Since publishing 'The Stud Farm,' on Smashwords June 1, 2011 at about 12.30 p.m.; I have given away over 80 copies in various formats from the Smashwords site. That's pretty amazing, when we consider that our top title on Smashwords, 'Heaven Is To Far Away,' took months, literally months to achieve the same level.
A small number of people have sampled other titles, and we've given a copy or two of 'The Handbag's Tale' away from that site.
The difference is pretty striking. Since a few weeks ago, when 'The Handbag's Tale' went ballistic on Amazon, we've been doing some 'soft' analysis, which doesn't require numbers so much as good old-fashioned uncommon sense.
The difference is a simple one. When 'Heaven' was released, we had about 100 Facebook friends. That was it. Ah, but now we have a few more, and we're on Twitter, and a few other places.
As I recall, the original cover of 'Heaven' wasn't too good either. So we are learning, we are making progress, and the natural sequence of envents will unfold, just as it was foretold, all those long years ago...
Over on Amazon, especially in the UK, we continue to give away a hundred and fifty or so copies of 'The Handbag's Tale,' on a daily basis. When we get to 10,000 copies, we'll have to decide where to go from there.
Technically, to sell 5,000 copies of any book in any genre in Canada would be 'a national bestseller,' but we are giving them away for free, so we won't talk about that (too much.)
But we're up to 6,850 copies or thereabouts as far as 'Handbag's Tale' goes, and things are looking good.
If you read Robert J. Sawyer's blog, which is a part of his website, you may have seen the post where the biggest complaint he had about this industry was the small number of promotional copies supplied to him by even the biggest publishers. As I recall, ten copies was typical for them.
I do listen sometimes, you know. I just like to pretend it was all my own idea. Incidentally, members of the news media are also welcome to download a free e-book if they like.
So. Here's the deal, and it's a good one: what you need to do is to go to Smashwords, download yourself a copy of the book, either 'Handbag's Tale,' (a detective short story,) or 'The Stud Farm,' (science-fiction weirdness, originally appearing in Jupiter Science Fiction, a UK print publication, #30, 'Hermippe,') and then click on 'like,' read and review the story or just enjoy it as a guilty pleasure.
And if enough people do that, and maybe even buy a book or two along the way, I promise not to run away and join the French Foreign Legion.
Because that would just be stupid.