Self-Publishing, Royalties, and Self-Worth

So I just got an email notifying me of my first Kitsune-Tsuki royalties. So of course I had to tweet about it.

Of course, I knew that I wasn’t putting out Kitsune-Tsuki for money. That’s good, because all single-digit humor aside, percentages on a 99¢ ebook ($4.99 in paperback) are not exactly going to pay for a trip to a warmer climate.


Cash (Photo credit: 401(K) 2013

But still, I do feel justified. Not that all that education and hundreds of hours of work went into Kitsune-Tsuki alone — it certainly didn’t — but that Kitsune-Tsuki proved I could be successful doing this.

Self-Publishing or Traditional Publishing?

You see, Kitsune-Tsuki sold traditionally, back in 2008. You might remember that the United States had a bit of an economic downturn about that time, yes? The small publishing house which had purchased Kitsune-Tsuki was affected along with everyone else, and they shelved the project to wait for a more financially-fluid quarter. Kitsune-Tsuki Han Solo’d in contract-carbonite for years.

When the contract expired, I briefly kicked around the idea of self-publishing, but I was still working toward traditional publishing with other projects, and I wasn’t sure what I thought of self-publishing. Vanity press, right? For work that wasn’t good enough to sell? (Of course that’s not a complete or accurate picture of self-publishing! but it was the prevalent view for a long time.)

But Kitsune-Tsuki had been good enough to sell. And it would be hard to place again in the traditional market, being a fairly niche piece and an awkward length, as well. So what could I lose? Well, besides money and self-respect?

But within a week of publishing, Kitsune-Tsuki had won an award (I’d submitted in advance), salvaging my self-respect, and now I can point to token royalties toward covering the money.

And I just sent off a requested manuscript this week, so I’m still working toward traditional publishing, too. All in all, no records shattered, but a success I can live with.


If you haven’t read Kitsune-Tsuki yet, and you’d like to contribute to my sense of self-worth and accomplishment, please consider clicking the link. I get an extra three cents if you buy through my own affiliate link, you see. ;-)

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