Instabounce: Still Working

See, this is why I keep telling people that Glenn “Instapundit” Reynolds is the secret king of online bookselling: He mentions that he received The Android’s Dream — just that it’s arrived in the mail, mind you — and the Amazon ranking shoots up to 1500 (or so) in three hours. Boing, there it goes. Damn, he’s good.

Update, 3:00pm: Now it’s at 699. All hail the Instabounce!

Update, 4:00pm: 542! Yes, now I’m just being obsessive-compulsive.

Update, 6:00pm: 515. I can quit anytime.

Update, 7:00pm: 504. Oh noes! I’m plateauing!

Update, 8:00pm: 451. Help me! It’s a sickness!

Update, 9:00pm: 442. Dude, I just totally passed a Star Wars novel on the Amazon SF bestsellers list. Hah!

Update, 10:00pm: 414. One thing I’ve noticed about the Amazon SF/F bestseller list, incidentally, is how 1984, Fahrenheit 451 and Brave New World are always lurking about in the top 25. Dystopia never goes out of style.

Update, 11:00pm: 440. Clearly, the sales death spiral has begun. Off to bed before the black depression strikes.

80 thoughts on “Instabounce: Still Working

  1. I won’t dispute that Mr. Reynolds has lots of traffic and is effective at redirecting that traffic to items that attract his interest, but I reject the proposition that he is good, unless “good” is used in the very narrow sense of being good at redirecting his abundant traffic.

    I used to check his site daily and used to find it interesting and worthwhile, but for whatever reason, the man has let himself go, intellectually.

    The only exposure I get to his site now is via his detractors, who seem to become more numerous every day. Mr. Reynolds has the dubious honor of having an entire site dedicated to journaling his decline: instaputz.

  2. I won’t dispute that Mr. Reynolds has lots of traffic and is effective at redirecting that traffic to items that attract his interest, but I reject the proposition that he is good, unless “good” is used in the very narrow sense of being good at redirecting his abundant traffic.

    I used to check his site daily and used to find it interesting and worthwhile, but for whatever reason, the man has let himself go, intellectually.

    The only exposure I get to his site now is via his detractors, who seem to become more numerous every day. Mr. Reynolds has the dubious honor of having an entire site dedicated to journaling his decline: instaputz.

  3. But congrats on the ranking thing anyway. I intend to pick up my copy when you are at Easton in Columbus in a few weeks, assuming that is still on.

  4. Adam Ziegler:

    “I reject the proposition that he is good”

    Eh. Glenn belongs in a select group of political bloggers who actually have some amount of influence, which means that he’s in an especially good position to annoy large numbers of people. Not sure that makes him, or any other political blogger of his stature, not good. I find him still readable when he writes on politics, which at this point in the election cycle is one up on most political blogs on either side of the spectrum.

    I would prefer not to have the thread turn into a referendum on Glenn’s goodness and/or badness, however. I like Glenn. His politics diverge from mine in a number of significant ways, as do the politics of a number of people I know and like.

    The Columbus thing is definitely still on! I’m really looking forward to that.

  5. I got an Amazon ad email telling me that TAD was coming out, so I ordered it today without reading Instapundit. I’m impressed with Amazon’s recommendations; they often send me info about books I already have, though not from them.

  6. Cassie:

    Thursday, November 9th at 7pm.

    Barnes & Noble at 4005 Townsfair Way in Columbus.

    Be there, or be somewhere else, where I’m not.

  7. Well, Cherie’s been pretty good at pimping herself, so she already had a pretty good ranking. I may be able to help her sell a couple copies here and there.

  8. Well, Cherie’s been pretty good at pimping herself, so she already had a pretty good ranking. I may be able to help her sell a couple copies here and there.

  9. Well, Cherie’s been pretty good at pimping herself, so she already had a pretty good ranking. I may be able to help her sell a couple copies here and there.

  10. “I like Glenn”

    Oh, how conveeeeenient. :) I’m sure it has nothing to do with the billions of dollars rolling in at this very moment from Instaplug-derived book sales. For that kind of money, I’d kiss Glenn right on the mouth. (Ok, just kidding about that last part…I think.)

  11. Glenn:

    “I’m sure it has nothing to do with the billions of dollars rolling in at this very moment from Instaplug-derived book sales.”

    Not really (we knew each other before the book-pimpery), but it certainly doesn’t hurt.

  12. “I would prefer not to have the thread turn into a referendum on Glenn’s goodness and/or badness, however. I like Glenn. His politics diverge from mine in a number of significant ways, as do the politics of a number of people I know and like.”

    Yowzah!

    I, in fact, disagree with Scalzi on many points, as well as those posted by many of the ‘regulars’ here on the whatever.

    Simply because I disagree, however, doesn’t mean I ‘hate’ the poster or find him ‘ignorant’ or
    otherwise intellectually challenged.

