I’m interrupting the second part of my previous post because the KENP rate payout for May has come out. It’s $0.004093 or so, which is ridiculously low. Second lowest of the year, and in comparison, we’ve recently had as high as $0.0046 or so. Now, mind you, this is the US$ rate and some of the others might change, but since most of our income comes from the US, a big change here is significant.
Well, as an example, the System Apocalypse Short Story Anthology II is 415 KENP pages. So, that’s a payout difference of $1.70 or $1.91 (or roughly $0.21 per book). Assuming a 100 books read, that’s $21 taken out of our pockets. A 1000 books read would be $210, just gone.
Now, the book itself is sold at $4.99; so we’re looking at roughly $3.38 (70% of price minus $0.11 delivery fee) if people bought it. Or put another way, we make almost double our KU payout now with the lower rate.
This is just as stark when you look at the Nameless Restaurant. We (okay, I) vacillated between going wide or going to KU and I eventually chose to be in KU for 3 months before going wide.
I’m now seriously regretting that choice.
So, the Nameless Restaurant has 167 KENP pages. That’s $0.68 or $0.77 in sales, or a difference of $0.11. Now, at $3.99 sale price, we make $2.73 per sale. Or roughly 4 times as much in terms of sales. And frankly, we don’t have 4 times the number of KU reads to sales right now (It’s slightly over 2.5 times).
And cozy fantasy wide, I think, would be much stronger than LitRPG. While we’ve gotten some nice rank boosts…
It doesn’t really pay the bills. More details of actual sales for the Nameless Restaurant later when the month is over, but…
KU and its exclusivity and the payouts hurt. A lot.
What To Do
Well, going wide is an option. It’s one I’ve gone for myself. I have multiple streams of income, and while even together, none of them equal my Amazon and Audible income, they are making a larger and large piece of the pie each year.
Some of the ways we make money that aren’t directly tied to direct sales on Amazon and Audible:
- Youtube ad income
- Amazon affiliate links on Starlit Publishing and this website
- Patreon (hi!)
- Webnovel app income
- Comic income
- Other ebook retailers
- FindAway Voices, Kobo and Storytel for audio income
- Merchandise Sales
- Sales on Starlit Publishing’s ecommerce store
- Kickstarter Projects
- Audiobook publisher advances and royalties
- Sale of paperback / hardcover books to bookstores
- Translations and sale of translations in above avenues
What’s all that worth? Roughly 10-12% (there’s some degree of unknown here due to the way wide income comes in 2-4 months late at times) of what we made this year. Not huge, but it’s also worth noting that our largest series are all on KU right now. As we shift them wide, I expect those numbers to change.
Are You Pulling A Thousand Li and System Apocalypse Wide?
Eventually. Right now, the numbers don’t support it; but I expect that as time goes on and I release more works and older works like the System Apocalypse which isn’t selling as well anymore due to lack of releases slow down, I’ll bring it wide and sell that way.
We’re also looking at increasing retail prices too and if we do that and it goes well, then the disparity (and sales number difference) between KU payout and sales income is just going to widen. At a certain point, it won’t matter that we get more readers in KU, we would still earn more by just selling wide.
But you have less readers!
Which is perhaps the greatest negative, though I’d point out that being ‘wide’ means that we actually have a very large reader base internationally.
Overall, it’s a bit of a gamble; but as KENP page reads keep dropping and inflation going the other way, things have to change.
I’ve written a lot about what to do if you intend to go wide. One thing I’d note is that the increase in come from all these factors is slow. As an example, I’ve doubled my Shopify and YouTube revenue this year already so far. Even though neither brings a huge amount in raw numbers yet, it is increasing – and at a faster rate than my Amazon income.
Just as importantly, the income is stable. Most of my wide income is much more stable than Amazon actually which is fascinating to me.
The best time to start is yesterday, the second best time to start is now. IF you intend to go wide.
Like the business blog post? Want to support me writing more of them? Want to read ahead (2 weeks) of others? Become a Patron and choose the $2-tier to be able to read the business posts only and ask questions about the business side of writing.