|Explaining the 1-10-5-1 Rule
Thursday, May 9th, 2013 12:33am
Short URL: http://roiurl.net/5Le8IC
There has, for many, many decades, or as some believe, since the dawn of modern publishing, existed an unwritten rule of success in the publishing world informally known as the "1-10-5-1 rule", "11-oh-51 rule", or the "Success Scale". So what is this rule and what does it mean? Well, it means a lot, but it also says a lot. But first to understand it you have to understand what the four numbers in it mean. So I'll break it down for you.
1 - Only 1% of all books published sell over 100 copies.
10 - Ten percent of those sell over 1,000 copies.
5 - Five percent of those sell over 10,000 copies.
1 - One percent of those sell over 100,000 copies.
So in short what this is saying is, unless you are an outstanding, exceptional, stand above the ground, or more realistically a VERY, VERY lucky person, you will NOT on average sell more than 100 copies of any one of your titles if you're an author. If you do, you're one of the honored minority of authors with a title that has sold over 100 copies. But if you notice the odds of selling 1000 copies quickly drops off, as only 1 in 10 of those who sell over 100 copies ever sell over 1000.
It's not impossible, but the higher the total desired sales, the harder it is to achieve. Now if you've already got a lot of fame, or traction by other means, then your odds of getting over each of the hurtles in this scale that much easier. Case in point. A wonderful lady I know around here who runs an insurance agency published a book recently that immediately sold over 350 copies in its first month alone. Why? She was already famous thanks to her company.
Now what about joe nobody off the street? The chances of breaking out of the 99% become nigh on impossible. But at the same time I've heard of people who were super famous who couldn't sell a single copy of their book no matter what they tried. So fame doesn't immediately make or break you. Success in publishing is a hit or miss affair that more or less boils down to 50% skill, and 50% luck.
So as I've said many times before, you either love what you do (ie, writing books), and be willing to do it the rest of your life without a single dime being made, a single pat on the back, or anything positive coming in return for your hard work, or don't become an author. Trust me, it's best that way. Publishing books for fame and fortune does nothing but hurt you and others, and leave a massive wave of destruction along the wayside.
So the next time you consider publishing a book, ask yourself one question: Am I doing this for the fame/fortune, or because I'm doing what I love? If it's for the fore, don't publish it. But if it's for the latter, publish it. But be honest with yourself because the 1-10-5-1 rule has no friends and takes no prisoners. So either write because you love to write, and publish the stories because you want to share them with the world, or DO NOT DO IT AT ALL. PERIOD. Anyhow, thanks for your time. :)
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Tuesday, May 7th, 2013 8:50am
Short URL: http://roiurl.net/3NrENk
Ladies and Gentlemen, I'd like to announce something new coming from ROI. Well, more specifically from me. For those of you who know, one of the things I do for a living is I design websites with the help of several friends who provide graphics and other assistance to me in that effort, including graphics, coding help, feedback, UI testing, and so much more. I'd be lost without them and want to give them a very appreciative nod. I'd name you all, but there's too many of you, so I'll just give everyone an overall thanks.
That now brings me to the point of this post. I've finally and officially come up with a name for the content management engine I use. It's now officially called "FidgetCMS". For years I just called it "CMS" given that I was lacking an appropriate and justifying name for it. But after much thought I've decided that this name fits it best. So what is FidgetCMS? Well, it's several things really.
One, it's the complete framework from which I've built many of the professional websites I've done over the years. Two, it's entirely customizable to fit just about any need. This is mostly due to the fact that the CMS is built around a framework rather than an engine giving it all the flexibility one would need to build whatever they want. Three, the admin panel on the system is always super easy to use, and with the upcoming advent of version 4 of the CMS it'll become all that much easier.
Four, once I write a website for you, should you decide to pack up and leave and go to someone else, the code is yours to take with you. Mostly because the framework that is the CMS allows me to customize everything to your specific needs and wants. So no two websites using FidgetCMS will ever be the same. Five, the engine has a complete and customizable, and even selectable templating system. All design and layout is controlled by the template system which allows you to have multiple templates that you can switch between quickly and easily, allowing you to have custom templates for various times of the year, to recognize special holidays, etc.
Anyhow, I just wanted to share that with everyone so you knew about the name change and a little bit about the CMS engine I use for this site, and many others I've written. It's changed a lot since it's initial inception over at Raiden's Realm, but it's always evolved, grown, and gotten better, especially as I've gotten better and learned more things. Anyhow, that's my introduction to the CMS. In turn I look forward to doing websites for many of you at some point in the future.
