Stealing Freedom is probably my most socially conscious project, and it’s nice to see feedback that indicates readers resonate with the themes I was trying to convey.
As always, I’m hopeful those of you who’ve read my work might consider taking a moment or two to post a rating and review on Goodreads, Amazon, Audible or all of the above. They really boost my morale, and they help with marketing and sales.
Whatever you do, I’m honored and grateful you’ve decided to give this wacky self-published author a chance.
Just a quick update. I’m currently enjoying the last week of our summer vacation. We’re with my wife’s side of the family this week at a beautiful farm rental. So we’re enjoying the view and each other’s company. Things will start getting back in their normal swing next week. I’ve been doing the marketing pass (which takes up quite a bit of time), so I haven’t gotten much writing done, but I expect to finish Discovered’s discovery draft relatively soon (only about seven chapters left to draft). So yeah, this isn’t really a post so much as an explanation of why there isn’t a post, but I figured I’d give you a bit of an update.
I figured now would be a good time to do another Marketing Journal.
I used to think marketing was a set and forget process that was instantaneous. You paid for an add; people saw it, and the money would start falling from the sky.
I was misguided.
Since September of 2020, I’ve been working to address that. You can review older posts to see the play-by-play, but the important part is I did indeed improve my sales, but my costs are still higher than those sales. So naturally I started working to balance them out.
In May of 2021, things got pretty dark. I sold three books that month. But there needs to be context, and there’s more to see.
While my sales were lower than they’d been in a long time, I’d reduced my cost, and that’s progress. In fact, my cost is steadily going down, and my sales are steadily going up. This is super encouraging because that was the plan going forward.
Sure, I want to have a great Average Cost of Sales now and earn money every month, but it’s not a sprint.
Also, May maybe wasn’t the great month for full sales, but it wasn’t without traction. You see, I had 957 pages read. Sure, some may scoff and say that’s only about $4, but it’s something. Then we hit June and July.
My cost went down even further for my June bill, and July posted a bill of less than $100!
As for sales, well, June brought me back to within my quote of 8 books a month (I actually sold 9), and I’ve sold 11 in July so far. If this trend holds, I’ve brought my cost down in half and regained my average sales per month from before I started working to bring those excessively high cost per click key words.
I had 1,320 pages read in June and 3,291 pages read in July.
This is encouraging to say the least, and it indicates that the plan is working. The trick is to keep moving forward and not get impatient. I won’t be ready to reset my quota for another month (I always get a three month average), and there’s still about 10 days in July, so I might have a few more sales! (You know you can help with that part, right?)
It’s still my dream for this series to become the “How I Became Profitable” series as opposed to the, “This is what I’m trying,” but that’s all time, patience and (of course) God’s will. Next year, we plan to go back to conventions, and hopefully that will have a positive impact as well.
I’m going to keep working, and I appreciate you all stopping by to see how things are going.
I know it’s been a few weeks. As my vacation got more fun, I decided to take it easy more and more. Of course I’m motivated to get back at it, and I’m happy to be sharing with you all again, but it was nice being with family and focusing on that for a bit.
Not only is it good to be back, but I was happy to see a new review for Bob Drifter, and that means I have the honor of sharing that with you now. You can read that review here.
Discovered is coming along pretty well. I’m about six or so chapters from being done. I’ll have some things to clean up in this draft, but I’m confident that this first pass is laying all the necessary groundwork for a great finish to the Oneiros Log.
It’s been an amazing week so far. It’s been a while since I shared some fun and happy personal life stuff on the blog, and given that I’m really not in the mood to think too much as I type this, I figured we’d just talk a bit about how things are going.
As for writing, I was pretty sure (and correct) that I wouldn’t get much writing done this week. We had a ton of activities planned and so much going on. I didn’t want to try and shoe horn in a lot of writing stuff. The discovery draft of Discovered is indeed about six chapters from being done (though that’s a lot of words given all the stuff that the outline demands). I don’t think I’ll get super writing time in, but I do expect to get my usual thousand words in from here on out.
