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A question to all published writers? 
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Post A question to all published writers?
Hello, I've recently published my first book "Utopian Socialism". It's on Amazon.com and it's being sold on online bookstores and what not. I have been waiting with excitement to recieve my first purchase and it seem's to be sorta like an addiction, checking up on it every day just to see if any bought a copy. I find it to be quite exciting checking up on it from time to time. So my question to all you published writers out there how long did it take you to sell your first copy?



Sat May 18, 2013 2:53 pm
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Post Re: A question to all published writers?
I published in early October and did not register any "real" sales until January. I should be more specific though. I published through Create Space both an ebook and a paperback version. The ebook took longer and was not available until November. Also, I sold the first thirty copies of the paperback which were included in my publishing package to friends and family within the first week of receiving them, but I don't count those as "real" sales since these folks obviously had a vested interest in supporting me. So my first sales to strangers, both the e version and the physical copy, did not happen for about 4 months. I still check almost every day to see what is happening with both versions and still get completely pumped by every single sale. I am guessing this will take a while to wear off. Best wishes to you in your journey :D


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Mon May 20, 2013 2:06 am
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Post Re: A question to all published writers?
I think I sold an e-book fairly quickly but to be honest, to my shame, I can't remember the exact date but I do remember the exact feeling - of triumph! I stared at the screen where it showed my sale for ages, seeing in my mind a multitude of sales coming now that the first sale on the internet was done!!
I sold paperbacks during both my launches and that had an appeal all of its own - especially when it is to a stranger. (NOT to say that friends and family don't count!) But I know what you mean about checking to see if someone you probably will never meet has made that decision to buy your creation - it is wonderful. You have succeeded. I used to check every day, now I make myself check only once a week - or it will drive you mad!
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Mon May 20, 2013 9:54 am
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Post Re: A question to all published writers?
I remember how I was with the first book I published I almost wore my fingers out doing a refresh on the screen - waiting for sales - it took about a week or so before sales started coming in.


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Tue May 21, 2013 10:44 am
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Post Re: A question to all published writers?
A lot of people ask me about this, because I went from being independent to being published, and that is what a LOT of people want to do.

I published first to Lulu and then to Amazon. I had moderate success - if I sold a copy two months in a row, that was a lot.

The first thing you're interested in is your price point. You are new and even though you know you wrote an awesome book, no one else does. They will figure it out if more and more people buy it, so pitch your book as cheap as you possibly can. When sales come up, you can start increasing the price a little at a time.

The second thing you're interested in is getting the word out. There are more than 10,000,000 titles on Amazon alone. Most of it is crap. True or not, most readers believe this, and they are trying to find good books in a pile that they can't actually see.

You want to talk about your book on every forum you can. Utopian Socialism tends to say that you want to get on progressive boards, you want to get into chats, you want to tweet when you can and get people interested in your tweets by talking about them. People who want to know more about your opinions will then find your book.

You want a WEBSITE. Sorry - it's the new millennium. Your book needs a website. Even if you do a Wordpress site and just blog your opinion, you need to get the word out.

What you're doing isn't selling your book - you're selling YOU. You're saying, "Look at what I think: you want to learn to think this way, and you can by reading my book."

Hope this helps. Good success.


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Fri Jun 07, 2013 7:28 pm
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Post Re: A question to all published writers?
Man, TheWizard hit it dead on.


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Sat Jun 08, 2013 8:24 am
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Post Re: A question to all published writers?
I wish I could answer the question, but I am not really sure...

My publisher did not inform me of the exact date my books were delivered to the bookstores, so I can never be sure when the first copy was sold.

I do remember the first copy I sold personally. The sale took place outside a public library. And afterwards, I met a few more interested individuals.



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Wed Jun 12, 2013 7:57 am
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Post Re: A question to all published writers?
I sold my first paperback in two days. I sold the Kindle edition in of my book in a day.


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Sun Jun 30, 2013 6:43 pm
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Post Re: A question to all published writers?
I guess I should feel lucky. I was freaking out thinking I should be doing better. My first week I sold 28 (not family and friends) copies, which worried me. Now I don't know if the graphs are accurate, but I've been sitting in the 30-200 a day range. I hope that is correct. I have hit all the book websites and I've ran a few free book contests. Learned how to do forums, somewhat. Going to work on blogging and tweeting. My website will be done this week. I am advertising with Google Adwords and Facebook. Goodreads is great. I have cards with my book cover and where to buy it and hand them out to one or two people whereever I am. I go to the music in the park in my town and the next town up and hand out quite a few. I contacted all the newspapers where I have lived. And I have two book signing coming up. I lay in bed at night racking my brain on how to get exposure on my book. The most exciting part are the reviews. I always check for new reviews from people that don't know me. That really excites me, lol. Good luck, Canuak. Hang in there!


