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Well, that was depressing but mostly expected. At least I went into the election with only the thinnest of hopes. (Thank you, Nate Silver, for keeping my expectations low!)

And the sun still comes up and the leaves turn and it's only a midterm, and gay marriage is still legal in my state and at least we voted a bunch of progressives into the county commissioners here who will hopefully put SOME brakes on the massive development about to eat Pittsboro, assuming there's any time left to do so. (Seriously, that was a clusterfuck. The developer claimed he'd accept input at every step and "we'd be in charge." These "input" conversations consisted of "This is bad." "Tough, we're not changing it." and "In the first draft, there was a buffer zone for the river here..." "Yeah, we changed that, because we wanted money." and "Your park is your septic field." "So?")

And Dragonbreath sales have been low this year because we had no new releases. Putting on my business hat, that was really not a good choice, and it happened entirely owing to poor planning on their part with the release schedule juggling. A year and a half is a very long time in kid's books, particularly when we were putting out two a year solidly beforehand. Plus a couple of books came out in paperback midway through the year, and that cannibalized the hardcover sales.

Regular releases are important for book sales, trade or self-pub. You have to keep people engaged in your world.

But we have four books out next year. Will that give it enough of a bump? We'll find out.

(I am not broke or anything, by the way, this isn't a "POVERTY COMETH!" moment, just a really uneven year in sales, as they sell hardbacks in the first half and the hardbacks get returned in the second half. Should you ever find yourself with a solid series, by the way, the first half makes the money, the second half gets nailed with returns, so stuff everything into savings before you go out and buy a car.)

On the bright side, Nurk! I actually got two hundred dollars from it this year! (Go, little shrew! You took awhile to find yourself, but I'm proud of you!)

One of these days I will do a big post about hybrid authordom and so forth, but probably not today. (Incidentally, if any of your are ever curious about sales numbers on self-pub and new book bumps and so forth, I've been keeping a self-pub thread going on the Absolute Write forums that details the business end there--it's mostly of interest for business types and math nerds (and perhaps those hoping to self-pub!) but since so much of publishing is still swamped in a mire of hopeful assumptions and lack of reliable data, it's my stab at providing a data point.)

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I had wondered why no Dragonbreath books came out this year...I figured it had something to do with contracts or business-y stuff. It's definitely a weird choice to release regularly, then nothing for a year. I'm really looking forward to the Dragonbreath #10 in January!

It wasn't a choice so much as a "We can totally do this!" on their part with some other stuff that was supposed to come out, and then they...totally couldn't. So the book that would have filled the gap on the first half didn't, and then DB10 got moved for unrelated reasons.

Stuff happens. All I can do is keep up my end, and if they blow it, hey, at least I'm not the one at fault. *grin*

Book sale optimism

sorry, on mobile so grammar for crap. Our elementary school JUST discovered Dragonbreath and now can't keep them on the shelf. (I may have prodded that a bit). My point is that they are just now getting popular in my area.

Have you ever been approached to do the Skype author thing with schools? Our 4th grade teachers do a lot of those. I think it's easier than touring for a lot of people.

Re: Book sale optimism

Awesome! So glad they like it!

Alas, I can't do Skype any more. My hearing loss in the upper register has advanced to the point where the library microphones turn kids into white noise. If libraries had way better sound equipment--and if the audiologist can fix me!--I might be able to start again, but I had to stop the Skype visits because I couldn't hear anything.

Hey! My kid is starting to read! She likes My Little Pony comics, I think that's probably the hardest thing she reads (very slowly) herself. She can probably handle Dragonsbreath, right? I had put this in the back of my mind as "check out later when she's bigger" but now she's bigger. (she's first grade, I know it says 2nd but...)

I think she'll like Nurk too, we tried when she was younger to read it to her but chapter books weren't interesting to her. That's starting to change. :)

Start it as a reading WITH her kind of thing. My parents did that with us for books we weren't quite ready for. Like when we were 7 or so, Dad read us chapters of The Hobbit to us every night.

Any chance of the T. Kingfisher works being available on paper? For those of us who have turned various non-techy relatives on to your writing, and who would like to be able to deliver more of it as -- perhaps -- suitable solstice gifts.

Argh. I just left what was meant to be an encouraging remark, but it contained URLs, and LiveJournal decided I was a spammer. Check your spam trap?

The Absolute Write forum thread was very interesting! Thank you for pointing it out. :)

My kids have been getting a little fussy about the lack of new dragonbreath (Moooom, *when* is it coming out again?) We've pre-ordered the next and Castle Hangnail, though, and they are threatening to go to the bookstore with me, so I can't read it first.

My youngest thinks the world needs a Dragonbreath-Babymouse crossover. (He's already written his own Dragonbreath-Pokemon crossovers.)

Many thanks for the link to the thread there. Interesting data. (Also, congrats on all the sales! O:D )

The developer claimed he'd accept input at every step

In computer science terms, there's a difference between accepting input and actually doing anything of measurable response to it.

Thank you so much for being open about your numbers, it's really appreciated. More data! More!

You may not think there's much kid's-books/Kingfisher cross-marketing potential just now... but just wait until all your thousands of child fans grow up!

Fascinating thread! It makes me curious - what are the taxes like on self pubbed books? Also, as a lazy longtime reader, it reminds me to go buy everything :)

Oh, hey, the T. Kingfisher things are available on Nook! [buys the things]

Yeah. Last few years the local counsel has been pushing for a bunch of ball fields behind my house. Claiming it will bring in SO MUCH TOURIST MONEY. So far it's behind schedule, everyone on the street now has a massive rat problem, 30+ trees (many of them 50+ year old oaks) were mulched, and there is nasty dust constantly being kicked up.
They didn't tell anyone about it till they had already pushed the plan through and when anyone complained or tried to fight it they started whining about how we complain too much.
Personally I think it was a front for dumping toxic waste. I hope your development issue gets stopped before it gets that bad. Our local ecosystem is a wreck right now.

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