Author Topic: 15,000 books in two months, 32,000 books first year. Advice for newbies!  (Read 71761 times)  

Offline LanelleH

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Thanks for writing this, reading it was super helpful. :)

Offline BlairErotica

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Then sacrifice a goat. Lots of goat sacrificing there.

It's okay to eat the goat after, isn't it? Wouldn't want to jinx the process.

Offline anniejocoby

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It's okay to eat the goat after, isn't it? Wouldn't want to jinx the process.

No, I think you just have to sacrifice it and be done. Not sure, though! :)
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Offline BlairErotica

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Thanks. I don't want to get the process messed up. Especially since it seems to work. Thanks for all the point, even the ones not about goats. Now you have me trying to recall what I use with goat besides LOTs of oregano.


Offline anniejocoby

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Thanks. I don't want to get the process messed up. Especially since it seems to work. Thanks for all the point, even the ones not about goats. Now you have me trying to recall what I use with goat besides LOTs of oregano.



My pleasure! :)
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Offline jjholden

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Such an inspirational read. The first episodes of my serial novels are now permafree and I will definitely give Freebooksy a try.

Thanks, Annie!

Online jamielakenovels

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How many free downloads did you get from using Freebooksy? Sounds like a great service.
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Offline anniejocoby

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How many free downloads did you get from using Freebooksy? Sounds like a great service.

It is, it is!!!! Here are my numbers. The first time I tried them, I put Broken free for one day. It was enrolled in KDP Select, and I thought I would do a free day to boost my mailing list and stuff. I expected to get around 1000 downloads, and would have been thrilled with that. I got 7500 downloads!!!!! In one day! And, best of all - the very next day, the book went back to $3.99, and I got 100 sales on that day! I thought, dayum.

Cut to Beautiful Illusions. The downloads for that one crashed to 20 a day a couple of months after a Bookbub ad. I did a Freebooksy ad, and I got around 4000 downloads in the next few days and 9000 downloads for the month! Not as impressive as the other ad, but, still - this was a book that had been out for awhile and went through a successful Bookbub cycle earlier. I was afraid that it was too saturated, but it really wasn't. So, yeah. Freebooksy. All the way.

I'm going to be running three Freebooksy ads the week after next, as I hope to have three permafrees by then. Beautiful Illusions, Broken and I'm going to go ahead and make my new release, Fearless, a permafree from the get-go. I'll definitely post my numbers.
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Offline anniejocoby

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Such an inspirational read. The first episodes of my serial novels are now permafree and I will definitely give Freebooksy a try.

Thanks, Annie!

Good luck! PM me with your numbers, or post!
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Offline Kit_Kat_Purrr

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10) Most of all, believe in yourself. Don't give up because you are having a hard time getting going and the sales just aren't coming. Believe in yourself and your abilities and stories and keep on keeping on. You might not be successful, but you definitely won't be if you give up.


Thank you for # 10.  THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!!

@struggling_here

Offline anniejocoby

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Thank you for # 10.  THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!!

@struggling_here

Keep the faith!!!!!! Seriously. There were times when I wanted to give up, but I really had no choice. My day writing job paid next to nothing. If I would have had a good-paying day job, though, I probably would have quit. Thank goodness I didn't. :)
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Offline SA_Archer

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Amazon finally made my first book free. Thank you Annie for the advice!

It is currently #504 in the free store and #4 in both my categories (Action Adventure>Fantasy, Horror>Dark Fantasy) with 447 downloads.

No collateral sales in the 13 seconds Scattered Magic has been free, but I am hopeful!

I wish I knew how to include a picture of my graph. It is kind of funny. In the last month I had a ENT inspired spike to 83 sales in a day. And this was huge compared to all the data points under 5 around it. Now I have a free spike up to 527 for today, and my little sales boost is just a blade of grass next to it.

I was really surprised at the number of downloads without any promotion at all. I've had 6 'episodes' free for a while, and the best one for this month was at 50. I didn't expect the collection to do SO much better. With my collection going free, some of the episodes have boosted up, but just like 20 or so more copies. I wouldn't have guessed that the collection verses the episodes would have had such a different result.

So far I am just grinning at the downloads and at the ranking.

Thank you Annie!



Offline Dina

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You are lovely! Thank you for sharing. And congratulations. Well deserved.

Offline anniejocoby

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Amazon finally made my first book free. Thank you Annie for the advice!

It is currently #504 in the free store and #4 in both my categories (Action Adventure>Fantasy, Horror>Dark Fantasy) with 447 downloads.

No collateral sales in the 13 seconds Scattered Magic has been free, but I am hopeful!

I wish I knew how to include a picture of my graph. It is kind of funny. In the last month I had a ENT inspired spike to 83 sales in a day. And this was huge compared to all the data points under 5 around it. Now I have a free spike up to 527 for today, and my little sales boost is just a blade of grass next to it.

I was really surprised at the number of downloads without any promotion at all. I've had 6 'episodes' free for a while, and the best one for this month was at 50. I didn't expect the collection to do SO much better. With my collection going free, some of the episodes have boosted up, but just like 20 or so more copies. I wouldn't have guessed that the collection verses the episodes would have had such a different result.

So far I am just grinning at the downloads and at the ranking.

Thank you Annie!




So happy for you!!!! Yay, you! Remember two things, though - at least, let me tell you my experience, just so that you don't panic. When I first went free, I had a lot of downloads. I mean, a lot. About a week later, they dropped off the cliff. I panicked, of course. But if that happens to you (I hope it doesn't!!!!!), but if it does, get a Freebooksy ad to get it back up there.