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Wed Jul 10, 2013 10:53 pm
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Post Re: A question to all published writers?
I got my first few sales in the first week on Amazon and there have been around a dozen sales per month since my book was published last September. I put it free for a week about a month ago and 562 people downloaded it. Sales have been tolerable, but not remarkable since. Best wishes with your book. :)

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Thu Jul 11, 2013 6:21 am
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Post Re: A question to all published writers?
I have learned, you must build a strong online presence. All the toys - book clubs, twitter, g+, blogs, facebook, linkedin, marsocial, and your own website. And DO NOT SPAM your book. Build up an audience and only bring up your book occasionally. Spamming your book link only chases people away. Get them interested first, and then have that link to your book available for them to grab on their own. I foudn this to work best.

My current online presence is weak, but I am working on it daily.
I personally haven't got my website up yet. But it is a priority now.

♥ Nathan Kane


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Mon Sep 09, 2013 8:46 am
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Post Re: A question to all published writers?
Like every author on this forum, I've tried everything and am still looking for new things to try.

But my most pleasant success comes from a complete Taoist "do-nothing" approach. Here's the story:

Prior to my latest book "KDP's Best-Kept Secret Revealed: How to Embed Videos and Widgets in Your Book Description," (http://amzn.to/1evdevT) I treated everyone of my prior releases with kid gloves. Rallying good reviews for them and worrying about their being bullied by some bad reviews. Angry that good reviews do not really translate into good sales number ... I was just like an over-protecting parent.

When "KDP's Best-Kept Secret Revealed: How to Embed Videos and Widgets in Your Book Description" was born on Sept. 7th, I was totally jaded. Been there, done that. Plus, it's a technical book -- there is hardly any room for me to glorify it.

So I just let the kid walk out of the door and go play in the neighborhood, thinking, "If he makes it he makes it. If not, it's just a book. I will write a better next one."

Three days passed with three brave souls actually purchased the book, at $9.99. Then a 5-star review kicked in.

What happened next were truly surprising.

1)One buyer who used the book (I will refrain from mentioning her name as she is in the erotica sector) raves about my book in FB indie author groups, driving a few new buyers to my book.
2)A well-known internet marketing expert (shame on me as I did not even know him and his famous newsletter,) by the name of Martin Kerrigan shot out a email blast, praising my book. It reads as follows:

==Quote below===
Two things today.

First KDP's Best Kept Secret. We all know what goes into your Kindle book description. Words. Targeted words designed to invoke a response.

WRONG!

Check this out:

KDP's Best-Kept Secret Revealed: How to Embed Videos and Widgets in Your Book Description

Amazing! Videos. Widgets. Images. An iframe showing all your books scrolling past. An opt-in form! Facebook. Twitter. Support via email, skype, phone or drums. $10!

I bought this without a second thought. Love it.

KDP's Best-Kept Secret Revealed: How to Embed Videos and Widgets in Your Book Description

==Quote above===

Naturally, that has created some buzz and purchase.
3)Other bloggers and authors start to recommend my book, including one fellow on GoodReads: http://www.goodreads.com/author_blog_posts/4892708-kdp-s-best-kept-secret-revealed

And I am sure more are to come. And I've manipulated nobody. I've bribed nobody. I don't even know these nice people who are benefiting from and recommending my book.



Mon Sep 23, 2013 9:09 am
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Post Re: A question to all published writers?
My first book, I had no idea what I was doing, but as I have a background in marketing, I came up with a plan of attack. It was a decent one, involving all that everyone else above has noted, but the one thing I didn't know at the time was the timing involved.

For example, if you hope to get reviews in any of the major trade publications, such as Publishers Weekly or Library Journal, or retail magazines, such as Ladies Home Journal, etc., they may want anywhere from 3-6 months of lead time in order to consider your book for review or promo placement. Now, I don't know about you, but once I'm done writing something, I want it OUT THERE! :)

My first book took me 12 years on/off to write, and so I went ahead with my plan, and while I was lucky enough to get some great reviews and recognition, which translated into sales, I wonder what it would've been like if I had actually given myself the lead time needed.

I have a new book coming out in October, and for this one, I sent advance copies to all the major reviewers and made sure I made their deadlines. For example, as my book is a collection of holiday themed short stories, I wanted to makes sure that all the retail magazines I sent to had them months ago, as they plan those issues way in advance.

Of course, if you are publishing something as e-book only, your platform and timeline will be entirely different.

I guess my advice is: prior to launching any new book, think about who your audience is, where they are, and make sure you give yourself enough time to reach those folks. You want the demand to be there prior to your book being released, so that instead of looking every day, hoping someone has bought it, you immediately see the results of your hard work.

Waiting and having patience is difficult, but I'm hoping that a good plan and enough lead time pays off! We'll see! :)


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Wed Sep 25, 2013 3:51 pm
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Post Re: A question to all published writers?
I agree with The Wizard and Mahree - you have to market and promote your book all the time. It's hard - harder than writing and time consuming - you could be writing another book. Do get yourself a website, it's probably one of the best marketing tools but again you have to promote it. Making a sale is still a big thrill - and I still check for sales far more often than I should!


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