I’m testing out the effectiveness of the Kindle Select program this week by offering two of my books for free; Starforgers and Tyrmia. So far the results have been promising. Each book has over 400 downloads.
My hope is that after a few dozen of those readers actually read the books and they come back for more and actually buy the other books I have for sale. That’s the plan anyway. Perhaps some smaller percentage will tell their friends about it and they will come back next week and buy the books that were free.
If none of that happens, it might not be worth doing again. If some of it happens in the next 90 days, I’ll have to think about whether I want to keep them exclusively on Amazon. I think it might be wise to keep at least one book in the program to generate word of mouth. At this point, that would likely be Tyrmia, as it’s a stand alone novel.
So if you’re curious about my novels and are too cheap to buy one, now’s your chance to snag two of my best works for free. Click on the links below to download your copies from Amazon.
Much of this past week has been spent in a fog induced by a bad cold. I’m still not completely over the stuffed up head but I am finally draining. Not much has been done on the writing and publishing scene.
Oh, except for launching my latest and greatest Space Opera – STARFORGERS!
Yes, you read that correctly. You can now point your Nooks and Kindles to B&N and Amazon and purchase the first book in the Star Trilogy – Starforgers. If you go to Amazon, you will even find two of my books priced a couple of bucks less than anywhere else, due to Amazon’s pricing issue. They are only charging $2.99 and .99 for Starstrikers and Tyrmia, respectively. Hopefully this will be resolved in the next day or two. Until then, get them while they are cheap!
I must say, the B&N PubIt! service is much more flexible and quicker responding to publisher changes than Amazon’s KDP. You can find all three novels on the Nook, looking particularly fine in all respects.
I’m still working to get Starforgers on Smashwords. Their draconian formatting is the last think I attempt when I publish a book.
All of my novels will soon be $4.99 as mentioned in a previous post. This is to raise their perceived value on the market place. You can still get my anthology, Tales From Ocherva, Vol 1, for $2.99 and many, many short stories all set in the Starstrikers Universe for under a buck.
Over the past several months I sent out agent queries for my SF novel, Tyrmia. Out of twenty or so queries I got two requests for partials and all of them rejected the manuscript. The novel has been for sale as an ebook for just about a full year. Off the top of my head, I might have sold twenty copies.
Despite being roundly praised by all those folks who have read the book, it has been a complete failure in the market. This is not too surprising to me, actually. The book is very, very niche. It’s not quite a Steampunk story and not quite a Space Opera story but kind of a blend of the two. It has a strong female character that resonates with readers and it has an interesting villain who is at times even sympathetic. The story is not cliche and the plot keeps you guessing until the end. But the book just can’t seem to find an audience on its own.
So what do I do with it now? I let it sit there on the web and collect dust bits. The shelf life for an ebook is forever. So it’s not costing me anything to let it hang around and snag the occasional reader. But there is no chance I will make a paperback out of it. So that makes two of my ebooks that will forever be just ebooks. The anthology – Tales From Ocherva and Tyrmia.
I think Tyrmia will find an audience years from now if I ever become a well known writer. It will be in my back list and loyal readers will eventually find it. So I’m not too worried about it. I have a new Space Opera novel coming out this fall and it will be part one of a trilogy that will be completed this time next year with the release of the third book. The Star Trilogy – Starforgers, Starstrikers and Starveyers will be much more commercial and could potentially take off. Until that time, I have my nose to the screen and my fingers on the keyboard – writing like a madman.
You can’t spend time weeping for your black sheep books. You have to direct your energies to writing better, more entertaining books.
This series of pictures shows the evolution of the artwork used on my latest novel, Tyrmia. The artist is Jeremy Wynn. As you can see, he started with a stock image and modified it according to my suggestions to turn it from a human female into a Tyrmian male.
Now you can see exactly where the lady in the eye is. For those familiar with the story, it is Zerdy, the protagonist.
Matt from the Seattle-Geekly podcast read and reviewed my SF novel, Tyrmia. You can catch this week’s episode here, the review is about eight minutes into the podcast. He liked it over all but thought it was a bit short. At over 100,000 words in length, it was a challenge to keep it that short. Many readers have commented it should be longer, so perhaps there will be an expanded version of a sequel some day.
Just to answer one question from the review, the novel is a stand alone story, but other novels set in the same universe are indeed available and include Starstrikers and the anthology, Tales From Ocherva.
