The Ups and Downs of 2011

I started this year in a very upbeat mode. My Jackson books were gaining steam on Amazon’s Kindle, and I was about to release my fifth in the series. I’d given up freelance work to write and promote full-time. It was a risk, but it was working out. Sales stayed strong through the new release and into the late spring, and I started to think I might even get ahead financially.

Then, inevitably, the Amazon algorithm dropped me to give other books a chance and my sales began to slide. By late fall, I was worried about whether I could continue to support my household. So I worked like a mad woman to finish another novel before the Christmas buying rush.

At my darkest moment —when I started looking for an office job—Amazon offered its Select Program to self-published authors, and I jumped in early with a few books. The giveaways gave me great exposure, and all my book sales responded. Now I’m heading into the new year with strong sales, and feeling optimistic that this time the curve will be different. A quick rise and fall (for some books), followed by a long, slow build for all my novels. Or at least, that’s what I’m hoping for. To gradually expand my readership and the volume of books I offer.

In personal news, our first granddaughter was born, and she’s delightful. My husband started a trike-building business, our oldest son left the Army (and Iraq) for the last time, and our younger sons both experienced huge personal growth this year.

I’m very optimistic about 2012. I have a few resolutions and goals, but I’m also approaching all of it with more flexibility than I’ve allowed myself in the past.

I have about 48 hours left in this year, and I plan to spend it reading, then dancing to Satin Love Orchestra tomorrow night. I also plan to spend the first day of the year reading as well. Then Monday, it’s back to work, writing my new Jackson story.

What are your highlights of 2011? Your plans for 2012?