Kindle Sales Numbers

In keeping with my blatantly open policy, here are the numbers for all three of my Kindle books for the past two months. Starstrikers and Null_Pointer are selling for $.99 and TFO is selling for $2.99.


  • Starstrikers:  193
  • Tales From Ocherva: 7
  • Null_Pointer: 3


  • Starstrikers: 197
  • Tales From Ocherva: 1
  • Null_Pointer: 5

For some perspective, here are the numbers for Starstrikers since January of 2010.

  1. January:          4
  2. February:     37
  3. March:         232
  4. April:            275
  5. May:              225
  6. June:            193
  7. July:             197

That’s over a thousand e-books in the last five months. Not exactly J.A. Konrath’s numbers but it also doesn’t suck. The question now becomes, do I raise the cover price  and take advantage of the 70% royalties or keep it at $.99 cents and let it ride? I’m leaning towards raising the price in order to establish credibility more than to seek higher earnings. I think the new best price for e-books is anything under $5.00. Exactly where to set the new price is up in the air for me right now.

The other danger is of course, losing the impulse buyers who are more willing to try out an unknown author like myself if the price is low. But since this is really just mad money and not a living, there is no real danger in experimenting with the price.

The most interesting bit about the numbers above is the total lack of attention that buyers have for a second SF book set in the same universe as Starstrikers.  What this tells me is that I’m failing to get fans and can only muster impulse buys. Perhaps raising the price of Starstrikers will help that effort. Also, a new cover for TFO will debut soon that brands it as being in the Starstrikers Universe.

Another SF book set in the Starstrikers Universe will debut on Kindle this fall. Tyrmia is less a traditional Space Opera and more of a Planetary Romance. So again, not exactly appealing to the core audience of Starstrikers, who like it when stuff blows up. Tyrmia will start at the $2.99 price point as will the prequel to Starstrikers, Starforgers when it comes out fall of 2011.

Null_Pointer Coming Alive Again

I’ve started working on NP again. You’re welcome! I have five pages written on chapter 13. It took me a while to reread all the previous chapters and review my notes, but my head is back in the game and I’m ready to finish the second half of the first draft. If you are looking for the previous chapters, I’m working on getting them online at soon. (They are up now) I have to go through and convert them to HTML again and clean them up a bit. No trivial task.

I just purchased a new word processor for my MacBook, called Mariner Write. As soon as I get it installed I will begin converting the chapters to HTML and putting them online. If you have not looked at the Author pages on the main site, please check it out. It has a clean new interface and I hope you can find your way around easier now. So stay tuned for a new chapter on Null_Pointer probably late next week.  UPDATE: Mariner Write can’t convert documents to HTML.  Seems like kind of a necessity these days.  Glad I have NeoOffice.

Where I Write, What Tools I Use

One of the most interesting parts of a website called eHam is the random user submitted pictures of Ham radio operator’s operating stations. Otherwise known as Ham Shacks. It’s always interesting to see what set ups other operators have. On that note, I will attempt to do the same for my writing setup.


Here is a picture of where my MacBook rests when It’s not being used all around the house. A beautiful oak desk in a window nook in the master bedroom. I used to have a nice den for my computers, but then I had kids. You know how that goes.

I have a USB hub behind the laptop that lets me plug into a printer, USB camera cable and the Apple keyboard. The Apple Mighty Mouse is wireless. An old Altec speaker system is also visible. The kids use that when they play games on the Mac. A small, 40 watt desk lamp is also visible. We use the desk for paying bills too.

The windows look out into my back yard where I can keep an eye on the kids playing. I can also see Table Rock and Bogus Basin from the desk.

I use the MacBook primarily for writing but I have been known to write programs on it in Ruby. We also use it as the family computer, at least until I can afford a Mac Mini for the kids to use. All my serious programming computers and radios are in the Ham shack in the garage.

For writing, I use the program CopyWrite. It lets me keep all my notes and writing together in one place. I use a USB thumb drive to back up my files on whenever I think of it.


Well, I hope you enjoyed this brief tour of my writing nook and some of the tools I use.

Daily Lit

I came across this web site yesterday and thought I would let the readers of this blog know about it. Daily Lit takes books that are in the public domain and divides them into bite size chunks and emails them to you on a daily basis. Letting you read an entire novel in a hundred days or so. Not a bad idea. Now you can catch up on the classics in easy to read, daily emails.

I’m reading Agatha Christies’ “Secret Adversaries”.

Chapter 12 Musings

Well, it started as a filler for getting the story on to the next day. Then the idea came to me to make a chapter that was nothing but IRC chat. Then, as I wrote it, I started exploring Dancia’s character again, adding pieces to her puzzle. But as it stands now – 6 pages into it, I’m not entirely sure what the point of the chapter is. Sometimes you have to go on these writing walkabouts when you are writing a book. You wonder down a path not taken and see where it brings you. Sometimes, you wind up throwing it out and using the ideas elsewhere in the novel. Other times, you just circular file it and move on.

For now, I will just leave it and when I do the second draft, make the decision to edit it or give it the axe. I’ve got the two main characters alone again at Joshua’s place. The entire chapter so far has been from Dancia’s point of view. Now, in mid stream, I’m switching to Joshua’s point of view for the last scene. Not sure that’s legal, but I don’t think it will confuse anyone, as we are in a different scene and location now.

I want to wrap this mess up and move on to chapter 13, as that is where more important things happen and the plot starts moving again. Maybe Chapter 12 will be a needed rest before the main story kicks into overdrive for the run to the ending.

New Chapter 11 is up!

If you have already read Chapter 11, please go back and read it again.  You can skim past most of it and get to the new stuff at the end.  If you are following the story and not the blog about how the story was written, you need to know what happens in Chapter 11 before you go on to Chapter 12.

Chapter 11 Rewrite Coming

If you have already read Chapter 11, please come back soon and reread it.  I left out lots of important stuff and am in the process of adding to it.  Time is tight this week with holiday madness engulfing the homestead.  You won’t want to miss the new version, as critical plot revelations occur!

I’ll be posting here to let you know when it’s up.


This past week we’ve been enjoying the hospitality of my in-laws in their Tennessee home.  It’s been warm, in the low seventies until Friday when the Midwestern storm blew through bringing high winds some rain and much lower temperatures.

I had thought it would be a good time to do some writing, but so far, I have done little to none.  I’ve been watching the birds and the trees and playing with my kids.  Good time to unwind and do large amounts of nothing – except eating wonderful food. :)

I should be well rested and ready to resume Null_Pointer next weekend.  One of the things I was not able to do on my vacation was get some required alone time to write.  When I get back into my normal daily routine, I will get back my alone time and be able to write again.  Then of course it will be Christmas and more down time.  Hopefully, I will be ready to start the second half of the mystery novel in January.

I did get the chance to print out the first 10 chapters and read through it while I was on vacation.  It’s not so bad as to make me want to throw it out and start over, so I guess I will finish it and see where it ends up after that.