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infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
2/7/23 3:32 p.m.

In reply to GameboyRMH :

Wonderful, I hope you enjoy it!

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
2/7/23 4:00 p.m.

Some small updates. The anthology I was accepted to, I finished that story, got it to a beta reader, then made some changes and edits. It ended at 16.7K words. Managed to write it in a few days, so not bad. I'm looking forward to that anthology coming out.

Went back to book 2 in my current trilogy and started working on it. Using 15-minute sprints, I managed to write 6K words today. I could probably write another thousand, but my eyes are getting tired. Next paycheck I'm going to invest in some of those blue light filtering glasses.

Currently sitting at 53 preorders. Very excite.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
2/17/23 9:45 a.m.

And this, gentlemen, is why we write to market. With a strong social media push, $800+ spent on an editor, $200 spent on covers, $180 spent on a couple promotions, my two cyberpunk books earned me a total of $129.69 in about a year's time. Yeah, that's painful. Great books and fun to write, but not profitable. 

Switching to haremlit was the right decision. Book 1 in my new trilogy just came out this morning. I had a couple preorder cancelations, which is normal, and wound up with 52 preorders when it came out. As of 9:30AM on release day (today), I'm sitting at $185.69 in sales. That number will go up as the day goes along. I'm hoping for $300 by the end of the day. I'm still new to the genre and a lot of readers haven't discovered me yet, so that number only stands to go up. I'm hoping for $1,000 by the end of the month.

I finished the first draft of book 2 yesterday. I'm taking a short break to work on a short story, then going back to book 2 for a round of edits. Then, it'll go on preorder.

That means I have roughly 2 months to work on book 3, which is awesome. I write pretty fast so I don't need that two months, but it's good to have that space. I'll keep up the book per month release schedule as long as I can, without stressing myself.

I'll try to post again in a week. 

Also, if anyone is interested in checking out this book, here is a link on amazon. Slightly NSFW cover, big fantasy chick boobs. And here's the blurb:

My life wasn't that exciting; a degree in engineering, a small flat in London, and an ex-girlfriend that still texted me when she was drunk. Every day was a bore.

Everything changed when I found myself in Lanercost, a small medieval village, with no idea of how I arrived. The locals seemed friendly, and a chance encounter introduced me to several breathtakingly beautiful women. I decided to make the best of it. Armed with only a solid education, my wit, and the five pennies in my pocket, I decided to build a life here. No, not just a life; a House that would last for generations. A kingdom. I was going to conquer.

Of course, there were a few things I had to deal with before I could become king: some ghosts, the local constable that hated my guts, and that whole lack of money thing. Oh, and a freakin' dragon.

Author's note: This is fantasy written for the male reader, which means you can expect the hero to conquer on the battlefield as well as between the sheets.

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/17/23 10:11 a.m.

I read Caro Ex Machina over the weekend, it's a fun little action short and the concept definitely has potential. I wonder what it would take to get one of your stories made into a Love, Death & Robots episode? wink

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
2/17/23 4:14 p.m.

In reply to GameboyRMH :

Thank you very kindly for the compliment on my writing! I think there is definitely potential there for a longer story. After today, I'm definitely planning on staying in the harem genre for the long term, though. I don't know if I'll ever return to "regular" science fiction and fantasy.

My book just broke $200 in sales, and those numbers are slowly but steadily increasing. Also had another author, whose wife owns a publishing company, contacted me and said they're watching me for a possible audiobook deal.

$200 in a single day. That's nuts, to me. More than I make at my regular job.

Money is the biggest motivator, and this makes me want to write more. It gives me hope. I created the title of this thread as a total joke, but now there is a very real possibility that I can make a respectable amount of money from this. That being said, Book 1 just came out today and I've written 2K words of book 3.

Let's goooooooooooooooooo

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
2/22/23 9:06 a.m.

I guess the numbers speak for themselves. Here's the past week of sales:

Pretty sharp drop off which is kinda normal but also kinda concerning. I know my book isn't perfect—I have my main character kinda wander around for the first 1/3 with big dreams until one of the love interests tells him to get his butt in gear. And while that may work well for a regular story and help develop characters, this is haremlit, power trip insertion fantasy. Readers want to see the MC be like Conan, always conquering. Lesson learned.

