Self-Publishing Case Studies
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Self-Publishing Case Studies



At our Media App Summit, we shared five case studies of writers who have cracked our Self-Published Bestsellers List. Their stories will help aspiring writers explore this booming marketplace.

At our Media App Summit, we shared five case studies of writers who have cracked our Self-Published Bestsellers List. Their stories will help aspiring writers explore this booming marketplace.



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Self-Publishing Case Studies Self-Publishing Case Studies Presentation Transcript

  • Self Published BestsellersStatistics & Case Studies
  • The Self Publishing Marketplace Bowker counts more than 235,000 print and digital self-published titles being released annually in the United States. Compared to 2006 figures, this year marked a 287 percent increase. Follow this link to read more about the study.
  • How We Make the Self- Published Bestsellers List We collect the list every Monday afternoon. None of these companies have released actual sales figures for the individual books. Our Amazon list takes the highest ranked self- published bestsellers in Amazon’s Top 100 Paid Kindle Books list. Our Barnes & Noble list is drawn from the bestselling PubIt! eBooks. Our Smashwords list is drawn from the bestselling titles in the company’s fiction list.
  • Most Popular Genres Four genres clearly dominated our Self- Published Bestsellers List this year. They are, in order of influence: 1. Romance 2. Erotica 3. New Adult 4. Thrillers
  • New Adult Fiction Writer Colleen Hoover
  • Colleen Hoover Hoover got permission from the Avett Brothers to use their song lyrics in her book. Hoover signed a book deal with Simon & Schuster’s Atria Books. Her work dominated our Self-Published Bestsellers List for weeks this year. She is part of the new adult fiction genre.
  • What Is New Adult Fiction?
  •  St. Martin’s Press hosted a contest in 2009 looking for stories that could be marketed to both YA readers and adult readers. The contest described for new adult fiction as books “with protagonists who are slightly older than YA and can appeal to an adult audience.” Self-published new adult fiction author Cora Carmack landed a three-book deal, bringing the term into a New York Times headline. See Carmack’s Self-Published Bestsellers List appearances at this link.
  • Thriller Writer C J Lyons
  •  Following a 99-cent Kindle Gold Box Daily Deal sale, thriller novelist C J Lyons swept five spots on our self-published bestsellers list. She has both self-published and traditionally published throughout her career. See all her Self-Published Bestsellers List appearances at this link.
  • Science Fiction Writer Hugh C. Howey
  •  Director Ridley Scott acquired the film rights to Wool, aself-published science fiction novel about a dystopian futureby Hugh C. Howey . He also landed a book deal with Random House UK. He wrote last week: “This is not happening ... One yearago, I was shelving books, arranging displays, dusting abookstore, and writing in the mornings and on my lunchbreaks. WOOL 5 hadn’t been written yet. I was just wrappingup the rough draft of WOOL 4. Cut to a year later. RidleyScott and Steve Zaillian option the film rights. 20 foreigncountries pick up WOOL. Random House in the UK andAustralia. #1 on Amazon. #11 on the New York Times list.”
  • Romance Novelist Barbara Freethy
  •  Barbara Freethy has sold one million digital books through Barnes & Noble’s PubIt! Program. Freethy used the service to self-publish 17 of her backlist titles and three new digital books for Nook readers. She has sold 2.7 million eBooks since January 2011 across six digital marketplaces. See her Self-Published Bestseller list appearances at this link.
  • Technothriller Novelist Ray Gorham
  •  Ray Gorham cracked our Self-Pub Bestsellers List with 77 Days in September, a $1.99 thriller about an electromagnetic pulse attack (EMP) on the United States. “Gorham lives in the small, farming community of Shepherd, Montana with his wife and five children. He runs his log home business by day and writes in the evenings, on weekends, and whenever the weather keeps him inside.” See all his Self-Published Bestsellers List appearances at this link.