Thursday, January 19, 2012

The Myth of the Bestseller

We all want to have a bestselling book.

The legacy publishing world often seems focused on bestsellers. How many copies a book sells gets it on bestseller lists, which get it even more attention. Publishers, and authors, crow about big hits, and huge numbers are repeated ad infinitum.

The self-pubbing world seems to be following a similar theme. I was one of the first people to post my self-pub numbers, and this trend has continued. I think this kind of transparency is good.

But the message is getting skewed. I've shared my numbers to show writers what is possible by pubbing on Kindle. 

I don't share my numbers to show how many more ebooks I'm selling than you are. And I've never stated that an ebook has to sell X number of copies before it is considered a success.

According to a recent article in Publisher's Lunch (no link because it's a pay site), 11 self-pubbed authors made the NYT List in 2011. I haven't read the article, so I don't know if it is slanted that 11 is an amazing number or a disappointing number. In reality, it is neither. Because that number is meaningless.

The self-publishing revolution isn't about how many bestsellers it produces. 

The self-publishing revolution is about authors--all authors--being able to make money on their work without having to jump through gatekeeping hoops.

You don't need to make the NYT list to be a success. You don't need to make $100,000 in three weeks to be a success. And the significance of this revolution isn't based on what the legacy publishing machine thinks is successful.

A writer doesn't have to sell 10,000 ebooks a day. They can sell 10,000 ebooks a year--only 27 a day--and because they keep a large chunk of the royalties, that can make a huge difference in the quality of their life. 

Even 5000 books a year, priced at 99 cents, is an extra $150 a month. Money used to pay bills. Buy groceries. Make things a little bit easier.

In the legacy world, if an author didn't make big money, they got dumped. But we writers don't have the overhead a NY publisher does. Smaller sales may not impress the legacy world, but who cares? They're bloated, unwieldy, antiquated, inefficient, and wasteful. 

Let NY try to support itself. We need much less to support ourselves. We don't need to hit a homerun like NY does. We can hit a bunch of singles and do just fine.

Bestsellers have always been an anomaly. The real story is about the midlist, and how many writers can get paid. And right now, more writers are getting paid for their writing than at any other point in history. That's freaking amazing. And it's a much more important story than one about 11 authors who made the NYT List.

Don't get me wrong. I'm thrilled for those 11 authors who made the NYT list. 

I'm also thrilled for my own success.

But I'm especially thrilled for the thousands and thousands of authors who are making ends meet because they achieved their goals and self-pubbed their ebooks.

Any writer who puts food on the table with their writing is successful. It doesn't matter if it is a box of mac and cheese, or caviar and champagne. Taking your career into your own hands, giving it your best shot, striving to do better... that's the American Dream, baby.

Bestsellers? Fuck bestsellers.

Don't let me, the NYT Times, or the pinheads in legacy publishing make you feel inadequate because you aren't a millionaire yet.

You are part of a revolution that is going to change how the entire world reads. 

Your ebooks will continue to earn money, forever. 

Be proud. You are a success.

171 comments:

David L. Shutter said...

Awesome.

So much for the blogging hiatus. That lasted a real long time.

Writing Trip

Virginia Llorca said...

A one star review that pays tribute to my character building is fine with me. Fours and fives are nice too, tho.

Jenn Greenleaf said...

I really needed to read this right now. Thank you!!!!!!

Joseph Finley said...

Amen, Joe!

Joe Konrath said...

So much for the blogging hiatus.

It's the diet. I have to do something to avoid thinking about food.

Sariah Wilson said...

Add me as another who was in need of this particular blog in this particular moment.

Thank you!

Rob Blackwell said...

I think all this beer is making you smarter.

Brilliant post. And I really needed it.

Thanks,

Rob

TiffanyFulton said...

This is one of my favorite blog posts ever- seriously, Joe! I am going to share this with my followers on Twitter. As an indie author, I also needed this as a pick me up. Thank you

Gabrielle said...

Amen. And thanks.

David L. Shutter said...

It's the diet. I have to do something to avoid thinking about food

Lol, sorry. Hope it works out for you w/o killing you.

Christopher John Chater said...

Awesome. I couldn't agree more. If someone sells one book, they're a success in my mind. If the reader likes the work and gets something out of it, you've succeeded. Anything after that is gravy.
Great job Joe.

Adam Pepper said...

I see the lack of food has turned you prolific rather than lethargic. I guess I shouldnt be surprised.

Good message. We all fall into that trap. Instead of measuring success next to others, we all should be grateful for each sale and each reader we reach.

I know I'd like to be selling a little better, but I'm also thrilled to be sharing my work with appreciative readers. Something that may never have happened without self publishing. I recently corresponded with a reader in Pakistan. I think that's pretty awesome that someone on the other side of the world found my work and enjoyed it. That's a victory!

Johanna Garth said...

Great post Joe! My book is still a baby but it's slowly gaining legs and I don't have to worry about how long it's going to take.

evilphilip said...

Here is a good example. Some teenagers just ran their truck through my fence and then took off.

My home insurance deductible is $500.

My Kindle check for the month of December is $900.00.

Talk about every little bit helping!

Will Granger said...

Thanks, just thanks.

Simon Haynes said...

My progress? I put 4 ebooks on Amazon in Sept '11 and sold 2 ebooks per day on average. In October I sold 3 per day. In November it was 8 per day, and December 11 per day. This month - so far - it's 13 per day.
Now, $35 a day doesn't sound like much but it works out to just under $13,000 a year, which is more than I ever earned in a year from my writing, when these same four books were 'legacy' published in paperback format. That was the high-water mark for my career in print, whereas on Kindle I feel like I'm only just beginning.

Todd Trumpet said...

The best cure for worship of the NYT Best Seller List?

Actually read the books on the NYT Bestseller List.

Todd
www.ToddTrumpet.com

Jude Hardin said...

It's the diet. I have to do something to avoid thinking about food.

And yet your subconscious is screaming mac and cheese!

I'm earning about $50 a month on my horror novella UNBORN. Not a lot, but an unheard of amount for a novella just a few years ago.

Maybe my new release, FIRE AND ICE, will help boost sales for UNBORN as well.

Patrice said...

Fabulous post, Joe. That's what it's all about, isn't it? Getting to write (which we can always do) and also getting it into the hands of readers. One or twenty or twenty thousand...

I'm going to hold onto this post.

bettye griffin said...

