Tuesday = PubDay

Going forward, we will be releasing our books on Tuesdays. We have played with release schedules over the years. Initially we just released whenever we were ready on any day of the year. This evolved to releasing all books on the first Tuesday of each month to now Tuesdays between late January and Thanksgiving.
Why not December and early January? These are terrible times to release books — sales results have rarely been worthwhile. It is hard to get momentum for a release — and our staff is taking a lot of time off over the holidays.  So, in the future, we will avoid these times for book releases.
Why Tuesday? Because very few holidays fall on Tuesdays and most people are in the office Tuesday through Thursday and the publishing industry has always seemed to like Tuesday. I don’t know — I guess it is early in the week, but not too early.
So!  Tuesday, January 22, will be the first releases for 2018. From there, we will slot books for Tuesday releases as they come out of the oven.

2017 was a good year

It wasn’t the best of times, nor was it the worst of times. The good news is 2017 saw an improvement of 15% in book sales. What’s really interesting about that is we only released 47 new books in 2017 – exactly equal to our 2016 output. So why the sales increase?
1) The economy improved!  As much as some of us don’t like the new leadership in the country, the economy has picked up steam. This is evident in all of my experiences in and out of publishing and as an Economics professor.
2) We changed our mix to release more nonfiction. We have had better and steadier performance from our new releases.
3) We improved our social media engagement. The steady pulse of social media has definitely resulted in increased sales of our back list books.
4) We had some breakthroughs with major media thanks to several of our authors.
So, what can improve? Sales are still below our best year of 2015. Most companies do not grow in a steady linear upward fashion. There is give and take and ups and downs. It really is more like a boat ride on rough seas than a skate across a frozen pond. 2015 was so good because we had a number of large hardcover publishing deals that were very successful. This has yet to repeat, and may never. The lesson learned is we need to keep adjusting to our readers and the marketplace.
Here are the top things we can do to improve to try to hit or exceed the 2015 number in 2018:
1) Sell more of the books we offer — especially fiction!
2) Continue to leverage new services like NetGalley, our Entertainment Agent site partner, and other opportunities to increase exposure.
3) Better coordinate our marketing campaigns. We will be attempting to coordinate our social media activity and ebook promotions — especially for fiction.
4) Continue to sign new authors with fresh material.
5) Continue to sign veteran authors with great backlists.
6) Continue to grow our new imprint brands.
Former Congressman Jason Altmire’s “Dead Center” “fivepeats” as the Sunbury Press bestseller for December

Former Congressman Jason Altmire’s “Dead Center” “fivepeats” as the Sunbury Press bestseller for December

MECHANICSBURG, Pa. —  Sunbury Press has released the bestsellers list for December. Former Congressman Jason Altmire’s Dead Center: How Political Polarization Divided America and What We Can Do About It took the top spot for the fifth month in a row. Recently released The Most Hated Man in America: Jerry Sandusky and the Rush to Judgment by Mark Pendergrast was runner-up. A Short Season, recounting the life of Josiah, a baseball-loving youth battling progeria, debuted in the third spot. Scott Zuckerman’s story of Murray Jacobs, a Seabee in WW2 entitled Dreams of My Comrades was fourth. Joe Farley’s basketball memoir Trumpet Call to Victory netted the fifth position. Mark Carlson’s World War II aviation history The Marines’ Lost Squadron was sixth. Jim Remsen’s Civil War / Reconstruction era history of the town of Waverly, Pennsylvania, and it’s Underground Railroad connections, Embattled Freedom, moved up to seventh.

