Con of Being Free

So I’ve been free on Smashwords for a while now, I don’t remember the exact date but it’s been a few months. I’ve been free on Amazon for just a few weeks. I’ve had 564 copies of The Ring, The Man downloaded across all platforms. That’s not too many but since they weren’t on a new release list when it went free it could be worse. I’m actually hovering around 10-16 on the Free Fantasy list on Amazon.

The problem I’m having is that of those 564 free downloads I’ve only had one person buy the two following books. Each episode ends on a cliff hanger so if someone reads it and likes it, more than likely, they’re going to buy the next episode, especially since they’re only $.99. So either people are reading it and not liking it or no one is reading it. Since I haven’t even received any reviews I’m leaning toward they aren’t reading it.

Who downloads a free book and then doesn’t read it?

*sigh* I do.

All the time.

I’ve got over 30 books on my kindle that I haven’t read yet, most of which were free. I’m part of the problem. No more I say! I will finish my library books, then read all the books on my kindle, and review each one. That way I can bitch about the people downloading my free book and not reading it and be able to say:

“Well I read my free downloads. I even review them.”

Self-righteousness is glorious.


  1. I get that. i’d expect to get about 2 reviews for every 2,000 I give away. All you can do is write the best book you can, so that if they do read the first one, they’ll buy the next. I’m in the process of trying this, myself, so I can appreciate the worry. Frankly, I’m not expecting anything but if I do get something, I’ll be pleased.




  2. Been there. I ran a free promotion once with KDP Select and had over 3,000 downloads of one of my books. It resulted in absolutely no sales and no reviews. My new theory is that “free” only works when there’s some kind of caveat, whether that be the obligation of a reviewer agreeing to read/review/publicize the book or giving away copies to people who sign up for a newsletter or become a new twitter follower, something like that. But you have to make sure you’re getting something out of it regardless of whether or not they go on to buy your next book.


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