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The Decision to Drop an Ebook Price Permanently January 30, 2012

Posted by shannonmuir in analysis, Books, ebooks, epub, indie, indie publishing, NOOK, self-publishing, Smashwords, webcomic, Writing.
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Effective this past weekend, the FLYING GLORY FLASHBACK ebook edition reduced from 3.99 to 2.99 permanently (the print edition will not change). It’s already that way on Kindle and Smashwords, and because Smashwords stocks the other retailers will take just a little more time to drop there. It was a difficult decision and I’d like to go behind the logic as to why.

FLYING GLORY FLASHBACK carried a higher price tag than my other ebooks. The reasoning behind this is that the webcomic that it is about has been provided by myself, at my expense and generally speaking at a loss, for a decade.  No merchandising or any other way to make incoming sales has really been done on our site with any direct basis on the FLYING GLORY AND THE HOUNDS OF GLORY UNIVERSE (though I have advertised a CafePress side project there years ago). I hoped that, with a small investment, people could give back a little extra in the form of one book after getting ten years of something for nothing.

FLYING GLORY FLASHBACK  finally became available for all e-platforms on December 19th. After looking at a month of data on sites where I can track this, some interesting patterns emerged. FLYING GLORY FLASHBACK is the clear frontrunner for my most regularly sampled book. It averages a sample a day, and in fact actually was sampled at least once a day for 29 straight days! Yet these samples are not translating to sales. There are two reasons I can think of for this: the first is that even though it’s about a webcomic’s lyrics and history they aren’t biting because it is text-only (there’s a complicated reason why we ended up having to do it that way involving the FLYING GLORY partnership agreement); the other one would be the price point.

The only one of these I have control over is the price point. So I’m trying to see now if people are willing to bite on an text-only book about a webcomic’s history, along with the full “lyrics” from every “song” featured in it as well as original materials I’ve written that went on to inspire the webcomic, at a lower price. As I put it elsewhere, a 2.99 price breaks down to only 25 cents per year to support the material people have come to enjoy. I feel like one of those charity commercials telling you what your monthly donation breaks down to, but I just wanted to make it clear.

Right now I need help more than ever because I don’t have a regular source of income to pay for the website. I will be blunt. FLYING GLORY AND THE HOUNDS OF GLORY will make it through the end of its tenth anniversary online as I made arrangements the site through the end of February 2013 while I was still more financially secure to do so. I’ve made arrangements for that because I can’t disappoint Kevin, our fans, or myself. However, I really don’t know at this point what the future is of the webcomic past that date.

No matter what happens, thank everyone for their emotional support over the past ten years, it’s meant a lot. Kevin and I are not throwing in the towel by any means. If you can show your support by spending the 2.99 on the book that would be greatly appreciated. Like I said, when you break it down it’s really kind of inexpensive. Regardless, the ride’s been fun, and I would do it all over again.

FLYING GLORY FLASHBACK: CELEBRATING 10 YEARS OF THE LYRICS, WORDS, AND HISTORY BEHIND THE WEBCOMIC FLYING GLORY AND THE HOUNDS OF GLORY can be found on ebook at Amazon, NOOK, Smashwords, iBookstore, Sony, Diesel ebook, and KOBO – and also in print. Remember that some prices may still show higher as they are in process of repopulating.

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