In case you didn’t know, authors with books selling on Amazon.com are now ranked according to their sales. If you have books published during the 1980s that are no long selling well, your author ranking is high. (And we all know that low is much better).
The book I’m most proud of, a 202-page coffee table centennial history book with more historic photos than pages, is currently sales ranked at 4,220,667 in paperback and 11,707,397 in hardcover. (I didn’t realize the numbers went that high.) The numbers change hourly, creating an interesting graph. My 1987 history hardcover has taken my ALL BOOKS rating as high as 77,061, although my sales rankings for mystery, thriller, historical romance, self-help and genre fiction have been as low as 560 since I’ve been periodically checking the numbers.Theoretically, a writer with one book that’s selling moderately well, with no early publishing baggage, can have a much better rating than a veteran writer with a great many books online. It makes me wonder why Amazon created this mid list nightmare. Do readers actually care whether an author’s rating is 98,564 or if it skyrockets over a million, if they enjoy reading the author's books?
On the other hand, should writers care if they’re ranked in the higher numbers? Will it lead to lower sales and humiliation when their lack of sales hangs on the electronic clothesline for all to see? Hopefully readers won’t go hunting for ratings before they buy a book.
How do you feel about the ratings and do you judge an author by his or her sales ranking?