Thursday, April 8, 2010

A Survey - please take a moment to comment.

I've noticed that some of my books are selling much better than others. I don't know why. There's no real way of finding out why some stories sell well and others don't. If a reader likes my writing, what makes them decide NOT to buy the next story I have published - because that has to be the crux of it. Yes?

So what puts you off purchasing?
1. Cover
2. Blurb
3. Genre
4. Price/length
5. Other

Any chance of putting those in order?

For me, when I have to make a purchase decision - first I look for the name of the author, then I read the back cover. I don't care about the front cover, the length/price - though I won't buy hardback. I don't care about genre - I'll read almost anything if that author has impressed me previously.
So what would stop me buying? I guess if the subject matter really didn't interest me - eg wrestling, NASCAR or other racing track stuff, or the same old vampire story.
How about you?


Hope said...

Author. Blurb. Excerpt. Genre. Those are my only criteria. But if the author is someone I've read and liked, I don't even glance at anything else. I want to read it. You could sell your grocery list and I'd buy it.

Flick said...

Ha - that's nice! Some authors are an automatic buy for me - Jenny Crusie (but not with that guy she writes with) and Susan Elizabeth Phillips - straight purchases with no question, no read of the blurb!

Arlene said...

The cover will catch my eye, but the blurb is what I care about, and then the cover becomes irrelevant. If the blurb sparks interest, and the opening page isnt lame, I'll check out the author. Someone I know and like, then I'm buying.
If I dont reconize the name, I flip to read a bit further in.
Genre is of no concern. Too short, I won't pay more than a few bucks. If its a hardcover, I ponder whether I want to wait for paperback.

Barbara Elsborg said...

Thanks, Arlene. Best I get the blurb right then!

Dreama said...

I would say:
1. Author
2. Blurb
3. Genre
4. Length (not so much price)
5. Cover

I don't know how much cover art means to me, at least when it comes to e-books. If it's paper/hardback it would be a bigger deal because then I have to watch what I have around the kids!

The blurb/excerpt is a big deal as if I don't enjoy that much, why by the book?

Genre's a really big deal for me as well as certain things, such as time travel, tend to annoy me. Most author's do a horrible job writing those and they're extremely cheesy and I just avoid them with only a few exceptions. The whole shapeshifter/vampire/vampire hunter/etc thing is out of hand as well and though I like it from a few select authors, I limit what I'm willing to buy.

Book length is a big one for me as I've noticed that the lengths seem to be getting shorter while prices are rising. I can't justify paying$5 for something that I'll be done reading in an hour. I'm much more willing to pay more for a book that will keep me entertained for a day or two.

And yes, I'm very loyal to my favorite authors! There are those that I either always buy or nearly always without a second thought. For the bigger nam authors I'm quite willing to pay for the hardback the day it comes out as I'm usually starving for a good read!

Barbara Elsborg said...

Thanks, Dreama, that was very interesting. With a couple of exceptions I seem to be incapable of writing anything short. I start off thinking it might be and it grows and grows!
I'm worried about my blurbs now - thinking I'm not making them interesting enough. I'd rather write 100,000 word novel than a 300 word blurb. Groan.

Tinkerbellz22 said...

I guess it depends. When it is an e-book publisher I choose by genre or by an author I already know and love. Genre is a big one for me, I don't mind the vampire/shape-shifter stories but Sci-Fi and homosexual romances aren't my forte. But if the blurb sounds like something I would enjoy I usually end up buying it no matter what the price. And usually the longer the better, I like getting my money's worth.

Paperback it is usually author, blurb and I hate to say it, usually the last chaper :).

Barbara Elsborg said...

Tinkerbell !!! You read the last chapter of a paperback - oh I could never do that. I DO see where you are coming from but I just couldn't.
Thanks for those thoughts - it just confirms I need to get my act together on the blurbs. I have no idea why it should be so hard to write a couple of hundred words saying what the book is about. Mind you if someone asks me - I can't even string three sentences together to do that either!