Friday, 14 October 2011

The free ebook experiment

Not sure it's conclusive yet, but a progress report nonetheless..

On 22nd September, we made One Step Closer, the first story from Nowhere To Go, a free stand-alone ebook as a sampler for the collection. A gateway drug that will draw readers in, give them a taste, and make them crave another hit of short crime fiction. One Step Closer won the Derringer award, is a decent short story, and I think it's reasonably representative of the rest of the stories in the collection. The experiment was to make it free, and see how well it worked as a promo for Nowhere To Go.

In the subsequent three weeks, One Step Closer has been downloaded over 10,000 times from Amazon. It's been the number one free short story across the whole of Amazon UK for just about three weeks solid. I'm surprised and pleased in equal measure.

Impact on sales of the short story collection?

Pretty much zero, to date, but it might be early days, and I don't know how many of those 10,000 copies have been read. Given my suspicions that free stuff gets hoarded, I don't know how many of those 10,000 copies will ever be read. We'll see.

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