I just put book 2 up for presale but I haven't announced it yet. I'm waiting a few days to announce it on the best day possible. The cover to book 2 is better than book 1, so I think it'll generate some good interest. Book 2 comes out March 17th. If it follows standard trends, it will make less than book 1, but it will also bump book 1's sales a bit. So I should be able to use those profits to get my transfer case fixed.

Reviews are doing okay, 33 reviews so far and holding at 4.2 stars. I would like for that to be higher, and I'm sure it'll creep its way up there. I got an early 2-star review that really hurt it. Amazon's rating system is kinda screwy, it takes 2 or 3 5-star reviews to pull a 1-star up to an average of 3.5. And anything below 3.5 they just kinda stop showing to customers. 

So looks like I should have no problem hitting about $700 this month. That's pretty awesome. I had set my initial goal at making $5,000 this year and I'm already on track to double that. As I release more and more books and things snowball, I should theoretically make more each month. 

As long as I can stay on my fast writing schedule and balance that with my job and daily life, I'll be good. I'm working on plotting book 3 in my trilogy right now and hoping to have that figured out by the end of the day.

Ninja edit: also my lifetime sales is now sitting at $2200.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
3/5/23 8:40 p.m.

I took my old omnibus from my first novella trilogy and dropped it to $2.99 on the first of the month, since that's when a lot of people get paid and thus have money to blow on books. It has a cool cover, which can be seen here. Don't worry, it's not nsfw, just a redhead wearing armor and a dragon. Sold about 50ish copies, generated some cash, and more importantly got some people to read my current book that's out. Also, I finished last month at $950. I'm expecting to clear $2K this month. My goal is $2.5K for next month, but we'll see.

Page reads have been steadily increasing over the past 3 weeks. 18K page reads today alone. I'm a little behind on writing book 3, as I've just been busy—being a father, husband, working full-time, it all gets in the way of writing. I know I'll finish it in time, but I might have to take a short break after this trilogy before I start releasing the next one. Not sure the pace of life will let me continue writing and releasing one novel per month. If I could just write for a living, then I'd be fine. Maybe one day.

I also was contacted by someone I know in the business and he said he wants to offer me an audiobook contract. So his publishing company will pay for the audiobooks to be recorded, and after that I'll get 70% of the profits. Pretty solid deal, since the larger companies will usually offer 25%. Also I know him, so I know it's legit.

Exciting times, exciting times indeed! If I continue at this pace then in 6 months I'll probably be making more from books than from my day job.

WonkoTheSane
WonkoTheSane GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
3/6/23 12:36 p.m.

I've been following along, thanks for posting the journey! 

 

Congrats and that's awesome!

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
3/9/23 9:28 p.m.

In reply to WonkoTheSane :

Thanks!

 

Today I signed a contract with Royal Guard Publishing for an audiobook. They're paying for the narration, I've already made the covers. Once costs are recouped, I'll get 70% of the money. Pretty good deal, to be honest, and that's for all 3 books in my trilogy. Also signed one for an anthology I'm part of. 

This month is starting off strong. Sales and page reads have been steady, and I'm slowly getting presales on book 2. I'm still behind on writing book 3; I've just been busy. Writing a 70K word book each month, month after month, is not easy, but so far I'm keeping my head above water. 

I wrote much of the final ending over the past couple days. It's got some very wholesome moments and some big, gritty battles. I think it'll be a crowd-pleaser. As much as I'll enjoy writing this, I'm very exciting to start on my next trilogy. And, I spoke with a good friend of mine, a popular indie cyberpunk author that also started writing haremlit, and we're going to collaborate on a trilogy. So, things are going great and they're only going to get better.

I don't want to throw out any numbers prematurely, but I think this is going to be a very, very good year.

I've also done some analysis on book lengths and maximizing my dollar. I've been formatting my ebooks using kindle create, a free program offered by amazon. It's not that great, but it's free. My book Mask of the Gods was 332 pages in ebook format using kindle create. I purchased Atticus and reformatted the book, and now it's 421 pages. No extra spacing or anything, just the difference between the programs. Considering I get paid for page reads, a 25% boost is huge. The program cost $148, and it'll pay for itself this month. Also, for this trilogy I shot for 3 books, each 70K words. Book 1 in a series always sells best, so from now on I'm going to shoot for 80K words for book 1, 70K for book 2, and 65k or even 60K for book 3. Of course if the books wind up more or less that's totally fine, but the goal is a larger book 1. That'll result in more money, while the shorter books later in the series will be easier to write.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
3/17/23 1:57 p.m.

