Deal with the Devil?

Dead with the Devil

So, after touting my strategy with the Triumvirate of Power, I tossed all that aside and committed an act that many would view as a deal with the Devil. I unpublished at all other locations and hopped on-board the Amazon KDP Select bandwagon. Why? Because I’m an indie author and can do as I please, which is one of the perks of fanning that entrepreneurial flame, rather than being told by others how I should do things. I spent enough time living life as a cubicle rat to see how that goes. Hint: It always benefits the person holding the cheese; never the rat.

Many might say, “But Marty, now the evil Amazon can tell you what to do. You’ve sold your soul to a beast that desires total control of the world.”

My answer – the beast might be poised to take over the world, but that’s because the beast knows what it’s doing, and many people go to the beast for their daily bread.

I’ve been toying with the KDP Select option for a while, even before bringing Dead Man Walking out to the masses. My gut instinct was to be available in as many markets and formats as possible. That instinct has since been squashed by the desire to be read, to have my little figments of nightmare and imagination in front of as many eyes as possible. Would I write if nobody read my work? Yes, I would… but it’s still nice to see others being entertained by something I created. After all, if I didn’t want others to read my books then I’d just leave them tucked safely inside my hard drive instead of sending them alone and unarmed into the big bad world.

There have been authors I’ve heard from that would prefer to cut off their right foot before yanking their work off Barnes & Noble because that’s their primary source of readers. Unfortunately, that ol’ B&N magic wasn’t working for me.

I wanted to test the ultimate power of Amazon and I did this with two simple actions. I put Dead Man Walking on KDP Select and set today as a free promotion day. That’s it. I clicked a couple of buttons and went to bed. No Twitter, no Google +, no Facebook, no nothing. I checked my stats bright and early this morning and saw that I had 75 downloads for Amazon US and 35 for Amazon UK. Shortly after that, I sent out a tweet, posted on Facebook, as well as on Google +. At this time, I’ve had 146 downloads on Amazon US and 59 on Amazon UK. I’m also listed #1,663 Free in Kindle Store and #78 in the horror genre.

Sure, those numbers aren’t staggering. I know a few people that put those numbers to shame, but I’m still thrilled to death. I’m a first time indie author with one short story on the market and I’m in the top 100 for horror in the Kindle Store.

Barnes and Noble doesn’t offer the option of going free (something they really should change or KDP Select will kill them) and Smashwords doesn’t really draw in the readers. I put Dead Man Walking for free on Smashwords and shouted it from the rooftops (okay, used many social media sites) and barely had a response. That versus 75 downloads while snuggling under the blankets and dreaming weird dreams. I’ll take the 75, thank you very much.

Many are scared of the beast and it’s potential domination of the world, but the beast does know what it’s doing, and that’s enough for me at the moment. After all, I write horror so it’s only right that I walk on the dark side. Besides, it’s only a 90 day commitment if I don’t like how things work out. It’s not like I sold my soul to the devil. I only loaned it to him.


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