Thursday, April 10, 2014

SM Johnson - Holy Buckets Batman! And syrup. For pancakes.

My M/M erotica novel, Above the Dungeon, is currently hanging out in the NUMBER 1 slot in category kindle free fiction.

Category being something like, free-kindle-ebooks-fiction and literature-GLBT-GAY... yanno, a very specific and probably small category. But My. Book. #1.

Hot damn and syrup for my pancakes, right?

OKay, so here's the deal. I had a short story called My Fifteen Minutes that was free all the time on Amazon and everywhere else, and it got a lot of downloads, in the ballpark of 500 - 1000 per month, but it didn't get any reviews.

So my guess was people were not getting around to reading it, or it didn't excite them enough to generate either positive or negative reviews. I brought it to my in-person writer's group, and had them give me some honest and in-your-face feedback (because that's what they DO and they are marvelous at it) and the result was that I decided the story is just not all that great. Mostly just that it's fairly amateurish both in plot and craft, in relation to how my skill as a writer has grown in the past few years.

Ideally, I will rewrite it one day, when there aren't 8983758473 other projects on my plate that I'm excited about, but that time isn't now, and ultimately I decided that this particular story is not at all representative of what I write - either style or subject matter. Which led me to unpublish it.

The problem, then, is that I really LIKE having a book on Amazon/Smashwords et al. that is free all the time. I think giving people a chance to experience my story-telling style for free is important, and, of course, I hope it will lead to sales of other books.

I mean, we all have those authors who wow us with almost every book, right? They become automatic buys, comfort food, time spent with good friends, the sort of book you can hardly wait to sit down and devour. Yeah. I wanna be that for a handful of people (or more, I wouldn't complain).

So... I decided I needed a new gateway drug book, and it kind of makes sense for Above the Dungeon to be that book. It is well-representative of the kind of characters I create, the kind of problems they have, and the sort of not-quite-happily-ever-after endings I seem to wrap books up with (hint - more often things close with a messy little knot rather than a nice neat and pretty bow). I dropped the price to .99 on Amazon and to 0.00 on Smashwords, then wrote to Amazon requesting it be 0.00 on a permanent basis.

Amazon declined, saying, "We don't do that."

Huh. All right. I went to the book's product page and "reported a lower price" - using the Smashwords link as proof of a lower price.

And then I happily trotted off to work for a couple of nights and slept a couple of days and somewhere in the middle of that Amazon dropped the price of Above the Dungeon to 0.00.

And this is where I came in yesterday. I checked my sales, saw that almost 500 copies had been downloaded, so went to the books page to see stats and - there it was. #1 in one of Amazon's sub-sub-sub-sub categories.

*happy dance*

Honestly, it doesn't get better than this.

Well, okay, it could be slightly better than this, as in it could be a PAY FOR book that hits the #1 slot of a sub-sub-sub-sub category and I could then experience these miracle payments of thousands of dollars a month from Amazon that have been rumored to exist for some authors for the past couple of years, but whatever. I'm pretty darn happy anyway.

Ya'll should go download and read Above the Dungeon, Then I'll work my crack magic and have you coming back for more, more, more. In the midnight hour. Or the morning. Either is fine with me. Just do it.

Have a great weekend, darlings. Be safe out there. Do NOT text and drive. (did you know even texting while sitting at a stoplight is illegal in many states including MN? I just found this out.) It can wait unit you get there. Or at least until you pull over and put the car in 'park.' Really. It can. Remember back in the day when we (gasp) drove around in our cars all the time and we didn't even have phones? And if you, say, needed to call someone, you had to go to the 7-11, and go inside and get QUARTERS, then go back outside and stick the quarters into the phone box? And - you could only call numbers you'd memorized or written down in your address book or had on a slip of paper in your wallet....

I know - damn, we really lived dangerously back then.

(Yeah, don't feel bad, I'm laughing at myself too because I'm as iPhone dependent as anyone).

K. That's all. Peace out.

[Missing IMAGE - phone at the 7-11]

PS - to see the phone at the 7-11, click here. Really. You should click and look. It'll be quick, I promise. And it's only fair, really, since I tried to just steal the picture and put it here, but apparently it's protected and copy-righted and I am not allowed to do that, technically, without asking for and getting permission, which I bet if I asked the person who took this wonderful picture, he would be happy to give me permission, but I am ready NOW to click the "publish post" button, and I am too impatient considering it's ALREADY Thursday and I'm late in writing this post.

So go, click. It'll make you feel good. And if you're like.... I dunno, 40 or older, it'll give you that warm squishy nostalgic feeling. Like back when you first had your driver's license and a car and freedom from those people you lived with who seemed like they spent 24 hours a day doing nothing but figure out exactly how they could control your life and make sure you weren't having any fun.....

(Texting and driving IS NOT fun, however. It is stupid. Don't be stupid.)

Oh! And PPS - Jeremiah Quick sales are absolutely miserable. So you could go get yourself a copy of that one, too, and tell your friends, I mean, just like, out of pity love for me or something.

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