About two months ago, I found myself embroiled in a heated discussion on my Facebook page that began with an article written by TaNisha Webb entitled, “Why are More and More Authors Faking Their Way to the Top of Bestsellers Lists?”
What began as a discussion quickly deteriorated into a mud-slinging fest, and it became clear to me what was really going on. Here are a few of the quotes from the article and also from the author and someone who agreed with her on my Facebook page:
“Well one of the ways that some authors are getting on the bestsellers gravy train is by way of free and dirt cheap e-book price points. Cheap price points will help to embellish sales but doesn’t necessarily mean that the author’s work is worthy of the download.”
“Some readers have noticed that not only are authors taking advantage of slashing the price of their e-books for eternity but they are also faking their way to the top of bestsellers lists by deliberately placing their e-books in the wrong genres in order to gain their undeserving bestselling status. This is a low-down dirty shame because not only are these fake bestselling authors being dishonest to readers when they claim they are a bestseller but they are also stealing…yes I said it…they are STEALING a spot from an author that actually do DESERVE and has rightfully EARNED their bestselling title because of these manipulative, greedy and starving for attention wannabes!”
“If you are a good writer with great storylines, characters, and quality books, eventually you will get to the bestsellers list the RIGHT way if you keep working hard. So many of us are so impatient. The most infamous authors put years, sometimes decades into their craft before ever getting any acclaim. What's the point of being on the list if no one knows you, you have no or few reviews, you have no following, and every time someone brings up your name or book people say, "Who?" If you truly want a lasting writing career, let go of all of the trickery and let it come to you naturally”
“This is exactly why readers find some authors so damn **trifling** because they are willing to get their "fame" by any means necessary instead of working hard and doing it the correct way.”
**For those of you who don't know what "trifling" is, it's an African-American colloquialism that basically means "irresponsible, devious, sneaky."
Their obvious disdain for successful e-book authors seems to be across the board, because as the discussion continued, the delineation between those authors that use “deceptive” methods and e-book authors in general disappeared. These folks are angry. They’re angry because e-book authors have found ways to get their books into the hands of tens of thousands of readers, even though it was at a financial loss to them. They’re angry because they suffered years of rejections, and once they finally got a publisher, they were locked into doing only what the publisher allowed.
The majority of e-book authors also suffered the same years of rejection only we decided to do something about it on our own. I am not talking about the small percentage of authors who hastily created a novel and immediately threw it into cyberspace. I’m talking about those of us who have written for years and even decades. What I heard behind the words was jealousy plain, simple and ugly.
Authors, readers I'd love to hear your thoughts.