A SELF-PUBLISHER’S SEVENTH YEAR IN NUMBERS

Welcome to this extremely belated annual report. I have no other excuse than: IT’S BEEN 2020! I’ll keep it short and (bitter) sweet.

First thing first: I actually published a book in 2020! Black Lily, the fourth book in The 9 Lives of the Outlaw Known as Crazy Cat series was published on January 15th. I did a Kindle giveaway for it on Goodreads with 100 winners (340 people requested it). And that just about sums up all things book related I managed to squeeze into the year of the dark lord 2020.

I got a new job in 2020. After about six months of getting schooled, I became a bona fide train conductor. I love my new job, even the crazy hours I work. The crazy hours grant me more time off work but every day is different, and I find it hard to work on projects with the same kind of consistency I was able to with my 08.00-16.00 job. Don’t get me wrong, I would never ever trade my new job for anything else! But I’ve come to realize that I no longer have the time, energy or interest to pursue all of my hobbies with the same gusto that I used to… Something’s gotta give but it won’t be writing, I can assure you of that. Also, I’ve started to learn Spanish.

My plans for this year is to maybe finish editing the next Crazy Cat book and probably publish a project with Ingvild Eiring. I’m trying to be realistic here and make room/time to actually enjoy myself with my sundry hobbies with the whole damn world in lockdown because of a global pandemic. Until next time: Tippin’ my hat to y’all! And be sure to wear your bandanas like you’re robbing a bank.

The Numbers

As you’ve probably deduced from the title, I’ve made six similar blog posts to this one. Scroll down or hit the “Annual Report” category to find them. I started doing these annual reports and sharing the actual numbers of my success and failures as a self-published author because I missed this kind of information myself when I published my first novel in late 2013.

I’ve made a few minor changes this year: I’ve omitted my photo books from the stats (this was never really about them anyway) and I’ve decided to no longer mention “merchandise sold.”

Copies Sold 

As always, when I say “sold,” I mean all copies in distribution, including free books, giveaways and gifts. This blog post is about being honest, so I must honestly admit that I’m not making any money off this and I’m still very much in a place where it’s all about building an audience. I guess the PDFs will pretty much speak for themselves, here’s the first one: Books Sold 2013-2020

Goodreads Numbers

Here are three charts, featuring the numbers of “To Read”s, “Ratings” and “Reviews” of my books on Goodreads.

The numbers are the accumulated total, including all years, for each year. Goodreads Numbers 2013-2020

I might add Amazon numbers next year, I have a few reviews there but so far I’ve gotten more feedback on Goodreads after hosting giveaways there.

Social Media

You can find me on Instagram as @julieloen – a mess of misc. and personal stuff, and @studiostandstill – an account dedicated to my wetplate work.

You can also find me on Facebook as JC Loen (where I post mainly about Crazy Cat related stuff) and Studio Staa Stille, which is dedicated to my wetplate work (in Norwegian).

Here’s my Social Media Numbers 2014-2020

Four Years of Wetplating

I’ve been making wetplates for four years today!

It’s been a weird and busy year, I haven’t had a lot of time to focus on my hobbies and projects, including my wetplate photography. I started studying to become a train conductor in February and graduated in July. I absolutely love my new job! But the studies kept me super busy, and well… It’s been 2020 in Norway too, still is. Y’all know what I’m talking about.

Anyway, since my last wetplate birthday, I’ve managed to squeeze in a few workshops – most notably one I hosted at Teknisk Museum in November last year.

I’ve made 1023 plates during my first four years in this mad scientist kinda photography. My 1000th plate is the one with the blindfolded lady smoking a cigarette. The lady is, of course, Ingvild Eiring, and the title of the plate (it’s an 8×10 tintype) is Execution.

The collage features one image from each month of my fourth year as a wetplate photographer, starting with October last year in the upper left hand corner and finishing with September this year in the lower right hand corner.

BLACK LILY IS OUT NOW!

Cover model: Ingvild Eiring

Black Lily is the fourth book in The 9 Lives of the Outlaw Known as Crazy Cat series. It’s a fast-paced tale of daring to trust new allies, fighting boredom with bullets, and making plans for the future while hiding from the law.

