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Money picJust yesterday I was pondering a blog post over at Musings of Mistress of the Dark Path on how certain marketing firms catapult authors to the top of bestseller lists.  All it takes is money.

The Wall Street Journal, NYT, and other well known bestseller lists are compiled using data on sales from specific bookselling venues.  All it takes is for someone to push a large volume of sales through these venues in a planned fashion, and BINGO  – a bestseller.  That’s what the author of Leapfrogging did, and he’s not alone.  Book publishers, list publishers, and many authors are refusing to talk about this, but the author community is abuzz with outrage.  This scandal ranks right up there with the “paid review


  1. Thank you!
    I keep plugging away with my books. Everytime I get discourage I realize that it hasn’t even been a year since book 1 was released, and Rome wasn’t built in a day!

  2. A well-written post, Debra. I do agree that buying out your own book won’t work for everyone and would probably be a major waste of money. It is best used for certain types (if you get past the ethics of it). Like you, though, I can’t imagine feeling all that proud of being a best seller using those tactics. It’s just wrong on so many levels. It might be considered okay in the shady business world, but it does bother me people have managed to profit from it. Maybe we can’t stop them, but awareness helps.

    As for promoting fiction, the tough part is certainly getting your name out there. Not all the popular book bloggers will respond when solicited. Sometimes their schedule is already too full. Other times they’re just not interested in your book. It’s definitely a hit and miss thing, but if just a few of the right people really enjoy it and tell others, it could make a huge difference in sales. Keep plugging away and you’ll get there 🙂

  3. Reach is one of the biggest issues I’m facing too. I’ve had some success with Goodreads ads this past month, and am hoping to do a bigger one with a giveaway late March for Elven Blood. I’m also planning a paid blog tour, and shelling out for a marketing company to solicit reviews on my behalf. I’ve tried soliciting reviews on my own, but with a FT corporate job, I only manage to connect with 1-2 people a month. Not enough! For me, I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m going to have to pay for marketing help. (but I’m not going as far as to buy 3k of my own book, LOL)

  4. You raise some good points, Debra. I’ve been trying to think outside the box on this one, because all the blogging and networking and what-not has left me feeling like I’m preaching to the choir. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE my choir, but they’re mostly other writers. I’d like to figure out a couple time-effective ways of reaching READERS. I’d even pay for the privilege, just need to figure out the best avenue.

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