So, book 2 in my trilogy came out today. I wound up with 78 preorders, compared to 65 preorders for book 1. So far I've made $321 today. That number should go up a decent amount in the afternoon/evening, so I expect to finish the day around $350, but we'll see. 

Here you can see my earnings over the last 30 days. The spike on the left was book 1, the spike on the right book 2. The shorter one in the middle was when I dropped my old omnibus to $2.99.

Book 3 went on preorder today. Already have 4 orders. I should finish writing it this weekend; it comes out in a month. The second I'm done I'll spend a few days on my cyberpunk collaboration with my friend, then I'm plotting and starting my next trilogy. I'll probably have to wait 6 weeks to release my next book, but we'll see.

 

Over $4500 in lifetime earnings, now. Crazy, since last year I released half a dozen books and sold practically nothing.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
3/17/23 9:23 p.m.

Just a quick update: Finishing the day with about $450 in sales and 33,000 page reads. My book 2 is currently rank 2966 in the entire kindle store (there are millions of ebooks in there) and it's pushed book 1 to 2489. 

Stampie
Stampie GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
3/17/23 9:32 p.m.

In my mind I see a guy walking up to me with his janky seat at the Challenge all smiles and I say damn that guy is doing some cool E36 M3 these days.  Congrats.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
3/18/23 10:53 p.m.

In reply to Stampie :

That seat was rough, but it went into a cool civic! I really wish I had gotten the chance to race that car. it would have been a blast. Ah well, we'll do a challenge in the future. Alessa really wants to and I've been dreaming of it since 1999.

 

Little update, so release day ended at $475 in sales and 33K page reads. Today, day 2, I'm at $226 and 42,000 page reads. That's good stuff. One more scene to write and I'll have book 3 done, first draft at least. It doesn't come out for another month so there's plenty of time. I started roughly plotting my next trilogy today. All good stuff.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
3/28/23 1:53 p.m.

The month isn't quite over, but sales are strong. Very strong. And according to other authors in this genre, the numbers I'm seeing are normal and will continue to rise as long as I continue to put out quality material. I'll wait until the end of the month to post actual numbers, but I'll put it this way: by the 20th of this month I had already made more than my entire monthly wages (including overtime) at my day job. I am very quickly approaching a situation where my day job will be preventing me from making more money as an author. In the end, I guess that's kind of a good problem to have!

To ensure I have enough good stories, I've removed all of the stories I wrote under my "main" pen name (which is obviously no longer my main) and I'm going to be rewriting them for my current genre. So instead of rushing to finish a story in a month, I can cruise and finish it in two weeks or so. That'll help keep me a few months ahead, so should anything happen I have a safe time cushion and can still release a book per month.

Pretty excited to post some numbers in a few days.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
3/31/23 9:21 a.m.

So, here's my month of March.

The sharp dip on the far right is just because it's only 9AM. Today will be another $120-130 day.

I do a lot of writing at work—my boss is okay with it as long as I do my work stuff first. Problem is, we had a guy on my team just up and quit with only 1 day of notice, so my workload just doubled. Now that I'm making twice as much from books as I am from my job, it's tough to continue working here. Especially in two months, when I start getting these huge royalty checks from Amazon. I'm going to keep my day job as long as I can,  basically until I'm at the point where if I have a book flop it's okay, I still have enough for my family to be safe.

But yeah, that's a lot of money for a poor person. That's life changing. Especially since next month will be better. I'm at 68 preorders for book 3 in my trilogy, already more than book 1 and I still have 17 days to go until the book comes out. Exciting stuff!

 

Robbie (Forum Supporter)
Robbie (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
3/31/23 10:11 a.m.

Nice work!

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
4/17/23 9:38 a.m.

