After I put out a call for ARC readers for Price of a Rose. I quickly received an email that showed some confusion about how all of it works and why I was asking for someone to buy the 99 cent version of the novella. I thought I’d clear that up with this post.

In the future, I will be more clear in my newsletters as to what is going on and what I’m asking.

What is an ARC reader?

  • ARC readers get an advanced copy of my book. You get to read it before anyone else does. Some people really like that. It is special gift I like doing for those who follow me and I want to offer this opportunity to fans.
  • ARC readers should be dedicated fans who want to support me and truly enjoy what I write.
  • ARC readers are excited to read the book and to tell others about it.

Free books are given out in hopes of a review, but that is not required

I can’t make you review. Neither can I say “you only get this book if you review.” That would go against Amazon policies and it would be rather mean. If you got a free book and didn’t like it, I wouldn’t want you to review either!

In the last 2 years, I have given away over 18,000 copies of my books for FREE. If I had that as income, my taxes this year would look a lot better then they are! LOL. But I do that as outreach, in hopes readers who would like what I write connect with me.

If you have a financial hardship and would like a free book, of course I would do that. Of course, you can become an ARC reader, and still receive a free download. You can also request your library carry my books and ebooks (all are available to them through a service called Draft2Digital or Ingram Spark).

If you do want to review

If you did get a free book, and want to support me, you can review my books at Bookbub, Goodreads, Kobo, Barnes and Noble, or Apple books.

You can even review me on Amazon (without a purchase) but that is restricted to those who have spent $50 on their account. There is also some evidence that Amazon will remove a unverified review (a review from someone who has not purchased the book) and yes, that has happened to me in the past.

I’ve also had verified reviews removed but the difference with those readers is because they bought the book they successfully argued with Amazon for their reviews to be returned. For example, one of my fans is a BIG reviewer. She had all 5,000 reviews removed from Amazon! OMG! But she was able to argue with them that she had bought each and every book and her reviews were all returned. A glitch? Maybe. Who knows with Amazon.

Why buy the book if you got it free?

Your purchase of my book during the first 90 days of its release plays a HUGE marketing role in my book being seen. For example:

  • The first 90 days is a crucial time period in terms of getting the book seen. After 90 days if there is not enough buying activity on the book, it falls down in importance in the Amazon search algorithm, making it harder to be seen without ads.
  • If enough people buy the book, Amazon will list me as a hot new release in their newsletter. This has the potential to increase book purchases in the 1,000s, if not more. It could change my career from a hobby, to where I could make a living wage.
  • When books sales are high, I have a chance of getting the Amazon bestseller banner. This is a big influence in getting other readers to buy my book.

Rest assured, this is not a get-rich scheme. Your 99 cent purchase on Amazon gives me 35 cents in a commission for a book I spent three months writing and paid an editor $400 to review.

Byrd Nash is a one-woman band. There is no big publishing house behind me. It is me, who does all the writing, research, marketing, book covers, ads, and more. Sometimes my husband pitches in but he has a full-time demanding job that brings home the bacon so to speak. The money which supports my vocation comes right out of my family budget.

I hope this gives you some insight on why readers are a major part in encouraging me to keep going when all the odds are stacked against me as an Indie author. You really are an important piece of the puzzle. Thank you so much for your support!

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