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Don't Tell the Kindle Owners Out There ...

Sunday, 16 January 2011

... but as well as my epublished short stories/novelettes being available to purchase for the Kindle at Amazon (and, indeed, via Smashwords for all the other species of ereader), they're now also all available for free download from Feedbooks.

This may seem like economic suicide but, as you may recall, my foray into epublishing over the past 12 months or so has been pretty much an experiment. And a good one. The Armageddon Machine continues to shift units on Amazon US and Guitar Heroes, for some reason, does pretty well on Amazon UK. Between them they ratchet up 50-60 sales per month. Better than a poke in the eye. Meanwhile I've learned a lot about how to get the word out and engage with (potential) readers in the process : not least of which is that you do better the more time you invest in networking and publicizing. Which I guess is pretty obvious.

So why the Feedbooks thing? Right now, this is all about (hopefully) establishing a readership for me. If folks download my free stuff on Feedbooks, then maybe a proportion will like what they read enough to keep an eye on me. And maybe a proportion of them will think about buying a novel should I have one epublished. I've seen quite a few writers publishing their first few chapters on Feedbooks, with a link to where the complete novel can be purchased.

What do you think? Is that a good approach?

Meanwhile Feedbooks is going pretty well. Just checked the download figures. The works have been up there about 6 weeks now and so far they've had around 6000 downloads between them. I figure that's a few thousand people who probably wouldn't have heard of me otherwise. Around 60 Feedbook readers have bookmarked me on their bookshelves. I'm happy with that.

The analytics Feedbooks provide are fascinating too. They're kind of addictive. Couldn't resist, for example, including this graphic of the distribution of people who downloaded Armageddon.

I'd love to know who my one reader in Fiji is!


  1. Wow! 6000 sales? Gosh, that's pretty amazing! And that distribution map in particular is interesting to see.

    Out of curiosity, are any of your e-books being offered for free? Or did those 6000 people pay for their download? If so... wow! Though I guess, from what you've said before, that Amazon get a bigger cut than you, but still...

  2. Thomas,

    Those 6000 are all free downloads : they're the Feedbooks figures not the Amazon ones. But, yes, in terms of Amazon, I get 35% of any sales.

  3. Well of course it's a great thing to do!!!! I have to confess being old and stupid, I keep reading Facebook for Feedbooks!! LOL!!!

    Anyway - I think it's a great way to get your name out there and beside you are so prolific you'll always have new stories - of course you will!!! So keep em coming is what I say!! Good luck and good for you!! Take care

  4. I've already got those three but I think it's a great idea!

  5. Old Kitty,

    Thanks for the encouragement! I shall endeavour to keep 'em coming!

  6. Thanks fairyhedgehog - glad you think so.

  7. Simon, I continue to learn the ebook and techical stuff from you! What is Feedbooks?? This is the first time I ever heard of it!

  8. Karen,

    Hope I'm some help!

    Feedbooks are an ebook publisher/distributor. As they put it "Feedbooks is a cloud publishing and distribution service, connected to a large ecosystem of reading systems and social networks. Every month, Feedbooks distributes millions of books to an increasingly growing community of readers."

    It's a place a lot of readers go to download free reads. It's possible to sell through them too, but their focus is strongly on free reads.

  9. Those are fabulous figures, Simon. And no wonder, your covers look great. Did you do them yourself? And I'm sure the content matches them -- off to feedbooks to find out. Expect 6003 downloads.

    Thanks for the tip, I've never heard of feedbooks, but it's obviously big.

  10. Deborah,

    Cool! The covers were all stock images that I bought and then added my own lettering to. Very easy to do.

  11. I just got Live From the Continuing Explosion and I can't wait to read it. The next one I will get from Amazon. I think this is a great idea. 6000 downloads isn't anything to sneeze at. I hope it goes well!

  12. Thanks Words Crafter and I really hope you enjoy the stories.

  13. Wow, what a horrific concept. I can't imagine what it would be like, watching an explosion in slow motion. Every single thing, happening right before my eyes, no matter how gruesome, no matter the amount of pain the people are in.

    Incredible concept and an insightful statement. Bravo!

  14. Thanks Words Crafter - much appreciated.

  15. I do think this is an idea with great potential. It creates name recognition and in the sea of possible reads, that's one of the things that will make me pick up a book.

    Oh, and having read Live From The Continuing Explosion (on Etherbooks) can I just say: you spooked me so badly with that one that I couldn't sleep for hours. Extremely well written. I think you need fear nothing from giving away free samples!

  16. I think these methods are effective in boosting sales as well as recognition, and I've read other authors who have reported such stats. Feedbooks and smashwords are great ways to discover new authors; I've downloaded free reads and then moved on to purchase the authors' other works (including yours.)

  17. glennyeg,

    Thanks, that's very encouraging. I've ceratinly done the same myself. And thanks a thousand times for downloading/reading my stuff!


I'd love to know what you think.