I've always maintained that while making money is nice, making it while doing what I love is even better. I will not be joining the authors who announce "I sold ___ number of books last month" because I prefer to talk about my work itself, not how many people have bought it. Nor will I ever ask people outright to buy my book because I feel that's undignified, and all professions should have dignity. Finally, writing for the express purpose of making money (which might include writing in the sub-genre popular at the moment, whether you enjoy it or not) takes the joy out of it, and if there's no joy, there's no point...at least in my opinion. But of course, I don't depend on my writing to be able to eat. That probably makes a difference.

Charlie said...

The bestseller lists are a big deal to traditional print publishers because the chains and the big box stores like Walmart and Costco shop from those lists. If a book made the list, it would get picked up by more stores. Although it's nice to think there's no logic behind traditional publisher's focus on the bestseller lists, it's far from blind worship.

Of course now with the stores closing and print dying, I agree that those lists mean less than they used to mean. In a couple years, they won't mean anything at all.

B2 said...

Hey Joe,

Ever heard of Intermittent Fasting, or IF?

It's a diet philosophy and requires some exercise, but many people including myself have had great success with it.

Much easier to follow than an all beer diet and almost (but not quite) as cool.

http://www.leangains.com/2010/04/leangains-guide.html

Morgan Eckstein said...

My goal is to hit my break-even point---in other words, to make as much writing per hour as I would if I continued to flip burgers for a living.

T.J. Dotson said...

Thanks for this post! Not too long ago, I told a friend that "I'm quite convinced a writer can make a living now, without ever seeing a best-sellers list".

And it's true. I know writers who are bringing home nice amounts of $$ from writing. They aren't making Konrath/Hocking/Locke money, but who cares?

Elisa Michelle said...

Your timing is interesting. K. Rusch just posted a blog about how the bestseller lists are devalued these days, and you're basically saying the same thing.

One thing I know for sure, if I can add even $100 to my monthly income my husband and I will be better off. If I can add more, that's awesome, but if I can keep managing to sell something, anything, that helps pay the bills and put food on our plates, I'd say that's well worth it, especially since traditional publishing won't do that for you on advances alone.

It might seem strange to someone looking at this from a traditional outlook though, to add up the sales from so many books. But I love it and think it just adds on to the amount of books I get to read a year. :D

Ozma said...

Thanks Joe

Millions More Blessings to you!

Lani Wendt Young said...

I love this post - thank you.

cidney swanson said...

Just blogged about the joy of buying a piece of furniture (new!) using writer income. Yup, a few hundred a month a huge difference makes. Crazy-great time to be a writer. Thanks for preaching' it!

Joshua Simcox said...

I love it.

A return to the kinder, gentler, more humble version of Newbie's Guide. If this is a side effect of the beer diet, I say keep it up.

Ellis Jackson said...

Quite frankly I'd kill for 5000 a year at this stage! I'm still proud of the achievement though, and prefer this rollercoaster ride than being told by some snotty kid in an office that I'm not good enough to publish.

Derek J. Canyon said...

Joe, I totally agree.

2011 was my first full year of self-publishing. I sold over 13,500 books and made over $12,000. To me, that's a a great success. Paid for a cruise vacation.

Blog: Adventures in ePublishing

mike fook said...

In the USA - you just might be able to survive selling 30 books a day at $2.99. Better at $4.99.

In Thailand you can be doing pretty well selling 10 books per day at $4.99. Making as much as a full-time English teacher in most areas outside Bangkok.

You can move to Thailand and write full-time. See if you can make it happen. Best move I ever made.

Laverdad said...

LOVE...YOUR...WORK JOE...

"Viva La Revolucion.." (Spanish)

you are an inspiration mate...(fyi, 'mate' is Australian slang for 'dude', I am not suggesting we procreate :)

Please never stop writing fiction, or blogging...

Ellen O'Connell said...

Thanks for this post, Joe. I'm one of those who feels a little pouty now and then over the emphasis on bestsellers, even though I know it's only human nature.

Two years ago next month, faced with doing something to bring in supplemental income, I put my first book up on Amazon. The dollar amount needed wasn't large, but the thought of the kind of thing I'd have to do to earn it depressed me. Since June of that year, my books have brought in at least twice the needed amount every month. When a new release and the holiday surge coincided last year, 8 times that amount!

There are many of us out here, not bestsellers, but writers whose lives are vastly improved by our small part in the indie revolution.

Stephen said...

Amen, brother, amen.

Andrea Lipomi said...

As always, thank you for your honesty and encouragement.

BTW, I NEVER read thrillers, but I bought and read Stirred and thought it was great. Your sense of humor and sick brand of gore were just what I needed to get me through a cross-country flight during flu season.

Andrea

Confident Relaxation Massage: Advice for the Budding Massage Therapist

Consuelo Saah Baehr said...

I've found that a flurry of sales for no good reason is as exciting to me as a bestseller (whatever that is). The serendipity of selling e-books is interesting and satisfying and just right. A frigging miracle for writers.

John Barlow said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
John Barlow said...

And there's none of that 'the editor hasn't mailed, so my numbers must be awful. And now I daren't ring her.' God that was a pile of demeaning shit.

If anybody wants to contribute to the trad vs indie debate over at the Theakstons Crime Writing Festival blog (bastion of trad publishers!), it's here:

10 reasons to jump

Marie Force said...

Perfectly stated, as always.

Speaking of the diet, when will we see some numbers? LOL! Just kidding. Hope it's working out as well for you as self-publishing has!

Anonymous said...

I know it's pretty small compared to the amazing Amazon thing you got going. But you might see a few more sales trickle in if you fix your e-book store. (It's down, by the way.)

Marlo said...

Great post! I'm so tired of fellow writers looking down their noses at indie publishing. (They tend to be the old school who have been at it the longest and gotten nowhere, by the way). The barriers to entry into this market have fallen like the Berlin wall, crumbling into itty bitty pieces. Authors have options they never had before and I think it's wonderful. And it takes just as much hard work to make it as an indie pubbed author as it does a traditional author, but at least you have control over your own destiny. Just my 4 cents.

Marta Szemik said...

Great Post!
I'm certainly not looking to be a NYT bestseller. All I want is to support my family and be able to write full time. Great inspiration!

Merrill Heath said...

Nice post, Joe. I always find it humorous when someone says, "Hey, my book is a best-seller! It's #3 on the fiction>genre fiction>mystery>detective>hard-boiled>amazing dog sleuths category!" WTH? Exactly how many books are there about amazing dog sleuths anyway?

