Celebrating Independence Day as an Independent Author

I just wanted to note that I count the July 4, 2010 holiday as my independence day as an indie author. It was that weekend that the Kindle Nation Daily offered my newly written short story, Dandy Detects, as a featured “Kindle Short.” At this stage of the “ebook revolution” there were very few places an indie author could promote her work, and I was very grateful for the opportunity. I had published my first historical mystery, Maids of Misfortune, just over 6 months earlier and I had sold 268 copies in the US Kindle store. I had made enough Read more…

7 Things joining KDP Select Can and Can’t do for you

I have no problem with authors deciding not to put (or keep) their books in KDP Select because there are a number of good reasons not to sell an ebook exclusively through Amazon. What does bother me is when people put a book into KDP Select with unrealistic expectations, or don’t do their homework about how KDP Select works, or blame Amazon when their books don’t sell, and then announce that KDP Select is not a good strategy to follow for independent authors. It is my hope that this post will help educate authors about what KDP Select can and Read more…

Authors Need to Get a Clue: How to devise the best marketing strategy for the Holidays

Everywhere the discussion is raging among indie authors: should they sign their books up for KDP Select for the holidays or not? This is an important decision because, if last holiday is any guide, the bulk of ebook sales are going to come in the ninety days after December 25, when huge numbers of new ereaders and tablets of all sorts are found gift-wrapped under the tree. On the surface the decision should be easy. If the vast majority of a specific ebook’s sales are on Amazon, if you have enrolled the ebook in KDP Select program before and achieved a Read more…

My brief experiment going off KDP Select: At least I got this nifty blog piece out of it!

So… I lasted only a month off of KDP Select. It was an eye-opening experience. I knew that I would lose sales on Amazon without the borrows and KDP free days to keep my books visible on the historical mystery bestseller lists, but my hope was that I would be building enough sales on Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and the Smashwords affiliates, to make up for these lost sales. I even told myself I was willing to accept lower overall sales for 2-3 months in order to test the idea that having my book on multiple sites (even if the Read more…

Surfing the waves of indie publishing and trying not to care if I fall off

Until recently, the narrative I had constructed about my life was that I was a bit of an under-achiever, generally risk-adverse, and very comfortable in a supporting role in life’s events. I learned early on to work hard enough to fulfill my responsibilities (school, work, family) because then I could do what I longed to do most, which for me has primarily meant reading. I followed that pattern throughout my academic and professional career. My mother (a trained social worker) was successful in getting me to spend time away from my books by pushing me to develop friendships, join in Read more…