The day Elysium Dreams went to the top of the Amazon rankings, I checked out the rankings for the Kindle ebooks overall. And saw something interesting, but not surprising. 8 of the top 10 free ebooks in the overall Kindle Store were romance novels. Elysium Dreams eventually ranked 18th overall.
14 of the 17 books in front of it were romance novels, of some sort. Of the three that weren’t romance novels, 2 were written by men and the 3rd… well the 3rd is a series that I have tried to read because someone told me I would like them, they were like the Cain series, but with a male lead. I did try. But even though the romance is light in the series (the male is married), there is still more romance than what you’d find in the Dysfunctional Chronicles or Nephilim Narratives.
After those first 2 paragraphs, I have no doubt everyone now thinks this is a post dedicated to being annoyed by romance novels. But it isn’t. By 1:15 central time, I had 5,000+ downloads of Elysium Dreams. Enough to get me to 18th place in the Kindle Store overall and first in handful of genre categories, specifically crime fiction. Those 17 books ahead of me therefore by 1:15 central time, had more downloads than me. Possibly they were in the 10,000+ downloads for the day.
Now, those are some good numbers and by the end of the day, I myself would be in the 10,000+ downloads for the day. This means that all of 18 books (all by different authors) had great download days and we all ranked on Amazon. Not a single one of us will rank on any published bestseller list. Because the NY Times bestseller list as well as the big one in the UK, still only count physical book sales. To make the NY Times bestseller list, an author pretty much has to sell 5,000 physical books in a week. Which is practically impossible for an indy. The most physical books I’ve sold in a week is 34.
Now, I had 15,000 downloads of Elysium Dreams at the end of the day and it was only a Tuesday. Wednesday, I’ll continue to have downloads of both it and Tortured as well as all my other free books. This will publish before the end of the week, but I can estimate that this week alone, I will have more than 50,000 total downloads. And remember, I’m working solely with Amazon sales, because they are the only ones that report in “real time” everyone else reports on a daily or every other day basis.
I understand this is a free book, but free books lead to sales and the day Elysium Dreams hit 18, I sold (as in received royalties for non-freebies) nearly as many books that single day as I had all of the first 18 days of March across all retailers.
I’m sure the other 17 authors on that list can say the same thing (when I got my BookBub email, the other 3 non-romance novels were in my recommendations email, along with my own book).
Interestingly, while the NY Times still only uses physical books to count bestsellers, the USA today has begun using digital as well as physical sales. Meaning the USA Today is probably a more accurate bestseller list. Since I have 3 large bookshelves full of books and 1 half case full of books, I have been banned from buying physical books. Meaning nearly every book I buy is digital anymore… thereby not helping Clive Barker get to the top of the NY Times bestseller list when he releases a book.