Weirdest thing. Over the weekend, somewhat inexplicably, my new travel book Naked in Dangerous Places got the wind behind it and began racing up the Amazon charts.
That’s an incredible development. For me it is, anyway. For you, probably less so.
But what’s even more incredi – oh, and by the way, thank you to all those people who bought it; you won’t be disappointed – but what’s even more incredible is that my previous travel book, Gullible’s Travels, the Adventures of a Bad Taste Tourist, did even better. For a while there, GT was fair rocketing along, picking up sales at every turn.
I was flabbergasted. And even now I have no idea what caused this outpouring of desire to own my work, I’m just glad it happened.
Publishers of course, have a real downer on Amazon. They’ll tell you, scornfully – and I’ve been told this many times – that the Amazon ranking is meaningless. That the company gives no rational accounting of how book sales are tallied, therefore it all seems pretty much random and can’t be trusted. That’s the corporate line.
Well, fair enough. But if both your books – both – having languished a little of late in the low numbers (which I guess, by that token, means nothing either) suddenly take off like Derby thoroughbreds and careen up the chart past hundreds of thousands of competing works, then, call me deluded, but to me that says people are buying them.
One book without the other could be a freak happening. Together, though? Come on, publishers – who are you kidding?
Alas, by Sunday, the ranking had dipped, indicating that the feeding frenzy was over (or that sales were still fierce and the Amazon ranking really is meaningless). Still, a few more weekends like that and, who knows, I might even be tempted to write a third one!
Incidentally, remember a couple of weeks ago when I put three signed copies of Naked on Ebay? They were, I’m delighted to say, snapped up right away. But then afterwards I got complaints from people who either didn’t know about the auction or were outbid, saying they were really disappointed, and that won’t do.
If they sell, they sell; if they don’t, they don’t. But at least you have a chance to purchase a copy of what I guarantee is a very funny book, while also knowing that, unlike every other Naked book out there, this one will be dedicated specifically to you. I mean, that’s got to be worth something, right?