Self-Publishing: Reviews

Now here’s a thing. I don’ know if this is a unique issue for me, or if it effects everyone. I have found with every single book release I have done, I have tried offering digital editions to you, my subscribers and followers, for free. Inevitably the Amazon freebie hunters always end up with copies and always, usually on Good Reads, they leave me a negative review.

Capricorn got a bad review for being weird fiction, January got a bad review for being just groaners and Spiders got a DNF review from someone moaning it was just jokes. In each case, I have been left scratching my head asking, if they could read even half the book, why couldn’t they read the synopsis? Go figure. To quote a Huffpost article:

Don’t trash the book because it wasn’t what you expected. Unless the book was misrepresented, it’s your responsibility to understand what you’re buying before you buy it. Trout Fishing in America isn’t really about trout fishing, and Fear of Flying is not for nervous travelers.

The Do’s and Dont’s of book reviewing on Huffpost

Anywhos! For the book writers out there, this time I asked you, the subscribing rabble, to leave a review every time I posted about the free book offer. I got twelve reviews on Amazon. Currently at 4.8 stars. The one negative review I got was from a freebie book hunter, complaining about it all being puns. On Good Reads, there’s more freebie hunters and fewer people who know me.  If it wasn’t for Jan’s review, I would have 2.5 stars. That’s the difference you guys have made. Thank you.

For those 11 reviews, I gave away around one hundred free ebooks on Kindle over five days. I don’t recognize more than half of the people on Good Reads who currently have me listed  ‘as reading’. So I don’t know how many freebie book hunters got my book and how many subscribers got my book.

Sales wise, I have had one sale either paperback or digital every day since I stopped offering it for free up from one per week before Spiders release. Water could be muddied there as I didn’t do an ounce of promotion for the prior three months dealing with my home issues. Then I suddenly did five days of heavy promotion. There’s also a mix of books being sold. It seems January and Capricorn have had a wee bump in sales from Spiders release.That makes sense and I have heard from a lot of authors, you need at least three books on sale before you get regular and consistent sales. For something as specialized and super niche as the Little Fears presents books, I believe a sale a day is good. My books are expensive. I am not yet famous. I can’t offer novel value prices of $2 a book.

Prior article, Self-Publishing Earnings on Amazon:

There’s something else to learn from one review. Richard Yates questions whether what I do is flash fiction or a cartoon. I don’t know myself, to be honest. For those that followed my stories before I created the Little Fears, I wrote stories on their own and drew completely unrelated doodles and posted them elsewhere. There never used to be any connection between them. I know flash fiction circles hate jokes being called flash fiction. Y’all know I’m not gonna listen to that crowd’s opinion though right?

Richard did make me think. Now both January and Capricorn are released from Kindle Select I am looking for expanded distribution for them both. Maybe I should be turning my attention to the digital comic distribution platforms instead of just book platforms. Good thinkin’ Richard!

Do you take anything from this?

I don’t know if any of that is either helpful or relevant to any of you. I do know I have a lot of people hoping to self-publish who read this blog though, so I figure any data or experiences are helpful aye?

If you want to read a few reviews, there’s a couple more below.

Ashlee G from Creative Writing Review:

Richard Yates review: on Read A Damn Book:

If you want to buy any of my books, hop on over to Amazon.

USA Editions:

UK Editions:

And if you have any questions, y’all know I try to help by email or comments. Ask me anything about my book writing and publishing process and I will try to answer.



Self Publishing: CreateSpace vs Amazon

Self Publishing: CreateSpace vs Amazon

One more booky post for those thinking of self-publishing. My camera has broken, so apologies for the repeat pictures.

I’ve been asked on social media again, why do I use KDP and what’s the differences between KDP and CreateSpace. Both are self-publishing platforms where you control everything. Almost.

In my opinion, Createspace thrashes the heck out of KDP in almost every way. Caveat, I’m super niche, KDP is easier and works for me a lil better.

CreateSpace is awesome.

Createspace offer a 30-day Payout instead of 60-day payout for KDP.
Createspace offer distribution on more platforms than just Amazon.
Createspace offer distribution in a handful more countries.
Createspace offer wholesale author copies, so you can bulk order and sell at shows.
Createspace offer physical print proofs before you hit publish. KDP does not.
Createspace offer professional publishing services. KDP, you’re on your own.

KDP Ain’t bad.

KDP is easier to publish on.
KDP keeps you online and in stock all the time. Createspace takes you down when you update until they approve your copy. I have read this hurts your search rankings?
KDP offers Kindle Select lending library.
KDP offers Amazon specific promotions. Such as if you agree to only sell on Amazon for 90-day blocks you can run discounts and free offers. May help launching books, especially if it’s an ongoing series.

I use KDP

Personally, I found Createspace incredibly awesome in what it offers, but harder to use. In addition, I am expecting to release a new book every 1-2 months in the Little Fears series. Imagine losing your rankings every time you release a new book when you update the ‘Also by the same author’ in each book every 1-2 months. Mad. No. Not for me at that pace.

The KDP tools also help me get a big kick start with reviews. The free offers and Kindle Unlimited lending library in the first month knocked my recent book up to 10 reviews, 5 stars. Wasn’t intended, was hoping for one or two to be honest. That has a knock on getting the book noticed for its first month and is gathering sales momentum.

I have been told Createspace gives you better pay rates. Again, I think because of the super niche layout and nature of my books, I found Amazon give me better rates.

I do not know how good Createspaces editing services are as I never tried them. I would say any monkey can format a book right with the Kindle book creator tools for KDP.

I believe Createspace is the better platform but KDP suits my needs a lil better you know?

Shameless Self Promotion

Find this post helpful? Shimmy on over to my Amazon authors page where you can buy all three of my books in digital or paperback, January, Capricorn and Spiders.



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