Register Guidelines E-Books Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Go Back   MobileRead Forums > E-Book General > Writers' Corner

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 03-16-2009, 10:27 PM   #1
David J. Guyton
Connoisseur
David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 51
Karma: 501406
Join Date: Feb 2009
Device: none
Concerned about unfair amazon sales stats (Kindle)

I am an author concerned about my sales ranking on amazon.com (like many authors). The better your ranking, the more books you sell. I have been as low as #797....not too bad.

But now I see a flood of books from traditional publishers offered as Kindle versions for a PENNY, and many of them FREE. These free books are dominating the top spots and skewing the ranking system. Of course free books will sell better than mine at 99 cents. Amazon won't let me charge any less than that. I don't care about making money with it, I just want to get to as many readers as I can.

In my opinion, amazon needs to either exclude these books under 99 cents from the sales rankings, or allow ALL authors to offer their book for free.

This is totally unfair to independent authors. It is also unfair to millions of readers who might be buying or avoiding books based on the amazon sales ranks.

Last edited by David J. Guyton; 03-16-2009 at 10:30 PM.
David J. Guyton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-16-2009, 11:11 PM   #2
Moejoe
Banned
Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.
 
Posts: 5,110
Karma: 72193
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: South of the Border
Device: Coffin
It's the first round in a battle I'm sure will rage over the coming years. The publishing industry doesn't want to open the doors, because they fear losing their entire business. They're desperate to hold on to what they have now, and will try every dirty trick in the book to keep that hold.

Imagine, if you will, the first truly independent author who strikes it big? The same author, offered a big fat contract, realises he can make more, have more control and do it his own way without their help. With that single author's success the whole publishing industry becomes irrelevant. This author has proven there is no need for an agent, an editor, a publicist or any of the other dozen or so go-betweens that now have jobs in that industry.

Musicians are already doing it, independent film-makers are doing it, even educated fleas, do it...but to be serious for a moment. The publishers, like many of the old brick-and-mortar businesses, have no real grasp of the change the internet has brought about. They still believe they're in control, and that may be true for a little while, but it's not going to last forever. No matter what tricks they pull.

As to what you can do about this? I wouldn't have the first idea, or even a second. They're the big fish in the pond, we're all just minnows (for now )
Moejoe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 01:59 AM   #3
David J. Guyton
Connoisseur
David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 51
Karma: 501406
Join Date: Feb 2009
Device: none
Yeah I totally agree. The old ways are dying and thank God for that. I was so fed up with the catch-22 of no agents considering writers who haven't already had something published (for fantasy anyway...not sure about other genres).

I don't know what to do about this problem yet either. I just wanted to make sure other authors and readers knew it was happening. So far I have written letters of complaint, but I'm sure they will go unread or whatever.
David J. Guyton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 03:06 AM   #4
Moejoe
Banned
Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.Moejoe did not drink the Kool Aid.
 
Posts: 5,110
Karma: 72193
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: South of the Border
Device: Coffin
Quote:
Originally Posted by David J. Guyton View Post
Yeah I totally agree. The old ways are dying and thank God for that. I was so fed up with the catch-22 of no agents considering writers who haven't already had something published (for fantasy anyway...not sure about other genres).

I don't know what to do about this problem yet either. I just wanted to make sure other authors and readers knew it was happening. So far I have written letters of complaint, but I'm sure they will go unread or whatever.
The publishing industry is failing, and at a rapid rate, its only a matter of time before it adapts or is destroyed completely. Just check out the coverage of the recent SXSW conference, where publishers showed just how out of touch they really are. Twitter roundup here: http://search.twitter.com/search?q=%23sxswbp

This is the perfect time for new authors disilussioned with the old system to step up and do it for themselves. Every day there are new avenues to go down, new communities that love reading where readers and writers can come together. If you've got a story to tell and you want it to be read, then for the first time in a long time you can do it with very little expense, and best of all, a lot more fun during the process. None of us (unless we're exceptionally lucky) will ever make it rich, but to me that's about as pointless a goal in writing as is slanting to a market. What we might gain in the future are loyal readers, spurred on by recommendations and authors being available instead of barricaded behind the walls of publicists and publishers.

I'm ranting now, but have you tried http://www.smashwords.com as another route to sell your book? They have a completely open policy on pricing, you can even give away your book for free if you'd like. Plus they support all the major e-book formats and some more besides. It's just another option in the many that are becoming available to us 'unpubs'.

Good luck

Here's some footage from SXSW


Last edited by Moejoe; 03-18-2009 at 03:19 AM. Reason: Added SXSW footage
Moejoe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 11:14 AM   #5
dadioflex
Dyslexic Count
dadioflex ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dadioflex ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dadioflex ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dadioflex ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dadioflex ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dadioflex ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dadioflex ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dadioflex ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dadioflex ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dadioflex ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dadioflex ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
dadioflex's Avatar
 
Posts: 526
Karma: 5041991
Join Date: Aug 2008
Device: Palm TX, Advent Vega, iPad, iPod Touch, Kindle
Edit.

