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I Survived Amazon's KDP Free Day Program and Am Even Doing It Again

1 Aug

When I wrote my last post on Your Shelf Life, I was preparing to launch my first “free day” campaign with Amazon’s KDP program. Since my track record on such promotions has been miserable (check out this article in which I explain how my Amazon bestseller day yielded sales of thirteen books), I was concerned about how the days would go.
How I Made Over $42,000 in One Month Selling my Kindle eBooks (known at $42K hereafter). Making $42K in a month is good enough for me. This is a really good guidebook outlining what Cheryl did to make a small fortune doing exactly what I’m going to be doing. It’s all there, step by step.

The major, major leaning I gleaned from $42K, is that while Cheryl is a marketing whiz and really loves doing it, I am not. I am a writer. I love to write and produce highly imaginative fantasy, sci-fi, visionary fiction, and even nonfiction about horses and spirituality. I’m not a marketer.

What happened when I applied Cheryl’s techniques in $42K to my ineptitude?

Holy macaroni! The Angel SOARED. Let’s see if I can find some screen shots. (Always take screen shots. My book Numenon once was #1 in 3 categories of mysticism and flew at about the 1,000 in paid sales level on Amazon for, oh, a year or so. I didn’t realize that this was good. Didn’t think it would ever change, either. I didn’t take any screen shots. Now all I have is a memory.)

What You Can Win by Losing: The 2012 IPPY (Independent Publisher) Awards Have Been Announced! Didn't Win? Some Words to Cheer You Up

4 May

On May 2, 2012, awards for the the last few categories of the 2012 IPPY (Independent Publisher) Awards were announced. Did your book receive an award in the 2012 IPPYs? Mine didn’t, either. I’ve been entering the IPPYs for years. This was the first time I didn’t win something. Kinda shocking.

I know, it hurts to have your masterpiece spurned. It doesn’t hurt half as much as getting a one star review, though. That’s like a crossbow bolt to the heart, except you don’t get to die. You get to read those words savaging your beloved baby forever, or as long as your book’s Amazon page lasts. So losing in the IPPYs isn’t that bad.

You feel better already, don’t you?
This is an article about surviving not winning in book contests. Usually I write about how to win book contests. One of the things I say in those articles is that you can do everything I say about “winning” and still lose. I just proved that it can happen to anyone.

At Last I Know Amazon Cares . . .

15 Apr

I awakened this morning to find an email from Amazon in my inbox. I was shocked to discover that it was about my new book, Lady Grace. They were promoting my book! For free! I didn’t even know about it!

I must have hit some critical mass for Amazon to notice me. I wanted to share the event with the entire universe, or as much as I could reach. So here it is, the text of Amazon’s pitch: (Unfortunately, the wonderful Amazon logo didn’t copy. Neither did the cool hot links, buy button going to Lady Grace, or any of that.) But here it is: proof that Amazon cares.

Lady Grace: A Thrilling Adventure Wrapped in the Embrace of Epic Love. In the absence of official links from Amazon, I’ll give you the cover here. It was in the Buy button on the actual email.

From: Amazon.com
Subject: Now available: “Lady Grace: A Thrilling Adventure Wrapped in the Embrace of Epic Love” by Sandy Nathan on Amazon.com
Date: April 15, 2012 2:21:27 AM PDT
To: Barry Nathan

(The Amazon Logo appeared here.)

Dear Amazon.com Customer,

Customers who have purchased or rated books by Sandy Nathan might like to know that Lady Grace: A Thrilling Adventure Wrapped in the Embrace of Epic Love is now available. You can order yours for just $15.95 by following the link below.