Skip to main content

Promoting Fiction: Sales Vs. Exposure (An Anecdote)

When I released my short story Universal Warrior: The Ring of Asarra late last year, I had modest ambitions. I only wanted to sell a certain amount of copies. Day one sales weren't what I was hoping for, so I adjusted the price and sales blossomed. I steadily sell about one copy per day.

So yesterday, I was checking my Amazon Sales Dashboard and the numbers weren't adding up. A fellow writer warned me that something like this might happen, but there's nothing that can prepare for the idea of being ripped off.

So I call in my girlfriend, who's far better at math than I am. After going over the dashboard, she shrugs and says something that resonates;

"Who cares? This is your first book. It was never going to make you rich or even much money at all. Right now, we want people reading your story. It doesn't matter how they're getting it. Every person that reads it and enjoys it spreads your name. That's what we want right now. Free marketing."

She then promptly dropped the mic and left the room.

It got me thinking; the Ring of Asarra is my first work for the paid market in my own name. Its exceeded sales goals and continues to sell. Amazon made it a recommended read and I have two positive reviews.

My experiences with the Ring of Asarra reinforce the truth about first-time authors. Chances are you won't make it big on your first title, or even your fifth. The idea is to build something that people will love and then continue building to keep them hooked.

Walk before you run.
Hard, hard work before exposure and then hopefully sales.

We all have a long road ahead.

Thanks for reading.

Universal Warrior: The Ring of Asarra is a short story available for $1.79 at the following links;


Barnes & Noble



Sign up for the newsletter and never miss another post. Get updates about my writing and learn how to promote your own fiction. Send me an email to atingle at aktinout dot com and I promise to never spam you or sell your info.


Lee Capp said…
Sometimes I have 'spicions myself Avery. It is amazing to me that my two novels can sell so well on Nook (Barnes and Noble) and virtually nothing on Kindle (Amazon). Amazon also tells me that no one (no one!) has clicked on an Amazon link on my website, although they seem to be clicking constantly on the Google ads right next to them. One wonders.

Popular posts from this blog

The Long Road Home

I will end you tonight. No, wait. That's not where the story starts. The story starts two and a half years before this, when Michelle (referred to as Michelle for legal reasons because SATAN was too heavily trademarked) reached out to me by Facebook. She mentioned that we played the same Facebook game and she wanted to say hi. I had never, in fact, even heard of the Facebook game. But I was freshly broken out of a relationship and she was pretty with a good body so I said "Hurr, okay." Conversation ensues. She tells me we came up in the same place. We did not come up in the same place. We spent one night in San Francisco talking. But I really wanted to sleep with her. So, "Hurr, okay." Fast forward a few months. I've left Missouri for the beautiful Pacific Northwest. I've settled into the ass end of Lynnwood, a suburb of Seattle. The apartment was so bad that the landlord wrote the mold on the wall off as "crayon coloring

America: A True Story About Hatred and Unity

I wanted fast food tonight. That was all. I found myself at Burger King to pick up my wife's order. I was a few cars deep when I spotted the Confederate flag. I surreptitiously snapped a few photos. This was going to be a very different story. When I pull out of Burger King, it turns out there's more than one. In fact, there are four trucks, each flying variations of the flag. I have to go around the front of them to avoid an accident. They're parked right in the middle of the road. As I drive around them, each person in the vehicle makes it a point to ensure I see them. I do. They see me too. When I get to McDonald's (which is in the same lot), I learn that they're not taking debit cards at the moment. Terrific. I wanted chicken nuggets and instead, I get a run-in with the new Confederacy. So I make my way back to Burger King, again appearing in full view of the trucks. I place my order, get it, pay, and pull out. Then one of the

Wave Rocketbook Reviewed

I love writing by hand, and I love notebooks. I'll often devote entire budgets to them and when Officemax has one of their twenty-five cent sales, I'll buy them out. I often draft by hand, finding that the scene comes together more purely when it flows from a pen rather than a keyboard. So when DailyDot advertised a durable new type of notebook that you could use over and over again for the cheap price of twenty-five (thirty after shipping) US Dollars? I'm down. The Wave Rocketbook is meant to be elegant in its design and simple in its execution. The instructions come on the bag itself, and only the pen and notebook are included. The pen feels like any other, so you have to be careful not to mix it into your collection or you will end up marking your notebook with the wrong pen (like I did). The ink is erasable, which is a bonus. A place to put the pen would've been nice, but it clips easily, if not securely, into the ringed binding. The paper is thick and