I’ve joined a group giveaway on instafreebie.com – you can download a free preview of Emma’s Story, and you can download other books for free as well. Some of the books in the giveaway are previews like mine, while others are complete stories (look for the “preview” keyword when claiming the book).
You can access the giveaway and browse all of the available titles here.
How does it work?
I tried it out earlier, and they way it works is you click on the book you want, fill out your e-mail and name and you get sent download instructions via mail. The mail contains a link to download the instafreebie app as well as your login and password.
Once you’ve installed the app on your phone/tablet you can log in and get the book sent straight to your device. Depending on what device you use you may have to download an app to read the story.
The book I got sent when I tried didn’t open in my phones default reader, but it was no hassle to find an app that could read ePub files.
Why give away free books?
The short answer is: promotion.
The somewhat longer answer is that it’s a good way for people to become aware of your stories. I’m giving away a preview of the first four chapters of my story, and at the end of the preview is a link to where the full book can be pre-ordered (hint, it’s here for US and here for UK).
Some people are giving away full books though. Why is that?
Most of these books are the first in a series, and the author hopes you’ll like it and buy the rest of them. I’d probably do the same if I had a series written and wanted to promote it.
In fact, once I get my series going I probably will.
It seems like a good way to get the story in front of readers who otherwise might not have found it. At the moment I’m almost completely unknown as an author. Only my friends and family and a few online acquaintances know I have a book coming out. This blog doesn’t have a huge following (but thank you for reading if you got this far), and while I have created a mailing list for a newsletter I don’t have any subscribers to it yet.
In this way though, by taking part in a group giveaway, I benefit from the promotional powers of the other authors taking part. It feels a little bit like freeloading on the effort of others, but hopefully I’ll be able to pay it back by helping other writers out in the same way in the future.