Stalk me elsewhere

Monday, August 6, 2012

Amazon Giveaway - The Aftermath

Hello, Fire Enthusiasts. How's your week? That's not really a fair question, I realize, since it might be just starting, depending upon when you see this post. Perhaps I should try a different tactic. May you have a great week, followed up by a fantastic weekend. You see, I'm still on vacation from the day job, so it should be fairly easy for me to enjoy my week. I'm Sorry. I'm not trying to rub it in or anything. :)

This has been one of those stay-cations, rather than a vacation. We did take one day trip to Monterey, California. My dad had never been to the world famous Aquarium, so the four of us picked him up and took him with us. We had a nice day, getting away from the triple digits and cooling off on the Central Coast. We might do something else before I go back to work next week, but for the most part I'm simply glad to have had some extended time off.

Now, with regard to my free event this past weekend, I'm torn. On the one hand, I am unsure just how many copies I thought I might be able to give away, but having read how others had done with their events - giving a couple of thousand copies away - I guess I hoped to do the same. I realize these things are hit and miss, but I would be lying to you now if I simply hid those feelings and pretended to be giddy. As of late Sunday night, I had given approximately 700 copies of Dance on Fire away. At my peak I reached #363 after having began the event at #93,554 in the free rankings. In specific categories, I reached #14 in Suspense, #22 in Thriller, and #17 in Horror.

Am I being silly or unrealistic with regard to quantity of copies given away? Feel free to tell me. I really want to feel great about what happened.

On the other hand, there is much to be positive and extremely thankful about. In the first two years of being published, I think I may have moved somewhere between two and three hundred copies of my book. It was on every site except Amazon. It had good reviews, but didn't really go far. I mean no offense to those sites. I will be back there soon. My point is, I had never been in the large pond before and was looking toward making as big a splash there as I possibly could. I guess I did make a fairly big splash when you think about it. One of my bestie's, the author Linda Cassidy Lewis (The Brevity of Roses), promised me that I was about to reveal myself to a much bigger audience than had seen my work before. And we did. We were between 2x and 3x as many readers in two days than I had done in two years. I guess I shouldn't hang my head, huh?

And lastly, the thankful part. If it weren't for you guys, I never would have come this far, either in copies given away or even getting that book on Amazon in the first place. So many of you never ceased to offer a hand in assistance, whether that was formatting, editing, etc. You have been there to pat me on the back, massage my shoulders, offer high-five's or pull me back up to my feet when I began to fall. You spent your weekend offering RT's on Twitter; posting and sharing my giveaway on Facebook; cheering me on with FB, Twitter and Google-plus comments; helping me keep my mind off the numbers while I sat in front of my lap top all weekend long; and all sorts of other things. You buddies, pals, mates, chums, secret crushes (had to throw that in there, but will never confess just who *grins*) and friends are really a marvelous community of writers and readers. No matter the final numbers, this has been a splash, and I couldn't have done it without you.

So, what's next? I loved The West Wing television show and President Bartlett always asked that.

Well, now that the event is over, I will turn my attention to the sequel, Dance on Fire: Flash Point. We're still finishing up the cover and I'm waiting for another beta reader or two to get back to me with their takes on how I've done. I will be contacting a professional editor and scheduling that work. I want to get the sequel up on Amazon before the year is over. During this time I will work on producing the softcover version of Dance on Fire, working with Amazon for that as well.

As always, if you have any advice for me, I would love to hear it.

Thanks again for everything, you guys. We've come a long way together.

We'll talk soon.  


  1. I'm sorry you didn't get in on KDP Select earlier, Jimmy. I'm afraid the results you'd read about were before Amazon started changing their algorithms every two days.

    My first free event was astounding (14,000 downloads), with a huge sales bump afterwards. My second freebie, 3 months later, was less successful (9,000 downloads), but the sales bump was only about a quarter of what it was the first time because Amazon had fiddled with how they counted the "sales" of free copies. Now, judging from your result, I suppose I'd be hard-pressed to give away any more than you did and might get only a few paid sales afterward.

    Because a sale is a sale to Amazon, they don't want to lose all us self-publishers, so I expect before long they'll come up with something new to keep us in KDP Select. But for now, maybe it's time to rethink our enrollments. It seems you've already decided this was a one-time experiment. Though I hear it still works somewhat to use one book as a freebie to draw sales for your other books, so you may want to try a free event again after you publish Flash Point.

    In any case, you now have potentially 700 new fans who will be anxiously awaiting your second book. So YAY! :-)

  2. I actually had picked this up back in February on Smashwords and forgotten I had done so, and grabbed it again on Amazon O.O Heh. So, you got a double sale from me :-) Now to get it read and reviewed, which could take awhile... but once I do read it, I will definitely review it for you.

    Still I hope you put it back on Smashwords, because obviously I prefer them. The only problem with Smashwords is their search function isn't very good, but if I find a book and discover I can get it from Smashwords, I will usually try to get it from Smashwords rather than Amazon.

  3. One more thought: Did your freebie get picked up by any of the free Kindlebook sites? I think that really helps because not only does everyone who subscribes to their site get notice of your giveaway, but they also advertise it on Twitter and Facebook.

  4. Hi James!

    I can't speak for free events as I haven't done one. I say, forget the figures and look at it this way - your book has reached a much wider audience. All those people will read and recommend it and possibly buy book 2. It seems like win/win to me. Now that you are on Amazon your work will be available to larger market:))

    I'm looking forward to buying the next one x

  5. I think it is wonderful your book is in the hands of 700 more readers. Especially with a sequel coming out. People will want more! Congrats!

  6. I don't know what constitutes a good giveaway on KDP.

    The only thing I can say for sure is that if you don't have anything else out, get it out quick. Freebies are only useful if the reader can go back and pick up your NEXT book, or at least something from your backlist.

    Freebies are an enticement. Once you give them a free taste, you need to offer something else they can buy.

  7. "Secret Crush", must be me--hah!--back at you, buddy!
    Back from Montana, we spent over 9 hours on the road yesterday driving from S.D., across bottom of Min., into the insanity of 3 Interstates around Madison, and home--with a lot of bugs crushed on the front (even though we'd hit 4 carwashes during the trip--one on a Blackfoot Indian res.
    I hand wrote several scenes during the trip (I ride, he drives), and have no idea when I'll get that down into the doc. But we had a glorious time.
    Sounds like you've been a busy bee. I do think that it's a good idea to get a lot of people reading your work, but I'm on a fence post on the giving away hundreds of copies, really. I don't know if it pays off, as I have never done so. And since I have a publisher, he has say on how many I give away on my books. So, you have freedom in that sense.
    Since I'm in the middle of my weekend, and getting up to date on stuff, I'll see you later on, my friend. (^;

  8. I wish I knew more about publishing than I do. I mean, I really should. So I don't know how realistic/unrealistic your expectations were. From what you said, though, it sounds like it went rather well. In fact, I am going to say it went swimmingly!


Thanks for stopping by. I really appreciate you taking the time. I'll get back to you here or on one of the other social networks. It's not like we're not on all of them, right? ;) Also, if you're here to give me an award - bless you. However, your friendship and visits are more than enough. Thanks and blessings.