My objective is to make enough money from my writing to "retire" from the day job so I can write full-time. I don't care if that income is from one book or 100 books. If I can publish 4 books a year, and sell an average of 5,000 copies of each book, then I'm set.

Merrill Heath

I.J.Parker said...

Ditto on the "amens." I need very little to be happy.

But . . .

Do the customers know that bestseller status doesn't mean anything, or are they still rushing to buy only those books?

Suzanne White said...

Once again, Joe hits a home run. Best sellers go hang! Since I sell my books as e-books I don't have to pay for any crusty old editors' martini lunches or their salaries. I no longer have to consult them about everything from commas to jacket copy.

E-book sales make us writers money. Our own money from our own work. E-book sales don't always avalanche. First year I made $400. 2nd year I made $800 one month and approx.$300 the others.This year started with $2500. for one month! Plant the seeds. Water them. Feed them. They grow.

THEN... this morning (after Joe's Best seller newsletter) I get this newsletter from Seth Godin FOUNDER OF THE DOMINO PROJECT.. Is he a dinosaur or what? He says "Apple didn’t make publishing easier..." (see below)

APPLE DIDN'T MAKE PUBLISHING EASIER. THEY MADE IT EASIER TO GET YOUR IDEA INTO DIGITAL PRINT.
There’s a huge difference between printing and publishing. Printing is a commodity, a straightforward but important process that takes time and money. Clearly, digital ‘print’ in the form of an ebook is easier and cheaper than paper printing, which involves cutting down trees and paying for trucks and shipping, etc.

But publishing is something else entirely. Publishing is the act of curation, of taking financial risk to do the marketing work of finding people who want to read your book. Publishing is venture capital for ideas. Publishing involves either building direct relationships with readers (like you and I have) or in gaining access to scarce shelf space with retailers who have those relationships. A good publisher, then, gets your book on the shelf at Barnes and Noble, or uses some sort of connection (an electronic one, perhaps, or a trade show) to get the book in front of the reader and to make a sale.

Making it easier to get a book in the iBook store is great, it will enable even more writers to get their books in print. In addition, Apple’s new software will make those books prettier and maybe more fun.

But publishing? Not at all. Doesn’t help one bit. SG

Sorry Seth Godin...PUBLISHING such as you knew it, is over. Barnes&Noble is probably supporting its bricks and mortar bookstores with Nook sales. And it's the last of the chain bookstores in the whole country! Independent bookstores are suffering too. Sorry. I love bookstores. But the future doesn't agree. History, we shall see, prefers e-books.
I am so glad to see Simon and Schuster becoming Simon and Shoestring I could burst. sw

Anna Murray said...

Right on, Joe. I'm not making millions, but the monthly check is getting my daughter through college, and the satisfaction I feel is overwhelming.

I thank Amazon every day . . . they are helping to make an extraordinary difference in thousands of lives.

JL Bryan said...

Thanks for the great post! I don't have any massive bestsellers and I'm not a millionaire, but I no longer have to commute to a day job, and I get to stay home and be a full-time writer and parent.

There may be insecurity in the future of ebook income, but at least nobody can fire me for showing up late or saying the wrong thing to the wrong person. So there's some aspects of job security that are better than my last day job.

It doesn't hurt that I'm making more than I did at any day job, but that makes sense, as I've trained for this novelist "job" for the last 20 years. Getting paid from your entire backlist every month is sweet. I have seven novels and a short-story collection, and I'm uploading the eighth today.

I may never get rich, but if I never have to go back to another crummy day job, that'll be success enough for me!

susanne said...

Again, an excellent post, which inspired me to write my own post on the subject: 'Apropos the Myth of the Bestseller by Joe Konrath'. http://susannefromsweden.wordpress.com/

Susanne O'Leary

www.susanne-oleary.com

Kristi Lea said...

It is so refreshing to hear encouragement from other writers for choosing not to wait around on legacy publishing.

I am e-pubbed by a digital-first imprint, not self-pubbed (yet...). But still I get raised eyebrows from writer friends who are with legacy publishers (and wait a year or more between books, after their agent spends a year or more shopping them), or are still waiting to find an agent.

No, I didn't get an advance, and it may be years before I can say whether I'm making more, less or the same money as them (on a per-book basis, I do make way more...). But I'm making money and writing what I love to write, the way I want to write it.

(And I do not want to spend my time writing queries. I want to write novels)

J. Viser said...

Joe - thanks for reminding us that our true competition is with our own limitations, not necessarily with others. Our civilization might be more civil if we kept that spirit in mind in all our daily dealings.

Tracy Sharp said...

You are the bomb. Thank you!

gniz said...

This post is dead-on.

Although I've had books hit the kindle bestseller lists, I certainly haven't hit the NY Times Bestseller list.

And yet, because of the volume of work I've put up and how well the books sell on average (in total), I've made enough to actually have a very good living at this epub thing.

Meanwhile there's no buzz about Aaron Niz and his work, I'm not on Good Morning America. How many other writers are there like me out there, quietly making a really good living at this game and flying under the radar?

I suspect quite a lot, and more to come.

Jon Olson said...

Forever? Hm. Is Amazon forever? Borders probably it was forever, too.

Jon O.
The Petoskey Stone

Wayne McDonald said...

Who cares if Amazon is forever? There will be other digital bookstores if it closes and with copywrite law protecting you for so long any book you write in your 20's can bring in income until your 100.

Cyn Bagley said...

Thanks for the sweet sound of attaboys and attagirls.

;-)

Yours, Cyn

LK Watts said...

Brilliant!!! After just passing the number that triples my target for the whole of the year in 9 months, this was right up my street. Thanks Joe :)

David L. Shutter said...

Nice post, Joe. I always find it humorous when someone says, "Hey, my book is a best-seller! It's #3 on the fiction>genre fiction>mystery>detective>hard-boiled>amazing dog sleuths category!" WTH? Exactly how many books are there about amazing dog sleuths anyway?

LMAO, That was great!

K.Ford K. said...

Great blog! Couldn't agree more. Thanks for saying what we all need to hear! K. Ford K. http://kfordk.com/

OccupyMyDream said...

Your post is terrific. Right to the point. Thanks, Joe!

Amanda said...

Love reading your blogs and am happy that your hiatus didn't last long. I am very new, but I love self publishing(for a many reasons)! I love being reminded that for every book I sell it's more money than I had before - for doing something I love, one more reader who will lead to more. And the best part is it's 100% me! Love it or hate, I did it and I'm proud of it. Thanks for having this blog site!

