Friday, April 22, 2005


I have sales data that might help other writers who are wondering how many copies you have to sell in order to crack the USAT BSL. I'd also like to post it here on the weblog, but if I do doubtless someone will accuse me of bragging again.

I'm trying to be more sensitive to the easily p.o.'ed, but I'd also like to make this info available to interested parties whose egos can withstand the pain.

Any suggestions? E-mail, maybe?

Update: Thanks for the suggestions and e-mails. To respond to some dismayed folks, I'm not attempting to bully other pros into releasing their sales data. Remember what your mother told you: If PBW jumps off a cliff, it doesn't mean you have to.

Seriously, I think pros need to be more candid about the reality of the business. Sell-through is huge part of that reality. Aren't you all sick of being told one thing and finding out the truth is different? If you put the facts out there, people won't be making career decisions based on rumors that their pals in MWA, RWA or SFWA told them.

Anyway, to continue my sensitivity streak and to keep both sides happy, I'll send the info to any interested party via e-mail. Please send your request with a subject line of "Numbers" to


  1. Anonymous8:18 AM

    I would like to know. You may email if you would like. My email is Thanks

  2. Anonymous8:21 AM

    Please post. I certainly would like to know, and I think most writers would.

    As to the bragging. If you are successful, then it's fact, not bragging. :)


  3. Anonymous8:21 AM


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  5. Anonymous8:23 AM

    I'd definitely be interested to know (and I don't consider it bragging when it will actually help people):

  6. I don't believe it's bragging, and even if it were, you've paid your dues. :) I'm just grateful you're willing to share.

  7. Anonymous8:29 AM

    Before anyone else posts their e-mail address (I get a lot of visitors, and I don't want you all getting SPAMMed), if you're interested in the numbers, just send an e-mail with a subject line of "Numbers" to, and I'll respond with the data. Everyone who has already posted an e-mail addy here, I'll also send it along to you.

  8. Anonymous8:43 AM

    You know, I've read your blog for a while, and you've never posted information that could be considered "bragging" unless it was to help other writers. Makes me think that those who accuse you of bragging are just hypersensetive to their own failure to match up.

    So I say ignore them and go ahead and post it. It's useful info, and it'd be interesting for a lot of people, writers and non-writers. And if it hurts peoples feelings and they have to accuse you of bragging to feel better, well, sucks to be them.

    - Tis Jones

  9. It's not bragging, it's just good information. Information that I would love to have. Please send it to me.

  10. Anonymous9:08 AM

    Yes please. :)

  11. Yikes! Duh! Didn't even think about that. Thanks for the info!

  12. Anonymous10:17 AM

    I say it's your blog, write what you want. Who cares what the whiners think?

  13. Anonymous10:36 AM

    In my opinion, instead of being concerned about offended ones bitching and moaning, why not school them to bend over and pucker to kiss your booty since they chose to come on your site to sniff anyway?

    Honest info about this biz is a public service.

  14. Anonymous10:44 AM

    I vote with everyone else who said, "It's not bragging."

    That said, please send it to me, too. :)

  15. Anonymous10:49 AM

    I didn't think it was braging and it made me smile all morning. People who thought it was bragging should perhaps consider if they have jealousy issues...
    It is obvious you work hard at what you do. To me, this was a little acknowledgement that you wrote a book people are buying (I bought it, I read it, I am giving it to friends as gifts). I was personally thrilled for you!

  16. Anonymous11:12 AM

    Just post it here. It's not bragging, and if some people think it is, well, do you really care what they think?

    PS. I'm glad you turned comments back on. Now if only we can convince Holly to ... ;)

  17. Anonymous11:27 AM

    It's instances like these where I usually wind up sticking my foot in my mouth by being really crass. Instead, I'll try stopping at the toes and be just plain crass.

    Those with egos that can be blown apart by the slightest breeze can go mollify themselves by re-reading their own critical raves with their peers in their own private literary corner where their brand of prose reigns supreme.

    For those of us whose interest is seduced by the tease of this post, we who absorb tidbits like this as though we were dehydrated sponges introduced to a full bathtub, these gems are the morsels that keep us alive.

    I love your frank disclosures on the writing life, fragile egos be damned. If they can't handle it, read someone else's blog.

  18. Post, Post, Post, Post, Post, Post, Post!

  19. Anonymous12:14 PM

    Please post. If it's bragging, then it's bragging in the Great Warrior sense.
    Woe to the sensitive who have nothing to brag about!

  20. I've been reading your blog for the past year. You deserve applause for your accomplishments. Forget the nitpickers (with their little green hearts)--go ahead and post the info. Working writers want to know. d:)

  21. Belated congrats on making the list! I have my first edition copy of IAB at the very top of my TBR pile.

    Count me in as another writer who enjoys your blog and doesn't feel you've been bragging (or pressuring others to post details). I'd love to hear what the magic first week sales number was for you on hitting the USA Today list! Email on the way . . .

    Thanks for providing a consistently entertaining, inspirational, and informative blog. You're a pleasure to read!

    --Tina St. John

  22. Anonymous9:15 PM

    I believe someone once said it ain't bragging if it's the truth or something of that nature. If it's too hot stay out of the kitchen. The more information you have the better prepared you are. Please keep the information coming.


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