Release day! I had 134 preorders for book 3 in my trilogy. When I woke up this morning my daily sales were already at about $340. Those numbers are slowly ticking up; I should start getting page reads later in the day. I'm curious to see where I end up at. Looks like plenty of people were excited to read this book, but in the end it's a book 3 not a book 1, so it'll sell a little less. If I can top my release day sales for book 2 ($475) I'll be pretty excited. Currently sitting at $375. Due to time zone weirdness and european sales, I also made $250 yesterday, as some of the presales came in before my EST release date.

 

I'll update again later day.

 

Also some other updates, books 1 and 2 for my next trilogy are already written and in the hands of my editor. I'm feeling very burned out and rather sick and tired of my below-average-paying help desk job, especially now that I'm making twice as much from books. I expect my next trilogy to do well, but not as well as this one due to them being darker and science fiction vs fantasy. Their performance will really show me how viable this is as income.

 

AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter)
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
4/17/23 3:51 p.m.

In reply to infinitenexus :

congrats man!

my only advice is to compare true costs of being a help-desk guy moonlighting as an author, vs an author.  Does your day job provide health insurance?  401k?  etc.

mfennell
mfennell HalfDork
4/17/23 5:07 p.m.

First, congratulations!

I (briefly) tried to make sense of your royalty payments.  It sounds like Amazon establishes a monthly fund that's distributed across all authors.  You are paid based on what percentage of all pages read that month were of your works.  Do I have that right?  I assume you are also paid a percentage (70%) for each book bought outright.

I would not quit your day job for that arrangement.  It can change at any time for any reason.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
4/18/23 8:10 a.m.
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) said:

In reply to infinitenexus :

congrats man!

my only advice is to compare true costs of being a help-desk guy moonlighting as an author, vs an author.  Does your day job provide health insurance?  401k?  etc.

I have health insurance outside of my day job, since I'm a disabled veteran. As for the 401K, they take about 30 years to mature, which means mine would mature at age 69/70. I don't make much money at my job, so I can't contribute a ton. With some hard work, I can make more, much more, at writing and make my own 401K that would be massively larger. I hear you though, don't worry. 

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
4/18/23 8:15 a.m.
mfennell said:

First, congratulations!

I (briefly) tried to make sense of your royalty payments.  It sounds like Amazon establishes a monthly fund that's distributed across all authors.  You are paid based on what percentage of all pages read that month were of your works.  Do I have that right?  I assume you are also paid a percentage (70%) for each book bought outright.

I would not quit your day job for that arrangement.  It can change at any time for any reason.

Kinda, yeah. They establish the monthly fund, which has been pretty stable over the last few years that I've bothered looking. If anything, it's ticking slowly up surely upwards. From that, they establish a rate per page, which usually comes out to roughly half a cent per page. From other authors I know, that has been pretty stable for years as well (not counting the first two or so years of kindleU, which was pretty much the wild west). The amount of money I get for a book sale—I chose the 70% route, so when I sell a book for 4.99 I get 70% of that, correct. I don't have numbers on audiobooks yet, all I know is I get 70% of sales from my contract.

It's not a bad deal, really. The key is numbers; while 0.4 cents per page doesn't sound like much, I get roughly 20-30K page reads per day. I have some author friends that have been doing this a couple years, in the same genre as me, and they average around 200K page reads per day.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
4/18/23 8:29 a.m.

Okay, so launch day yesterday went pretty well. I wasn't really sure what to expect, but I just wanted it to be better than launch day for book 2. And it was! I ended the day with 115 orders, 46,979 page reads, and made $560.69 total. Not bad for a day's work. Note that due to time zone weirdness I also had about 30 orders from Europe that counted toward the day before, not launch day. Page reads often come a little later; people will get the book for free on day 1, be busy the next day, then dive into it on day 3. That's pretty common. So I'm hoping either today or tomorrow I'll break 50K page reads. I haven't gotten that high yet.

The audiobook for book 1 comes out on the 26th. It's on preorder right now. I should get monthly updates from my publisher about that, and monthly payments once the initial costs are paid off. From what I've been told audiobooks take longer to really catch on, but they have a longer tail, so to speak. 

So now I have to turn my attention to my next trilogy, my cyberpunk one. I basically took the two cyberpunk books I wrote under my old name and pulled them down, then rewrote them and added some extra love interests, made new covers, fixed some issues (my old editor let a lot of typos and mistakes slide by) and I'm republishing them under my new pen name. Books 1 and 2 are in the hands of my editor, and I'm 10K words into writing book 3 right now.

