Thursday, May 19, 2011

CDC's Zombie Apocalypse Survial Guide

cc-Lindsey T
Yes, it's true the CDC has a plan in place for the enviable day our deceased relatives rise up from the ground to feast on our brains. Don't believe me? You can read the Preparedness 101: Zombie Apocalypse guide right on the CDC's website.Here's a nice quote to show just how serious they really are:
"If zombies did start roaming the streets, CDC would conduct an investigation much like any other disease outbreak. CDC would provide technical assistance to cities, states, or international partners dealing with a zombie infestation."

CDC's actual Zombie preparedness badge.
It goes on to talk about how they'll use quarantines to maintain an an 'infection control area'. Which interestingly enough, is exactly what happens to Nate and Misty in my upcoming novel, Super Zombie Juice Mega Bomb--they get stuck on the wrong side of the 'infection control area' (hey agents, it's still available, but I've got 2 fulls and a partial out, so you better act quick).
Now, since this is a government guide, they enviably end up giving some bad advice; like when they advise that families, "Pick one place right outside your home" for a meeting place, they suggest the mailbox.
Okay, are Zombies somehow reluctant to attack people gathered around mailboxes?
Honestly, the guide is a little tongue in cheek. But they really seem to acknowledge the possibility of a zombie invasion of one sort or another.

Hmmm, I wonder if this would help or hurt the sales of zombie fiction?

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Riding the Kindle Free eBook Train -Again

Some of my long-term readers might remember last year when Amazon posted my ebook, Monster in The Mirror for free, but still paid me commissions for each sale. I'd made a little over $2k in the process. Well they've done it again, but this time they've modified their sales agreement so that they don't pay the commission when an ebook goes free (you can prevent your books from going free, if you want).

But, even if I'm, not getting paid, giving away an ebook, especially if it's a novella or collection of shorts is a great way to introduce readers to one's work. It's not a guaranteed way to get readers to buy your other titles, but it does help. Especially if you have a good backlist (which I don't). I'm working to get a couple more titles that are almost finished out ASAP, so I can capitalize on all this free publicity.

So while ranking higher than War and Peace (again) on Amazon's Bestseller list looks good, it doesn't equate to success. Unless you can turn those free ebook readers into paying fans it's not doing a lot to advance your career.

For those of you who are curious, I've have over 5,000 downloads over the last several days, which has resulted in about 7 (Paid) sales over my average. So, it takes a lot a free ebooks to equal one sale. I'd estimate I get 1 extra sale for every 1,000 (or maybe 900) free downloads. Now, I know some of my fellow authors are doing better (a few worse). These are the one's who have lots of other ebooks for readers to buy.

So, with a little luck, by expanding the number of ebooks I have out, I can use this giveaway to build a bigger readership. Oh, in case you are wondering: Yes, I laughed out loud when I passed War & Peace in the rankings.