I'm a small publisher with a PR budget in the low three digits, so I'm always on the lookout for ways to get my books discovered by people who will enjoy them. My first book, Emperor Dad, was in fact, released as an ebook first, with a few family and friends sales, but it never achieved any great sales. When I finally broke down and decided that self-publishing was better than un-published, I produced trade paper editions. Awards came and I have refined my production skills so I now have three, (in a few weeks four) titles out that are getting very nice reviews. Still, sales are not large, and I'm on the lookout for ways to get my books in front of people's eyes.
In December, I discovered that it wasn't terribly hard to put out a book on Amazon's Kindle. I buckled down and converted Emperor Dad to Kindle format. I uploaded it to their system and waited. Nine months later, zero sales.
I wish I had a Kindle just so I could see if the book was really in their system or not. But I've never even seen one. Nobody I know has one of the bookreaders. Supposedly there are hundreds of thousands of them in existence, but I can't afford one. I suspect, with no evidence, that Amazon makes it a whole lot easier to discover a big name bestseller than it is to find something by a small publisher.
July. Graham Perks of Touch Tomes, who dove head-first into the iPhone App business, had talked to me earlier and now suggested publishing one of my titles as an iTunes App book. With my history of experimenting with ebook sales, it was a no-brainer to hand him the Emperor Dad files and let him run with it. In just a few days he had the book encapsulated into an iPhone App and formatted quite nicely. Today is the third day it's been out for sale. Early figures show twelve sales over two days.
Kindle: Nine Months, zero sales. App Store: two days, twelve sales.
It's the same book. It's the same non-existent PR campaign.
From an author's perspective, the iTunes App store is a great place to be. Think about it. Kindle has (in July) 140,000 titles to a customer base of supposedly 300,000 readers. Not all of those are fiction either. The iPhone user base growing rapidly, with supposedly 10 million units out there by the end of the year, and the App Store is very popular. And the books? 158. I just checked. Hey, as a reader, I might like the Kindle catalog, but as an author, this is the kind of front-facing, front of the store, prime exposure I'd never get on my budget. With millions of people coming to visit.
Change of Schedule - Henry’s Stories has been on-line and regularly updated for almost two years now, with a mix of new and old stories -- some short and others novel length. ...
5 years ago