First of all, I wrote 130,987 words for the month, bringing me to 368,622 for the year.
I put up 39 blog posts, 80% of them on the Montana blog.
I filed to run for political office again this month.
The real kicker, however, was getting 750 books sales.
Yeah, that’s a lot!
Let’s dive right into that, and the other recent developments, in this 34th monthly report of mine.
An Explosion of eBook Sales
I mainly count Amazon, figuring my print book and D2D sales are icing on the cake.
This month I managed to get 670 sales on Amazon.
Typically, I count the month as good if I get 100 sales.
I got 159 sales on Colter’s Winter alone.
Colter’s Hell got 119 sales and Colter’s Revenge got 129.
On top of this I put out the final Colter book, Colter’s Escape. That got 24 sales for the month.
All told, I sold 610 of the Colter novels this month, 1,351 altogether since I published the first last April.
Now…are those sales sustainable, or is this just a flash in the pan?
I dunno. It’s hard to say, though for the past month I’ve been averaging about 20 sales a day.
- When my US sales totals passed $1,000 I wondered if that was the threshold and it it’d start to come down.
- I wondered the same when I hit $1,300 a few days later.
- Now that it’s hovering around $1,600 I’m still wondering.
Honestly, I think that is the plateau, I think it will start to level off and perhaps even come down.
But wow – what a fun and wild ride, huh!
The 7th volume of the Mountain Man series is called Fortin’s Furs and I have 28,706 words on it and 122 pages.
I expect to have this book on sale by the third or fourth week of April.
The main reason I’m able to get it out so quickly is not because I’m a fast writer, it’s because I’m going with fast eBook cover designers.
Yeah, I’m going to abandon the custom art approach that the first six books had.
I’m doing this for few reasons:
- First, it’s expensive. Custom art costs me between $100 and $150 for the image and then another $20 for the layout work. I can get a premade western cover for $25 to $50.
- Next, it takes too long. Custom artists typically take two to three weeks to do the sketch and then another week or so to get the image colored and in the size I need.
- Finally, it’s a hassle. Dealing with artists is just one more thing that takes away from my writing time.
At this point I’m going with Go On Write and James’s work.
I’ve been enjoying his services since 2013 and even have a few cover credits built up because of all the traffic he gets from my eBook cover artists article.
That’s why I’ll be going with these style covers for the next few volumes of the series:
That’ll be at least three books and I’ll pump them out one after another until June. At that point I’ll assess where I’m at and where I should go next.
Montana Book 6
Currently it’s 43,000 words and 190 pages. That might sound like a lot but it’s only about halfway there.
It’s a slow affair and goes in fits and starts.
Just six people have bought the fifth book in the series. In fact, here…take a look at my Montana history book sales:
As you can see, there’s no real money in Montana history books.
Despite that, I like to finish what I start. I also have a feeling that when the series is complete, the books will sell more.
Yeah, it’s all about getting the most recent history out there, the 80s and 90s and into the 2000s.
People just don’t know that much about this, and there’s nothing in book format.
I’ll fill that gaping hole, and I’ll fill it soon.
I hope to put out “Book 6” this year, probably around August or September.
Yep, 5 months from now. Stay tuned. As we get closer to that time you’ll hear a lot more.
Remember, I might get a shit-ton of sales but I won’t get the money for those sales until 60 days later, or at the end of May, maybe June on some of ‘em.
So I didn’t have that much money to ‘throw around.’
Despite that, I stuck to what’s evidently becoming a goal of giving $10 a week to charity.
This month I gave $10 to the following charities:
- National Council on Aging: 94% of donations go to the cause
- Prevent Child Abuse America: 96% of donations go to the cause
Yeah, just $20 this month.
I kind of feel bad about that. I probably could have given more and I should work on that.
Besides that I sent a letter off to the World Wildlife Fund encouraging them to get their fundraising expenses down from the 18.9% they currently are.
Since I was writing the letter I went ahead and suggested they get administrative expenses down from 6% as well.
Currently they give just 74.7% of donations to their cause. That just doesn’t sit well with me.
I sent a similar letter to OxFam America, telling them to get their 15% fundraising down and their 7.6% administrative costs as well.
I will not be giving to either of those charities until they do.
Something else I won’t be doing is giving much to charity this April…unless things turn around.
I was very lucky to get the rent paid and the power bill paid for April. That leaves me with $3.60 in the bank and $100 in my pocket.
Wow, hangin’ by a thread.
Sure makes you feel alive.
Looking Forward to April
- April 11: Finish writing Fortin’s Furs
- April 25: Publish Fortin’s Furs
- April 30: Finish They All Died
That last one is a short western novel I’m working on, a kind of abstract book that'll remind people of the film Memento in how it’s paced. I’ll discuss it more later.
I don’t have a lot else besides that. A big reason is because my wife is going to New York for a week starting tomorrow and I have to look after my 4-year-old alone.
Wow, that’s kinda scary.
It’ll cut down on my productivity so I’m leaving things open for now.
For the most part, know that Montana stories will continue.
Also, please remember that an easy way to support this site is by making your Amazon purchases from here. I get about 6% of each sale.
Thanks for reading!