Merrill Heath said...

I love being reminded that for every book I sell it's more money than I had before - for doing something I love, one more reader who will lead to more. And the best part is it's 100% me! Love it or hate, I did it and I'm proud of it.

That's a great attitude, Amanda. That's what it's all about.

Merrill Heath

S.E. Gordon said...

Hey Joe. I now have the #1 free children's book on Amazon (#7 overall). Thanks again for the inspiration!

Scott

Stephen T. Harper said...

A good post to take the opportunity to say thanks again, Joe, for all the info and advice. My book went on sale in October (as a novel - I experimented with a serial style for 8 months prior - not recommended). The book had a high production cost which was covered by Christmas. I'm in the black now and have already made enough for... oh, let's say car payments for the foreseeable future.

I write many things for my living. Some enjoyable, some a task. But I've never been happier than now, with the sudden ability to do exactly what I want, say exactly what I want to say, and be able to find an audience for it without middlemen. Amazing, amazing time to be a writer.

I'd also like to point out that, once you write the book and release the documentary on your diet, you will have also figured out a way to make money off of drinking beer. Just saying'... Wow, man.

Jill James said...

I so needed to hear this right now. I don't need to be a bestseller, I just need to know my words are getting out into the world. Thanks to self-publishing, they are.

Kay Bratt said...

My husband and I talk over all my publishing decisions, numbers, stats, rankings...and I always argue my point with "And JA Konrath says..."

So can you make up some of those daily desk calendars with inspirational saying on them for us Indie authors who just need a little Konrath tidbit to start our day? And I'll tell you what... I'll just take 5% for giving you the idea. ;0)

Coral Russell said...

You are awesome! I've been talking to so many Indie writers who were told - I can't market this - yet I love their stories. It seems like we're returning to a time of folk art where it is by people for people and let it take on a life of its own. Thanks!!!

Paige Adams said...

Back in the 80s when I worked in book/magazine wholesale and distribution, there were tons of backlist titles that sold steadily year after year and ultimately sold far more copies than most so-called "bestsellers."

Many of these were genre titles that never appeared on any national bestseller list, but whose authors had steadily built up a loyal following - like Joe.

In my admittedly out-of-date experience, if you can write halfway entertaining mysteries, thrillers, actioners, gun porn, or science fiction, you'll eventually see results. The fans of these genres are voracious readers, always looking for their next fix.

Hiroko said...

It looks like the traditional industry - and the media that follows it - are showcasing publishing to be about money. For many of us, it isn't about money (or money alone, anyway)...It's about writing. And sharing.

S.E. Gordon said...

Hey Joe. This is off-topic, but my friend Nichole Chase just found her work being offered for sale on pirate site called eBookr. I found a number of my friends in there, along with you. We are currently discussing what to do about this, but I figured you should at least be aware of this. Or were you the one who was fine with piracy? I forget.

Anyways, here's the site. I'm sure some of your friends are in there as well:

http://www.ebookr.com/results/konrath

Nancy Beck said...

Smaller sales may not impress the legacy world, but who cares? They're bloated, unwieldy, antiquated, inefficient, and wasteful.

Love this and the entire post. :-)

I'm not there as yet - need to get more stories uploaded - but I'm not about to give up, not this soon.

I've only been self pubbing since July, so I've got a ways to go. :-)

Demon Daughter

Word verification: licks (except I don't write erotica ;-))

Joshua Simcox said...

@ Jon Olsen:

Well, I would argue that Amazon isn't making the kind of mistakes that Borders made prior to their dissolution. I saw firsthand how their process worked, and believe me, those folks never missed an opportunity to miss an opportunity.

When you also factor in their penchant for populating their stores with less-than-knowledable employees that treated bookselling no differently than they would've treated selling burgers and milkshakes, clearly Borders was doomed long
before the rise of digital publishing.

So, yes, I would bet on Amazon being with us for the long haul. They give millions of consumers what they want, quickly and affordably--sadly, Borders rarely did the same.

(And don't get me wrong. I know that plenty of smart, helpful, passionate book lovers were employed by Borders. I was just never fortunate enough to meet one.)

Stephanie Void said...

Thank you! That post helped so much.

Nancy Beck said...

I will not be joining the authors who announce "I sold ___ number of books last month" because I prefer to talk about my work itself, not how many people have bought it. Nor will I ever ask people outright to buy my book because I feel that's undignified, and all professions should have dignity.

@bettye griffin - I love your attitude. :-) You must not go on Kindleboards very much (or at all). ;-)

Demon Daughter

Nancy Beck said...

Just downloaded ORIGIN. I'm not really into thrillers, but this sounds kind of intriguing...

Jude Hardin said...

my friend Nichole Chase just found her work being offered for sale on pirate site called eBookr.

I just now went and looked at the site, and they're actually selling subscriptions for unlimited ebook downloads. Like Netflix for ebooks.

They're stealing books and selling them for profit.

Surely you have a problem with that, huh Joe?

Jenn Sterling said...

this post is fucking rad. i love it. i offered my book for free for 1 day and got over 16,000 downloads. that blew my mind. and since then, i've sold more copies of my book than i EVER had before. hell, i think i sold more copies in one day, then i had in 5 months combined. i FEEL good! :)

Joe Konrath said...

Surely you have a problem with that, huh Joe?

You can't stop piracy. Any ebook lover will eventually be on Amazon, and it's easier to get my ebooks for $2.99 than to pay for a subscription to a pirate site and then manually upload to their Kindle. I can't imaging losing any income to a place like that.

S.E. Gordon said...

@Jenn - You should have run it for a few more days. You would have hit #1. My best day was yesterday with 10,500 giveaways, propelling me to #5 overall.

Anonymous said...

Even bestseller fame won't keep you in the gatekeepers' good graces forever. To with, even if slightly OT : some studio execs wouldn't even LOOK at George Lucas' new movie. Link's here, copy-and-paste only, sorry : http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/22/magazine/george-lucas-red-tails.html?WT.mc_id=GN-D-I-NYT-MOD-MOD-M237-ROS-0112-HDR&WT.mc_ev=click&WT.mc_c=178238

If THE movie bestseller man get treated that way, then he (and we) are lucky he can't afford to go indie - as he has ;-)

Anonymous said...

That shoulda been "CAN go indie" above, sorry again. Gotta start supplementing my caffeine with sleep ;-)

Renee Mimms said...

"Taking your career into your own hands, giving it your best shot, striving to do better..."

