I have another blog post coming after this one. I was going to just make the one post but decided to separate this subject out from what’s coming. The reasons for this will be made blatantly obvious to anyone who reads both posts🙂
You know about my little Kindle Experiment but what you don’t know is that last week I took every book in the OF WAR Series out of ‘paranormal’ and every book in the Sister Christian Series out of ‘Christian’. Yes, I very ashamedly admit to having done that for a few weeks. Not wanting to become known as something like The Heathen Passing Herself Off as a Christian Writer, I got rid of it. BUT, if I hadn’t done that I would never have realized how easy it can be for an author to manipulate their ranking on Kindle/Amazon.
OF WAR Complete went from number Oblivion+2 in ‘paranormal’ to 219 in ‘mythology’. It made a grand total of 6 sales during this sales period and it happened to have been running a sale price. The first book, “The Heart of War” went from Oblivion+a-bazillion to 516. 1 sale. 1 during this period. Book #2, “Child of War-A God is Born” went similar oblivion to 665. Not one sale. 0. Zippo. Nada. Nothing. It went on and on that way for every book in the series. I took it out of ‘paranormal for two reasons 1-‘paranormal’ has become synonymous with vampire/shifter/werewolf/zombie sex. I have Gods not creatures that were once (more properly) relegated to horror movies. 2-I followed a link for a book, a series, similar to mine, by a “New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author” and discovered the number of reviews were low but the rank was high. Her Greek Gods were ‘Mythological’ not ‘paranormal’. So I followed her lead and….viola! (That’s a New Englander’s joke, I know it’s voila…duh.) Up until then I had shied away from the ‘mythological’ category because it happens to be lumped with Fairy Tales and Folklore…no, you can’t get rid of them. I also thought about ‘Dark Fantasy’ since my Gods and my stories seem more appropriate there. I thought about ‘Dystopian’ for “Rising Son” and…
Holy shit! Looking at “Rising Son” now and someone is trying to sell a USED paperback for $72.10!!! WTF???? Honey, if you want a paperback I’ll get you like 3 or 4 for that price.🙂
I don’t think it’s quite as bad as ‘Dystopian’. I know, we killed off at least 3/4 of the world’s population but still, I’m not ready to be that bleak about it.
Genesis, Sister Christian #1, actually made it to a rather high rank in the ‘Christian’ category. So high I’m embarrassed to say it here and so I won’t. It made 1 sale during this period. 1. All books in that series are currently resting nicely in the top 500 for ‘women’s fiction’. Sub category of ‘Christian fiction’ is still showing up but that’s because I used ‘christian’ as a keyword. Sue me. It’s relevant to the story.
I have no idea who, if anyone, looks at the ranking and then makes a decision whether or not to buy based on your numbers. Judging by the sales not made I’d say ‘not many’ but that’s just me. However, for us vain, pathetic, simpering, needy, writers the boost in numbers by simply changing your category can be a very nice jolt for Ye Olde Sagging Ego.
(But $72.10 for a use paperback of “Rising Son” is just pissing me off!)
So if you’ve found that you’ve put your work into a really broad category with tons of competition like ‘paranormal’, you might want to step back and take a deeper look at it. Perhaps it fits better somewhere else. Perhaps that other place will allow you more visibility so you can get more sales. Most of us are realistic about this game, we don’t expect to become Kindle Millionaires…we wouldn’t turn it down either! But, being able to buy yourself something nice or someone else something nice at the end of the month with your ‘extra cash’ is always a pleasurable thing.
Try it. You don’t have anything to lose since you can always switch back to what you had before. Can’t hurt. Might help. Go for it. See what happens.