Thursday, March 17, 2011

An Update on E-Sales re: Enjoying the Show

Last May, I blogged about the realities of what you can make writing (romance) for electronic publishers. I filed my taxes in 2010, claiming a little over $38000 in income for the year. My biggest seller to date, then, was a novella I wrote for Samhain back in 2007 entitled, Enjoying the Show.

So I thought I'd update. With Kindle and Nook now garnering huge sales, it makes a very large difference to a writer like myself, who makes a living primarily selling ebooks. To date, I have nearly 50 titles through Amber Quill, Ellora's Cave, Loose Id, Samhain, Total E-Bound, Whispers, and in April, Carina Press. I also have over 20 books in print, or a few less, if you consider some of them are no longer available from the publisher.

I write for smaller presses and make most of my money from electronic sales. But lately, I've been seeing a real boost in royalties thanks to Amazon.

Here's a new breakdown of my Enjoying the Show royatlies...
This is what I wrote back in May of last year about the book on my post, Just How Much Money Can You Make Writing Ebooks?:
I submitted the story, was rejected, made the improvements suggested (thank you, Laurie), and received a contract from Samhain in January 2007. The book released from Samhain nearly a year later, in December 2007. It’s a vanilla, m/f contemporary romance with an awesome cover. The novella cost $3.50.

In 2008 (to include my Dec 2007 take), I grossed: $3670 and sold 2672 copies.

In 2009 I earned: $3901 and sold 2790 copies

And so far, in 2010, I have grossed: $1496 and sold 1069 copies.

In total, just from this one book, I have made $9067. Now, that’s over the course of two and a half years, but that’s not bad for one novella, especially since if folks like it, they might go back and purchase my other books, all of which are still listed and available through all my publishers
Today, I have new figures. To date, I have sold a total of 16,132 copies of Enjoying the Show. The book has been on Amazon's Top 100 Paid Contemporary Romance books and kindle books for months, though is showing some decline lately. But to this point, all in all, I've grossed $22,584.80 for my novella which came out in 2007. I get a royalty check every month from my publisher, who's seeing a nice return on a fun novella that came out over three years ago. A win-win, for all concerned.

So why share this nugget of detail? Because I think now, more than ever, ebooks sales are booming. It's still vital to have a good story, a decent price point, and edits (yes, EDITS), but the overall thought that if you aren't New York published you aren't a real writer has gone to the wayside. Granted, I'd still like to branch into the big leagues of print publishing, but I don't intend to stop writing while I'm waiting for lightning to strike. :) And I'm happy to say I was taxed substantially more this year than last, but I was smart enough to pay quarterly through 2010, so it hasn't hit me as hard.

With ebooks on the rise, writing for a living becomes more of a possibility for those willing to invest long hours and continual hard work. FYI, and one to grow on. If you have writing questions about anything I've written, I'd be happy to answer them. Just shoot me an email at


Caridad Pineiro said...

Thanks for the info. It was quite enlightening.

Marie Harte said...

Thanks, Caridad. I love hearing from the successful print sellers (ahem, like yourself) about the business. And I also think it helps to share info about the smaller print/ebook world, which is where I come from. Publishing has so many avenues nowadays. And I'm always eager to hear how the indies are selling. Keeping my ear to the ground about that as well. :)


Wow those are impressive figures and I happy that someone can make that kind of money.

Most of us "oldies" can't people we KNOW to download our books.. Mostly because (as they tell me) "I don't like to read on a PC or Paper is too costly,"
Now that so many electronic readers are available I hope things will get better for all of us.

This was a great post. Thank you

Marie Harte said...

Hey Storidiva.
It's interesting, but from what I'm seeing, a lot of the bestsellers on Kindle now are YA books. And it makes sense if you consider that the "younger" generation feels at home with the newer technology. So yeah, more YA readers are buying ebooks, because that's what they know.
I always laugh when people talk about holding a book in their hands. Sure, I like to read a book in print, but when I got my ereader, it opened up a whole new world to me. I'm more into content than the medium it's in anyway.
But the Kindle is a definite help to writers everywhere, in my opinion.