WRITERS: Think You Can't Sell 500? YOU CAN!!!

So the other day I was reading a fairly interesting article that included stats on the publishing industry, and I love statistics, so it was right up my alley.

Did you know that right now over 500,000 books are being published each year? This includes both self-pubbed and traditional.

Of those, how many do you think sell more than 500 copies (of one book)?

50%? Nope.

25%? Nope.

I'll tell you. 2%. That's right, 98% of books published today don't sell more than 500 copies. Wow. I couldn't believe it myself. Some of you might think that sounds about right, but it really threw me for a loop, so to speak ;)

Once I let that sink in, I did my happy-happy-joy-joy dance and decided never to let my book sales get me down (which is easier said than done). My first novel has been out for three months and has done well. It took me 42 days to sell 500 copies, and I've also been fortunate enough to make it on a couple Amazon Top #100 lists and actually today made it on two top ranked lists as well.

When I first published Black Diamond Death, there were many days when I only sold a few copies a day, and I was discouraged, but I'm also impatient and needed to remind myself on more than one occasion that these things take time. What worked for me might not work for someone else, but I believe you all have the tools to be a success. And as I strive to one day sell 100,000+ copies like some of my fellow author friends, so should you.

One thing that I believe helped me was that I focused on promoting in any way I could (that didn't cost money) for the first month that my book was out. I tried to do a minimum of five things to promote myself a day, and as a newbie, I honestly didn't know what I was doing, so I relied on my fellow authors to show me the way, and they did through Kindle Boards and also through a group I created on Facebook called Indie Writers Unite. It's amazing how willing your fellow authors can be, all you need is to ask.

I have loved the journey so far and look forward to a lifetime of memories, more book sales, and new friendships. ONWARD!

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Comment by Cheryl Bradshaw on June 22, 2011 at 4:34pm
I started a group on Facebook called Indie Writers Unite right after my book came out, and that helped me immensely because I made a lot of author friends that way and the advice they gave me was priceless. I also found a lot of ideas through the author's forum on KB. One other thing I did was to guest on several blog sites whenever asked, and I did press releases for my book, joined Twitter, and got my book on any website that advertised for free, like Daily Cheap Reads and Free Book Friday. I'm still learning, but all these things have helped :)   
Comment by Stuart Matthew Davis on June 22, 2011 at 1:47pm
What do you feel were the most effective ways to promote?
Comment by Mark Young on June 22, 2011 at 3:42am
Good article, Cheryl. This should be a real encouragement to other writers struggling to boost sales. Congratulations on your writing success.

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