DaisyClusterBlog_0083 copy copyTwo weeks into my career as an “indie author” and I’ve had zero sales.

On the bright side, things can only get better – you think?

I spent the first few days after publication updating information and posting The BIG PICTURE – A Camera, A Young Woman, An Uncompromising Ethic on Amazon’s Authorcentral, Shelfari, Goodreads, BookLikes, and the LibraryThing. I find navigating through these sites frustrating and time consuming. I’m not even sure what the goal is – having your book listed on all these sites amounts to little more than having your book listed on all these sites.

Perhaps I’d have more success if I got “friendly” – joined groups and discussions though I’m not sure what the conversation would be about other than how your book is not selling and do you know any more stupid sites to post it on?

Something is wrong here, but until I can figure out what exactly it is I’ll continue with the status quo, which ironically, has gotten me no where with my previous books.

As you can tell, it hasn’t been a good couple of weeks

Next, I sought out opportunities to have The BIG PICTURE reviewed. There’s a bunch of sites that claim they specialize in reviewing books by self-published authors. They break down into three categories:

– those who were giving free reviews but were apparently overwhelmed and have either closed for reviews altogether or until sometime in the undisclosed, distant future.

– those who said sure we’ll review your book but if you want it reviewed quickly it will cost you – anywhere from $25 to $100. Otherwise, we’ll see what we can do, but no promises.

– those who said don’t talk to us until we see your money.

I went ahead and submitted review copies to three sites that seemed the most legitimate:




Booklife is Publishers Weekly indie site. They put you through an involved registration that even includes a self-evaluation quiz to see if you’re actually ready to self-publish. Guess what, you’re not, but if you pay to subscribe to any one or all of their programs they can help you get there.

I’m thinking a review from any of these sites is about as likely as my novel becoming a best-seller. Hey, we can only hope.

In groping around the internet I discovered a woman who had started an author’s review group on Goodreads. The moderator froze the group with 56 authors signing on, all willing to submit free books, and 5 people applying to read them. Which is just another indication of how likely one is to get that elusive review.

I then posted the first chapter on Wattpad. I’m not sure if I’m in violation of the exclusivity agreement but so far no Amazon police have come to my door, wiped out my account, or froze my computer. I posted the second chapter on July 24th. So I far I’ve recorded 26 reads.

I also tried to upload excerpts from my new novel on Bublish only to be informed that my current (free) account does not allow me to add another book. I either have to upgrade for $199 or delete an existing book. I chose to delete a book. Bublish is fun, but it doesn’t appear to be driving any sales for me, but then nothing is.

One book wasn’t enough evidently, so I deleted two. I was still getting the same message so I decided to “submit a ticket” and ask what was going on rather than delete my last book.

Bublish emailed me back and said they were looking into it. They added;

We are a marketing tool that an author uses to effectively reach, engage, and grow their audience. We believe that the tools we have created make that process easy and fun for authors. As you know, it takes time and consistency to grow an audience and that with a growth in audience size and a valuable product, sales do increase.”

The problem with all these “aids to authors” is they lack verifiable results. Without seeing any sales just how much time and money are you supposed to spend in an attempt to “grow an audience”? I thought book sales came first and an audience came after people read your book and liked it. I still do. First comes the “valuable product”, then the audience grows.

Bublish suggested a conference on Skype. I suggested we forget it, I’ll use Twitter for free, which I have been, everyday, tweeting about my new novel into the digital void.

It’s not that I wouldn’t be prepared to pay money for a program or service that could resuscitate my moribund writing career. I really don’t care to be compensated for the time spent writing my books, but I’ll be damned if I’ll go in the hole to market them.

The only bright spot in the last week week is that my personal website has clocked 138 visits. Since I’m obviously not a successful writer or (take my word for it) a popular guy, I’m attributing this increase as response to photo assignments I’ve posted on Flickr and Red Bubble.

Or, could it be, since I’ve been doing a fair bit of political agitation for my community and environmental causes, that my enemies are checking me out?

Now that would be interesting, and, I might say, a much needed distraction.


My new novel, The BIG PICTURE – A Camera, A Young Woman, An Uncompromising Ethic is now availableon Amazon at http://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B00LTXGD58


Visit my publisher’s website for excerpts from, and buy links to, my three novels, Spirit Bear, Eagleridge Bluffs, and Not Wonder More – Mad Maggie and the Mystery of the Ancients. Now all three books in the ECO-WARRIOR series available for $8.99



Read my current work(s) in progress at



More of my original photographs can be viewed, purchased, and shipped to you as GREETING CARDS; matted, laminated, mounted, framed, or canvas PRINTS; and POSTERS. Go to: http://www.redbubble.com/people/rodraglin


View my flickr photostream at https://www.flickr.com/photos/78791029@N04/

Or, My YouTube channel if you prefer photo videos accompanied by classical music