It’s an odd situation to be in. As I write this, my novel His First His Second has been available for sale on pretty much every e-book medium going, including places I’d never heard of until I signed up to Draft2Digital. So in addition to the essential Kindle, I’m on Kobo, Nook, iBooks, Scribd, and Page Foundry.
Which means I can’t just link to the Amazon page each time I want to beg people to buy my book. And I hate begging.
More to the point, I hate seeing people beg. Especially indie authors I happen to be following on Twitter.
Buy my book… please?
Buy my book!
Buy my BOOK! NOW!
I hate that. And I don’t buy their books.
Nor does anyone else, I feel. Or maybe they do, otherwise they wouldn’t do it. But I have never heard anyone issue the advice to an indie author to saturate Twitter with outright demands to purchase.
So I don’t beg. I might mention occasionally when I am accessible on a new format, or deliver some snippet of news. But other than that one time I did a charity drive on my profits for a day, constantly banging on about buying the book is just such a turn-off for genuine readers.
Thanks very much, by the way, to all those who pre-ordered. All profits from the 14th and 15th go to the BBC Children in Need Appeal.
Oh, and that brings me to another point – thanking.
I cannot tell you how happy it makes me when a stranger buys my book. Especially one who simply saw something I was talking about, clicked on my Facebook or website link, and took that chance. I’m a new writer, so I know it’s a big deal. It’s unusual for me to do it, so I have to ask – why would anyone else?
Hopefully because I’ve done things correctly: from feedback on forums etc, I think I’ve got myself a decent cover; from beta readers, I think I’ve got a plot that holds together; from readers again, I think my prose is up to a professional level.
The only thing I don’t have is exposure. Which makes it doubly gratifying that anyone has seen my novel and thought “I’ll give that a go”.
However – I’m British. So I don’t know when to stop thanking people.
When I was about 22 I got into some hot water with money. Nothing big, just mishandling my personal finances, living beyond my means. In many ways, I’m still paying for my youthful ignorance and immaturity, but I’m certainly in control now. One day, though, way back when, I was called into a manager’s office and introduced to a bailiff who presented me with a county-court judgement. He wasn’t intimidating but he was firm and needed a signature, and at least he was subtle (only my immediate boss knew about this). As the bailiff left the office, he said goodbye, and I said…
Yep. I said thank you.
That’s how bad I am with thanks. And that’s brings me to my dilemma: when do I stop it? When does thanking people become annoying?
I mean, if you bought His First His Second on the 14th November, diverting my lovely profits to needy British kids, you might still ‘like’ my FB page and get a little sick of me gushing over each dozen sales.
So I am writing this as one big thank you, and to say I really am grateful to those out there taking a chance and buying this novel either before release or in the first week, with no reviews and no recommendations other than me saying, “Please buy my book.”
In the future, if sales climb, yes, I am bound to gush a couple of times. But I will keep it to a minimum, and hopefully you’ll come back for more. I see someone has already pre-ordered my next novel Three Years Dead (not due out until the end of Feb 2015), also on 14th November, and I say to that person a BIG thank you.
So, I’ll leave you with this:
(If it’s not too much trouble… thanks.)