Last edited by dadioflex; 12-16-2010 at 04:48 AM.
dadioflex is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 01:56 PM   #6
David J. Guyton
Connoisseur
David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 51
Karma: 501406
Join Date: Feb 2009
Device: none
Quote:
Originally Posted by dadioflex View Post
David, positive reviews, entries in lists and, what you're doing here, active promotion are more important than Amazon sales rank once you're outside of the top 100 or so, I'd have thought.

EDIT - out of curiosity I checked out the top 100 fantasy list for Kindle and there are hardly any free books there, and not many 99 cents ones.

How exactly do you think sales rank affects sales? Naively I thought sales affected sales rank.
Dadioflex,
I know the stats can be really weird when you look them up different ways. I tried to search for my own book once through a subcategory, and it wasn't even there where it was supposed to be.

The way I discovered this scam...I was on my own amazon sales page, and under the text "Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought:" Every single one of them displayed was a free book. Here is an example...note that this book has locked down the #1 Kindle sales position, as well as #1 in 3 subcategories...

#1 http://www.amazon.com/Assassins-Appr...7394683&sr=1-5

# 3 http://www.amazon.com/His-Majestys-D...7394683&sr=1-6

#5 http://www.amazon.com/Blood-Engines/...7394683&sr=1-8

Etc etc...

Keep in mind that this is a very new stunt. The Traditional Publishers will be flooding amazon with these free books.

As far as the sales ranking, yes, my promotions matter more, but my promotions are meant to get my amazon sales ranking as low as possible. I have been under #1000 twice now, one of them was #797. When you dip that low, Amazon starts putting your book everywhere on their site, increasing visibility and therefore sales. It's very hard to get numbers that low, and even harder to maintain it, even with amazon "promoting" you. However if you get below 1000, you will make enough sales to remain there all day.

MoeJoe I saw the video you added but I'll have to watch it a little later as I am on my way out the door.
David J. Guyton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 04:55 PM   #7
David J. Guyton
Connoisseur
David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 51
Karma: 501406
Join Date: Feb 2009
Device: none
Hahaha that guy in the crowd is my HERO!

"Well that's why you guys are going away...just so you know."

Perfect.
David J. Guyton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 05:24 PM   #8
KindleDude
Connoisseur
KindleDude doesn't litterKindleDude doesn't litter
 
Posts: 82
Karma: 172
Join Date: Nov 2008
Device: Kindle
David, I seem to recall that these free editions you mention are limited-time promotions.

I would also mention that there are some good book bloggers around that publish reviews, have followings, and seem willing to look at new authors. I'm thinking of Breeni Books and Linus's Blanket, which I happen to be familiar with, but I'd be willing to bet that there are plenty of others. This might be another avenue for promotion.

Finally, speaking as a reader, I wouldn't avoid buying a book that seemed interesting because it cost .99, or even 9.99. I'm not sure the free promotions (which to my observation are often book 1 of a series, to try to entice readers to buy into the series) are that big of a factor.

In fact....I just bought yours. Q.E.D.
KindleDude is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 05:39 PM   #9
RickyMaveety
Holy S**T!!!
RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.
 
RickyMaveety's Avatar
 
Posts: 5,186
Karma: 108401
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: San Diego, California!!
Device: Kindle and iPad
You know, I was in that crowd, and I couldn't make out part of what the man said then either .... not where he said "That's why you guys ..... something"

Does anyone have better hearing than mine and can tell me what he said? Because I can't understand it in the video any better than I could in person.
RickyMaveety is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 05:41 PM   #10
zelda_pinwheel
zeldinha zippy zeldissima
zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
zelda_pinwheel's Avatar
 
Posts: 27,828
Karma: 908606
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Paris, France
Device: eb1150 & is that a nook in her pocket, or she just happy to see you?
Quote:
Originally Posted by RickyMaveety View Post
You know, I was in that crowd, and I couldn't make out part of what the man said then either .... not where he said "That's why you guys ..... something"

Does anyone have better hearing than mine and can tell me what he said? Because I can't understand it in the video any better than I could in person.
David apparently has excellent hearing. he quoted him (3 posts up) as saying

"Well that's why you guys are going away...just so you know."

so ricky, what are your thoughts on that conference ??
zelda_pinwheel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 05:57 PM   #11
RickyMaveety
Holy S**T!!!
RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.
 
RickyMaveety's Avatar
 
Posts: 5,186
Karma: 108401
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: San Diego, California!!
Device: Kindle and iPad
Quote:
Originally Posted by zelda_pinwheel View Post
David apparently has excellent hearing. he quoted him (3 posts up) as saying

"Well that's why you guys are going away...just so you know."

so ricky, what are your thoughts on that conference ??
It was phenomenal. I made so many connections it bordered on the insane. And, the panels (especially the questions and comments .... even the twittered comments and questions ... were intense).