Also, my read-through rate was low at first. Only around 3%. That grew over the months, though, and it's now 12% for one of my books and 25% for the other. That has been the experience of others on this board, too - the read-through rate grows and grows as you get more of a name. So, if you don't get a ton of sales off your freebie at first, be patient. This, too, is a long game!

But you are on your way!!!!! Congrats!!!!!!!!
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Offline SA_Archer

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Thank you so much Annie! Up to 818 downloads for the collection and a total of 946 downloads across all my freebies in a single day. The collection is up to #315 in the free store, and #3 and #4 in my genre charts. You're right about the sales, too. Just one each of the next two collections in the serial so far. I'll not sweat it, thanks to your advice. Like many who've been screaming in the wilderness and not getting noticed, right now it is just nice to know the story is in the hands of so many new readers. :)

I'll watch it and use Freebooksy and the other places mentioned in this and other posts to try and keep it sticky on the charts, like you've said.

Thank you again!

Offline jamiegrey

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Congrats, Annie! And thanks so much for this post, it's really inspiring. I wasn't planning on making book 1 of my series free until I had a few more out, but I'm starting to rethink that.

One more question for you if you don't mind? With your fast release schedule, how do you handle editors? Do you use one? And if so, how does that work with scheduling? I'd keep my poor copy editor booked to the gills if I wrote as fast as you!

Offline anniejocoby

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Thank you so much Annie! Up to 818 downloads for the collection and a total of 946 downloads across all my freebies in a single day. The collection is up to #315 in the free store, and #3 and #4 in my genre charts. You're right about the sales, too. Just one each of the next two collections in the serial so far. I'll not sweat it, thanks to your advice. Like many who've been screaming in the wilderness and not getting noticed, right now it is just nice to know the story is in the hands of so many new readers. :)

I'll watch it and use Freebooksy and the other places mentioned in this and other posts to try and keep it sticky on the charts, like you've said.

Thank you again!


Good luck! Glad that you took my advice. And remember, don't panic - this, too, is a long game! :)
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Offline anniejocoby

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Congrats, Annie! And thanks so much for this post, it's really inspiring. I wasn't planning on making book 1 of my series free until I had a few more out, but I'm starting to rethink that.

One more question for you if you don't mind? With your fast release schedule, how do you handle editors? Do you use one? And if so, how does that work with scheduling? I'd keep my poor copy editor booked to the gills if I wrote as fast as you!

Gah! I'm going to have admit something that might get me pitchforked and torched, but...I self-edit. Don't throw things at me, please! But my production schedule is most of the reason why I don't have an editor. I don't know of anybody with that kind of turn-around time. I do have a beta reader, though.
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Offline AnyaWrites

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Gah! I'm going to have admit something that might get me pitchforked and torched, but...I self-edit. Don't throw things at me, please! But my production schedule is most of the reason why I don't have an editor. I don't know of anybody with that kind of turn-around time. I do have a beta reader, though.

No pitchforks here! Your books are great!
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Offline jamiegrey

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Gah! I'm going to have admit something that might get me pitchforked and torched, but...I self-edit. Don't throw things at me, please! But my production schedule is most of the reason why I don't have an editor. I don't know of anybody with that kind of turn-around time. I do have a beta reader, though.

Not at all! I think that's great. Wish I was that talented :) I'm a bit dyslexic so I need to hire a copy editor or it's just not pretty! And yeah, I can see where turnaround time would be difficult.

Thanks for answering! I appreciate it.

Offline anniejocoby

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Thanks Anya and Jamie! I sometimes feel bad for self-editing, so it's nice to know that you guys like it anyhow!
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Offline N. Gemini Sasson

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Awesome story, Annie. I love it when people here share what works and what doesn't. Makes us all smarter.

Like you, I put some books in Select. While it did have its perks, I can see now that there is a better path. I plan on making one of my old books permafree soon (just have to decide which one) and am close to being done writing the first in a totally new series.

Your experience shows that patience is key. And that it can be worth the risk to switch gears and try new things - whether that's a new series or a new way of marketing.

Thanks for sharing and I wish for your success to grow and grow and grow. You rock!

ETA - I am *floored* that BB has passed on your hugely popular book so many times. Sounds like you're doing just fine anyway. ;-)
« Last Edit: July 15, 2014, 10:22:11 AM by N. Gemini Sasson »


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Offline bellabentley

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Thanks again for a wonderful thread! I continually come back here! I'm going to send in my first book to freebooksy. Even though it's a long short story,...and the remainder of the series are novelties. Think that's okay? I researched their page and found a few short stories. I was wondering if anyone had an success with that?

Again, this is book 1 of an 8 part novelette erotic romance series. With each book, the books progressively increase in words! <3

Offline anniejocoby

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Thanks, Gemini! I wish you luck with the permafree, just have patience! As I noted to other posters, I started with a 3% read-through rate, and I now have a 12% read-through rate on Beautiful Illusions and a 25% read-through rate for Broken. So, if your read-through rate starts out small, don't be too discouraged. I have read that with other posters as well - the read-through rate keeps growing as you get more established.

And, yeah, I'm a little bit perplexed on why I can't get a BookBub ad for Broken. I just tried again yesterday, so we shall see....

Bella, yeah, I think that Freebooksy takes any book lengths at all. I think. At any rate, they are well worth the price! I have had enormous success with them, as have other posters here, so you should do great! Good luck!
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Offline bellabentley

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thank you!! <3

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