Thursday, January 26, 2012

Get Yourself on a List

About 18 months ago I met a man on the kindle board who was kindly trying to help me with the sig list of books after your name.  Never did get it which was a big reason I stopped going.  I wasn't enough in with the in crowd.  But this man was nice and tried to help me.  Sent me his book.  I sent him Bad Apple which he critiqued and made lots of notes.  That I still have.  He thought I got the story all wrong..He thought it was a girl who had been abused who picks up a shotgun instead of a violin, and goes out for some vengeance.  It isn't until the last chapter where Joe breaks into the house was this man happy.  Everything up till that moment was a huge bore.  He didn't like the covers.  The bad apple?  Girl with shotgun will sell the book.  The book isn't about a girl with a shotgun it's about a girl resurrecting her life with the aid of a compassionate family and music.  So I didn't take his suggestions and now he's one of Amazon's stars and a young woman from Canada for whom English doesn't seem to be her first language gets the point of the book.

What this guy told me was to get on a list.  No matter what list you're on, you will sell better.

I think since Nothing Serious had been published it's been a top seller in home garden>antiques (yes it does have something to do with antiques) Not Low Maintence was on that Legal thriller list for 2 words I tagged it with--Lawyers, murder.  It had no business in the legal thriller list but it was at #2 for about 10 weeks and made me a nice bit of money.  If you don't know the way Amazon drills these categories down, go study for a  while.  Can you apply any of what you've seen to your book?  Find an element, or topic that is in your book and on those lists and go to the metadata and change it.  Because most of my adult novels are about Jews, it's not hard to mention Jewish women, it's a search term and it will put those books on that list if they start having any sales at all.

Obviously some people just go to the top ten overall, or top if romance whatever.  Some people obviously type in search terms.  I don't know what they're typing.  Jewish women mystery.  Could be.  Then Amazon sorts thru the millions of books and if I've done my job with the cover title and description and of course book, I may make a sale.

Everytime I see a spike in sales, I say "I must have gotten on a list somewhere."  It become so obvious.  I don't go look, I usually find out by stumbling upon it.

Let's this be your homework for the next week or so.  Try to learn about the lists and figure out how your descriptions and metadata can drill you down to the Amazonian Lode.

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