Over the last ten or eleven days, we have given away over 4,900 copies of 'The Handbag's Tale,' a sardonic murder mystery set in Paris, at the height of the Roaring '20s.
I wrote it specifically as a promotional item, not being ready to tackle what would (or could) be my first detective novel. At that time, I was really more interested in science fiction.
It's available right now for the investment of two minutes time from Amazon.
At 11,000 words, the story took me a couple of weeks to write, and I submitted it around a little before deciding to publish it myself according to my 'everything for free' business model.
Necessity is very often the mother of invention and in my own case this is certainly true. What surprised me, was when I found that invention was the mother of virtue! But then I have a strong interest in making it work.
Later tonight or early tomorrow morning, the 5,000th free copy will go out the door, and I suppose someone will have to make a decision whether to put a price on it, or shoot for 10,000 free copies.
I say this because I am presently working on another Inspector Maintenon story, this time set in southwestern England circa 1926 or '27. It's called, 'Maintenon Gets a Vacation,' and he's on a walking tour of the moors when he stumbles across a murder.
This one has a double-whammy of a twist at the end.
I wish I could claim some credit for all of this promotional success, but Amazon lowered the price in a simple price-matching move because I was giving away free copies on Smashwords, one of my other platforms.
During e-book week, I worked my butt off to give away 130 e-books on Smashwords. Imagine my surprise to open up my account and discover that I had given away 1,700 e-books in my sleep.
There are no accidents, or so they say. I sure wish I knew how that happened; but what I did before, I can do again. Who knows, I might even be able to sell them for a buck or something.
You never really know until you try.
Note: the 'everything for free' business model controls overhead very nicely and that is what allows us to keep our prices low while maintaining the highest literary standards.