TFD’s Birthday Is Next Week – So How Was Its First Year?

thefourthdescendant medYou guys rock. Have I told you that lately?

But why do we rock? you may be asking.

Sit back, and I shall tell you a tale.

TFD has had an amazing first year. Mind blowing, even. And if not for you, the readers, reviewers, and fans, none of what I’m about to tell you would have happened.

On February 4th, 2015, The Fourth Descendant went live on Amazon. My debut novel (though certainly not my first completed novel), the book I’d worked on almost non-stop for over a year, was now released to the public, who could buy, read, and review it at their whim.

It was exciting. And terrifying.

I had no idea what to expect. I only knew most indies don’t sell huge numbers.

Pre-orders and first day sales helped the book land a spot on the historical mystery best seller list. And thankfully, I had several beta readers on deck who loved the book and wrote the initial reviews for it. Day 2, and it was already technically an Amazon best seller with a handful of reviews. Not bad. Now I was excited, terrified, and hopeful.

TFD had a respectable first month. It received positive reviews fromreview ad a Reader’s Favorite reviewer and an Amazon Top Reviewer. In early April, following a Goodreads giveaway, I ran its first FKB promotion. It climbed to #3 on the smaller-category best seller lists and to #306 in Amazon’s overall ebook rankings. That means it was the 306th best selling ebook out of the 4 million or so ebooks for sale on Amazon.

It cruised along for the next few months, until it turned a corner in July/August. After a Kindle Countdown Deal that brought it to another high ranking, it started doing well on its own – meaning I didn’t have to promote much on Twitter or other social media to maintain sales. Either Amazon was promoting it for me in their emails (which I suspect) or people were talking about it (which I also suspect). It hit 5,000 ebook sales in late July, less than six months after release. In mid-November, someone bought the 10,000th ebook copy.

It turned another corner on Thanksgiving weekend. With no promotional deal in place for Black Friday, I predicted weaker sales, perhaps the lowest it had seen in months. Just the opposite occurred. The daily average for copies sold nearly doubled and stayed that way for weeks. For the third time, I submitted it to BookBub, hoping the strong ranking and hundreds of reviews at this point would give it a better shot than it had in prior attempts. It was accepted.

#40The BookBub promotion email went out on January 7th, about a week and a half ago. More copies sold on that single day than sold in the book’s first five months of existence. And the high numbers carried over to the next few days after that. It climbed to #40 on Amazon, higher than The Martian. I knew the placement would be short lived, but it was fun to outsell that book for a few hours.

So here we are a week shy of the first anniversary of TFD’s release. It’s closing in on 20,000 copies sold, and this month, more than one million KU pages have been read in a month for the first time.

I feel like someone will pinch me at any moment and this dream will be over. So I’ll say it again: None of this would have happened if not for you, the readers and my author friends, and I THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart. 

I truly appreciate everyone who has critiqued, read, reviewed, and talked about my work. Truly.

We’re celebrating a bit early because the celebration is also happening on Goodreads, where I’m hosting a giveaway for signed paperbacks. So if you don’t have a paperback, click here to jump over to the page and enter the drawing. It ends on February 4th, TFD’s birthday!

Again, thanks to all of you for your support! TFD is riding strong into its second year.

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