Promoting Star Time Ebooks
Isolation has been giving me some time to rethink my whole “business” of writing. I can’t stop writing, but whether or not I can get the resulting stories out to potential readers is another matter. Many projects that I thought I would be able to get into paper copies I could sell have stalled out. It doesn’t help that practically all streams of income that my wife and I relied on have dried up. I can’t, in good conscience, spend the money for cover art and pre-publication charges that would enable me to produce a book that I can’t sell.
And I’m a little too set in my ways to tackle a Kickstarter project when I don’t have the necessary mailing list volume that would be necessary to make that work.
So, I’m experimenting with ways to increase my ebook sales volume. The standard method seems to include advertising a book for free, in order to build readership, hoping that some of those people would go buy other books in the series.
And now I run up against Amazon the monopoly. I sell my ebooks through five venues; Kindle, Barns & Noble, Apple, Google, and Kobo. Four of those use the ePub version, Kindle uses its own variant. If I want to sell a Kindle book for zero cost, I have to sign up to be Kindle exclusive and take all ePub versions off the market. Since not everybody uses Kindle, that leaves a portion of my readership out in the cold. I’m not going to do that.
So, I experimented, using the blog-recommended method of setting the non-Kindle versions to zero and letting the Amazon computers notice that and price match the Kindle version to zero as well. Unfortunately, Amazon either changed their policy or just has it in for me. When I tried this on Star Time a while back, they instead just took the Kindle version completely off the market. You couldn’t buy it at all. Admitting defeat I put it back to its normal price and it came back on line. So, due to Amazon’s policy, not only am I prohibited from putting my book out for free on Kindle, I can’t put it for free anywhere else, or Amazon takes it down.
I’ll be advertising this here and on Twitter and Facebook and anywhere else I can think of that’s cheap. (I can’t afford an advertising budget either.)
Please spread the word to any of your friends.