SUNBURY PRESS – Bestsellers for December 2017 (by Revenue)
Rank Prior Title Author Category
1 1 Dead Center: How Political Polarization Divided America and What We Can Do About It Jason Altmire Political Science
2 2 The Most Hated Man in America: Jerry Sandusky and the Rush to Judgment Mark Pendergrast Legal History
3 NEW A Short Season Jake Gronsky & David Bohner Sports Memoir
4 7 Dreams of My Comrades: The Story of MM1C Murray Jacobs Scott Zuckerman Military Memoir
5 6 Trumpet Call to Victory: The Final Years of Hazelton Saint Gabriel’s Basketball Joe Farley Sports History
6 3 The Marines’ Lost Squadron: The Odyssey of VMF-422 Mark Carlson Aviation History
7 9 Embattled Freedom Jim Remsen History
8 14 Tigers by the River Wylie McLallen Sports History
10 12 Amelia Earhart: The Truth at Last, 2nd Ed. Mike Campbell History
11 5 Chasing Understanding in the Jungles of Vietnam Doug Beed Military Memoir
12 10 Chicken Bone Beach Cheryl Brooks Segregation
13 8 Dear Ma – The Civil War Letters of Curtis Clay Pollock John Hoptak Military Memoir
14 Beagle Tales 2 Bob Ford Pet Humor
15 Beagle Tales Bob Ford Pet Humor
16 Beagle Tales 3 Bob Ford Pet Humor
17 Beagle Tales 4 Bob Ford Pet Humor
18 The Georgia Segregated School for the Deaf Ron Knorr & Clemmie Whatley History
19 Prohibition’s Prince Guy Graybill History
20 16 Raising Monarchs Sue McGovern Pets
21 24 Pit Bulls Anthony Julian History
22 Digging Dusky Diamonds Kohn Lindermuth History
23 Bows, Bullets, and Bears John L. Moore History
24 Fireproof Moth Milo Thornberry History
25 Prince and the Paupers Guy Graybill History

Jason Altmire’s Dead Center: How Political Polarization Divided America and What We Can Do About It was #1 due to brisk sales due to the author’s activities. The Most Hated Man has been bolstered by radio and media appearances by author Mark Pendergrast. A Short Season has been helped by the television program produced by Ben Houser on ESPN, E:60 and a tremendous response to the book by the local community.
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Kyle Alexander Romine’s “The Keeper of the Crows” is #1 again at Hellbender Books for December

Kyle Alexander Romine’s “The Keeper of the Crows” is #1 again at Hellbender Books for December

MECHANICSBURG, Pa. —  Sunbury Press has released the bestsellers list for December for its horror/thriller imprint, HELLBENDER BOOKS. Kyle Alexander Romine’s supernatural thriller The Keeper of the Crows was the bestseller for the month once again.  Keith Rommel’s psychological thrillers The Cursed Man and The Silent Woman took 2nd and 3rd spots. Keith’s supernatural thriller, The Devil Tree, grabbed fourth. Michael Hawley’s supernatural thriller The Ripper’s Hellbroth was slipped to fifth place.

HELLBENDER BOOKS – Bestsellers for December 2017 (by Revenue)
Rank Prior Title Author Category
1 1 The Keeper of the Crows Kyle Alexander Romines Supernatural Thriller
2 3 The Cursed Man Keith Rommel Psychological Thriller
3 The Silent Woman Keith Rommel Psychological Thriller
4 The Devil Tree Keith Rommel Supernatural Thriller
5 2 The Ripper’s Hellbroth Michael Hawley Supernatural Thriller

Romines was helped by strong ebook sales. Rommel performed well with ebook sales due to his movie deals. Hawley was buoyed by author appearances and activities, including a television program on the Travel Channel.
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“Living in the Afterlife” by medium and author Michele Livingston repeats as the Ars Metaphysica bestseller for December

“Living in the Afterlife” by medium and author Michele Livingston repeats as the Ars Metaphysica bestseller for December

MECHANICSBURG, Pa. —  Sunbury Press has released the bestsellers list for December for its spiritual/metaphysical imprint, ARS METAPHYSICA. The Peoples’ Medium, Michele Livingston, took the top spot for the second month in a row with her visionary Living in the Afterlife, revealing her channeling of information from the other side.  Lebanese author Karim El Koussa slotted into 2nd place with his controversial history Jesus the Phoenician, took fourth with his historical novel Pythagoras the Mathemagician, and rounded out the list with his metaphysical novel The Phoenician Code. The metaphysical travel memoir, The Dream Alchemist by Anna-Karin Bjorklund, showed third.

