Last Updated on August 13, 2023 by ADMIN-TOM
Publishing a book using Amazon’s kdp (kindle direct publishing) facility is easy, very much like falling off the proverbial log. I know this to be true because I’ve done both, that is published my books and fallen off a log (okay, it was a rocky ravine) and believe me, the latter is much more painful.
What is hard, when it comes to book publishing, is getting your target audience to buy your book. You don’t have to worry about the sales, because again kdp take care of that. But what you do have to take care of is the marketing. Marketing is the fly in the ointment for every indie author.
You may think marketing your book is simply waving your flag on social media and shouting, “Look! Look at this book. Buy it now.” I have news for you, it isn’t as simple as that. Advertising is one way but that may prove both expensive and fruitless. I’m not writing this to get you to buy my books and I haven’t written a How to Sell Books on Amazon for Nerds book, so don’t think this is a hard sell. This piece I’m writing is all about the oddities and vagaries of being an indie author.
A few years ago, I logged into my kdp account and suddenly found a spike in sales for one of my books. Operation Werwolf had received over 120 downloads. These weren’t sales, these were at the tail-end of a free promotion that had seen a dribble of downloads. Normally free promotions see a flourish at the beginning and then the downloads tail off. This time it was the other way round. My other promotions for this book on social media had seen a few free books go, but nothing like this. I contacted kdp expecting some sort of glitch, only to be told it was correct. I asked why this odd splurge of downloads and kdp were at a loss to explain. I let it go and never gave it another thought, until now.
Over the last couple of months, I’ve done a lot of promo work on Twitter and Facebook. More so Twitter because I’m not a fan of Facebook. The book I’ve been promoting is The Brittle Sea which is permanently free on all digital stores and all eReaders from Kindle to Kobo and whatever is in between. The reason this book is free is because it’s book one in a trilogy. The theory is if people download book one for free, and they hopefully like it, they may download books two & three which are priced at a modest $1.99 each. It works, but not in a huge way. I’ve been getting a modest single figure download on an almost daily basis and have reached a hundred plus in a month. Sales for books two & three from the modest downloads of book one have also been very modest. That is until 13th June 2023.
I awoke to discover one hundred plus downloads of book one had occurred and during that day a total of 389 books were downloaded, propelling The Brittle Sea to the number one spot for US Historical Fiction. I must admit I was a little stunned. The next day saw fifty-nine books downloaded. Today saw twenty downloaded. That’s 468 downloads in three days. I have no idea why because I haven’t done any sort of promotion except on Twitter’s writerslifts. Then it occurred to me that as The Brittle Sea had been climbing the free book top one hundred tables for a few months, and that kdp had altered the way they define categories, that was perhaps the reason for all these downloads. But no, because this book has also seen 20 downloads via Draft2Digital’s various platforms. Three were via Apple Books and seventeen Barnes & Noble. This was beginning to get suspiciously bizarre, especially since sales of books two & three also increased with fifteen sales over the two books in two days. I’ve been averaging seventeen sales a month over the last three months. So, what is going on? You know what? I have no idea.
I am completely stumped, and I’ll bet kdp have no idea either. If all the downloads were on kdp I would expect Amazon had put out an email with my book featured on it. But because it happened to Apple Books and Barnes & Noble’s Nook Books as well, that rules out an Amazon email flyer.
So, I keep plodding away at my marketing and I hope that one day I may see a bigger splurge of book downloads and massive sales for my other books. Think I’m daydreaming. Well, you’re right. But daydreams can sometimes turn into reality. All we can do is keep chipping away at the granite block of life and hope for the best.
Copyright © Tom Kane 2023
Magda Asparov didn’t know the danger she was sailing into when she boarded the Titanic. With a mysterious past, an arranged marriage waiting for her in America, and a manipulative independent spirit, Magda had no way of knowing the fate that lie ahead. But when the Titanic goes down, Magda survives and awakens with no memory of who she is, where she’s from, or where she was going.
Rescued by Captain Richard Blackmore on the Lady Jane, the ship’s steward names her Maggie. Now her life takes a turn she never expected. As Maggie learns to navigate the unfamiliar waters of her new life, she must confront the secrets of her past while falling in love with Richard Blackmore.
With suspense and psychological thrills, The Brittle Sea by Tom Kane is book one in an exciting historical drama trilogy. The Brittle Sea is a FREE ebook.