Wednesday, 26 April 2017

The 19% Solution

Just to keep you all abreast* of the life and times of Gibbous House, a debut novel from a nonentity author. (That's me, by the way). Unbound- or PenguinRH who handle distribution - managed to get a physical manifestation of my book in a total of 5 branches of Foyles (Yaay!) in the London area (Booo!). If you click through PRH's Gibbous House page using the "Buy From" button, you will see that GH can be ordered from Waterstones,Hive,WH Smith and Leviathan - I mean Amazon -  on-line.

Now, an optimistic estimate of how many books have been sold since publication is about 20. Yes, twenty. I know of five or six here in Spain and the other 14 are an attempt to make sense of Amazon rankings, in the absence of sales figures. This number does not include all the special editions that the generous people who supported the novel on its journey to being a physical book are lucky enough to own. Well, obviously, I'm a writer without an agent, I have no PR team and, yes, let's be honest I am just one of Unbound's authors, who must now number in the hundreds, if not, they soon will. If you have any other Unbound books check the spine for a number, it will tell you what number book it is in Unbound's catalogue, (I think). Gibbous House is number 89.


Neither do I have a generous trust fund to finance appearances at Hay-On-Wye or Frankfurt Book Fair, even if I could get invited to such a thing. So I promote Gibbous House on line. I have a page on Facebook dedicated to my writing. Unfortunately,  I think the sarcasm from Please Allow Me may put off more than it encourages, I find the daft posts of my alter-ego very therapeutic in what is a really frustrating business. I tweet occasionally and like to retweet authors I know and the posts of fellow Unbounders, especially those still in the long funding process. I join book review groups and promise to review others books in the hope that they'll review mine. Of course, I am a book snob. I want what I review to be well-written, free from solipsism and dangling participles. This doesn't help my efforts to get Gibbous House reviewed. If you are an author and you'd like an honest review for your book, send me a final proof or an e-book and I'd be pleased to look at it. My only condition is that you have worked with (and listened to) a competent editor. Contact me here

Notwithstanding the above, my Facebook followers and twitter audience do not increase and therefore the echo chamber effect is noticeable. Many have already bought the book, in fact. Not many people share or retweet, usually it's the same people and grateful though I am, it would probably more effective if more people shared or retweeted one thing about the book per week. Or so I am told, who knows?  

Anyway, regarding the 19% solution, that's the discounted price for Gibbous House on Amazon today. I don't think it will promote sales, somehow.  I am looking into some local radio here in Spain, but, I doubt they'll be very keen since Gibbous House's only connection to Spain is the fact that I live here. Even the local free English press aren't prepared to do a review, although I offered them a hard copy to do so. (Can't imagine why they weren't tempted!)

Well, that's a lot of my chest. Never mind, I'll post something more positive later in the week!

*Ooer missus, have you noticed how the BBC prefers "across" plus a direct object? What are we, nine years old?

Monday, 17 April 2017

Everything Must Go! (Amazon's Marketing Strategy)

I was stunned to learn this morning that Amazon is heavily discounting Gibbous House... by 9p! Seriously, is this really going to garner any more sales? What are they thinking? I've had 3 months at full price, so I get it, only 8 reviews and my sales must be under a certain number (who knows what?) so the algorithm kicks in and... Eight pounds 90 p vice 8.99.

I was hoping I'd get six months to a year at full price, but you know, without knowing how many sales there actually are, it hardly seems to matter. Oh well, live and learn.

Anyway, those of you out there who have read it, I would be so grateful for a review. 10 words or a 110 both equally welcome.

Sunday, 2 April 2017

Well, I Never...

A picture of me holding a copy of Gibbous House was posted on one of those "What's on in..." Facebook pages. It got me 3 sales on the day it was posted. I'm pretty sure that it's a one off opportunity, though. I am thinking of holding an event in the local area. I have about 15 copies that a reviewer is never going to see, so I could take along a lap-top and convince people to buy a copy on-line when I run out of these too. Ha! Ha!

Anyway, I think it may have achieved more than Please Allow Me's efforts on my behalf. However, it's hard to tell because Amazon don't release any sales figures, not even to publishers.

Reviews help, of course, I've had a good one from a Blog-based reviewer here. What I particularly liked were the headings like the one below, if you've seen the cover of Gibbous House you'll realise why.

A nice touch from the blogger, no? They are different for every book reviewed. Many thanks to Little Bookness Lane. Amazon rating had a twitch on the 30th March too, it's no coincidence that this was the date the review appeared.

Well that's all folks, except to say, do keep a look out for more nonsense from Please Allow Me, he's sure to come up with something less fit for purpose than Boris Johnson. However, in the meantime this is the most fun so far for my money... ("What money?" says PAM)