Reply To: Poll–Purchase Reservations

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Thanks for the feedback! It’s very helpful and a lot of what I expected.

So let me address here a few of those things…not as a defense, but as a “why”

The price:

1) First and foremost, I set the list price, expecting most bookstores to automatically “whack the price” by a dollar or more.
a) only Google Play did this, immediately. No one else did.
b) I actually debated reporting the cheaper price to Amazon so they’d lower it…but it was selling better than expect, and well, that seemed to be stupid of me to do. It got noticed on its own.
c) I was afraid if I set it at $4.99 it would get whacked really low. And a really long, really cheap book screams “CRAP”

2) I also tried to set a price based on “entertainment time” The book is almost 250,000 words, which is very long by ebook standards. I see these $2.99 books with fewer than 100,000 words and the bang for the buck thing kicks in. If it’s twice as many words????? It should be twice as much. $5.99 (Yes, I know that doesn’t always hold)

[i]My book prices are really dated (mainly because I don’t buy mass market paperbacks–only ebooks, trade paperbacks and hardcover these days) but in my “mind” a good SF, mass market paperback should be around $6.99, trade $14.99, HC $24.99 and this is just internalized pricing. So a “good” ebook price would be $4.99. Which was really the price I paid the longest for a mass market.

Of course, that is all without inflation…in terms of value, look at how little the price of books has changed, especially SF/Fantasy vs movie tickets?

So my goal was always about $5 for the book, my expectation was it would get whacked to that…and it did, eventually.[/i]

3) Editing: yes, I know there are errors still. It’s unbelievable how many times, I and my best friends have read and edited things and still couldn’t catch stuff. I’m going to give every author I bad mouthed for crappy editing a huge break. It’s hard. (unless you have a publisher…and then there’s no excuse, they are taking most of the money…so they should hire a good editor)

Next time, I’m going to see about a real editor…I just need to find one that’s good with SF/Fantasy and particularly, Oorstemothians. But there will also be a beta program where, while I’d be looking for more content/plot/continuity feedback, I’m sure people will catch annoying editing things as well.

4) Cover art: I never intended to do the cover art myself. I was going to hire someone, but time was getting down there…i wanted to get this out before I started another full time contract job, and the artists I “liked” I was afraid were very expensive, and or had a long queue, and I had no idea how well this book would sell to justify $1k to $2K or more. Now, that I know that I can make the money to pay for a good artist, I’m going to do so.

I also wanted something very catchy to stand out in the huge array of books out there, so I feared it would take quite a lot of back and forth to get the right cover image…and I wanted it “out there”

5) I really don’t know what to do with the description that will hook people, be an honest portrayal/description, and not give too much away. There “is a reason” publishers have specialists to write these things. The author is almost always too close to the story.

Maybe we should have a “write a new blurb” contest?