Yeah. When it comes to marketing our novels, we suck on a level that's levels beyond the usual suckage.
We're not bad people. See? We like puppies. We especially like pug puppies.
What happened was this: When a writer signs up with KDP Select, they're allowed five days to "promote" their product (= give it away for free) to Amazon's audience. The free approach may or may not be a swell idea -- since a fellow writer told us he'd never had a negative review until he put his novel up for grabs...and, then, oh, Lordy, did things change -- but, since the audience for Something Wicked had dwindled, we thought we'd give it a try, anyway.
We selected two days in July to promote the story and three days in August. We thought we'd do a minimum of promotion for the first round (this blog and we hit a couple of sites that list free novels) and use Ebook Booster for the August run. We don't know if Ebook Booster is any good, and the $40 out-of-pocket charge is roughly all of the royalties we've collected from Wicked in the last twelve months, but it was worth a try.
Because, if we somehow forgot to tell anyone that SW was a freebie, the Ebook Booster people would have our back. Which, of course, is exactly what happened when we failed to remember the two days we'd selected in July. Rather, we remembered the days incorrectly. We thought the promo was going to run 07/27-07/28...and we were wrong. It ran, unnoticed, on 07/23-07/24.
We discovered this when a new Something Wicked review popped up on Amazon. The reader was kind enough to write that the book was more entertaining than he'd expected. This comment led one of us to ask, "Well, why would you buy a novel if you didn't think it would be any good?" and the other one of us to say, "Uh-oh."
Yep. The freebie had hit the market and we'd failed to share it with our own tiny world, the good people who visit MarsNeedsWriters.
Trying to find a positive spin on things, we came up with this: We garnered a new review! Yay! Also, we can now gauge the effectiveness of paying for the efforts of Ebook Booster.
If you'd like, you can play along. Without any kind of decent marketing, SW garnered 656 downloads. Sadly, not an impressive number. The next series of free dates will be 08/21-08/23 and Ebook Booster has shared this info with its network of sites. So far, twelve of those sites have emailed us, telling us that they've received the request and they may (or may not) be promoting our work at that time. We've got our fingers crossed.
After the next promotion runs, we'll share the download number with you.
Quote o' the day: "If you want your writing to be taken seriously, don't marry and have kids, and above all, don't die. But if you have to die, commit suicide. They approve of that." -- Ursula K. Le Guin