I’ve received enough emails lately to make me realize that folks are fascinated by what constitutes a writer’s life. I decided to reveal the naked truth from my perspective using the uncompromising language of numbers.
Please keep in mind that these statistics are only a reflection of my work. Me, little ole mid-list cozy mystery author, but I hope they fill in some of the blanks.
Number of books I’ll have published by the end of 2010 — 13
Number of author names I’ve used — 3
Average page count per book — 290
Average word count per book — 87,000
Number of publishers I’ve written for — 3
Average number of series I have going at once - 2
Average advance received from publisher — $3000, $5000, or $7500 per book
Average amount paid for large print or foreign rights — $500 or $1000
Average amount of advance spent on promotion — 50-75% of advance
Average money my publishers give me for promotion — $0
Average time it takes me to write a completed draft — 5-6 months
Average positive emails I receive per week from readers — 6
Average negative emails I receive — 1 per blue moon and these are usually to point out a type-o or punctuation error
Number of personal copies I receive of each title — 30-50
Time it took me to sign with an agent — 5 months
Time it took my agent (Jessica Faust of Book Ends) to sell my first series — 2 months
Average number of conferences I attend per year — 3
Average number of library talks per year — 2
Average number of times I check my sales ranking on Amazon — a billion
My writing income based on my 2009 tax return — $21,000
Day per year I work — 360 (this is not an exaggeration. I consider promotion work and unless I am sick or am forced to be away from a computer, I find time every day to write, edit, promote, or research).
Age I knew I wanted to become a writer when I grew up — 7
Number of cancelled series — 1 (the Molly Appleby collectible series)
Number of proposals I’m working on — 2 (may be combined into 1)
Times I’d trade this life for another — 0. There are bad days, trust me. But I knew what I wanted to do when I was seven and by golly, I’m doing it and loving it.
Did I miss anything? Not strip things down enough? Go ahead and ask me a question. I’ll tell you anything.