Part Six, At Last!

by wjw on January 4, 2015

HWirePartSixSmallerThe grand serialization experiment is over, and Hardwired, Episode Six is now available at Amazon, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords.  The folks at Apple are apparently taking an extended holiday, and Episode Six isn’t yet available on their site despite my waiting more than 24 hours to make this announcement.


It’ll probably be up on iBooks by Monday, though.

It has to be admitted that the experiment of serializing a book that is already available in its entirety hasn’t been a great success— the first part, which was free, sold briskly, but the others have pretty much languished.

On the other hand, the freebie may have persuaded people to buy copies of the complete novel, which now outsells my other books by a considerable margin.

So maybe I should just release the first part of every novel for free.  What d’you think?

John F. MacMichael January 4, 2015 at 6:48 am

I think it would work. One thing I have learned over the years shopping at our local farmers market is that the free sample is a very powerful sales technique. I can think back on quite a few things where my initial reaction was something along the lines of “They want how much a pound for that!?” or “That looks weird.” Then after a free taste or two, my reluctance has been converted to “Yes! We need to get that!”.

kpacheneg January 4, 2015 at 3:51 pm

Definitely worth a try.

If I may ask, what’s your commercially most successful work? I hazard a guess and say Dagmar Shaw, so does this mean we can expect more near-future, earthbound material from hereon out?

Andrew Timson January 4, 2015 at 5:49 pm

I agree that releasing a free sampler sounds like a good idea to me. Some vendors do let you try samples from ebooks, but they often don’t contain more than a chapter or so, and end at an inconvenient place; that’s not always enough for me to make up my mind to pull the trigger.

TRX January 5, 2015 at 1:25 pm

With only one data point you really don’t know. Pick another and see if you get a similar result.

Most people who liked Hardwired would probably like Voice of the Whirlwind too, so I wouldn’t pick Voice for a second data point.

Gary Bunker January 6, 2015 at 2:55 pm

Sure, the old 1990s shareware model worked great for iD and Apogeee.

I suggest the Voice of the Whirlwind if you’re going to try this again – if Hardwired got an audience interested, they’ll follow VoW just as us old geezers did when the books were originally published.

Anonymous January 8, 2015 at 4:22 pm

“It has to be admitted that the experiment of serializing a book that is already available in its entirety hasn’t been a great success”

Well 5 episodes at $1.99 comes to twice what the complete novel was going for so perhaps that has something to do with it? Five bucks for a couple of essays (plus the additional work involved with dealing with multiple files instead of just one) is a ‘no sale’ for me (no worries though – I had already bought the ebook).

If Hardwired (the whole novel) has only jumped in to pole position since you started doing the serialisation then that would be pretty compelling evidence that the ep1-as-a-taster strategy has some legs however.


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