by: Staci Stallings
Maybe you know me and know this already about me. Maybe you have guessed it about me in reading my posts. But I’ll let you in on a little secret: I like control. I like to know where I am. I like to know where I’m going and how I’m getting there.
It’s just how I was wired, I suppose.
Sometimes my plans get bigger than my ability to pull them off, but most of the time I’m working toward something with a definite plan in mind and a map of how to get there.
That’s definitely true with the marketing of my writing. With the writing itself, I’ve learned to turn that little slave-driver in me off. But when I’m marketing, sometimes it’s a whole different story.
I think that’s why God throws little and sometimes BIG hitches in my plans. To remind me, once again, that I’m not the one in charge and that we will go in His direction and at His pace. It’s humbling to say the least.
And so it was Feb. 1, 2012. I had been planning for that day for several weeks. It was the first day my book, “Coming Undone” would be on Free Kindle, and I had a lot of things set up–articles on other sites, Facebook pages to contact, tweets for Twitter all ready to go. I was SET I tell you… Ready, Set, GO!
I even had a spreadsheet set up so I could track the downloads and learn nuggets to help me better do this next time.
Feb. 1 started, and I noticed something strange on the Amazon reporting site almost immediately–my rank on the page was going down, but I wasn’t adding any sales. In fact, it hit 89 downloads and stopped completely!
I was patient for as long as possible and then I emailed my writer’s group to ask if anyone else was experiencing this. Sure enough, it was an everyone problem. One of the guys wrote in, “Great! Staci Stallings just broke Amazon!”
HAHA! I needed that laugh.
As the day progressed, my book’s rank kept climbing into the #200’s and then the #100’s. The problem was, half the time, I could no longer even see my rank. The other writers were updating me, but my rank (what I could see) was all over the place. It would be in the 500’s and then 100’s then the 200’s then the 100’s again. I had watched these things for a long time, and I had never seen this.
As the day wore on, I was getting more and more irritable because I had no clue what was going on! I couldn’t see my sales numbers and my ranks were not consistent or logical. And then I got an email from a friend, “YAY! You’re number 54!” Which meant I had broken into the Top 100 Free Kindles on Amazon!
I was jazzed, but it sure would have been nice to see it.
Frustrated, I opened a book of Bible sayings and came across the one for Feb. 1, which was tied to the verse: We walk by faith, not by sight. Ah-ha! Finally I understood.
Finally after all day, my spirit relaxed. Here was the message God had wanted to give me all along. “Staci, you’re gonna have to trust me even if you can’t see what’s going on.”
Someone sent me a link to the Top 100 page, and suddenly I got a glimpse of what was going on. The rest of the evening and into the next morning we watched in the Top 100 as my book climbed ever higher until it had reached #11 in Free Kindle Store. Two days later it was climbing the Paid side, finally ending its ascent at #98 in all of Amazon, and #1 in Religious Fiction and in Religion & Inspirational.
It was a wild ride.
And it was a whole week before I got a real understanding of just how many downloads that represents.
Let me tell you, walking by faith is not easy for a control freak. I’m just glad God was kind enough to give me the lesson in a way that I can’t miss it. That sure did help!
Check out Staci’s New Website that’s all about her books: Ebook Romance Stories… You’re gonna love it!