Becoming an Amazon Best Seller
I know I need put this all down while its fresh. Many months ago I decided to reedit, refresh and relaunch Firetok. I’ve written about it several times so I wont go into detail on the why. Please keep in mind, I approach this blog as a student, an explorer digging through life sharing my experience. I keep studying, keep reading and continue my education on how to crack the codes. In this case you can spend thousands of dollars with the “experts”. Some will guarantee Best Seller status for a fee. Sometimes I believe I am fortunate not to have a ton of money to throw at things like this or I likely would. I can’t say for sure. It took months to get the book ready. I got commitments from a decent size group of people to read and review as part of the launch. I sent out advance copies to them all and sat back and waited. No I didn’t. The waiting part is a lie. I tried to push the video out, made a couple short versions of it and pushed as hard as my internet connection could take.
Launch day was Thursday and met a debut at maybe 181. I was pretty thrilled, that was in the horror category which is flooded with books. Thursday evening progressed to where it moved into the top 100. They update the numbers every hour and I was checking it once in awhile or as fast as my computer would refresh whichever comes first. It hit 55 which was still in the 100, you can trust me I got help with the math. It held on up and down till I checked in Saturday morning and it was no longer on the list. I went to work, came home feeling sick and took a nap. I woke up and checked again just because. It had moved up to 25. I was so excited. I still am. I was not really present in the moment. I had to be asked, “Doesn’t that make it a bestseller?” I was like, um… I think you are right. I was not prepared for this to happen. Fortunately I have friends who jumped on it and started tweeting while it slowly penetrated my dense hide. So yes the Amazon Best Selling list is the top 100 selling books by category. I was coming up in different categories but horror believe it or not is where Firetok did the best and went the highest.
I am not sure what all to say. I ran my free promotion for four days. Amazon would have allowed 5 for every 90 days the book is enrolled in some other Kindle program, not sure exactly what. Firetok stayed in the top 100 nearly the entire time. I truly don’t understand much of any of the algorithm thing. Reviews affect your book as do downloads. How? I have no idea. I was able to observe one review moving the rating up lets say 8 places on the list while another one only moved it two. I had one mysteriously removed and that alone seemed to drop the number by over 20. Make any sense to you? Congrats if it does. It’s easy enough to find how many paper books I have sold in the CreateSpace dashboard. Digital sales especially in the midst of a free ebook promotion? I have no idea how to figure that out, I think I had and still do have too much going on to spend much time looking.
How did it all play out? In this case, the advance readers hit the ratings hard on launch day and kicked this book in the ass. They were favorable ratings, thank goodness, which may be important to add. It is all kind of a blur right now. Fortunately they trickled in over the course of the whole day so I could check on the rating repeatedly. Kind of reminded me of the night we stayed up till the early hours waiting for the Bush Gore results which never came, only infinitely more interesting.
I did a post nearly a year ago about becoming a bestseller from selling free books. I speculated on the possibility. I can say now with confidence, it is possible if that makes any sense. Of course its not quite that easy. Nothing is.
This is such a thrill I cannot really explain it. It was at least 5 months ago when I decided to go back and right some wrongs with this book. Never in my wildest imagination did I consider something like this would happen. There is a little bit of validation for all the studying, digging and scratching actually paying off. I will say as well and actually most importantly I could not have done it without the support of my friends who did the advance reading and showed up for the reviews.
Bibiana Krall, Sheri McInnis, MJ Labeff, Michele Belisle, Jason Hatch, Brianna West, Sally Lloyd, Doug Hudson, Lance Zechinato, Ed Selender, Julia Satu, Amelia C, Juliette Power and Jennifer Lopez, my sincerest of gratitude.
Thanks to Dianna of course, my partner in this and every endeavor.
Originally published at www.firetok.com on March 3, 2016.