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Thoughts by I. M. Telling
5/16/2012 I have to go to my 'day job' in less than two hours. My career has been as a computer programmer so in a sense, I have been writing all of my life. Writing a computer program is not that much different than writing a story in that as the writer, you are the manipulator (God if you prefer) of what you write.  You control the characters in your stories, you control the objects and variables within your application.  I have accepted the fact that in all things in my life, I prefer to be the manipulator.
  As of this morning, it has been 47 days since I sold my first story on Amazon. It has been interesting!
  I started my first novel [ The Ebony Letter  ] about 4 or 5 weeks before that first sale which occurred within 24 hours of being posted on Amazon.
  Sales have been happening that are both MORE than I expected as well as LESS than I had hoped. Does anyone EVER have more than they hoped? I doubt it.
  To be honest, I didn't think I would sell anything yet I didn't write it to sell, I wrote it to express myself so even one sale is a bonus.  Of course the problem is that it takes a lot of sales to make the actual investment in dollars worth it, but I should reach that level soon.  The time invested both in writing and promotion... thats the one that will get you.
  The trends are looking up. I had my best day ever yesterday as far as numbers of units sold and traffic to this web site has been increasing. It is possible that even my time investment may someday equate to what can be earned by putting in those 40+ hour weeks for someone else.
  As I write this, I have four primary products.  [ Two novels The Ebony Letter  and Brenda Bailey Cunningham's Ankle Bracelet  ], one short story [ Being Serviced  ] and a series of short stories that is called High Stakes Erotica that thus far has five parts with a 6th nearly done and possibly three more parts left to write.
  If I have a major frustration at this point, it is with the relative success of my efforts after these first 47 days of being on the market. The two novels are where I develop characters and I have a plot while a typical short story such as [ Being Serviced  ] is more about a single event that is simply chonicled. The characters in a short have limited backgrounds and not much in the way of analysis can be portrayed about them.
  Nearly 40% of all unit sales thus far has been for my short story [ Being Serviced  ].  I started writing it at 5AM on a Sunday and finished the first draft by 5PM on the same day. A few hours in proofing and correcting and it was on the market whereas the novels take weeks to complete. Even my other shorts typically take a week to complete.
  My genre is Explicit Erotica, with a large measure of interracial attached to it. My stories thus far have not been oriented towards romance erotica (which is probably the mainstream for erotica in general) so I am guessing that my primary audience is middle aged males as opposed to females of any age. Demographics of readership would really be nice to have.
  It is not a revelation that [ Being Serviced  ] is my best seller given my assumed fan base. It's get in, get on, 'get off', and move on stuff.  This particular title is also the most hard-core of all my works, at least as a percentage of words written. Because of this, I intend to create a second hard-core short within the next few weeks to increase my exposure.
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