I will be putting this on a post-it and taping it to my desk.

Margot Justes said...

Fantastic post-I'm learning from the best-thank you, Joe.
Margot Justes
www.mjustes.com
Hearts & Daggers

Christina Garner said...

Downloaded your book. (Btw, not the first one I've gotten!)

Thanks so much for the post. A nice pep talk at the right time. The two books I've been working on for the past six months will be up this spring (sequels to a previously self-published book) and after that I'm turning an old script into a novel. Very excited for this year!

David L. Shutter said...

Before you read this post, I'm asking you to assist me in an experiment I'm doing

Ugh...this is about the umpteenth "experiment" in the last two weeks for free books after I already bought them.

Ah well, tip your bartenders and support your authors folks.

Experiment results should be interesting. Hmm, I wonder if it will have something to do with "bestseller" generation.

Good times

Writing Trip

Kiana Davenport said...

OK, Origin downloaded though I had already bought and thoroughly enjoyed it. And several of your other books. BY THE WAY Joe, we DO read you.

Interested to hear results of your experiment which I think has something to do with the KDP KOLL program.
Onwards!

GreatNovus said...

Thanks for the post J-Kon, i really got to get my ass in gear writing wise. Also I got Origin off your old website as a pdf a LONG time ago and it was my favorite book. I recently got a Kindle and got Origin again in its Kindle form back when you had a bunch of your title up for free a few weeks ago. Have yet to reread it because I've been reading the Crouch Books that were also up for free download. It might be a while but I'll eventually get around to buying the backlog of the Jack Daniels series so I can see how you and Crouch did Stirred.

Merrill Heath said...

OK, Joe. I downloaded Origin. I see it's now at #47 on the free list.

Speaking of bestsellers, what kind of numbers are we talking about if you hit the Kindle top 100? How many sales per day if you're in the top 25, top 50, and top 100?

Merrill Heath

Matthew W. Grant said...

Joe,

I already have ORIGIN, but I downloaded it today to help with your experiment. Let us know the results.

Matthew

Ramon Terrell said...

I must chime in with everyone else and say thank you for posting this. :)

James H. Byrd said...

Thanks for the post, Joe. I grabbed Origin and look forward to reading it.

I just uploaded my first fiction book to LSI today, and I'll be doing the Kindle conversion over the weekend. I have no illusions about becoming a bestselling author. I just hope I find some readers who enjoy the story and want more.

Jude Hardin said...

I read Origin a few years ago, when you were looking for feedback before submitting it a second time to Big 6 publishers. Kindles didn't even exist back then, and we thought self-publishing was a joke. :)

But I downloaded it to my Kindle today. Looking forward to seeing the nature of the experiment, and of course the results.

I can't imaging losing any income to a place like that.

I don't know. I guess it depends on how prevalent sites like that become, and how well known. I could see where some Amazon Prime customers, for example, could be lured to a site that offered more downloads for less money.

Word verification: hatingly

First person to use it in a sentence wins a free copy of FIRE AND ICE.

Dawn Wilson said...

I think this is your best post yet, Joe.
And BTW, why, why, why, to some folks think it's wrong to make a living by writing? Like you have to freakin' suffer by for your art by living on nothing but beer (oh, wait...)
I mean...make a living by writing popular, yet high quality fiction...hmmm...didn't SHAKESPEARE do that?
BTW, Thanks for Origin. I just got it.
Sweet! I've been wanting to pick up Origin. I was raised Baptist, so of course, the devil thing really scares the bejeepers out of me.

Thanks Joe. I'm starting to see some really cool sales. I owe a lot of inspiration to you. Seriously. You have done us all a great sevice. Pick up my book for free on Sunday (Ten Thousand New Year's Eves) and have a brewski.

Anjasa said...

Thank you for this post, it was really well done. Honestly, over the past few years, I've written so much for free, and I'm just now venturing into ebooks. If I can make any money off it, I'll be ecstatic, because I love writing. I enjoy it. If I can make money of something I enjoy doing?

Sign me up!

Mari Stroud said...

Thanks for posting this. I might be measuring my royalties in tanks of gas at the moment, but that's still more money than I've ever made off my writing before, to say nothing of the awesome community of fellow writers and book bloggers.

Stella Baker said...

OK, downloaded...curious about the experiment. Does it involve test tubes and Bunsen burners and all the stuff I was lousy with when I was in high school?

Matthew W. Grant said...

Jude,

I accept your challenge!

Hatingly - adverb - in a hateful manner

She looked hatingly at her husband's lover.

"Who invented the Kindle and KDP?" the legacy publishing CEO screamed hatingly at his buxom secretary.

"And your little dog, too" the witch cackled hatingly.

Matthew

Jude Hardin said...

LOL Matthew. Your copy is on its way.

Robert Piluso said...

Wonderful, galvanizing, challenging piece! I love the presentation of pragmatics vs. Philosophy of art. To and for me, prose is a near-sacred domain of ideas and psychology, a challenging inter-relation between reader and author (Easton Ellis, Wallace, Kerouac). I like to leave the genre entertainment/escapism/commerce to the movies.

Matthew W. Grant said...

"Thanks, Jude. I look forward to checking it out!" he said UNhatingly. :)

Charmaine said...

Joe, am I sad or what, but your post brought tears to my eyes! This is the best article you have written on why indies do what they do--to be read by somebody--whether it's one person or a million. Thanks for shining a light on what really matters.

J S said...

Isn't it wonderful how the best method the Traditional Publishers have for marketing is NYT Bestsellers list promotion?

Look at book jackets and see how many traditional publishers proclaim, often in larger fonts than the author's name, the NYT sales metric. Once you begin to look you see it a lot. Or if an author got it once, how often the tag line follows their other books.

It's because readers don't have a way to measure an unknown book they are considering. And a Lemmings party always seems so exciting.

Brianna Merrill said...

I have worked pretty hard on my books all the while balancing being a mother of 5 small children and this post made me feel so much better about myself and the "success" of my books. In 2011 I made over $5,000 which does not sound like much but it's 5k more than I had before and it paid for a fun trip for my family of 7. The best part is I have many more years to look forward to. This forever shelf life thing is awesome. Thank you Joe for always keeping things in perspective, so many of us would be lost without you! Oh, and good luck on the diet, you can do it!

Diane said...

And here's why I visit this blog every freakin' day. I need my pep talk fix. A big thanks to you, Joe, for all your good energy! Next week is my last week working a regular job. Been with the same company for 10 years, but I'm done. Gonna write me some more ebooks.