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|Writing Update for April
Saturday, April 20th, 2013 8:40pm
Short URL: http://roiurl.net/rijx1c
Hi again everyone. Sorry for the long silence, but I didn't really have much of anything to report. So what little I had to say I just tweeted. But now I've got some updates to make, so it's blogging time! Anyhow, here's my updates for anyone interested in what's happening.
Books: Lion and the Fire
For everyone who's been waiting for my latest book "Lion and the Fire", the final novel in the 4 part "Land of the Lions" series, I have good news. The manuscript has so far gone to one reviewer and one editor. Despite not having been given a final edit, the reviewer gave the book two huge thumbs up and rated it the best of the series! Given the general insecurity I have with my writing, that's fantastic news!
The story itself closes out the series, a project I've been working on since 1992. Yeah, it took me that long to finally get it where I wanted it quality wise. But I think you'll find that it was worth the wait. It's also a bitter sweet ending, because Lion in the Wind was the first novel I ever started on, so this series has been a part of my writing career since the beginning.
But as with any story it's time to put it to bed. While I know there's a ton of possible content that could go into still more books, or another series, I feel that, when you see the ending you'll understand why I'm ending it there. But don't fear! It's a good ending and does the series and characters great justice.
Anyhow, the estimated release date for this book is sometime in early May. That's not set in stone yet because I haven't gotten it back from the editor yet, but when I do it should be finalized and available for download shortly after. I also have one other announcement to make on this, but I'll just bundle it with the next section.
I know a number of you have heard my announcements in the past that all my books are going 100% digital. This is because the entire publishing industry is. So I'm just following wherever that ship leads. Plus it's getting crazy expensive to print books anymore. So any kind of large scale release of print is unlikely to happen ever again. I'll also be phasing out all print sales for older titles as well, save for "The Great Commission" and only because there's still a demand for it in print. Actually, that demand is quite a bit higher than the ebook version, so that'll still be available in print.
However, for all of you dead tree lovers, I *WILL* be offering limited editions of my books in print. There'll probably only ever be 25-50 of any one title released in print, but that'll allow those of you who are still print book lovers to get your fix in today's digital world. As for the release of those editions, I'll make an official announcement when they're available.
For those of you who haven't heard, I've moved to a new publisher. It's a company called "Fall River". They're another small house like 2 Moon was, but with the way the market has changed, they fit my new publishing direction a lot better than 2 Moon does anymore. Sure, it was a fun 5 years with the old publisher, but now it's time to move on to a new one to better fit with the new direction of the publishing world. (just like my move to all digital)
Now, as for the limited edition print books I mentioned above, as well as my regular stock, those will be unavailable for a while as I make the transition between the two publishers. Once I'm up and fully settled in at the new publisher I will have a full range of things I can offer, including speciality merchandise, limited edition print books, posters, and tons of other stuff. Trust me when I say that the new publisher will be a very nice addition and hugely complimentary to all my books.
Now, as for my ebooks, nothing will change. That's the beauty of ebooks. Despite the move to a new publisher, their availability won't change one bit. They're still available via Smashwords, Apple, BN, and several others. The only one they won't be available at is Amazon. But given all the tons of problems we've had with them, that isn't in the slightest bit surprising.
Amazon has been a pain in my side since the first book I published, and I doubt they'll stop being that anytime soon. So the problems I'm having with them is nothing new. However, I'm expecting Fall River to resolve that issue and get things straightened out with them once and for all. So at some point I'll have full Amazon access for both print and ebooks. So stay tuned for an update on that.
Works in the Pipe
For those who are interested, I've had a lot of works in the pipes over the past several months, but nothing that really jelled. That's why my pending section has been transitioning so much of late. If you've been paying attention over there you will have noticed that new books were added and then later scrapped on a regular basis. This is just a normal thing when trying to start a new series or novel.
Right now I've got all my current series finished, and everything coming down the pipes, save one book which is almost finished (it's a companion to "The Great Commission") and should be out sometime in June or July called "Love: God's Greatest Gift". Other than that one, all my other novels are what I call "fresh meat". In other words I'm starting with new characters, new worlds, new plotlines and villains and so much more.
So as with any good book it takes a while to first find a plot or story that works, and then solidify the story. So my pending section may be a bit fluid over the next year until I find something that actually gains some traction and begins gelling in my mind. So please pardon the dust a bit as I try to get my next round of stories moving. ^_^;;
I also want to apologize about the forums. I haven't had much to post about, so they've atrophied a bit. But I've got plans to spice them up a bit this summer. However, that doesn't preclude you from signing up and posting! We don't have a specific topic we talk about. It's more of an open community where pretty much anything is welcome, assuming it's family friendly of course.
