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I came across this author today:

http://www.amazon.com/Paladins-Redemption-Kingdoms-Forge-Book-ebook/dp/B00TTDWWZ0/ref=pd_ybh_3

A few things to note:

1. He's a debut author.
2. His sales rank is currently 512. That's not bad - and I expect that he hasn't quite plateaued yet.
3. The book was published a little over a fortnight ago.
4. His price is $3.99.
5. A debut author, with only 9 reviews, would not have secured any of the big advertisers.
6. A debut author isn't likely to have a significant (if any) mailing list.

What does all this show? It shows that if you pick a popular category, have a good cover, blurb and look inside feature (all of which he has) you're a good chance of getting results - nothing else required. This guy isn't an outlier. It's happening all the time on Amazon. The best advertizing we have is the cover, blurb and the look inside feature.

And the good thing about this is that all of these factors are 100% in our control.
 
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Good for him.

I'm glad he's attracting attention and making sales.

 

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Hi,

I could be so jealous!  Fantasy is my genre too and I've just published my first book less than a fortnight ago as well.  I decided to post however because I am almost certain I have seen this cover somewhere before.  It seems that it could not be bookbub but I just subscribed to that early this week and I don't have any other promo emails coming to me.  I could be wrong but I feel literally like 95% certain I have seen this cover as it caught my eye and it was in the same genre I was looking for.

I can't be certain but perhaps he managed to advertise this correctly and market it efficiently and in either case I agree with you that the cover, blurb and look inside are good as well as his author bio which doesn't have a picture but is very well written and humble.

I'll watch how this one goes and see if he puts out a second book anytime soon.

Regards,
SM
 

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Thanks for posting this Jack.  I don't usually read fantasy, but had a hard time putting it down after I started reading it. It's really good. I'm 4 chapters in and it just makes you want to read more.  The author mentions cash is tight, right now, I think that is going to be nothing but a bad memory for him if he keeps writing books like this.
 

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I thik branding plays a large part in his success as well. The cover and the blurb sells an adventure and an idea. He did a great job.
 

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Hmmm...beautiful cover. Great title.

antares said:
Paladin's Redemption is #1 in Fantasy at amazon.com as of 07 March 2015.

Why do I get the feeling that Kade Derricks is a pseudonym and that this is not the writer's first rodeo?
Ah-ha! ;D You might be on to something....
 

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Well, it could be a pseudonym. But I don't get that vibe looking at his Amazon pages - still less at his website.

Personally, I just think he has talent and good instincts. He might, or might not, also have an experienced adviser.

We can be pretty sure that he hasn't had a Bookbub add yet. Apart from everything else, I get the Bookbub emails for Fantasy and I would have seen it. And no other advertiser would propel him so high.

And even if it's a pseudonym the Amazon customers don't know that. Of course, he might have used his mailing list from another name to launch this book. That's possible, but it kinda defeats the purpose of having a pseudonym. It all seems very unlikely to me.

I think he's what he appears to be: a debut author. And his cover, blurb and look inside are working well.


 

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Okay, I'm sorry but am I the only one that doesn't think the cover is actually all that great? I never would have clicked on it. Obviously I wish him the best, and this is an amazing accomplishment! And yaaaay exciting! This guy is rocking it. But... I just don't think that the cover is really all that *shrug*.
 

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Stephanie Marks said:
Okay, I'm sorry but am I the only one that doesn't think the cover is actually all that great? I never would have clicked on it. Obviously I wish him the best, and this is an amazing accomplishment! And yaaaay exciting! This guy is rocking it. But... I just don't think that the cover is really all that *shrug*.
It's not a great cover, but it's extraordinarily genre appropriate. This brand of fantasy is traditionally read more by men than women (a generalization, I know). I get the sense that perhaps male fantasy readers just want a clear indication in the cover of the type of book they want to read. Just a sense - I've got nothing to back that impression up.
 

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We miss you, Harvey Chute.
 

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Greetings,

Well I have yet to read it or download it but the cover looks great as does the blurb.  What I am noticing is the categories right now.  They are as follows:

#1 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Arthurian
#1 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Myths & Legends
#2 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Metaphysical & Visionary

I have watched Nick's videos on the 10k readers and his video about categories was most telling.  Here are the number of books in each category:

1) Arthurian = 892
2) Myths and Legends = 2,894
3) Metaphysical & Visionary = 2,971

To give you a point of reference here are a couple of popular categories within Fantasy

1) Coming of Age = 3,799
2) Epic = 19, 062
3) Sword and Socery = 11,765

So this is just my speculation but add a good solid (if not excellent) cover for the Fantasy genre, write a great solid and concise blurb to hook a reader's attention, throw in a great looking "Look Inside" so that it is clean and professional looking, add a humble author bio that feels real and top it of with some knowledge of marketing (or luck if you aren't buying what I'm selling) using the least competitive sub genres in Fantasy and the mix looks like success.

