$37 to IAVA from “A Little Too Broken”! $5,020 and counting to veterans’ orgs!

Ebook sales were pretty sad in July for Tom and Jamie, but they did make about the same amount on the audiobook, so there’s that! As noted before, I am donating 1/2 of the audiobook royalties, but on a “deferred giving because I’m broke” plan. So far, that totals another $125 due to Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America or some other veterans’ organization, when I’m solvent. (I’ve been shorting Puppies Behind Bars lately, because the totals have been so small, and I know IAVA needs it for critical lobbying efforts, but they’re not forgotten.) All the same, $5,000+ donated so far since November 2013!

My BookBub for Given the Circumstances is tailing off, and it’s definitely not the big boost I’d hoped for. But, I did break even on the BookBub fee, and GTC: The Audiobook is now #12 in the Audible Gayrom bestseller list, and I always get some boost on my other titles as well, so there’s that. (And ALTB:TA still isn’t Whispersync’d, which fucks you on Audible rankings – see for yourself, I dare you to find more than a couple non-WS books on the gayrom bestseller list.)

I know that most people who sign up for these deals now are looking for freebies, but I’ve found that freebies suck. First off, unless it’s the first in a series, it doesn’t drive sales of any other titles. Second, science says that people who get books for free value them less, are less likely to actually read them, and don’t review them as often as they review something they paid for. I gave away thousands of copies of Werewolves of Brooklyn via BookBub, and it didn’t do bupkus for sales. And “visibility” ain’t what it used to be. The problem with being #1 on the Free chart is that the people who see you are…the people trolling the Free chart for freebies.

I’m really stoked for the end of August, to see what GTC:TA did in terms of $$ in July. Pulling a number out of my ass, I’m conservatively estimating around $300, given that I made $180 in the first five weeks of ALTB:TA, and while GTC was only out two weeks in July, I hammered the hell out of the promo where I didn’t do that on ALTB. And I have a blog tour set up in August for the GTC audiobook, which should keep sales up. The book is #12 in the Audible Gayrom bestseller list, which is great, esp. if you remove the mainstream titles (Middlesex, Here Comes the Sun, and Mislaid) – which makes it “top ten” in indie titles.

Oh. And if you rank them by customer ratings? I’m actually #3! Of course I have one two star on performance, but then, the #1 title in the list has two of those. Trolls gotta troll, man.

I tossed out chapter 10 of Apollo’s Curse:The Audiobook yesterday. We’ve had a lot of smoke in the air from California fires, and I sounded like Brenda Vaccaro. I just want to go go go on this and get it out there, but that’s typical me. Nothing I can do about the atmosphere. After that, it’s Would I Lie to You?

I haven’t written anything since pubbing Strength in Numbers in February, for lots of reasons. And now I’m busy as fuck between audio and paid editing gigs. So I really don’t know when I’ll write something again, but that’s okay. Right now my primary focus has to be on MONEY NOW. I can’t afford to spend four months on a novel that may or may not pay off (probably not).

I’ve heard people talking about how much they’re making on Amazon Short Reads, romance titles 25k words or less. That sounds like something doable within my other jobs. The only problem is…these “short reads” are all…in Kindle Unlimited.

And I could make more money if I was in KU, there’s no doubt. But. I can’t take the abuse. Which is really what it is, Amazon pulling the rug out from under us over and over, with no warning, no explanation. I can’t handle the psychic trauma of suddenly getting one of those “exciting changes” emails that mean I’ll be making 10% next month of what I was making this month, with two weeks’ notice to completely replan my finances.

That said…there was a mysterious addition to my May royalties just paid, hidden under a line that just said “Multi Month KU/KOLL Adjustment.” This WordPress theme won’t let me put more than one pic in a post, but here’s a link to a screen shot.

Word around town is that this is Amazon clawing back some money from KU scammers and redistributing it to the rest of us, or, writing off the scammer money paid out, and taking a loss paying us what we should have would have gotten. But, typical Amazon, radio silence on that. I wouldn’t have even looked at the report if the telegraph lines hadn’t buzzed about it… Even the good news comes from Amazon with no explanation, and that’s what kills me about working with them.

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