As a gentle reminder, Tyrmia is only .99 cents for a limited time. So there’s no excuse not to give it a try!
You read that right, Tyrmia is now only ninety-nine cents on the Kindle. Don’t wait, get you copy now! This is a limited time, introductory offer.
Reviews are coming in on the Kindle Edition of Tyrmia.
“Tyrmia, is a feast for the senses, and not the typical sci-fi fare. Tyrmia seamlessly blends the high-tech background of the novel’s protagonist with a primitive rain-forest culture and steampunk urban civilization.” – Pandora Swift
“This is one of those ‘can’t put down’ books. The characters are unique and believable … The plot never slows down and he keeps adding more twists to the story. Enjoyed it completely.” – Angela Abderhalden, Author of Questionable Ethics
“It’s got the adventure, quest, action, visual, tainted love and a message to preserve the worlds resources all wrapped up in one. If you enjoyed Avatar you’ll love this too.” Denise
“It begins and ends as SF, but between those two bookends it’s more like a mix of Burroughs and Verne.” – Bill Blohm
“Buy this book… it’s a mature and enjoyable read from someone who is becoming a standout young writer in the Pacific Northwest.” – Steve
Normally I wait to see the sales results after the month is over, but I don’t see these numbers changing much in the final week of January. Sales have dropped off a bit from the bump I got in December.
1 A Night At Downers – 2
2* Null_Pointer – 1
3 Ocherva – 1
4 Silicants Only – 1
5* Starstrikers – 14
6* Tales From Ocherva, Volume 1 – 2
Stared items are books that retail for $2.99, all others are short stories that retail for $.99. My earnings equate to $35.36 for novel sales and $1.40 on short stories, for a total of $36.76.
My best selling book is still Starstrikers. This continues to amaze me because it is my first novel and not by any stretch my best effort. My second novel is not even in the SF genre, but is instead a Mystery novel – Null_Pointer. My best writing effort to date, is the new SF novel – Tyrmia. A stand-alone story set in the same universe as Starstrikers. That novel is not enjoying any sales at all this month. Despite being my best work and despite having a fantastic cover, it sits on the Kindle shelves untouched. Why is that?
Two possible reasons come to mind for me. The first is that I’ve done little to no advertising and virtually no social networking for it. Sure, I’ve blogged about it, but not many people read this blog. Sure I’ve mentioned it on Twitter, but most of my followers on Twitter are firmly in the traditional press mindset and don’t really respect what I’m doing with this whole “self-publishing” shenanigans.
Secondly, it has no reviews on Amazon. Even the friends of mine who have read Tyrmiaand loved it, have not blogged about it or left reviews. I can’t blame them for that, it’s not their job to see that my book sells. I also have not badgered anyone to put up reviews. We won’t even mention the fiasco of my Buy Tyrmia Day in December that netted me two sales.
It’s not likely that I will stop writing and do continuous promoting for Tyrmia. That’s just not going to happen. I’m too busy writing the prequel to Starstrikers. So I must start begging readers to post reviews and write about the book on their blogs. That can only help. I have also begun to cross promote Tyrmia on the Starstrikers Amazon page and the page for my SF anthology, Tales From Ocherva. I think when someone reads Starstrikers and decides to look for more, it doesn’t hurt to make it easier to find my other books.
We’ll see if sales increase any in February. Stay tuned.
Today is the day to buy TYRMIA on the Kindle! Even if you don’t own an actual Kindle e-reader, you can still purchase and read Kindle e-books on any computer or smart phone. The reading software is free and available from Amazon. You can also gift TYRMIA to anyone with an e-mail address.
The goal is to sell as many copies of the TYRMIA e-book on Amazon as we can today only, to boost the e-book up onto the best seller lists before the holidays. TYRMIA is a Science Fiction novel about a woman who finds herself stranded on a jungle planet and forced to live with a native tribe of aliens in order to survive.
Please be sure to come back to the Amazon page after you have read TYRMIA and leave a review. As of this morning, there are not reviews on the Amazon page and the ranking is sitting at 207,675. The goal is to get the ranking into the hundreds just for today. So please take a moment during your day today to either gift this e-book or buy it yourself.
Thanks to all my readers and fans and may all your holidays be happy and healthy!