This week, I silently celebrated a nice milestone: over 2,000 ebook sales of Sultana. Didn't mention it to any of my friends, co-workers or loved ones. If you're reading this blog, then you heard it first. My mother is probably wondering why I'm so cheery, despite a dreadful cold.
For many of my writing friends, that figure is small, but it's very significant to me, as I recall my struggles to get this title published by traditional means. Along that journey, there were the nagging fears and self-recriminations involved in being 'agented, not sold' and one spectacularly bigoted rejection, something about "a positive portrayal of Muslim society post-September 11 will never sell." I keep that 'gem' along with a few other ridiculous letters from industry insiders tacked up on my desk for a good laugh. Reaching this milestone on what is the anniversary month of Sultana's publication is also gratifying, because I have done very little to promote the title.
Last month, in celebration of the upcoming anniversary, I offered the book for free over a two-week span, which resulted in over 15,000 downloads, some additional good reviews and 108 sales of the sequel, Sultana's Legacy. It keeps getting better. Amazon's been a bit wonky all day, but for the first time, Sultana broke into the smaller genre categories at #92 in Family Sagas (yes, I took a screenshot for posterity). I don't expect things to stay this way forever - that's my inner pessimist / realist talking - but I'll enjoy while it lasts. Lest you think I'm planning on grinning like an idiot all night watching KDP data, I have a book to put out in the spring that I'm steadily editing. No rest for the sick or highly motivated.
To all those who read and critiqued early drafts, supported and believed in the strengths of Sultana, and those readers who've bought the book and / or its sequel, you have my undying thanks.