I have two LitRPG trilogies outlined, and I'm pretty excited to write them. I might start on one after I finish my cyberpunk book 3. LitRPG is a harder market to break into, and average sales are roughly the same as HaremLit, but the top sellers make WAAAYYY more, and the sales last longer, which is something I need. HaremLit is great, but sales often drop off pretty sharply after 60 days. A good LitRPG book will keep selling for months. If I want income, not just fun money, that's what I need to do. So I'll be focusing my efforts on two pen names, one harem adventure, one litrpg. Cue burnout in 3, 2, 1....

Speaking of burnout, I feel it and pretty strongly. So far I've written and published one book per month for the last 7 months straight, and also made covers and formatted them and posted about them and advertised them. I'm basically working two full-time jobs at the same time. So I already feel burned out, but I remind myself that that's not an option. This is my future and my family's future that I'm trying to improve, trying to build, so I keep grinding on. Failure is not an option sort of thing. In the end I still really enjoy writing. I love it. That's what's important.

I'm really curious how much money I'll make from these books this year. If I just keep selling like I am and never improve, I'll make more than $50K. More realistically, things will slowly snowball and I'll build a fanbase. While every release won't always be larger than the last, there will be a steady increase over months, and eventually the audiobooks will start to add their dollars in as well. $70K? $80K? Who knows. It'll be fun to find out though, that's for certain!

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
4/18/23 6:38 p.m.

Just wanted to add that I hit a milestone and got more than 50,000 page reads today.

Javelin
Javelin GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
4/18/23 6:39 p.m.

Is the new cyberpunk trilogy going to based on that short you shared earlier about the courier?

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
4/25/23 4:03 p.m.

In reply to Javelin :

If you're referring to the short story entitled "Runner," then yes. That was the first story I wrote about Zeke, and that turned into a couple books that didn't sell, because cyberpunk people don't read books unless it's William Gibson. I recently pulled them down and rewrote them as harem (not too hard, just made Delila older and a love interest, and added another woman in there as a love interest, and in book 3 he'll get a third.)  I'm about 28K words into writing book 3 now.

My covers and blurb are on point, but Cyberpunk isn't for everyone. This won't be as popular as my previous trilogy, the fantasy one. Purely from a sales standpoint, this probably wasn't the best idea. However, I'm trying to balance writing with a full-time job and being a dad and husband, so rewriting books I've already written enables me to keep my book-per-month release schedule and gets me a couple months ahead. My next trilogy is going to go back to 1st person POV, isekai medieval fantasy because that's what sells. I already have a good idea for how it starts, and a general plot.

Also, I haven't posted a total sales graph in a while. Here's my journey as an author, from the beginning to now:

It's pretty clear when I started writing haremlit. Also, I think I'll make $5500-6K this month. My first audiobook comes out tomorrow, so that's exciting as well. 

I find it interesting how things have changed in 13 months. Last year I had a website, I wrote a bunch of pretty decent books, I was trying to do promotions, run amazon ads, post on all sorts of social media sites, everything I could to get a buyer. I'd get excited if I made more than $2 in a day. Now I have no website, no newsletter, I don't bother with promotions or paying for big email distributions. I don't have a free reader magnet. What's more important is I write books in a category filled with voracious readers. 

I have set some goals for myself this year. I'm hoping I can save $50K by the end of the year; the wife and I are going to use that on a downpayment on a house somewhere else. I also want to get to the point where I'm making at least $200/day every day, reliably. That's solid income, and when I'm safely there I'm planning on quitting my day job and going full-time. 

Also I mentioned some burnout in my last post. I was definitely feeling it, but I've basically forced myself to keep writing. I haven't been nearly as productive, but I got some words on page, and that helped me to feel better. I've managed to write about 4K words today, which is close enough to my goal that I'm not bothered. 

Sometimes I have to remind myself that these books don't need to be perfect. I don't need to write the best book ever, a NYT bestseller with deep themes and an extremely technical plot. I just need to write books that are good enough. 

I know I ramble a lot and probably repeat myself with every post; I don't read my previous posts before typing a new one. So thanks for sticking with me this far! Now, back to writing.

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