Sunday, February 06, 2011

The Rough Guide to Space Opera: B. V. Larson - Blue Tyson

B. V. Larson is a writer of science fiction and fantasy, and an interesting case. J. A. Konrath features a Guest Post by him. Apparently he has a series called Imperium that is of definite space opera flavour, with the first book being Mech. Alien-human desperate space war carnage, by the sounds of it. He has double figures in books and more, and apparently sold 38,000 books last month, and 100,000 in the last six on Amazon. The odd thing for a digital only author is that there is propaganda for the books on his website, but no excerpt. And liking to a Kindle sample is extremely pointless.

A couple of other authors I wanted to look up had no excerpts. Sara Creasy, who has a Kindle sales rank of 46,000 or so for the book in question. Sandra McDonald, who is severely afflicted by the Macmillan manacles, and has no ebooks excerpt for her third, it appears. (And if you are thinking it is dumb not to have all books in a series available, you'd be right.). The rank for her third, 144,000 or so. Hannu Rajaniemi's Quantum Thief has a rank similar to Creasy's. Rajaniemi's book is 9.99. Creasy and McDonald are not available to buy, so show no price, but Creasy's paperback is 7.99 from Eos, and they do stupid things like have higher priced ebooks sometimes so it could be 7.99 to 14.99 (the latter price I have seen from them for a 7.99 book). McDonald's is probably more likely 12.99 or something being Macmillan. Larson appears to only be at Amazon or Barnes and Noble, so if you want epub outside the USA you are SOL (as opposed to SOL completely for Creasy/MacDonald). When you are as popular as Larson is though, there'll be the usual free downloads around I'd imagine. Odd for a digital author to limit sales and excerpts though. In this case you'd have to consider the possibility that the writing is poor. There's zero chance he is better than Rajaniemi, almost zero chance he'd be better than MacDonald, but some chance better than Creasy is how'd I see it. It is even odder to be excerpt free when you know that people using the shops you can buy his books can get samples.

Mech sales rank on Kindle


Or thereabouts. So all these authors have the same no-good website problem. Larson is 1/3 the price approximately, and DRM free and kicking the living crap out of them. His sales keep going like that pretty sure he can afford to get a few hours out of a web developer to improve things. :)

2.99 is definitely Robert A. Heinlein's beer money (or cappucino money). 9.99 or 12.99 is dinner out at the pub money.