At heart I'm fairly lazy, so instead of working on the second level I'm writing this pointless blog post. I promise the blog won't descend into a pile of self-promotional balogna, I just need to get some focus back. Probably this weekend.
So, I've done the math. I've got a small blog with a tiny following - people may say they love content, but as the content turns towards gonzo post-apocalyptic megadungeons, that content-hungry audience gets smaller. Doesn't help that the whole notion of publishing a module turned out to be a vast undertaking that sucked up all my spare time for the past few months, so my content posts have became sparser and sparser.
The reality is that what I'm about to sell is a niche product within a niche of a niche. Let's outline the nested niches here:
a. It's old-school. Very, very niche
b. It's a megadungeon. Niche
c. It's gonzo with robots and guns and other things that make "high fantasy"-type DM's blanche. Yet another niche
So what's my audience here? Possibly just me. Now, on the other hand, there are not-insignificant expenses. Mainly, art. That stuff costs money. It would be both stupid and unfair to my family to blow money on a vanity publishing effort where I can't recoup the expenses. I don't need to make more than I spent, but I do need to try to not lose money - I especially need it to break even so I can finance art for the next book.
So, what I've got is a very boutique product. There's no mass market here. So, it's got to get boutique pricing. No way around it. I'm guessing most other modules I see being sold very cheaply are very very low on art and other expenses, or I am totally misunderstanding the economics involved. Well, that's not me - I dropped some cash here, and the audience is tiny. The price necessarily has to be high.
Of course, high prices can shrink audiences even further - the plus side here is though we are all cheapskates, the majority of us have reached an age where a wee bit of disposable income is available. So, once a purchase decision is made on the quality of an item, the price isn't going to affect things too much one way or another.
So, it looks like my price is going to be $17.57 for an 87-page book, consisting of a city & setting painted in broad strokes, first level (or first two levels depending on how you look at it) of the megadungeon, a boatload of new monsters (34 entries there), some new magic items, etc.