Lee has teamed up with an old friend and is back at outlawing again. The duo gains a new nemesis in a ruthless bounty hunter, and new accomplices in an accidental killer and a stagecoach driver with a secret.

The outlaw known as Crazy Cat gets to prove what she’s made of in encounters with
tyro outlaws, a wounded gang member, and an aging horse, and worst of all: stagecoach passengers.

Get your copy here: Paperback or Kindle

A SELF-PUBLISHER’S SIXTH YEAR IN NUMBERS

Well, I guess I’m darned… I didn’t publish a single book in 2019 (I stated earlier that I’d be darned if I didn’t at least publish Black Lily in 2019) but I did finish one! So, I guess I’m only half darned. Black Lily, the fourth book in The 9 Lives of the Outlaw Known as Crazy Cat series was completed late last year and will be published January 15th.

I reached a new epic low in books sold in a year in 2019, with a total of only 123 books sold. I don’t, however, worry about that at all. Like the year before, I have done absolutely nothing to peddle a single book since my previous annual report. I work a full time job and have been distracted (to put it mildly) this year with other projects besides my writing. I like to call these things I’m passionate about “projects,” the rest of the world seem to insist upon calling them hobbies. Either way, they all claim a fair amount of my time. I became quite obsessed with diorama and miniature making in 2019, and as usual I’ve hosted several wetplate workshops and done a few memorable shoots, I even found the time to open up a proper web store (see previous post). So, I’m juggling a full time job, writing, wetplate photography, a web store and miniature making… it sounds like a lot, but I’m not the least bit tempted to quit any of it.

My plans for this year is to publish Black Lily (it’s all set, so there’s no question about that), make two photo projects with Ingvild Eiring come to life in some sort of book/magazine form, finish the first draft for the sixth book in The 9 Lives of the Outlaw Known as Crazy Cat series and maybe, just maybe, finish editing the fifth book – I don’t expect to publish it this year, even if I do. I’m eager to move forward with the Crazy Cat series, I love working on it, but I don’t want to rush it and publish something that is half-assed.

My #2019bestnine on my @studiostandstill profile on Instagram

The Numbers

As you’ve probably deduced from the title, I’ve made five similar blog posts to this one in 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018. Scroll down or hit the “Annual Report” category to find them. I started doing these annual reports and sharing the actual numbers of my success and failures as a self-published author because I missed this kind of information myself when I published my first novel in late 2013.

Copies Sold 

As always, when I say “sold,” I mean all copies in distribution, including free books, giveaways and gifts. This blog post is about being honest, so I must honestly admit that I’m not making any money off this yet and I’m still very much in a place where it’s all about building an audience. I guess the PDFs will pretty much speak for themselves, here’s the first one: Books Sold 2013-2019

Goodreads Numbers

Here are three charts, featuring the numbers of “To Read”s, “Ratings” and “Reviews” of my books on Goodreads. The numbers are the accumulated total, including all years, for each year. For example: My total reviews received for Embers at Dawn was 8 in 2015, 2016 and 2017. I didn’t get any new reviews those years, 8 are the most reviews of that book for all years combined. Goodreads Numbers 2013-2019

Social Media

You can find me on Instagram as @julieloen – a mess of misc. and personal stuff, and @studiostandstill – an account dedicated to my wetplate work. I changed my @polaloen account to @ingvildandjulie last year, where I post photos from my 60+ shoots (and counting) with Ingvild Eiring. It’s fun to share images from our huge catalogue of work, but I’m not including it in my overview here (the number of followers on this account is, oddly enough, exactly the same now as it was a year ago).

You can also find me on Facebook as JC Loen (where I post mainly about Crazy Cat related stuff) and Studio Staa Stille, which is dedicated to my wetplate work (in Norwegian). I have, of course, a social media presence for my web store too, but I don’t think the numbers for that particular “project” belongs here.

