As an indie author, I believe that sharing information is the best way to help the community. I have already greatly benefited from authors who have publicly shared their approaches to publishing, or who have been gracious enough to answer my questions. In that spirit, I want to be open about my experience since publishing one month ago.
Please note: when I share my sales data, I do so in order to be transparent. I honestly don’t know where my sales data fits in the overall scheme. If an author had less sales in their first month, it doesn’t make my book any better, just as I hope the opposite isn’t true either.
Before I published my debut, “No Heart for a Thief”, I did as much research as I could about how to get readers to read my work. I knew that I had written something that I was proud of, but great books go unread all the time.
I started by sending out as many ARCs as possible. Between reaching out to specific bloggers and YouTubers, and creating an open ARC request for reviewers, I gave out 86 ARCs. Most of these were eARCs, but I also gave out a handful of paperback ARCs. This helped me get a good amount of reviews before my release and create a small buzz around my book.
Following the advice of Ryan Cahill, author of The Bound and The Broken, a series which has gained a rapidly large fanbase, I focused on building a readership first and foremost. Selling my ebook for $0.99 won’t bring me wealth, but with luck, it may help readers find me. And it may be working.
In the first month, I sold 417 ebooks, 100 paperbacks, and had 32,265 of pages read through Kindle Unlimited Amazon’s subscription service. Between reviews and ratings from Advanced Reader Copies and purchased copies, No Heart for a Thief has 65 ratings and 43 reviews on Goodreads, and 24 ratings and 9 reviews on Amazon.
So what does that mean in terms of $$$?
At $0.99/ebook, I make about $0.33/ebook. I make a little over $2.00/paperback on average, but it differs based on what site the purchase is made on. Lastly, KU brings in about $0.004/page read.
In total, I brought in $555.64 in my first month in total sales. This does not take into account the cost of the giveaway I ran on StoryGraph or the cost of the review copies I have given away, both of which were not included in my total book sales.
To put that in context, I spent about $4000 producing my book, the costs of which I will break down in a future post. The bulk of this cost came from artwork, editing, physical ARCs. This does not include the upcoming audiobook.
I am super proud of what I’ve accomplished so far. It’s a humbling experience to have strangers read and enjoy my book. I know that none of this would have been possible without the reviewers who took a chance on me and my fellow authors in the indie community.
Thank you to everyone who has shared a post, written a review, or bought a book.