The Tattooed Writer said...

Great post! I am nowhere near bestseller status yet I make as much from my ebooks now as I do from my day job.

For me, that is success.

It's a fun and wild ride!

SphinxnihpS of Aker-Ruti said...

My question is to get the first sale is promotion important? I'm in this boat. I put up a novelette. I don't think the writing is bad--it was a place that had been previously accepted elsewhere but I had to withdraw--and the cover while not wonderful isn't awful. Same with the description. And the pricing isn't bad. And I did some modest promotion on my blog and twitter. Still months later, nothing.

I've decided now to work on two novels I want to get up before spring. Once I have a sizable stable--maybe about 5+ novels, then I can work on getting that first sale. Until then, I'll write.

Jodi

Staci Greason said...
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Staci Greason said...

If you're focused on book sales, you're cheating your creativity, your self, out of a good day of writing. Good lasting art and sales are not always equal. I yearn for readers as much as the next writer but I find it almost impossible to start my next work if I'm focused on the outcome. To me, it's a trap. And the writer must be careful to step his/her ego around it.

Casper Bogart said...

@Brianna M: $5000 is what your advance might be as a brand new author with a legacy house.

You're doing great! PLUS, you control the rights, so your books will keep generating money for you in perpetuity throughout the Universe...

MarCarring said...

Thank you for your incisive post.

Rene Mullen said...

So well put!

Prepping to submit my first novel THIS WEEK, it's refreshing to hear such positive encouragement. If I only get this one book published, I'd be happy as a scratch and sniff smiley face sticker.

Athena said...

Well said! This was perfect timing for some the internal issues I’ve been struggling with myself. Thank you for all your work and generous advice. Your post gave me the last push I needed to redefine my own goals and decide for myself what constitutes success.
Toodles,
Athena

Aleister Finch said...

Right on.

I just really started sinking my teeth into this. My January royalty check will pay my internet, gas, and heat. That's good enough for me, and better than I ever would have had if I didn't get my stuff out there.

Suz Korb said...

Thanks for this. Every time I feel down about my writing, you always blog post just in time. I don't know what I'd do if you ever stopped blogging.

TeriB said...

Sphinxnips: you've damned your own novel with faint praise. The cover isn't bad, the price isn't bad, the writing isn't bad.
Speaking purely as a reader, I'm not hoping for 'not bad' when I pay for a book. I like looking for self-published, low-on-the-list authors to support. However, I'm going to choose books by authors who are clearly taking a professional attitude by providing a good price, good cover, and a well-written blurb.
Amazon makes it pretty hard to search the low end, scrolling forward only one page at a time, with no option of sorting the least popular first. Since there are thousands of books in most of the genres, the titles at the back end are not going to get seen by the casual browser who is having a look-see. They have to be looking for either book or author, or something closely related, specifically. So promotion is important.

I gave Amazon shit today because I can't search more that one page in advance and it makes it so time-consuming and frustrating to get to the middle, much less the bottom, of the list. I'm certain more authors would have an increase in sales if they changed their search function.

Jude Hardin said...

Question: how are hundreds of people finding my book when it's listed for free, with little or no promo on my part? Even people in the UK, Germany, and France. Is there a page you can go to that lists all the free ebooks?

Amanda Taylor said...

This is a really great post. Indie authors including the fledglings (like me) need to keep this in mind. It's about connecting with readers anyway.

Sybil Nelson said...

What an inspiration post! I have been totally looking at this the wrong way. I was actually depressed because I only sold 8300 books last year. That's crazy. I should be ecstatic that I have been able to pay my mortgage from my writing for the past few months. Especially after being strung along by NY for two years! I am a success! Screw them!

Walter Knight said...

Midlist authors are placing at least one book on KDP Select. I joined the rush, and did it too (one book).

The question is do I go all in KDP with all my books. I am in an arguement about that now.

Mark Edward Hall said...

Thanks for this post, Joe. I'm a horror writer with three legacy published novels. Recently I've listed several independent novellas and a bunch of short stories. They're all doing okay. Not great but okay. A week ago I listed a little novelette that I wrote nearly fifteen years ago entitled 'The Hero of Elm Street' as a free download for five days. This story is not a horror story. It's a light little ghost story about love, loss and the power of hope. Not generally my style but I thought I'd give it a shot. Originally it was turned down by Yankee and pretty much every other literary magazine in the business. I'd pretty much given up on it until I decided to give it a try on KDP select. 250 copies were downloaded in the first three days of the promo and I thought, well, that's that. Then something amazing happened. Within the next twenty-four hours it exploded as more than ten thousand copies were downloaded. After the promo ended it continued to sell at an alarming rate. And some of my other titles started taking off. I don't know what happened. I didn't do anything different with this story. It's a mystery to me, but a good mystery. I wish to thank you, Joe, for all the eye opening posts. Without you this little piece of magic would probably never have happened.

Lisa Follett said...

I published my debut novel four weeks ago. I have already sold over 100 copies (not to family and friends). I feel successful. I finished writing and editing a book (success). I published a book (success). I sold a book (success). Readers have read my book (success), and enjoyed it (according to my first Amazon review -success). How many people in this world dream of writing a book, but they never make it happen? How many writers in this world dream of publishing a book, but die with their manuscript tucked away in a drawer or on a computer file? Success comes in all shapes and sizes.

❀Lisa
Lisa Follett

J. R. Tomlin said...

John Barlow said...
And there's none of that 'the editor hasn't mailed, so my numbers must be awful. And now I daren't ring her.' God that was a pile of demeaning shit.

John, let's face it. Almost the entire process was a pile of demeaning shit. One of the things I'm thankful for every day is that I never have to do any of it again.

Christiana said...

I agree with you, Joe. That is what's freaking awesome about the entire indy movement. Not only has it allowed writers to have direct access to their readers, it's also been an economic bonus for many writers.

Before the indy movement, so many writers were wasting years of their lives, knocking on legacy publishing doors and hoping someone would deign to read their work. Being thankful for whatever snarky crumb of advice they got from the gatekeepers. Only to find out, when they finally got a deal, they still couldn't afford to quit their day jobs.

Now, they can spend that time much more productively, writing, publishing and connecting with readers. And, along the way, they're making the royalties they should have been making all along. Whether they're selling a 100,000 or making gas money.

I've seen so many writers who have found a new purpose in life, simply because they are now in control of their own writing careers. It's a wonderful thing.

David L. Shutter said...

