October 2, 2010

What's a Writer to do?

I love hearing from readers, even if I don't necessarily agree with the feedback. Hearing what a reader thought of one of the my stories helps me to improve and lets me know what the average person thinks, instead of my circle of other writers who see things so differently.

I was excited to hear from a couple of readers on Amazon about my Shades of Night: Wounded Fox story. One reader loved it, saying they are excited for the next installment. Another reader said they were disappointed since it was a short story. Okay, maybe I should make that fact more clear in the Amazon listing. This reader complained that the price was steep for how short the story was. If I could lower the price to twenty five cents, I would, but Amazon does not let me dip below ninety nine cents -- something about keeping the lights on at the server farm.

I have to admit, I don't like readers feeling like they did not get their money's worth. I have bought books and after the fact felt that way, so I know how it is. This reader did not say the story was bad, just too short. I had always heard to leave them wanting more. In any case, this feedback has given me pause, made me consider perhaps changing how I am doing the Shades of Night series. I said before Shades of Night is an experiment. The whole project is not about making money, so quite frankly I don't care about the ninety nine cent price point. I am more concerned about telling good stories, gaining exposure. I have a day job, after all...

Since I cannot give away downloads on Amazon and I cannot go below ninety nine cents, I have been thinking of combining two installments of Shades of Night per download and just releasing the series once every two months. I have not completely settled on this idea, but I am very seriously considering it. What do you all think? Is ninety nine cents too much for a short story that gives you about half an hour (maybe more or less depending on how fast of a reader you are) of entertainment? Maybe I am over-reacting, and that is why I am just mulling things over right now.Let me know what you think, either by posting comments of just sending me a message...

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