Monday, July 21, 2014

Second Chance?

When I published Twisted Love in February, 2013, it was my sixth title.   The book never sold  well.  Though I changed the cover twice and the product description several times, the sales remained well below the average for my other titles.
In hindsight,  the title was a poor choice.  It had nothing to do with the story and it made the book sound like it belonged in the erotica genre, which it does not.  It even received a review from someone who panned it as "twisted and s and m love."  I found that hilarious, as the book is a thriller and has no explicit sex scenes.  I suspect that person based her review on the title alone.

With 12 titles published and reasonable sales volume, I've had my share of reviews, good and bad.  I'm thick-skinned by nature; I don't pay much attention to negative reviews unless the reviewer raises a specific point about the book.  That one, however, has stuck in my mind.

 I think the message in that review was that the title misrepresented the book.  To that reviewer, Twisted Love  meant  kinky sex.  I began to wonder if other people read that into the title as well.  If shoppers were put off by that, they'd pass on the book.  If they were looking for kinky sex, on the other hand, the product description would have caused them to pass on the book.

 I decided to change the title to something that I hoped would not trigger erroneous expectations.  To reposition the book in the market, I decided to change the cover as well as the title.  I didn't want to annoy anyone who had  bought the book already by tricking them into buying it again, so I mentioned in the product description that it had been previously published as Twisted Love.

 The mechanics of changing the title were simple enough; the original book was 'unpublished' and the new one was treated as a new book.  I've done that for the ebook version; I haven't yet done the paperback version, but the overwhelming majority of my sales are ebooks.

 Will people who passed up Twisted Love give The Redemption of Becky Jones a closer look?


Anonymous said...

I think it will work unless people decide the title sounds like an Amish romance!

Unknown said...

Titles are so critical, I think you made the right choice!

Author Bob Nailor said...

I've discovered that "cute" tags can be misunderstood and misinterpreted by others on the internet. You may have stumbled onto a truth and made the correct move to change the title. Good luck.

Unknown said...

I hope the title helps. I so enjoy your books.

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