According to my calculations (?), between ebooks, paperbacks, and the two versions of Kindle Unlimited so far, 300 copies of The Healers’ Road have been purchased and/or read as of this week. (As the owner of a towering TBR stack, I do not expect everyone who’s bought it to have read it already.)
Woohoo? Maybe. Sure, why not.
Coincidentally, as of yesterday the book is now 500 days old. That feels like forever, in some ways. I’m several weeks into edits on its sequel, and I’ve finished two and a half drafts of another novel* and a few short stories and novellas** since then, along with a boatload of test run / futzing around scenes – “well, this doesn’t fit into a real outline yet, but what would happen if I threw these characters into this situation?”
* as yet unfinished / ** as yet unpublished
Back when I listened to other people, I was told over and over that an indie book has no more than 30 days in its life cycle. You absolutely must hit a particular Hot New Releases chart on Amazon, immediately, and once you slide off it, you better have another book out or nobody is ever going to want to read your stuff again. Because that’s all there is, that one chart. That is the world in which indie books live, and there is no other. Just that chart.
My book is 16 times that age now. It’s apparently a Galapogos tortoise of a book. The weird thing is, though, out of those 300 copies, you know how many were in that magic 30-day window? Ten. So… I don’t know.
I’d still like to write faster, if I could. I’m aware that since I work so slowly, the first year’s worth of THR readers are going to have no memory whatsoever of me or my book. I built that uphill climb with my snail’s pace, and I’m going to have to live with it.
But hey, consider that I started the first proto-drafts of THR in 2006 and finished it in 2014, then wrapped up THH in roughly a year and a half (fingers crossed). That’s over five times faster. If that pace kept up, I’d have another book out in three months. And yeah, that probably won’t happen – but I learn something every time that gets applied to everything that comes after. I guess the goal is to take <1.5 more years to wrap up the trilogy, and then <1.5 years to start the next part, whether that’s Rone’s story or someone else’s.
Where was I. 0.6 copies a day. It’s nowhere near the New York Times list, but it’s still tortoising along.
I am excited and grateful for every blip on my sleepy little graph. I hope every person who takes a chance on my two cranky jerkface characters has a good time, whether they found the book 2 days or 250 days after it was released.
I’m not in any hurry. The books will be there. The journey starts over and over. That’s one thing I love about books.