As a little experiment, I decided to make a couple of my short stories free on Amazon: Sagan’s Law and The Cageless Zoo.  I didn’t think much would happen and I pegged my expectations very low.  As of 5pm yesterday they were free on Amazon.  Exactly twenty-four hours later, they are #2 and #4 on the science fiction bestseller lists for free e-books (and Sagan’s Law is #99 on the overall free list.)  I’m flabbergasted by the number of free downloads and even more pleasantly surprised by the novels sold because of these free offerings.  My novels have jumped way up the rankings as well, though no where near as high as the shorts.  My guess is that a fair number have enjoyed the short stories and are willing to take the plunge with a purchased novel.

If you’ve been on the fence about purchasing one of my novels, here’s your chance to try a sample story.  If you decide you like, come back and pick up a copy of The Digital Sea, Gamers or the Fires of Alexandria.  I’m not sure how long I’m going to leave them up free, but get them while you can.

** Update — 8pm.  Sagan’s Law is #1 on the free sci-fi ebooks.  Rather strange to be next to George RR Martin (he’s tops on the paid list) but I’ll take it.




Thomas K. Carpenter

Thomas K. Carpenter is a full time contemporary fantasy author with over 50 independently published titles. His bestselling, multi-series universe, The Hundred Halls, has over 25 books and counting. His stories focus on fantastic families, magical academies, and epic adventures.

  • Hey, Tom, kudos to you for trying that experiment, and for your great success with it. I just released a fantasy novel for free, in part to (re)acquaint readers with my work after a long time off the market, and I’m pleasantly surprised at the early response to it. I don’t have it on amazon yet (right now it’s only at the book site, http://www.dragonsword.info), but amazon will be the next stop with it. Seems like the time is right for this kind of approach to getting our work out there.

    You have a great blog, by the way, and an interesting take on things. I look forward to stopping by more often.


  • @Deborah – Thanks for stopping by and good luck with your re-released novel.

    @LM May – Thanks! 🙂

  • Still seems kinda crazy. I keep looking at it and wondering how it got there. ;p

    Now if I could just get that on the paid category. 🙂

  • Might have to do this with “El Mirador” when the time comes. What do you think? Too risky for a first ebook, or a good way to build an audience?

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