Here’s my Social Media Numbers 2014-2019

Merchandise

My Tictail store closed last year (they were shutting down, so I had no say in the matter) and I chose to shut down my Zazzle store. I didn’t sell a single item from my Society6 store, but I did sell a couple of tintypes from my Etsy store.

All in all 2019 have been pretty darn good! They way things are looking, 2020 ought to be even better… It’ll be the year I become a train conductor! I currently have less than a week left in my old job and less than a month until I start the new one. Here’s to hoping!

Obskura Kuriosum

Today, on Halloween, I’m finally revealing a project I’ve been working on for three years – a webshop called OBSKURA KURIOSUM.

The shop is in Norwegian, basically because I noticed a sad lack of proper curiosity shops in Norway. Have a look at it here: obskurakuriosum.no.

If you see something you like but live outside of Norway, just send an e-mail to post@obskurakuriosum.no and I’m sure we’ll figure something out.

The image is a tintype, featuring model Ingvild Eiring, that I shot for the lookbook a year ago.

Happy Halloween, y’all!

BLACK LILY: THE SOUNDTRACK

Model: Ingvild Eiring

Y’all! Those of you who have been following me for a while knows what this means – this being the soundtrack to my next book… It means that I’m just about done with another book! That’s right. I’ve taken my sweet time with this one, but I’m almost done with Black Lily, the fourth book in The 9 Lives of The Outlaw Known as Crazy Cat series. We’re looking at release this year, late November/early December. All I have left to do is read through it one more time before I send it off to get proofed and… y’know, all the boring stuff, like formatting and getting it ready for publishing. In the meantime, here’s the soundtrack to Black Lily to get you in the mood for another adventure with the wildest cat in the crazy west.

If you want to be the first to know when Black Lily is available, be sure to sign up to my Mailing List.

My Third Wetplate Birthday

I’ve been making wetplates for three years today!

Since my last wetplate birthday, I’ve done my first wetplate wedding shoot, hosted more workshops, done portrait and model shoots, made almost 100 plates of Ingvild Eirings Bad Mice and even had a few wetplaters from the USA visit my tiny studio in Norway.

I’ve made 900 plates during my first three years in this mad scientist kinda photography. I failed miserably on taking my darkroom on the road this year, I hope to change that next year!

And by the way… I’m having a SPOOKTOBER SALE in my Etsy store. Everything is 30% off the entire month. Check it out here.

The collage features one image from each month of my third year as a wetplate photographer, starting with October last year in the upper left hand corner and finishing with September this year in the lower right hand corner.

A SELF-PUBLISHER’S FIFTH YEAR IN NUMBERS

Finally! Here’s my very belated annual report on how my books have sold and gained reputation during the past year. I reached an epic low concerning book sales in 2018… I guess that’s some sort of achievement too.

I didn’t publish any books in 2018. I meant to (at least) publish the fourth book in The 9 Lives of the Outlaw Known as Crazy Cat series, but life got in the way and there simply wasn’t enough time to complete that particular task. I sold a total of 136 books in 2018. I thought 2016 was bad with a total of 170 books sold, but I can thank myself for that. I have done absolutely nothing to peddle a single book since my previous annual report.

I am currently working on the last stages of editing Black Lily, the fourth book in The 9 Lives of the Outlaw Known as Crazy Cat series. It will be published later this year, probably in the fall. I’ll get back to promoting my books when it’s launched.

I did, however, get a few things done concerning my wetplate photography. I hosted four wetplate workshops, attended two markets where I made tintype portraits, launched a website dedicated to my wetplate work and got my Etsy store up and running again (this time dedicated to wetplate photography). I also went to my first portfolio review… and I’ve been confused ever since, questioning my art and wondering what direction to take. I’ve come to the obvious conclusion that I need to make personal photographic work that is either meaningful or sellable. Now I just need to figure out what I find truly meaningful and/or what sort of images do people actually want to spend money on – not as easy as it sounds.

