Update November 6, 2020: Sales of A Tale of Hell…

I am beginning to see sales via IngramSpark that are better than I saw at Amazon. I will be moving more books to IngramSpark soon.

Just now I checked my IngramSpark account to get the ISBN for A Tale of Hell and Other Works of Horror. I was pleasantly surprised to find that since having published A Tale of Hell… on October 21, I have sold five copies (including one author’s copy I bought at a discount). This is definitely more print copies (and probably more than the number of Kindle versions) than I ever sold in four years on Amazon. I did give away a lot of Kindle versions as promotions. So, maybe the promotional giveaways are working in a weird, ironic way.

I have no indication of where these were sold or who bought them.

I have always thought that Amazon prices its print copies so high that it drives customers to their Kindle versions. Its print copies are not great nor vey professional in their quality. These factors also undoubtedly drive customers to Kindle.

Yeah, branching out to IngramSpark was a good idea.

I will therefore be moving Nocturne: Poems of Love, Distance, and the Night, a callous and disinterested lover to IngramSpark soon. I have already started a draft there. I will start looking at moving the e-versions there as well.

Thank you very much to those of you who have purchased a copy.

For those of you who haven’t yet bought a copy, IngramSpark distributes to over 39,000 book retailers worldwide. Ask for one at your local bookstore. I am researching which stores do sell these. So far I have found that you can get them through Books A Million (though these may be just the Amazon version), Barnes and Noble, and Powell Books. These are print-on-demand, so they probably won’t be on the shelves. You will probably need to order them.

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Cover of A Tale of Hell by Phil Slattery

Update of August 13, 2020: Kindle Keywords

Phil Slattery portrait
Phil Slattery
March, 2015

Since Tuesday, I have spent some time trying to improve my book sales by using keywords better on my Amazon site.

When I set up the site, I saw that they had seven fields for seven words up to fifty characters long. Mistakenly, I thought you could have only seven keywords, I feel like such a dummy now.

I read two articles today: 7 KINDLE KEYWORDS: USE ALL 50 CHARACTERS OR NOT?  and Make Your Book More Discoverable with Keywords. What I took away from these and what I decided to do are two different things.

Below are the things I decided to do. What I took away is not as important as I what I decided to do, so I won’t bother you with that.

First, for Kindlepreneurs, jam as many words into each of the seven boxes Amazon gives you. The maximum number of characters is fifty. I did not see anything that said the words have to be separated by commas.

For keywords, choose words that are not in your title or description. This makes sense because that would be redundant.

Google search engines put more emphasis on the titles and description than keywords. So, maybe it would be good to put any words you would use as keywords in the title and/or description.

Sometimes it might be useful to think of an exact phrase that someone would use in searching for your book and put that in as a keyword. Google search engines sometimes look for that.

I tried to think of as many keywords as I could for my books, but after a few, my imagination was crapping out on me. I came up with an idea to help with this though. This is something not taught in either of the two articles I mentioned. I would think of a word describing the essence of my book, something that people might search for, and looked up its synonyms on line. My reasoning is that words have nuances and the meaning and nuances may vary somewhat from speaker to speaker. For example, someone wanting to read my book Diabolical: Three Stories of Jack Thurston and Revenge (I may change this title to make it more marketable), the primary theme of this book is evil. Thesaurus.com gives 48 synonyms for evil. Therefore, I selected several keywords from this list trying to choose one used widely today such as: wicked, malevolent, depravity, misery, suffering, etc.  Then I moved on to another descriptive word and its synonyms.  I changed all my keywords on Tuesday and still haven’t seen any results, but it is only Thursday.

Try out some of the suggestions and let me know how they work out for you. Leave any recommendations of your own in the comment box below.

Hasta luego.



My Position in the Amazon Poetry Section is Climbing (for today at least)

Selfie with Lotus in background near Arkansas Post, September 4, 2019

I just now checked my stats for sales of Nocturne…, and although I managed to only give away a few books recently, that was enough to bring the stats up to:

Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,512 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)

I have heard some debate as to how accurate Amazon stats are, so it is possible that I have more sales than what is recorded here.

Also, for some unknown reason, I had more views from the UK than the US (13 vs, 12), which is unusual. Usually, I will have a dozen or so views from the US and maybe half a dozen at most from the UK. What most people viewed today was my promotion of Nocturne…