Before the indy movement, so many writers were wasting years of their lives, knocking on legacy publishing doors and hoping someone would deign to read their work

Amen

I just read a Writers Digest blog post, an eight agent roundtable.

Half the discussion was: "I won't read this, I don't like that, I don't care for that other thing either...etc, etc." The whole time I'm thinking: Well, what the hell do you know?

B.V. Larson is another great example along this discussion, heavily rejected by agents and editors and now a top selling Sci-Fi independent.

J. R. Tomlin said...

Merrill Heath said...
I always find it humorous when someone says, "Hey, my book is a best-seller! It's #3 on the fiction>genre fiction>mystery>detective>hard-boiled>amazing dog sleuths category!" WTH? Exactly how many books are there about amazing dog sleuths anyway?

You totally miss the point, Merrill. It doesn't matter how many books there are about amazing dog sleuths. Who cares?

If Amazon has such a category then there are readers looking for those stories. That does matter and so does the fact that if my amazing dog sleuths novel is there (or my historical novel or my Men's Adventure novel or my War & Military novel to bring some reality instead of insults to the discussion) then that means those readers can FIND my novel.

Visibility. Discoverability. Those things very much matter.

Leonard D. Hilley II said...

Another great post! Thanks for the inspiration.

Thea Atkinson said...

As Dr. Suess once said, "I like the thinks you think."

especially: "Fuck the bestsellers."

Booyah

WDGagliani said...

Joe,

Sorry for the slight OT, but I wanted to say great job on your story in the new Cemetery Dance! In fact, it's cool we're both in the magazine this month, albeit your contribution is fiction and mine is a long review of a Graham Masterton novel. Great to be on the same ToC with you again.

Congrats on the success, btw. I made my novel Savage Nights a KDP Select freebie this weekend and it was downloaded (so far) almost 4 times as many times as it was purchased since April 2010. And the weekend ends at midnight.

Excellent advice coming from you, as always!

Bill

wannabuy said...

"The real story is about the midlist, and how many writers can get paid."

The real story is that because mid-list authors make enough to justify their writing time we readers now have enough choice to "pull" is back to reading.

Survey after survey show readers read more as e-readers than print readers. I don't believe it is all the devices...

@Todd:"Actually read the books on the NYT Bestseller List."
Oh, making people read those would just be mean...

I'm about to go on a trip. I'll load my Kindle. The chance of a NYT bestseller making it onto my Kindle? Zero.
Neil

wannabuy said...
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CMSmith said...

Thank you.

Yuwanda Black said...

Bestsellers? Fuck bestsellers.

Should have been the title of this post. Sums it up brilllantly.

Thanks for the reminder Joe (ie, if you're putting food on the table from your writing, you're a success as a writer). :-)

Merrill Heath said...

J.R. Tomlin said: You totally miss the point, Merrill. It doesn't matter how many books there are about amazing dog sleuths. Who cares?

No, J.R., I got the point. I was just saying that if you're a "best seller" in a category that has 5 books, and you still haven't sold enough copies to buy a happy meal at McDonald's, then it's silly to boast about having a best seller.

Merrill Heath

J. R. Tomlin said...

@Merrill Heath Bragging about being on a best seller list is always silly. I've been on half a dozen Amazon best seller lists. Heck, I'm on a couple of Amazon best seller lists right now. Who cares? I'm sure you don't. Frankly, I don't. EXCEPT for it helping readers find me.

The lists Im on aren't the biggest on Amazon. Again, I don't care. They are the ones that help readers who are find my novels find my novels.

So what if most people don't write historical novels? That doesn't matter, because I assure you there are people out there who buy them. I couldn't care less about "bragging rights". I care about sales.

Norm Cowie said...

I don't want to sell a million books. I want to sell one book for a million bucks.

http://www.normcowie.com

Chrissy said...

It's about the marathon, not the sprint. This reminds me of early, and terribly flawed, feminism.

The idea is not to do what men do. The idea is to have equal footing and do our best. That our best may be better because it's a fresh perspective is a victory, but not if or because it "beat" a male paradigm.

It's hot house publishing-- cultivated in a protected, but unnatural environment. I'll take my wind-sown meadow, thanks.

C. R. Reaves said...

Personally, I wish I were prolific enough to write a million books.

If I were that prolific, I wouldn't have to spend ages pinning my hopes on selling one book for a million - I'd be able to share all the stories in my head and heart and reach a wider array of people and probably make far more off my million books than off of the one "big" one you hope for, Mr. Cowie. :)

Glynn James said...

This is so true. My books sales added up to $700 for December. That's some serious money.

Christopher Hudson said...

If putting food on the table with writing is the criterion for a successful author ... that could be me, as long as there is only a family of squirrels sitting at the table.

Ursula said...

Great post!

This month, someone in France bought my book. A ton of someones in US did too. I had a very successfull promotion through KDP select. Few more likes. And a few decent months of royalties, certainly enough to cover the trips to the bar during football season.

Where would it be with legacy? Hmmm. No where.

Where is it now? Everywhere Amazon sells - that's monster territory.

Where isn't it? NYT Bestseller.

And here's me not caring, because as you so well stated, the old bloated model doesn't apply to a different, new and revolutionary market model. Am I at 100K in a handfull of days? Nope. Not yet. But it's always possible, and before, with the old model, well, was never even probable.

Nely said...

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!!! What a difference you have made in the writing world. I love it! :o)

Kelly DeWitt said...

"Bestseller" is in the mind of the beholder... We sold a few copies of Raven c.s. McCracken's MERLIN'S KNOT when the France market of Kindle opened up, and it shot us to the top of the Amazon.com Contemporary Fantasy category for few days in that country because there was almost no competition at that point. (Now it would take a bit more than that to do it again, that's for sure.) Still - we did hit "international bestseller" status, and that will always be true for that one title, even if we never hit that level again. (I have high hopes to hit it at least a few more times, though. ;)

Leah Miller said...

I've been floundering for a while. Have been stuck with this notion that I'll never be a "real" author if I don't have an agent and a publisher. After reading this post, finally I see the light. Thank you. Rock on, Mr. Konrath. That is all.

Elena DeRosa said...

I didn't enter ABNA because a publishing contract from Penguin no longer appeals to me. Right now it's not about the money, it's about the freedom...the money will come later.

Gavin Bell said...

um... can someone explain to me what "legacy publishing" actually means? I mean I've worked out from the context that it obviously refers to the traditional 'major labels', but... I don't understand the term.

cidney swanson said...

