Surface-level takeaways from reading the Taleist survey (1007 self-publishers asked about self-publishing):
While I earn way, way below the $10,000 average (skewed by the top 10% of authors earning 75% of the revenue), I am somewhat above the $500 median, in terms of annual revenue. I also have triple the number of titles available, compared to the top 10%, and over seven times as many as the average.
The other number which jumped out at me was 1,500: That’s the average number of copies sold last year, according to respondents. I wish they’d included a median value for that, too. That’s over nine times more copies than I sold last year, across all my titles, and if I recall correctly, their number was *per title*. My sellingest title sold 27 copies in 2011, and it was a $0.99 short story (my two best-selling book-length titles sold 18 & 17 copies apiece in 2011) – I have no idea how to get from dozens of sales a year to thousands, and as opposed to the 53% of respondents who self-published for the first time in 2011, I’ve been doing this for nearly a decade.
Glancing at the Amazon page for the $4.99 version of the report (my copy was free, for taking the survey), I see that it appears to have sold more copies in less than a day than any of my books did all last year, and possibly more copies than all of my books put together last year. I suppose I really ought to get back to work on my book about my experiences writing and self-publishing 19 books over the last ~10 years. Maybe next week, after Phoenix Comicon crushes my soul for the next four days.
Here’s hoping Never Let the Right One Go sells out at Comicon, at least doubling my book-revenue and nearly doubling my max-units-sold-per-title vs last year.