Granny Rainbow - although published under the name of Panda Eyes - was essentially a self-published book; I paid for everything except the ISBN number.
Which is fine.
I was willing to invest the money, see where it took me and my little book. I knew it would be a long time until I sold enough copies to break even. Assuming, of course, I could even sell enough to break even.
And then came More Granny Rainbow. Published in the same way, with my own spondoolies, but less attractive it seemed to the reader as sales of this book didn't go as well as the first. Add the two sets of costs together and it would take me even longer to break even...
The other day I was doing my 'author accounts', ready to see how much I'd earned from author talks and the like to disclose to the tax man.
And - incredibly - I discovered that I have sold enough copies of both Granny Rainbow books to cover all their costs. It's taken three years, but I have finally broken even. Hooray!
Having said that, it was never about the money...I published Granny Rainbow simply to see whether my stories would be enjoyed by young readers, and they are. Making a little bit of money on them is nice, but it wasn't why I decided to write.
Reading is important. If I can, through my books, encourage even one reluctant reader to discover the joy of burying themselves in a book - be it fiction or non-fiction - then I consider myself to be one of the richest authors alive.
So hooray! for breaking even, but hooray times ten! if my writing opened a door that would've remained closed otherwise.