I was invited (by Guy Kawasaki) to attend the Alltop party on Sunday night, and that was fantastic. I met several authors there, and then on Tuesday attended a panel on "From Blog to Book Deal" .... not because I'm thinking of writing a book so much as I was curious as to the views of some of the bloggers who's blogs I am just starting to read.

I ended up purchasing a few books at the festival .... not because I plan to actually read the p-books, I've got e-book copies of them and will read those .... but because there is something very cool about purchasing a book with the author sitting right in front of you, and then having them autograph it. That's the one thing you still can not do with an e-book.

I went to buy a copy of "Reality Check" only to have Guy tell me that he'd send me a copy when he got home. That didn't work for me .... dammit, I happen to think that there is a moral imperative to support good authors and artists and I like to pay my way.

I'm off topic again, aren't I?? Anyway, I didn't go to much of the graphics/gaming events (which I thought I would find more interesting, but didn't), and attending anything I could on digital publishing.
RickyMaveety is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 05:58 PM   #12
zelda_pinwheel
zeldinha zippy zeldissima
zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.zelda_pinwheel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
zelda_pinwheel's Avatar
 
Posts: 27,828
Karma: 908606
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Paris, France
Device: eb1150 & is that a nook in her pocket, or she just happy to see you?
you ? making connections ?? *shocking* !

i'm glad to hear you had a good time.
zelda_pinwheel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 06:08 PM   #13
RickyMaveety
Holy S**T!!!
RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.
 
RickyMaveety's Avatar
 
Posts: 5,186
Karma: 108401
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: San Diego, California!!
Device: Kindle and iPad
Oh, but you were talking about that particular panel discussion, weren't you ... not SXSW generally.

I'm sorry .... well, my view on all of that is that the literary agents and publishing houses are more about PR than anything else. They can do a lot to publicize their authors .... but that's really about all. I don't think they add any value to a book, and I don't feel they serve as a "filter" to sort the wheat from the chaff.

I've always been one to read a book based on either personal recommendation by someone who's opinion I trust, or because I just happened on it by accident and then decided to read everything that author ever wrote.

Examples of that last method of book selection are Larry Niven and Terry Pratchett. I never heard of either of them through any direct efforts of their publishers. I pulled "Ringworld" off the shelf just because ... and someone here recommended "The Hogfather."

I've purchased several books now simply because the author has come to MR and said they wrote a book and they'd like me to buy it. Only one book (out of maybe ten that I've read) turned out to be complete crap .... but that's not bad odds.

And, so yes .... I think publishers and agents may go the way of the Dodo.
RickyMaveety is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 06:43 PM   #14
David J. Guyton
Connoisseur
David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.David J. Guyton ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 51
Karma: 501406
Join Date: Feb 2009
Device: none
Quote:
Originally Posted by KindleDude View Post
David, I seem to recall that these free editions you mention are limited-time promotions.

I would also mention that there are some good book bloggers around that publish reviews, have followings, and seem willing to look at new authors. I'm thinking of Breeni Books and Linus's Blanket, which I happen to be familiar with, but I'd be willing to bet that there are plenty of others. This might be another avenue for promotion.

Finally, speaking as a reader, I wouldn't avoid buying a book that seemed interesting because it cost .99, or even 9.99. I'm not sure the free promotions (which to my observation are often book 1 of a series, to try to entice readers to buy into the series) are that big of a factor.

In fact....I just bought yours. Q.E.D.

KindleDude,

First, thanks for picking up my book. I hope you enjoy it. You're right, people who have Kindles don't seem to mind spending anything up to $9.99, but I still feel it is unfair for Traditional Publishers to be able to have this advantage over Independents. I don't mind giving my book away for free, but I would like those free books to count towards my stats, or, if not, I would like amazon to exclude the books from the TPs so that the ranking system reflects the popularity of the books...and not some scam.

Even if this stunt is only temporary, I think ALL authors should be allowed to take advantage of this.

And thanks for the review sites...I will definitely check them out. I know reviews are important but so far I only have reader reviews from amazon. I can't believe how much work it is once you have all the writing done...reviews, forums, stats, promotions, contests, contacts, planning and writing the sequel, painting the new cover (yes I do my own artwork), mailing books and info....it's a lot more work than the actual writing.
David J. Guyton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2009, 07:06 PM   #15
RickyMaveety
Holy S**T!!!
RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.RickyMaveety lived happily ever after.
 
RickyMaveety's Avatar
 
Posts: 5,186
Karma: 108401
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: San Diego, California!!
Device: Kindle and iPad
Yep .... I just picked up a copy too. I look forward to reading it.
RickyMaveety is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Amazon Kindle sets sales records. sibelhodge News 37 12-21-2009 07:56 AM
Kindle sales monthly sales record in Nov. kennyc News 12 11-30-2009 07:18 PM
Amazon 2007 Holiday Sales Great, but Kindle? vivaldirules Amazon Kindle 8 01-09-2008 04:08 AM
Amazon announces associates get 10% kindle sales horseyride Amazon Kindle 5 11-30-2007 06:25 PM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 01:15 PM.


MobileRead.com is a privately owned, operated and funded community.