Gavin Bell, see this link http://www.barryeisler.com/ebooks.php#monkey (scroll to bottom of page) for a very thorough discussion of "legacy" publishing between Barry Eisler and Joe Konrath. A good place to start. HTH.

John Daulton said...

You are doing real good in the real world for real people with your blog. Cheers to you.

rob walker said...

Great points all, Joe. I have you to thank along with my own damn stubborn tenacious self to now call myself a success. Great post. plan to share it on my FB wall and Twitter.

Rob Walker
"What Mioves Kindle Bks. off the Shelf" = kdp Community thread

HeartBrokenPost+LovelornPost Paranormal Romance Series said...

Thanks for posting this! I really need to hear this

A.R. Wise said...

Here is a Facebook discussion that everyone should check out. Lots of great talk about the validity of self publishing. http://www.facebook.com/stephanie.starr3/posts/10150503274696451?notif_t=like

kathleenshoop said...

It's such an exciting time for self-publishing. I am thrilled to be in that group that is selling books every day, making money, even if I'm not in the kindle top 100. It was a thrill to be there for 3 weeks this year and it's a thrill to still be on some category bestselling lists (or maybe I'm off...I have't looked in a while).

But more than anything, it's knowing that I have distribution, that I can put my work out there that gives me a sense of contentment. My next novel comes out soon and I'm excited all over again.

I just hope there continues to be shelf space that leaves room for every writer, self-pubbed or not. You are so right, being hung up on rankings/huge sales isn't helpful. Writing the next book and the next is where our energy should be.

I am forever amazed at the people who comment here that have found success in so many different ways and that's what matters--having access to readers, writing the best thing we can, and measuring success in ways that make sense for each of us.

Congrats to all here who have put their work into the world! And thanks to Joe and others for your support--indirect or otherwise.

kathleenshoop said...

"It's the diet..."
Go swimming--it burns a million calories and you have some wiggle room. Plus it tones your whole body. Sounds like a commercial, but it's true!

David L. Shutter said...

Haven't heard anything yet on the Origin "experiment" but I noticed that Origin punched into the top 100for a time, #62 in all fiction I saw it at, might have gotten higher. Sitting at #100 this second.

Am I guessing the experiemnt was "look how easy it can be to engineer a "bestseller" given the right conditions...hence...fuck bestsellers?"

Just thinking outloud.


Writing Trip

S.E. Gordon said...

Just cracked Amazon's Top 100, Joe! #99 overall, #91 Kindle E-books, #2 Children's Books and #6 Children's E-books. It was one year ago to the day that I read this blog for the first time and decided to dedicate myself to e-books. I owe you a beer (for your beer diet, no less).

Danielle Blanchard Benson said...

Konrath, the beer diet is making you smart to point of being a white Confucius man! Excellent post, will definitely buy Burners (already bought Origins but I paid for it... LOL) and as always, you dispense the gospel according to Konrath. I made a little over $800 in 2011 (not bad for a chick who released an unedited series with shitty covers back at the end of April). Most of my money was made in the second half of the year. Scratch that, I didn't make any the first part of the year.

I'm looking to doing so much better this year. By May, I should have an additional three more books on the market (all proofed and edited) and one of them is the sequel to my vampire saga which is doing well in a market that is dried up with tales of nosferatu.

I live for this blog and am so happy I read it today because I could definitely use a pick me up and this did just the trick. Better than a shot of Jack any day! Keep smiling, keep writing and keep making them Benjamins... you deserve it! ;-)

Coolkayaker1 said...

Kathryn Stockett would disagree with Joe, I feel.

jenniferlaurens said...

Amen. Hallelujah. Praises. Candy. Cake. Confetti. Let's hope some of the bloats in NYC are actually reading your posts.

smober said...

Success will be defined differently by each individual. Some aim for best-seller status and will be disappointed with anything less; others aim to just share their work and do what they love, regardless of popularity or income it provides.

When I sold 4 copies the first day my first novelette was available, I felt successful. I had taken a leap and shared my work with the world. I'm doing about 15 copies a day, over about two weeks that it's been available.

I define "being successful" as doing what you love and being happy.

Rosemary Fryth said...

@evilphilip said... Talk about every little bit helping!

Tell me about it! Our dog had to have surgery to have a (possibly cancerous) lump removed. Cost us $800. My first two Amazon KDP royalty checks will cover the majority of that vet bill.

Anonymous said...

Thank you. You'll never know how much I needed that encouragement today.

Michael E. Walston said...

I'm happy to see your blogging hiatus is over. I look forward to your posts. This one was definitely an inspiration. And the comments are always full of interesting ideas too--like, I could move to Thailand, write books about dog sleuths, and supportmyself in style while regularly making a best-seller list...

electricianmass said...
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Jeffrey N. Baker said...

Thank you. I've been having debates with a friend, who is very much in the Traditional Publishing camp. For him it equates to notoriety and prestige.

I'd rather be my own success, than place it in the hands of a publisher who could botch it all.

Mercy Walker said...

Thank you. I've been so close to giving up. But now, I'm just about to finish writing another novel, I'm going to start self publishing them. This post has given me hope.

Viv said...

It's too easy to get downcast when others are apparently doing better.
But the midlist is a funny place whether you are self-pubbed or with one of the Big Boys. Selling a thousand books is a big achievement there, and if you've done it all without a budget and a team of promoters, well all the better.Lit fic has never been a massive seller, but it still has a niche for those who read it or write it.
That was just the cheer I needed.
Viv

Anonymous said...

Very, very good.

As long as you have enough to live your life while doing what you like the most, who cares if you're not in the bestsellers list?

Where is that "Like" button?

:-)

C.A.

warren murphy said...

good work, joe. it's always reassuring to know that you are on the job. warren murphy

warren murphy said...

hooray, joe, hooray

Katlynne/Ms. Downlow said...

I love the Indie Publishing Revolution, and I love how open and supportive you are to your fellow Indie community members. I self pubbed for the first time in 2009, and I love the extra income. Thanks for taking the time to keep me plugging away at this side job. And thanks for personally responding when I wrote you a while ago when I was fresh on the scene writing naughty tales. You absolutely Rock, Joe!

David Lafferty said...

Thanks for the encouragement and perspective. You're the Bob Lefsetz of writing!

abdul j. said...

I've been thinking this for a while but hadnt seen anyone verbalise it until now. No more hoops. The system may be bloated but it's been democratised and that is an amazing thing worth marvelling over.