Once I release them to the world, it's out of my hands. Some will treasure them, others will hate them but I'm a story teller, it's up to me to provide content to those who want to read. Those who like my stories will make themselves known, just as much as those who don't. The important thing is I'm writing and I'm enjoying what I'm doing. I hope you are too. There's a little paper on wall that sums it up:



Author Steven Wolff