Tuesday, July 29, 2014

July 29th

Hi it’s Christina –

Good Morning! A different type of shiny object distracted me today, marketing.
My ranking on Amazon fluctuates wildly, and I am trying to take steps to balance it out a little. One day I can be ranked in the top 1K, the next day it drops to the 400K range, then the following day I’m in the 100K range. There does not appear to be any logical reason for the one day free fall.

I do attribute the high rankings to sale or promotional days, which is to be expected. To be in the 100K – 200K range among the nearly 50M books listed on Amazon, and in the 10K range of the over 1M in the romance category, is respectable, but you know me. I always feel there is something I can do to be better.

I met an author named Nick a few months back, and shortly he will be coming out with a book that tries to unravel the mystery of how Amazon ranks books and how they are placed during searches. A bit has to do with how books are tagged so the search engine recognizes and selects the book. He also shows you ways to become a larger fish in a smaller pond.

There have been other books on the topic, but the methods the authors suggest strike an ethical nerve with me, so I would not engage in their tactics. Nick’s suggestions however, are ones where I would smack my head and say, “Well why didn’t I think of that? It makes perfect sense.”, and I have no issue implementing them.

The book is still in the advanced release stage, so I can’t give you any of the details, but as soon as I get his blessing, I’ll let you know all about it. Now, even though he has monkey steps, you know what a techno/media ditz I am, so I’m sure this is not going to be a walk in the park for me.

For the past few days, I have been concentrating on Author’s Central and another site,, which feeds Author’s Central with details about the books. The only thing about Shelfari I have reservations about is anyone can add details about the books, not just the author. Perhaps now that Amazon has acquired GoodReads, they will blend it with Shelfari and take the best practices from both sites. GoodReads has an author’s dashboard where you have control over your books and the details – characters, plots, summaries, quotes, tags, etc..

There is a lot of work I need to do to get all three books fully detailed. So far all I have for all three is the book description and the about the author finished. For A Second Chance, I have Characters (list of each of the characters and a brief description of each), Quotes (several quotes from the book to give you a feel for the character’s personalities), Settings and Location (is started, but I have to add detailed descriptions), and First Sentence, Series, Author, Awards, Notes to Parents, Subjects (this is all the genre and sub-genre classifications), and Tags are all done.

Now, if I can get the same done for Taking Chances and Corporate Blues, I’ll be in good shape. Corporate Blues won’t be too terrible, but I am dreading Taking Chances. Since this one is the second in the series, the list of characters is quite extensive. When I get around to finishing Simply By Chance, this is going to be an absolute nightmare! I wish they had a way to pull in characters from the first book so all I’d have to do is click on a prefilled list, but they don’t.

Okay, I got a late start today, so I have to boogie. I hope you have a great day, and happy writing!