I usually reveal my plans for the year in my annual reports here, but I’ll skip it this time. I’ll be darned if I don’t publish Black Lily, that’s all I’m gonna say. I don’t want to jinx any more projects by revealing them too soon. 😉

Inst-image-136

My #2018bestnine on my @julieloen profile on Instagram

The Numbers

As you’ve probably deduced from the title, I’ve made four similar blog posts to this one in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017. Scroll down or hit the “Annual Report” category to find them. I started doing these annual reports and sharing the actual numbers of my success and failures as a self-publisher because I missed this kind of information myself when I published my first novel in late 2013.

Copies Sold 

As always, when I say “sold,” I mean all copies in distribution, including free books, giveaways and gifts. This blog post is about being honest, so I must honestly admit that I’m not making any money off this yet and I’m still very much in a place where it’s all about building an audience. I guess the PDFs will pretty much speak for themselves, here’s the first one: Books Sold 2013-2018

Goodreads Numbers

Here are three charts, featuring the numbers of “To Read”s, “Ratings” and “Reviews” of my books on Goodreads. The numbers are the accumulated total, including all years, for each year. For example: My total reviews received for Embers at Dawn was 8 in 2015, 2016 and 2017. I didn’t get any new reviews those years, 8 are the most reviews of that book for all years combined. Goodreads Numbers 2013-2018

Social Media

Again, as always (it seems) I end up apologising and explaining why I haven’t fulfilled my plans for the previous year, and excusing myself for being the worst. blogger. ever. Sorry! I haven’t entertained WordPress as much as I should, I even quit Twitter. I’m still all over Instagram, though, with three private accounts: @julieloen – a mess of misc. and personal stuff, @polaloen – a gallery dedicated to my Polaroid work, and @studiostandstill – an account dedicated to my wetplate work. You can also find me on Facebook, but Facebook seems less than useless these days, if you want to promote something creative.

Here’s my Social Media Numbers 2014-2018

Merchandise

I wasn’t been much better at selling merchandise than books in 2018, but it didn’t turn out too bad. I sold two art prints at Society6, one book and three sets of postcards from my Tictail store, and one set of postcards and one tintype from my Etsy store. I also sold a few postcards and tintypes at the markets where I made portraits. I didn’t sell anything from my Zazzle store.

I’ll be closing my Tictail store soon (they’re shutting down), and probably move everything (or most of it) to Etsy. I’m considering closing my Zazzle store too.

That’s it for now! Hopefully my next annual report will be filled with big numbers and bigger accomplishments. I don’t, however, consider 2018’s lack of retrospect bravado to be synonymous with failure, it was simply a year of travelling… and I haven’t reached the destination yet.

Another Year of Wetplates

I’ve been making wetplates for two years today!

The first year was mostly about getting the hang of the process. During my second year I leveled up to making 8×10 plates, started to make my own collodion, made an Etsy store and sold some of my wetplate art. I’ve done both commercial and non-commercial wetplate work, exhibited some of my wetplate art for the first time and done my first pop-up event. Studio Stand Still became a thing with its own website AND I kicked off @wetplatedarlings – an Instagram gallery for wetplates.

I’ve made 650 plates during my first two years in this mad scientist kinda photography. I’ve got several personal projects in the works and lots more wetplate related stuff lined up. I’d also like to experiment with flaws and artifacts. I love perfect plates, but (especially for personal projects) I like a bit of mess on my plates.

The collage features one image from each month of my second year as a wetplate photographer, starting with October last year in the upper left hand corner and finishing with September this year in the lower right hand corner. Models are: Janne Ebbesdatter Lavogez, Zialand, Ingvild Eiring, Isabell Lorentzen, yours truly and a dead magpie.

If you’d like to see more of my wetplate work, head on over to studiostaastille.no or julieloen.com or follow my adventures in wetplate photography on Instagram.

Welcome to Studio Stand Still

I’ve got a website dedicated to my wetplate work now! It’s in Norwegian, because Norway is where I’m at. Have a look at my website here.

To see even more of my wetplate work, check out Studio Stand Still’s Instagram page here.

AND I’ve exhumed my Etsy store from its long slumber and transformed it into a shop dedicated to my wetplate work. Buy my wetplate art here.

That’s it for now, just a quick and seriously belated announcement about all my wetplate related stuff going on around the web.