This week I visited my brother and sister and their two wonderful daughters. We went to the Midway Museum, Belmont Park, and the San Diego Zoo. We also got the rent a pool for an afternoon. Honestly, every second of it was awesome. I got some quality time with my brother and sister (they’re married you see). It had been some years since I saw either of my nieces, and I’m so glad we started at this end of the line of families.
This sort of became the activities portion of the vacation. It’s not that we don’t have a few plans at the other locations we plan to visit, it’s just most of the rest of the trip is reserved for relaxation and time with families. But while we were in San Diego with a pair of activity-driven women (my wife and sister), we tried to do everything San Diego offers, and I sort of think we did.
After I get a few hours of sleep, it’s all about the drive to my old stomping grounds.
Today marks the official end of May’s Book Cover competition. June is still ongoing, but the voting for May’s winner-take-all poll ended Friday, and that means I get to announce a new winner! The 2021 M.L.S. Weech Book Cover of May is …
Betrayed by me! This is the first time one of my covers has ever actually won Book Cover of the Month! I really think this is one of my stronger covers. Carlos really outdid himself. The stats still aren’t flattering at all, but I won fair and square (100 percent of three votes). I still need your help to get this contest going the way it was before I took that break. The more votes the competition gets, the more legitimized it is. I’ve always been a fan of book covers, and I truly want this award to become meaningful, but I need your help to do that. Please take moment to vote when you see the new poll come up. Please share it with readers you know. Just taking the time to do that will go a long way.
That means Betrayed has found its place in the 2021 Book Cover of the Year poll, which will begin in another 10 months.
That’s not the only other winner to announce! The 2021 June Book Cover of the Week polls have been going on for two weeks now, and I have have the pleasure of announcing the winner for week two.
I’d be grateful if you would be so kind as to watch my channel, where I talk about all seven of the covers and why I think they were so cool.
Remember to vote for your favorite through the link I provided above! This means that A Clash of Fates is the second book to make it in the finals for the 2021 June Book Cover of the Month! You guys can choose who wins the title and then support your favorite in the yearly competition (obviously next year)! I hope you’ll participate.
I don’t care how “big” I get (not claiming to be big now); I’m always going to love sharing reviews. The five-star review below from Shawna is for The Power of Words.
I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.
These short stories were a great collection. I love having short stories by different authors in one book. It always seems to shake things up a little bit.
These stories really spoke to me and I loved every second of them. Usually, I can’t really connect too well with shorter stories but these ones all had me hooked from the moment I hit play. Very well done!
I truly appreciate the thoughtful words.
As always, please allow me this opportunity to ask that if you’ve read any of my books (especially Betrayed), please be kind enough to leave a rating and review on Amazon, Goodreads, or Audible (or all three). They really do help.
If you are wondering about the audio version, I honestly have to save up a lot of money for it. You see, I want to be able to pay the narrators up front. I hope to bring both Shawn Compton and Jennifer Wooster back. That depends on a whole lot, but the money is the first part. To help, I’d sure appreciate it if you headed over to Amazon and bought Betrayed or any (or all) of my titles. If you’ve done that, maybe recommend it to your friends?
I still have a goal to sell 189 copies. Why? Well, if I sell that many, I hit #1 in my category. I have more than 1,000 followers here, so that means I only need about 20% of you (less than that actually) to help a friendly neighborhood self-published author out. Would you be so kind?
I’m already hard at work and more than 71% through the discovery draft of Discovered, the final book in the Oneiros Log. So far, I’m very pleased with how it’s coming out. I’m sure there are a few rough patches because of how often I had to stop to get Betrayed out, but that won’t be an issue now that I’m not freaking out over having readers wait years for a book. I’ll always be grateful to you all for your patience.
The print book isn’t far behind. It’s way easier for me to get an ebook out than a print version, but I’ll work on that over the next few days. I’ll have to format it. Then I’ll need to have a proof sent to make sure it looks good. Once that’s done, the print version will be out.
For now though, I hope you’ll consider giving Betrayed a chance. If you liked Caught, I honestly think you’ll love Betrayed!