    We all come to our opinions through life experiences, and like azzholes, everyone has one and they all stink.

    I find Glenn to be thoughtful and open to opinion, where the (anonymous) haters that blast him on the ‘mock’ websites have no tolerance for civil, intellectual debate.

  13. Ditto the 504.

    Funny thing – I actually ordered TAD today as well. I had it sitting on my wish list and when I needed a second book to “pad” my order to over $25. As a side note, the order over $25 = free shipping is the greatest gimick that Amazon has ever come up with. I won’t even shop at B&N online because I ALWAYS buy more than $25 worth of books and there is no way I’m gonna pay shipping for them too.

    Anyway, warm Scalzi Literary goodness heading my way!

  14. Ditto the 504.

    Funny thing – I actually ordered TAD today as well. I had it sitting on my wish list and when I needed a second book to “pad” my order to over $25. As a side note, the order over $25 = free shipping is the greatest gimick that Amazon has ever come up with. I won’t even shop at B&N online because I ALWAYS buy more than $25 worth of books and there is no way I’m gonna pay shipping for them too.

    Anyway, warm Scalzi Literary goodness heading my way!

  15. As a side note, the order over $25 = free shipping is the greatest gimick that Amazon has ever come up with.

    Combine that with their VISA card where you earn points for purchases, and 2500 points = $25 gift certificate. Just buying routine food and gas means that I get at least two gift certificates per year. I ignore all other credit card offers now because you just can’t beat free books. :) (and music, and videos, and a wide assortment of household things.)

  16. Two things:

    1. John, get help. Watching Amazon rankings . . . therein lies madness.

    2. To Rex Schrader: I *used* to think that the $25+ = free shipping thing was Amazon’s greatest gimmick – until they lured me into Amazon Prime-land with a “free” 90-day trial. (“Hey, the first one’s free, kid.”) So now I’m roped in. Once you’ve had the experience of gunslinging an $8 book order and then having the thing show up at your house 48 hours later, there’s just no going back.

    Hey, the proprietor hisself wrote about this a while back, didn’t he? Ah yes, here it is:

    http://www.scalzi.com/whatever/004188.html

    Teh Crack itself, indeed.

  17. I won’t even shop at B&N online because I ALWAYS buy more than $25 worth of books and there is no way I’m gonna pay shipping for them too.

    B&N has the $25+ = free shipping, too. I tend to order from them more than Amazon…but, hell, I have two kids so it’s not like I get to order that much for myself anymore anyway.

  18. Hey, what is this by my keyboard? Oh, yeah, it’s my copy of The Android’s Dream, what I just purchased at my local Barnes & Noble with the pennies I’d collected for orphans and stray kitties.
    I had to choose between it and The Ladies of Grace Adieu by Susannah Clarke. Hmm, richly rendered English fairy tales, or a fart assassin? Let’s see how wisely I chose: Dirk Moeller didn’t know if…

  19. Jeff Hentoz:

    You say you have a copy of Android’s Dream? I demand photographic evidence! Unless, you know, you’re just being silly.

  20. Jeff Hentoz:

    You say you have a copy of Android’s Dream? I demand photographic evidence! Unless, you know, you’re just being silly.

  21. Can you keep it up till 2pm tomorrow?

    that would be a 24 hour cycle of the precise growth of your book on the list.

    I think you should go all scientific, don’t sleep for the lext 7 days, and take an hourly sample.

  22. just 103 points more to crack the top ten in SF/F.

    Someone at the Scalzi household should be baking the bright white pie of happiness.

  23. WickedPinto:

    “Can you keep it up till 2pm tomorrow?”

    Um, no, probably not. There’s a thin line between being silly, which is what I’m doing here, and being pathetically anal, which is what I hope to avoid.

  24. WickedPinto:

    “Can you keep it up till 2pm tomorrow?”

    Um, no, probably not. There’s a thin line between being silly, which is what I’m doing here, and being pathetically anal, which is what I hope to avoid.

  25. WickedPinto:

    “Can you keep it up till 2pm tomorrow?”

    Um, no, probably not. There’s a thin line between being silly, which is what I’m doing here, and being pathetically anal, which is what I hope to avoid.

  26. I got mine ordered. (Not that I helped today’s bounce — I have all kinds of things queued up such that my once-per-month goodie box tends to be waiting for pre-ordered things, which then arrive the 2nd week of every month. Still, go John!)

  27. I hope your wife has a feeding tube hooked up to you… cause you ain’t leaving the computer any time soon, are you?

  28. I hope your wife has a feeding tube hooked up to you… cause you ain’t leaving the computer any time soon, are you?

  29. John, I’ve been watching the updates on the blog entry, and I can’t help but be concerned. After all, as writers, we know any Amazon ranking from 1000 on down is truly meaningless and…

    Holy crap! 414 at 10:01!