Again not to take anything away from this debut author but it looks to me more like a perfect storm where all the parts came together and in the end the "#1 Bestselling" tags in those sub genres may have kicked in the Amazon algorithms to the point of this work reaching 'critical mass'.

Well done is all I can say.  I'll be looking at Nick's videos some more and tweaking my key words today  :)

SM
 

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Salvador Mercer said:
throw in a great looking "Look Inside" so that it is clean and professional looking
Ok, you have my attention. By "great looking 'Look Inside'" do you just mean one that isn't all taken up with front matter & 8 pages of acknowledgments, or is there some voodoo I don't know about?

Or do you just come up with a great phrase like "hungry, orange snow" to describe flying embers, and stick it in your second paragraph? :)
 

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Janet Rochester said:
Ok, you have my attention. By "great looking 'Look Inside'" do you just mean one that isn't all taken up with front matter & 8 pages of acknowledgments, or is there some voodoo I don't know about?

Or do you just come up with a great phrase like "hungry, orange snow" to describe flying embers, and stick it in your second paragraph? :)
Hi Janet!

I thought I mentioned it specifically enough as in "clean and professional looking".

I can't speak as an author cause I'm too new to this but as a reader for the last 40 years I'd say when I do "Look Inside" I want to see that everything is in order and that it looks professional. The clean part, for me at least, probably refers to the lack of clutter. Some author's try to cram too much inside that front 'Look Inside' and from a 'publishing' POV I have no idea if that is right or wrong but from my 'reader' POV I like to see the usual elements inside after the cover; TOC, copyright page, dedication and of course good formatting.

Those are just my opinions and while I fancy myself quite the reader I can't speak with any kind of real authority from the publishing side. So to summarize yeah, no 8 pages of acknowledgements and there is no 'voodoo' that you are missing. ;D

Regards,
SM
 

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I thought that was what you meant. Cool.

Every time I come here, I find people talking about things (mostly to do with marketing) that make my brain hurt. So I wanted to be sure I wasn't missing yet another boat.
 

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Understood.  I was a Dr. Seussy not too long ago myself having just joined Kboards on January 1 of this year.  My head hurts too from all the advice and things I have to learn about the business here but I'm glad I found this place otherwise I'd probably have already augured in by now.  :p
 

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In my opinion his blurb really doesn't do his writing justice.

I saw the cover and thought "I want to read this." then I read the title and thought "Sounds generic." then I read the blurb and thought "Yup, generic." then I took a look inside and the cover size broke the formatting on the tablet I'm on (I checked Mr. Mercer's book to make sure and it did indeed not have this problems, good job, Mr. Mercer) then I scrolled down and started reading and it had me hooked, I just wanted to keep going.

Now, my point is that I would never have gotten all the way to the writing if I weren't on a mission to give it a thorough look, but now I might have to buy the damn thing. I'm not sure that the cover and the blurb is selling this book.
 

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Jack Krenneck said:
I came across this author today:

http://www.amazon.com/Paladins-Redemption-Kingdoms-Forge-Book-ebook/dp/B00TTDWWZ0/ref=pd_ybh_3

A few things to note:

1. He's a debut author.
2. His sales rank is currently 512. That's not bad - and I expect that he hasn't quite plateaued yet.
3. The book was published a little over a fortnight ago.
4. His price is $3.99.
5. A debut author, with only 9 reviews, would not have secured any of the big advertisers.
6. A debut author isn't likely to have a significant (if any) mailing list.

What does all this show? It shows that if you pick a popular category, have a good cover, blurb and look inside feature (all of which he has) you're a good chance of getting results - nothing else required. This guy isn't an outlier. It's happening all the time on Amazon. The best advertizing we have is the cover, blurb and the look inside feature.

And the good thing about this is that all of these factors are 100% in our control.
The bad thing is the wise saying of 'don't judge a book by its cover' is turned on its head.

If you dress the pig in a fancy costume the effects of the illusion truly are like the emperor isn't wearing any clothes.
 
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