I'll say it right up front;  with the advent of epublishing I think there's been a rebirth of the short-story.  In fact I think in both volume and in quality, ebook publishers are bringing to the reading market some of the best written stories ever seen.


What's more, a number of epublishers are actively seeking out authors who want to write a series using the short-story as its main vehicle for presentation to the reading public.  I have no less than three such series going on with Trestle Press.


And I'm happy as a lark about it.  Here's one of my newest series.  Classic police-procedural detective work.


Eleven stories featuring Turner Hahn and Frank Morales.  Only the beginning for these two.  Lots more stories coming.  Here's the Amazon site for it.


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Nope. Each is different. Pubit pays 40% under 2.99, so I make .40 per .99 short stort. For the rest, they are all different based on country, distributer, VAT etc. For example, going through smashwords Apple pays me .61 for a .99 story sale in the U.S.; .55 for Australia sales. Sony pays me .60, Kobo pays me .59 for US sales and .57 for Canadian sales. Smashwords I get .82 for a .99 story, 4.10 for a $4.99 sale. But, my 4.99 book sold by Kobo in Canada only gets me $2.88.
Without looking up the contract, it looks like I'm getting about 60% across the board.

As for the formatting I can't speak to that cost, I do that all myself, across all lines. I pay for editing cost and cover art as my only expense.
David DeLee
Fatal Destiny - a Grace deHaviland novel

Thanks.  I'm amazed.  I thought Amazon's prices were followed by all.  They do not pay 70 % unless it's priced at 2.99 or above.  It turn out to be smart to pay the surcharge for Smashwords also for individual short stories.  Good to know.

I think this is a great idea but I don't feel I understand how to do it.  I'm open to advice.

As is often the case, I feel humbly impressed by what the others have done or are doing.  Are any of you having a lot of luck making money selling short stories?  If you are getting good results, can you clue me in?  I feel very honored and appreciative to have so many "senior colleague" authors around.  Its way more fun for me to learn through interacting with you than it is to read way too many books about the publishing industry.  Still, either way, I do need good information.  Who is making enough selling short stories to pay like a utility bill regularly?

If so, I grovel and beg of thee, most esteemed ones:  how are you achieving this?

Don't know about the part you mentioned ' . . . making money . . .'  but what you need to do is find a publisher who does short stories and/or go the Amazon route and publish them directly thru Amazon.


If you want to go the former, send one of your stories to my publisher (Trestle Press) and see if they'll accept it.  If go do the later, a little research on Amazon on your part will lead you directly to their site.

Do they pay royalties only or something?  Thanks to you, I see they exist.

OK, because of this interaction with you, I have submitted 3 stories to them.

Well at 35 cents a whack, and that in a genre that sells poorly, you don't expect to make much money.  What it does do is give you a bit of advertising.  My stories haven't been up long enough to have significant numbers to share.  The first two stories, put up in the first third of a month, made 57 dollars by the end of the month.  That is better than nothing, but so far they haven't earned back formatting costs.  However, I may catch new readers this way.  Every story is followed by a sample chapter from one of my books.

You may indeed obtain new readers.  I love that your stories are followed by a sample chapter - that is a great way to get folks to want to buy more.

Ingrid, I would think that over time your stories will earn back their formatting and related costs. That seems to be part of the key in self publishing - have a lot to offer, use existing stories to cross promote (sample chapter!), and be patient.

Yes, Clay.  Over time, they'll earn out.  I should add that I've learned a lot about this from Joe Konrath's blog.  His figures, though, boggle my mind.  I have to cling to the belief that this will accelerate, as it did for him.  There's always the sneaking suspicion that, as the numbers increase exponentially, individuals will get lost and sales will begin to fall off.

Perhaps, I.J.

But, I think for everyone who drops off, you will pick up new readers who discover you for the first time. That is why I think regular, new releases will be critical to the success of the indie-writer.

Also, unlike the produce model traditional publishers and bookstores must followed because of limited shelf space, the virtual bookshelf is unlimited, so your titles will never 'spoil' and lose placement. All your titles will be there and available unless and until you take them down.

Isn't it an amazing time to be a writer.

David DeLee

Fatal Destiny - a Grace deHaviland novel

True, but we still have to get people to buy them.  And promotion is nearly impossible.


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