    Go, Scalzi! Go! Go! GO!

  30. Just ordered it.

    By the way, I hate when you political rant. But as you mentioned, I use bloglines, so I just ignore those anyway. Of course, it is called Whatever, right? May have something to do with the fact that I’m a conservative, also from Ohio, and I hear enough of it from my lib friends at work. (And I know, the GOP is going to get killed in Ohio in a few weeks-and we do deserve it, oh well-back to the wilderness, where we can find our roots again).

    I do, however, love your books and your thoughts. Can’t wait till next week when the book hits. I’ll have it done by the weekend.

  31. Those three dystopian novels, Fahrenheit/BNW &1984, are all required reading in most highschools and in some freshman college classes.

    Much like Bible sales are affected by membership numbers in some groups, the dystopian novels you mentioned are not so much popular to the masses as popular to a few who make the masses go out and buy them.

    I guess the same could be said of the whole SW fan-base…membership in alot of clubs come with a cover price.

  32. Dane, “Fahrenheit/BNW &1984… the dystopian novels you mentioned are not so much popular to the masses as popular to a few who make the masses go out and buy them.”

    Well, I always knew I wasn’t one of the masses. Considering I’ve read and reread my copies of both Fahrenheit and 1984 until they crumbled, and then bought new copies.

    John Borell, well, it’s the balance for all the right-wingers I’ve got to listen to at my job. Not much fun either way, but it sure sharpened my arguments.

    And I second Heather Braum wanting to see the evidence. With something having a date on it. After all, we’re talking SF here, who know if we wouldn’t be experiencing a time shift and Jeff is posting from our near upstream future.

  33. Dane, “Fahrenheit/BNW &1984… the dystopian novels you mentioned are not so much popular to the masses as popular to a few who make the masses go out and buy them.”

    Well, I always knew I wasn’t one of the masses. Considering I’ve read and reread my copies of both Fahrenheit and 1984 until they crumbled, and then bought new copies.

    John Borell, well, it’s the balance for all the right-wingers I’ve got to listen to at my job. Not much fun either way, but it sure sharpened my arguments.

    And I second Heather Braum wanting to see the evidence. With something having a date on it. After all, we’re talking SF here, who know if we wouldn’t be experiencing a time shift and Jeff is posting from our near upstream future.

  34. Steve Bucheit:

    I’ve got about four copies of each that I have bought and rebought.

    While they are good books, to be sure, I didn’t buy them because they wore out. I have three kids and they have all three been required to buy them as a part of whatever assigned summer reading program or other class mandate and when they went to borrow a copy from their older siblings- said older sibling was unable to find their books in the messes they live in.

    As a result- I have bought those same titles over and over again…someone should write a novel about the books having a life of their own where they hide when they’re needed so you have to go out and buy new ones…until there are enough to take over the world…

  35. Dane, shhh. As a hopeful author, that’s one of the industry’s most guarded secrets. If I would even hint that this could happen the Penguin Classics’ Ninjas would storm the office and…

    what’s that noise on the roof?

    To late… run. Run!

  36. 490?!

    It’s obvious that Asia and Europe weren’t notified and didn’t do their part while we in the Western Hemisphere were sleeping. Fie!

    I, too am able to track my popularity via IMDBpro’s “star meter” which compares how many times my page is viewed compared to everyone else listed there.
    Two weeks ago: 623,024th most viewed
    Last Week: 599,905 most viewed
    Clearly a trend! Scarlett Johansson better watch her #1 ass.

    At any rate, I’m able to share Scalzi’s obsession with watching my numbers; the only differences being that A.) I don’t make any money when my numbers go up, and B.) My numbers demonstrate that I’m not……um…..very popular.

  37. I think it’s great that in this day we can track book sales on the web and quickly order them, but as a lowly independant book seller- I wish I didn’t read about so many people ordering the TAD off of the web. But anything to get people to read good science fiction is bonus so buy it wherever you will. And one day maybe I convince Scalzi’s publisher to have him come to do a signing in Milwaukee- we never get any good science fiction writers, oh-hum.

  38. I think it’s great that in this day we can track book sales on the web and quickly order them, but as a lowly independant book seller- I wish I didn’t read about so many people ordering the TAD off of the web. But anything to get people to read good science fiction is bonus so buy it wherever you will. And one day maybe I convince Scalzi’s publisher to have him come to do a signing in Milwaukee- we never get any good science fiction writers, oh-hum.

  39. I find myself wondering what sort of sales boost you might see if Rick Santorum used OMW in an analogy for the middle east conflict :-)

  40. One thing I’ve noticed about the Amazon SF/F bestseller list, incidentally, is how 1984, Fahrenheit 451 and Brave New World are always lurking about in the top 25. Dystopia never goes out of style.

    The classics never go out of style. And if this 2003 article in Slate is to be believed, that is not just because they are required reading.

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