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Monthly Archives: March 2015

ROW80 Toby Neal

ROW 80 2015 Round 1 in review

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Fireweed TrailSo, here we are at the end of the first quarter of 2015 already and I have results unlike any quarter I’ve had in a while. It’s been a pretty interesting 80 days, so it’s time to look back before moving ahead.

Here were my goals:

1) Finish off Ripe, the final installment of my Spoiled Rotten trilogy. DONE!

Yup! I finished that one off and it’s done. Nice to have that in my rear view at last.

2) Collect the Spoiled Rotten trilogy together and submit to Write On for feedback. DONE!

I received over 4,200 words of critique from my fellow authors at Write On on Spoiled Rotten that will inform a final polish and revision on this one; I’m repackaging it as a full-length novel with an all-new cover by my cover guru, Victorine E. Lieske!

It’ll probably debut in the second quarter of 2015.

3) Write a KW short for my friend’s set-to-launch-in-April KindleWorld.

Not quite done yet, but closing in on it!

The book, a novella-length-ish book, is called Fireweed Trail and is set in … the forthcoming Lei Crime Series KindleWorld created by talented novelist Toby Neal!

The almost-final cover, by the reliable Victorine, decorates the top of this post!

Aside from all that? My PR impact from being on ENT has been a thrill: I’ve sold about 55 copies and 11 borrows on The Woodsman since that one-day free-day ad ran. I’ll but that for a dollar! (Or $15.00!)

So, that’s all for now, folks. I’ll reveal my big plans for Q2 2015 when we resume in April.

For now, I have to work on getting Fireweed Trail out on time!


First March 2015 ROW80 update

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The WoodsmanI’ve had a big week unfold for me.

Today (Sunday, March 1) was a huge day for The Woodsman, the novel I first released back on Friday, October 17, 2014. I ran an ad, for the first time ever, with one of the “big boys,” eReader News Today (ENT). The results were outstanding and beyond my expectations.

First of all, I gave away way more copies globally than I did during my free run in late January. Back then, I gave away 1,629 copies, and my rankings were #4 in horror, #6 in crime thrillers, and #124 overall. That came as a result of three Fivvr ads, a $3 ad from another site, and listings on several “free to list” sites. Total invested: $19.50.

Today, I invested $15 in an ENT ad and let it fly on its own without notices on any other sites. The results? As I write this, I’m at 2,037 copies given away worldwide, and rankings of #3 in horror, # 7 in crime thrillers, and #85 overall. That’s a big step forward and for only $15, instead of $19.50.

This has me thinking that the huge amount asked for by BookBub might not be the best use of approximately $110, by me. Not when I can get these kinds of results for only $15.00. Sure, BookBub is the gold standard… but is it really worth almost ten times the amount invested? I’m not so sure, since in horror BookBub says the over-under for a free book ad is 2,000 to 19,800. Umm, so in other words, I could pay $110 and still only get the same number of downloads I got today for $15? Color me less than enthusiastic about that prospect. At least right now.

The real interesting bit will be to see how paid sales go once the book reverts back. In January, about 26 paid sales followed the giveaway of 1,629 freebies. I wonder how many paid sales I’ll get in the aftermath of another 2,037 given away. Would 30 paid be too optimistic?

The Woodsman aside, I completed the final-final proofing of Ripe, catching 12-16 previously-uncaught typos before the deadline. Now the book is “locked in” until it’s released and I’m confident it’s about as perfect as it’s gonna get for a while.

At some point later this year, I’ll collect all three volumes and do a print edition. I’m gathering feedback on Spoiled Rotten right now on Write On by Kindle, so that I can take some time to reconsider, revise, and maybe even expand the tale before putting out the collection.

As I said in my last update, I was going to go back to Razed after that, but I have a friend who is launching their own Kindle World in early April and invited me to be one of the premiere authors supporting that world. I gladly agreed as I think it’ll be great exposure for me in general, and a chance to get my name noticed among Amazon’s editorial staff, so that when I finish Razed and submit it to Kindle Scout, I won’t be a complete stranger to them.

I now know what the KW story is gonna be about as I spent time today casting the story after coming up with the overall plot setup and such. I’ll be writing it soon.

I know I’m being coy here, but I don’t have a title yet and want to make sure I hit the deadline on the book before announcing it. Otherwise I could end up with egg on my face.

Let’s just say the book should appeal to fans of Shada, and maybe some of my fans from the audience of The Woodsman, too. For now, I’ll stay silent on further details, though.