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  • Writer's pictureMichael Parker

Understanding what sells.

What is it about a title that intrigues people? Last week I included the phrase, Bodice Rippers in my blog title. Over the last few weeks on Goodreads, my blog has been read by an average of 1 (one) over several weeks. This is worked out by the number of zero reads and the occasional two. Suddenly interest has shot up to eleven readers. Where have you all been? Perhaps I should title this entry as fifty shades of grey, and see what happens. Maybe I’ll go viral!

I saw a post on Facebook that referred to self-published romance authors — first timers as well — who had leapt into the best-selling category on Amazon; sold millions of e-books apparently. It got me thinking: Romance is definitely the best selling genre in the book world. Most people, particularly women, like a good tear jerker. Must have a happy ending though even though the happy couple were beset with impossible problems during the story. So why don’t I jump on the Romance bandwagon and write a bodice ripper? Perhaps me and my wife could act out a couple of trial scenarios, just to capture the realism. Trouble is: she’s seventy two and I’m seventy three, so we may have a problem there; the story wouldn’t get very far. But it’s definitely worth a thought (the story, not me and my wife). I’m in the middle of a thriller at the moment, but a lot of stuff is getting in the way of me cracking on with it. Coincidentally, I stopped writing this particular story last year and penned a romance. It’s called PAST IMPERFECT and will be released in January by my London publisher, Robert Hale. Will it sell? My record with Hale (eight titles to date) isn’t very good. They will keep the e-book rights of course, but maybe I can persuade my publisher to let me have the paperback rights; then I can publish it with Createspace. We’ll see.

Looking at my rankings each day as I do, is like riding a roller coaster: the rank goes up and down like saw teeth. I can always see a positive response to any promotions I run, even if they are low cost and only run for a day. Earlier this week I reached 1400 in the Action & Adventure category, and about 1600 in the Thriller genre. Not bad when I’m usually wallowing in the 100,000 range and lower. Each upward step means sales, and it would be cheaper to buy my own books and bump my rankings up rather than pay for advertising. The trouble with that though is that it isn’t readers who will be doing the buying. But I’ll keep on and hope that I can attract readers to my website, my books and my style of writing.

We’re off to England on Monday, so today, Saturday, I’m getting my blog out early and making sure I’ve all the necessary bits and pieces done by tomorrow evening. We will be going to Pagham in West Sussex to look at some park homes. We visited the site last May but didn’t have the time or opportunity to view the homes that were for sale. This time we will see about half a dozen. Whether we’ll buy one during this visit remains to be seen, but it would be great if we saw what we wanted and could afford it.

Another event that will happen tomorrow is that I will be preaching at our local, Christian Fellowship here in Torrevieja. I will be giving a personal testimony about how God has made such an impact on me while I have been going through my cancer treatment. Although my cancer was diagnosed last year, 2013, the signs of God’s involvement began in 2008. Long way back? You just never know, unless you look and listen, how much God’s presence makes a difference. The testimony will be broadcast on the church website during the week. You can find it at

My next promotion, hopefully, will be for ROSELLI’S GOLD with BookBlast (Booksends) if they accept my application. Wish me luck!

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