ARS METAPHYSICA – Bestsellers for December 2017 (by Revenue)
Rank Prior Title Author Category
1 1 Living in the Afterlife Michele Livingston Metaphysical
2 2 Jesus the Phoenician Karim el Koussa Religious History
3 3 The Dream Alchemist Anna-Karin Bjorklund Metaphysical Travel
3 5 Pythagoras the Mathemagician Karim el Koussa Historical Fiction
5 The Phoenician Code Karim el Koussa Metaphysical Fiction

Livingston’s books have sold steadily throughout the US and overseas due to the subject matter. McClellan’s books were bolstered by author activities in the Harrisburg area. El Koussa’s books have been helped by exports
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William F. Lee’s grief memoir “All My Heroes Are Gone” once again Brown Posey Press bestseller for December

William F. Lee’s grief memoir “All My Heroes Are Gone” once again Brown Posey Press bestseller for December

MECHANICSBURG, Pa. —  Sunbury Press has released the bestsellers list for December for its literary fiction imprint, BROWN POSEY PRESS. William F. Lee’s touching grief memoir about the loss of his wife after a long marriage, All My Heroes Are Gone,  ranked number one for the third month in a row.  Lawrence and Tammi Knorr’s photographic album of unusual scenes in Wormleysburg, Wormleysburg: Jewel on the Susquehanna, captured second. Frank Deter’s emotional recounting of his beloved hunting dog, A Dog Named Judy, was third in sales. The Heatstroke Line, Edward Rubin’s climate fiction novel, was fourth.  Strange Magic, a collaboration coordinated by Catherine Jordan, rounded out the top five.

BROWN POSEY PRESS – Bestsellers for December 2017 (by Revenue)
Rank Prior Title Author Category
1 1 All My Heroes Are Gone William F Lee Grief Memoir
2 Wormleysburg: Jewel on the Susquehanna Lawrence & Tammi Knorr Photography
3 A Dog Named Judy Frank Deter Pet Memoir
4 2 The Heatstroke Line Edward Rubin Climate Fiction
5 4 Strange Magic Catherine Jordan, et al Short Stories

Lee’s book has performed well due to author activities in his local area of Texas. The Knorr’s and Deter’s books were helped by Christmas sales. The other titles were bolstered by online sales.

 

Wade Fowler’s historical JFK novel “The Compass Island Incident” tops Milford House Press bestsellers for December

Wade Fowler’s historical JFK novel “The Compass Island Incident” tops Milford House Press bestsellers for December

MECHANICSBURG, Pa. —  Sunbury Press has released the bestsellers list for November for its Milford House Press fiction imprint. Wade Fowler’s The Compass Island Incident, a thriller that incorporates the JFK assassination, took the top spot. Wade also nabbed fourth place with his Harrisburg-based thriller The Honey Trap. Marie Sontag’s historical young adult novel The Bronze Dagger was second. Sontag also took the 15th position with The Alabaster Jar, another novel in the series. Jess Steven Hughes took the third spot 15 with his historical novel set in Ancient Rome, The Broken Lance. The humorous Miss Feesenschneezen Is Ill by David Parmalee, a young adult novel about unusual substitute teachers, was fifth. Parmalee also took the 14th slot with his historical novel The Sea Is a Thief.  Mark Mitten took 6th and 1th with his two Western novels, Sipping Whiskey in a Shallow Grave and Hard to Quit.  Sherry Knowlton took two spots with her Alexa Williams murder mystery novels that have political twists, Dead of Autumn and Dead of Summer.

MILFORD HOUSE PRESS – Bestsellers for December 2017 (by Revenue)
Rank Prior Title Author Category
1 4 The Compass Island Incident Wade Fowler Detective Thriller
2 9 The Bronze Dagger Marie Sontag Historical YA
3 7 The Broken Lance Jess Steven Hughes Historical
4 The Honey Trap Wade Fowler Detective Thriller
5 Miss Feesenschneezen Is Ill David Parmalee Humorous YA
6 8 Sipping Whiskey in a Shallow Grave Mark Mitten Western
7 11 Dead of Autumn Sherry Knowlton Detective Thriller
8 Winter of the Metal People Dennis Herrick Historical
9 12 Dead of Summer Sherry Knowlton Detective Thriller
10 14 Three Rogues in Gettysburg J Geoffrey Barber Historical
11 2 Hard to Quit Mark Mitten Western
12 Where Elephants Fought Bridget Smith Historical
13 6 Emeralds of the Alhambra John Cressler Historical
14 10 The Sea Is a Thief David Parmalee Historical
15 The Alabaster Jar Marie Sontag Historical YA

Fowler’s novel The Compass Island Incident took the top spot due to author activities. Sontag’s book, The Bronze Dagger, benefited from orders from schools. Jess Steven Hughes’ The Broken Lance made the list due to his ongoing book signings. The others were helped by ebook and online sales
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