The last thing in the world I could ever pretend to understand or know the first thing about are book sales figures especially when they appear as Amazon sales rankings. But I hear out and about and lately from an article in the review supplements last weekend, that Amazon rankings are watched closely on an hourly basis by many.
I have basically spent a lifetime ignoring them let alone being so presumptious as to think that perhaps anything I may write about here could have a positive and measurable impact on sales.
Recently it suddenly dawned on me that I do have an impact on sales because Legend Press told me so.They identified an upsurge in sales of Salt and Honey by Candi Miller after I had written a review of it here.
This week I decided on the spur of the moment to conduct a highly technical and well-audited bit of an experiment of my own.
Managers love "conducting an audit" in the NHS, any excuse and they'll audit you, so it's rare for me even to use the word let alone conduct one of my own.
Brings me out in a rash.
I wrote about a book that I suspect is quite obscure and lesser known but I agree with Ernest Hecht of Souvenir Press certainly deserves a wider audience; The Marvellous Adventure of Cabeza de Vaca by Haniel Long came and went on Tuesday and didn't generate that much debate.
Amazon sales ranking the night before 267,938.
I then forgot all about my highly technical and well-audited bit of an experiment until last night when I suddenly remembered and went back in to check, Amazon sales ranking now 46,098.
I have no idea how the rankings are calculated or what this hike of 218,840 places actually represents in solid book sale figures but it would be nice if it was half a dozen or so.
Now I suspect this is all more likely to be down to some great huge double page spread in a review supplement somewhere rather than a bookaholic in Devon but it does confirm for me the importance of honesty and integrity in the world of book reviewing per se and something which I think has become an unwritten code amongst us all here in LitBlog world.
Free books are lovely but as I emphasise time and again, they will only ever make it on here if I can put my hand on my heart and say I'd have paid the going rate for this one and would be happy to suggest that other readers might want to do the same or kill for it at the library.
The power of the masses to have their say still invokes heated debate all over the place.
The publisher, whose bi-monthly website letter ( a blog minus the comments by any other name ) faux pas about "yammering bloggers" caused the most unearthly amount of hurt and offence and hasty re-editing, is now drawing our attention to and recommending a book that a newspaper reviewer suggests
" is a shrewdly argued jeremiad against the digerati effort to dethrone cultural and political gatekeepers and replace experts with the wisdom of the crowd.”
I can hardly bear to assist sales by telling you the name of the book but take a look here and see what the "wisdom of the crowd" makes of it.
Nowadays I just smile inwardly and carry on regardless and if you want to read a great book that I think brilliantly examines, exposes and deflates literary posturing then look no further than The Intellectuals and The Masses : Pride and Prejudice among the Literary Intelligentsia 1880-1939 by Professor John Carey.
As we says down y'ere in Devon, us masses knows what us likes and all we does is tell it like it is, which for most if us is exactly what we want to know.
PS In response to those who have inquired, and for anyone who may have thought my blog name was in any way connected to said publisher, please be assured that of course I just stuck a pin in the Dulux colour chart, I was but a stab away from being BananaYellowReader.