I only make that requirement because we have young children browsing it periodically, so we can't go completely hog wild in there. Plus I'm a Christian, so I don't like non-family friendly content either. Now I'm not trying to censor anything so much as make it a safe place where anyone can come and hang out. :)
Also, just so everyone knows, we DO have a spam filter. Yes, it's a bit hard to get through at first, but that's the point of it. The filter is there to keep out the spammers. I'm sorry if it causes anyone problems signing up or posting (once you're cleared by me or you reach your post count, you're free to post without moderation, fyi) but it's necessary, because nobody likes a forum filled with spam or spammers.
Now, on that regard, if you come up against the spam filter during signup and it blocks you from joining, just contact me and I'll make sure you get an account on the forums. I don't want to block anyone (except spammers) from the forums, but in order to keep the bad guys out I've got to leave the spam filter set as high as I do. So please understand. Again, if you have any issues signing up, or even posting, just email me and let me know and I'll get you squared away. :D
Only a few people have signed up to be a feedback reader. The more of you I have, the more constructive feedback I can get to help me become a better author. So please, signup to be one. It only takes a few minutes and it won't be a hard thing to do. Every so often (a few times a year, maybe twice a month max) I'll be posting content for you to read and provide feedback on.
Again, as the description on the info page states, you don't have to edit the work. Just provide your thoughts on the story and what you think of it. So whenever an entry is posted, just download, read it, and then come back here to submit your thoughts. And yes, there are usually deadlines for your feedback, but I try to be as lenient on the time frames as possible. I'm not a slave driver after all. :P
So if you can help me out by being a feedback reader I would greatly appreciate it.
Other Works - Your Suggestions
Now, last but not least, your suggestions. I'm always up for input from ANYONE. Don't think yourself too small or insignificant. Most of the time the comments people post are about things I'm completely unaware of, or never would have thought of myself. So please, share your thoughts on ideas, stories, possible characters, etc, and even this website or anything else you think is important for me to know.
I think this is especially important now that I'm between series and trying to get another round of books started. One genre I've been tinkering with and researching a ton on is survival and apocalyptic fiction. Given the atmosphere of today's world that's actually a huge genre right now, and one that fascinates me. I don't know if that'll be what drives the next books I work on or not, but I'm wanting to try my hand at it. So keep your eyes pealed for something coming in that genre.
I'm also looking (or at least experimenting with this idea) into doing a new Earthfleet series. It's tentatively called the "Apollo Saga", based around the starship Apollo. The story itself departs from Sol space and heads out into the galaxy, mingling a multi-species crew into a universe full of all types of aliens. So it'll be a little deeper exploration into the Earthfleet universe.
I'm also poking at doing a continuation of "First Dawn", picking up where the book left off and exploring the world of Captain Edmond and the Destiny. Sort of a ST:TOS for my Earthfleet saga. :) Either way those are just a few ideas that are on the table for the moment. I'm not saying they'll be the next books being released, but they *are* some ideas I'm exploring.
But since I'm still trying to settle on something new to work on, I'd covet your suggestions for content. Anyhow, that's my update. I know it's a bit long, and I probably should have made these sooner, but at least I got everything out now and hopefully brought everyone up to date on how things are going. :) Thanks for reading and thanks for being such wonderful fans of my books! :)
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|Our Forums Are Friendly, So Come On By!
Friday, March 1st, 2013 5:12pm
Short URL: http://roiurl.net/xstQdu
Just a reminder, our forums here are a family friendly, general topic forums, and all are welcome. We're very open, we don't restrict what you say, or what you can post with one exception. What you post MUST be family friendly. Mostly because under 13's can signup and post here with parental permission. Even if they couldn't they can still browse the forums and see all the posts. So I don't want to be corrupting our younger generations. The world is doing a good enough job of that on their own. >.<
So hop on over to the forums, sign up, and post to your heart's content! Due to our spam filter you *might* have a slight problem signing up. (You'll only hit the stops if you're posting from a domain that's been blacklisted for spam. It's nothing I have control over.) 95% of people won't have any issues. But if you do, by all means contact me and I'll get things squared away for you.
I really want everyone who can to stop on by, post, share, comment, and so much more. I want the forums to be a fun public place where everyone can have a great time. But some of that requires people to join. As I said, everyone is welcome. So please join our wonderful and growing community. You'll be glad you did. :)
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