View Full Version : press releases: They Work

05-09-2006, 07:07 PM
In 2001 I published my first novel Bought And Paid For through iUniverse. In 2005 I published my second novel Scimitar through Author House. Both outfits distribute through Ingram. The reason I switched companies is AH gives a 35% discount while iU is a stingy 15%. Both are still far below the standard 40-45% rate.

It should be noted that these books are gay titles and, unlike the big chains, the practice of returning books is not an issue with the gay indies; they typically donít do it because they rarely order large stocks. I got that bit of news from the owner of one of the largest GLBT bookstores in the US.

Bareback Mountain is probably an exception to the volume rule but my guess is the managers know their market well enough not to have overstocked that book.

Now what does all this have to do with press releases? Well, when each of my books first came out I sent announcements out to all the indie bookstores in my data base. Not surprisingly over these few years I got the usual 500/title in sales. As we all know this is about as good as it gets for a POD novel. I also had about 200 copies of each bought with my author discount (if you can call it that). These were sitting collecting dust and I lamented this fact to a fellow writer whom I met quite by accident while I was shopping in a big city bookstore. He gave me the name of a man who distributes gay titles. Since I had already eaten the costs on these books there was little to lose. I contacted the distributor man and away went my stash of books. That was last month. As soon as the books went out I reprinted my old press release for each book (changing the dates of course) and in big red letters I announced these titles were with a new distributor and that they were available at the standard discount rates. As I did this I wondered if the PRs would really make a difference in my sales.

Son-of-a-gun, I just learned three bookstores, one in Canada, one in Atlanta, GA and one in Rochester, NY, placed orders and Iíll be receiving a check for a few hundred dollars. Not bad for books that were collecting dust.

Now I have to decide if I want to go through the expense of getting more books. The loss in $$ was easily absorbed after a few years of lying about my office, but with more books being asked for I face a dead loss of $$. This puts to the test my statement that all I really want is to be read. Hmmm.


05-10-2006, 07:00 AM
I'd buy books with the money you made back from the orders you just made. Congratulations. It's hard work and it paid off.