While I’ve understood the appeal of Kindle Unlimited (KU), up until now I’ve rejected it for a couple of reasons. First is narrow versus wide. With KU, you cannot publish your story anywhere but at Amazon. I think you can do print versions, but most of that stays with Amazon.
Going wide, you can publish at all the other sites such as SmashWords, Apple, Kobo, B&N, and others, in addition to Amazon. Another drawback to wide is that you can’t publish in ePub or other formats that are native to Windows, Mac, most tablets and phones.
Certainly, nowadays there are apps which allow you to read Kindle books on other types of devices besides a Kindle. But to me, it is aggravating that Amazon restricts you in an effort to keep you corralled into the Kindle World.
Publishing on Amazon and allowing your smut to be in the Kindle Unlimited section, allows people who cough up $10 a month to read all they can stomach. For an avid reader like myself, I like KU except the nonconformist side resents being told I can’t publish a story anywhere except on Amazon.
Amazon pays about one-half cent per page for every page someone reads of your masterpiece. This doesn’t sound like a lot, but when there are millions of people out there, it adds up.
I decided what the hell, I’ll try it again and published my latest story, House Party, both narrow and in Kindle Unlimited. This 85,000-word novel is my biggest yet, and I have to admit that I was a little hesitant about committing for the next 90-days before I could go wide.
I was floored when in the three weeks since release it has sold 31 copies, and almost 18,000 page reads, which translates into 74 complete story reads of the 243-page novel. This one story in three weeks has earned basically one and a half times my normal Amazon income for a typical month!
That’s all the bragging I’m going to do, and I apologize for it but what I’m trying to say is consider using Kindle Unlimited to see if it helps your book sales.
Normally I don’t pay a lot of attention to my Amazon sales as I’m too lazy to read all the reports but using Book Report (GetBookReport.com) makes it so easy to see your best selling stories and how much money you are making. Book Report also breaks out your sales per day, week, month, etc. so it’s a lot easier to see if you’re doing any good.
I’d had always read that Amazon has a 30-day cliff and will start throwing your story under the bus in a month. Since I’ve been using Book Report since May or June, I’ve confirmed to myself that is true.
If you release a story, it will bump your author’s rank for about a month, then you’ll see your rank start to fall. Publish a new book, and it’ll immediately jump up for another month.
So, the old saying “Publish or Perish,” is definitely a truism with Amazon. This does not seem to be true with SmashWords. From what I can see, SmashWords only goes by best sells or most popular, without considering age.
I have two books in SmashWords Men’s Erotica Best Sellers that are in the top 60, and one of the stories was published in 2014 and is ranked higher than a story published this year.
While certainly, you can argue that one story is better than the other, but the bottom line is that a story published four years ago is ranked about the same as a story published in the last few months.
This tells me that when you publish at SmashWords, your story doesn’t get forgotten in a month and continues to be ranked on its merits, without being penalized for age.
Up until recently, I’ve always made more money at SmashWords than I have with Amazon but the last couple of months have been just the opposite.
The thing I really like at SmashWords is that they automatically push out to Apple and others such as Kobo and B&N. My sales through SmashWords are typically split four ways between SmashWords, Apple, Kobo, and B&N.
Sales and marketing are the things I hate to do. I’d druther pound away at my keyboard than try to figure out how to market a story but I’m becoming convinced that I need to pay attention to things like sales figures, advertising, etc.
I’m not naive enough to think I’ll ever quit my day job and write smut but I am covering expenses and being able to buy a nice laptop every year or two.
That’s all for this month folks. Go out and VOTE on November 8th. Until next month, if it’s the 24th, it’s time for smut from the dirty mind of Larry Archer. LarryArcher.blog