Two copies of my novella Welcome to Scranton sold in the San Francisco Bay Area last week. That might not seem like a big deal but considering my book isn’t sitting on the shelves of book stores there or anywhere, for that matter, but Scranton, I found it quite interesting. I know about the sales because Amazon allows authors to access sales information of their books via BookScan. It’s a fantastic source of information, which shows how many books you are selling in geographic areas around the country. BookScan is a service from Nielsen, the same company that provides TV ratings data. Major book stores, except for Wal-Mart, report their sales information to BookScan.
Thanks to BookScan, I was surprised to learn that copies of Welcome to Scranton have also sold at book stores in Pittsburgh, Johnston, Philadelphia, New York City, Boston, Orlando and Norfolk, Virginia. The buyers of the book must have gone to a store and ordered it, which is how they show up on the report (see image below). If you are an author and have not created an Author Central account, I encourage you to do so at http://authorcentral.amazon.com
BookScan is just one of the tools available from the Author Central. Kindle sales information is provided. You can also link to a blog, see reviews of your books, and create a bio.
Welcome to Scranton made a cameo appearance on TV in one of Liz Randol’s political ads during the recent primary election campaign. Randol ran for Lackawanna County Commissioner. The ad, which shows Ms. Randol holding a copy of the novella while speaking with a group of young women, was replayed over and over every day in the first half of May. I couldn’t have asked for better publicity for Welcome to Scranton, except perhaps for the book to appear on an episode of the TV show The Office.
I have never met Ms. Randol and do not know her positions on the issues, nor did I endorse her. But I am in favor of all candidates holding my book in their TV ads, regardless of their political persuasion–Democrat, Republican, Libertarian or vegetarian.
The Scranton Times-Tribune reported that Randol won in Scranton and the Abingtons, was second in Dunmore, but came in fifth in Carbondale. County-wide, Randol came up just 403 votes short of edging out Commissioner Corey O’Brien, meaning she won’t be on the Democratic ticket in November.
It must be disappointing for Ms. Randol. But we may see her again, given her strong showing in Scranton. Perhaps she’ll run for Mayor in the future. I’m hoping she does so she can run more commercials featuring Welcome to Scranton.
Take a look at the ad below and see the cover of Welcome to Scranton 17 seconds into the video.
Welcome to Scranton is back as a Kindle Best Seller…in a very narrow category.
It was right behind Ann Patchett’s Truth and Beauty and ahead of Thicker Than Blood:Friendships of Womyn by Maureen Jones-Ryan.
It reached #22 in the following category:
- #22 in Kindle Store > Books > Nonfiction > Advice & How-to > Health, Mind & Body > Relationships > General
Again, I’m amused as the novella is fiction. It’s definitely not a How-to book on anything except perhaps how not to have a relationship. But I’ll take what I can get.
After lowering the ebook price of Welcome to Scranton to 99 cents, sales have jumped. It is #77 on the Kindle Best seller list for Advice & How-to> Health, Mind & Body > Relationships right behind Dr. Laura’s book The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands.
That is quite amusing as Welcome to Scranton is fiction. While the story is about people with dysfunctional relationships, it’s more of a How Not-to book on Relationships. Very funny indeed.
Boy, if I could only outsell Dr. Laura, even if it’s just for a day. That would be something.