Saturday, May 5, 2012

What if They Don't Like It? A KDP Success Story

My first book blast for Gallagher's Pride hasn't yet completed two days of free on Kindle and I'm pleased to say that it has been a smashing success! Truly, it has far, far surpassed what I imagined it would, downloading thousands of copies in less than two days and so far reaching #2 on the historical romance bestseller and up into the top 20 of the overall free Kindle bestseller list - needless to say I've been overwhelmed with pleasure. Will my book remain high on the lists after the KDP run? Possibly not, but truth is that it may never had made it high on any list without a bit of help.

Then it hit me - before, when only a small number of the books had been downloaded, I risked only a small number of people not liking the book. Suddenly there are thousands of readers out there who could potentially not like it. Even as the downloads continued to rise, my brain bobbled back and forth between how exciting it was that I had reached such a grand audience and the nagging feeling that the expanded audience also meant a greater number of people who could possibly not enjoy the book and post poor reviews for all of cyberspace to read. (Side note: you may find this article interesting).

Well authors, it's the price to be paid and let me tell you that it's a price worth paying. Why you might ask? If you read the statistics on how many books are published each year, you'll see that the figure runs anywhere from 300k to over 1 million - whether or not the numbers are accurate, there is still an enormous amount of new books flooding bookshelves and cyberspace. So what happens when one new lowly author publishes a book amidst all that? Truth is, most people aren't going to know you're out there. KDP has solved that problem for many authors, making it possible to reach a vast audience in a short space of time. Yes, you're giving the book away for however many days, but you're potentially reaching a new audience that can go from a mere 100 or so readers to thousands.

Then I thought about it more and realized that it didn't matter. I love the book and I know others will too. Of course there will be those who don't, but the book is out there and it's being read - that's what matters most to me as a writer. So a big THANK YOU to every reader who made the KDP run a grand success and here's to many days of happy reading!

So is it worth? That's not what you should be asking. The question an author should be asking themselves is 'is it worth it not to try it'? Is it worth no one ever knowing you're there? Is it worth being lost forever in a flood of new titles just because you're afraid of what readers might think? Without an audience, you're only writing for yourself. Writing is like any other business venture, because as a writer you are in business for yourself. With that comes risk, but if you endure, pay your dues, and put out a product worthy of an audience, you will succeed. Just remember that it doesn't hurt to have a little help along the way and to keep an open mind to what readers (your customers) are saying.

Authors - what's your success story? Has it been worth it?


  1. I do hope the book sells more the free offer. Much success.

  2. Hi - I saw your announcement on "Rope and Wire" so I'll be swinging back by tomorrow to check out the blog hop. New follower here and I look forward to visiting again!


  3. Thank you for the support Peaches!

  4. I am so happy your book is doing well! It's a great read and I'm sure people will love it:) I can tell you that from my own personal sucess with my first KDP promo that my book still continued to sell extremely well the first few weeks after my promo ended. I am sure that yours will continue to sell and that you will see many sales from this. Good luck!

  5. MK, I had the same results when Yellowstone HEart Song went free last month. #2 in historical romance, and at #7 overall. It was the best high! Post free, (and even during the free run) the other books in my series sold tons of copies. It's been three weeks post free for me, and I am seeing a definite drop in sales now, but still way higher than they were before going free. It's the thrill of being seen rather than being buried in a sea of other books, and that people are reading your book. As far as reviews, so far I've received only stellar reviews, so I think when the bad one (s) come, the blow won't be so hard. to swallow.

  6. Kimberly & Peggy - thank you for the encouragement. All I can say is that whoever thought giving away your book for free would be so much fun! :)