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Thursday, March 22, 2012

Sales Glitches

Funny how stuff happens. I get a great review on a novel that never received much attention, and I’m notified by readers they can’t access the digital book form off the AuthorHouse site. There’s some good news. Come to find out after phone calls and e-mails it will take a few business days to get the digital e-book form back on line with AMERICAN MUTANT and three others. Since I can self-publish a novel in an hour on Amazon with full linkups to everything, I’m wondering if AuthorHouse could use me on their IT staff.  :)
While I was learning about glitches, and actually fixing glitches in cars yesterday I neared 12,000 words in my sequel to DEMON. I haven’t heard back from the agent taking a full look at the manuscript, but I’m still querying it. The characters are so much fun for me to write about, if I ever contract it with anyone, or even self-publish it, I may be able to market a series.
My friend, Author/Reviewer RJ Parker is now reading PEACE, and really likes it. Luckily, it’s for sale on Kindle and Nook. Because it’s around 650 pages long with action and humor throughout, it’s a little pricey for an e-book. On the other hand, a reader buying it won’t get short changed. On Kindle, it’s selling for $9.99, but on Nook, Barnes&Noble took a bit off the price there at $8.49. If I had anything to do with it, I’d drop it down under four bucks, since competition for e-book sales takes place on the market with thousands of short novellas for under two bucks.
It’s apparent that sales will hinge on the name recognition battle front. Also, it seems so far in my observations that the large excerpts offered mean less than a well done cover to readers. This factor surprised me. Shopping in an on-line bookstore is not exactly like perusing novels on a shelf at a brick and mortar bookstore. I thought the blurbs and writing samples would be the big draw on-line. Not so. Professionally done covers mean a lot, and they can be pricey if you’re self-publishing. It must be done though. If the agent hunting falls through, the first book of my five finished novels I’m hawking that is going to get self-published will be LAYLA, my Djinn storyline inside an automotive repair shop. It will need a first class cover though.
That’s it for now in the writing business. If yesterday’s phone call appointment is any clue, I think today’s real life auto repair appointment will be memorable enough to blog about tomorrow.  :)


Jordan Summers said...

Bernard, That's odd that they say the book won't be for sale for a couple of days. It must be some major IT problem for that to happen. Hang in there. Fingers crossed you hear back from that agent soon. :)

BernardL said...

I agree, Jordan, and I'm going to hound them everyday. I have their direct phone number and extension. :)

raine said...

Sorry to hear about the glitches. Hope everything clears up soon.
And interesting info about the covers. I figured they'd generate the initial interest, but not be more important than the excerpts!

BernardL said...

It's Murphy's Law, Raine. I get a little action on the novels I thought I had covered, and then I don't. :) Jordan just blogged about hitting the 10,000 e-book sales figure for one month alone! She had gorgeous covers on the material she's been releasing on Amazon. It's not that her writing doesn't hold or entice, along with name recognition, but those very well done covers do definitely help. I noticed that my friend RJ Parker's true crime series have striking covers too.

Jordan Summers said...

I actually think covers only work to catch reader's attention. After that, the excerpt better pop/tease/blow their minds or all of the above.

I've picked up plenty of books based on their covers, but I've rarely, if ever, purchased one for that alone.

BernardL said...

Your excerpts are great, Jordan. As you say, the covers catch a reader's eye, but there better be something to hold the attention on the inside. You wouldn't be selling 10,000 e-books in a month without a lot more than stunning covers. That's for sure.

Charles Gramlich said...

A Djinn inside an automotive repair shop? Channelling reality are you?

BernardL said...

Oh yeah, Charles, and it's hilarious. LAYLA has a great blend of humor, action, and automotive repair, all wrapped up in paranormal setting. :)