Saturday, August 18, 2012

SLAMMED by Colleen Hoover: #1 in the iBookstore!

Today we get to meet author Colleen Hoover. If you're following YA authors on Twitter, you may have seen the news that she signed a contract with Atria, a division of Simon and Schuster, for two books: Slammed and Point of Retreat. Colleen independently published both of these books in e-format, and both hit the Kids' EBook Bestseller List!

On July 28th Slammed hit the #4 spot in the Children and Teens section of the iBookstore. Then the following Saturday, Slammed jumped to the #1spot, and Point of Retreat came in at #5.

Colleen, tell us about the story of Slammed.

Following the unexpected death of her father, 18-year-old Layken is forced to be the rock for both her mother and younger brother. Outwardly, she appears resilient and tenacious, but inwardly, she's losing hope. 

Enter Will Cooper: The attractive, 21-year-old new neighbor with an intriguing passion for slams. Within days of their introduction, Will and Layken form an intense emotional connection, leaving Layken with a renewed sense of hope. Not long after a heart-stopping first date, they are slammed to the core when a shocking revelation forces their new relationship to a sudden halt. Daily interactions become impossibly painful as they struggle to find a balance between the feelings that pull them together and the forces that tear them apart.

"There is no description that could do this book justice. Slammed is a heart-wrenching, emotional, yet somehow humorous journey of two souls that are destined to be together, despite the factors that stand in their way. So much more than a romance, Slammed teaches lessons about love, life and the soul-deep moments in between. Not to mention the's oh, so good." ~Katie's Book Blog.

What top factors do you believe put your e-book where it is now?

I am a self-published author, therefore have not had the ability to benefit from marketing, advertisements, etc. I think it is both a combination of pure luck and characters that people feel like sharing with others through recommendations. I truly believe word of mouth is the ultimate reason for the success behind both Slammed and Point of Retreat. It's amazing how readers can ultimately propel a book into best-seller status if it's something they love. I will forever be grateful to them.

What is your target audience, and how do you believe the e-format works for that audience and serves their needs?

When I wrote the books, I didn't have a target audience in mind. I just wrote the story that I felt compelled to get out. I did try and keep it as clean as possible so the younger audience could read them as well. I think with the e-format works for most audiences nowadays. I know I have three young children, and they absolutely love to get on my kindle and search for books. It's like a library right in the palm of their hands. I think with time, we are going to see both much younger and much older audiences purchasing e-books.

Is your book available in print format? Which came first and why? 

I uploaded SLAMMED to Amazon in e-format as soon as I finished it. I had no idea how to go about submitting to traditional publishers and wasn't really thinking that far ahead. To me, it felt as though I had just wrote a story that I wanted to get into the hands of my friends and family. I never imagined it would turn into what it has. I ordered the paperback version through createspace about a week later.

I just recently signed both books with Atria, a division of Simon and Schuster. They will have their version of the paperbacks out this fall and I'm really excited to see them in bookstores.

Do you believe the e-format helps or hurts you as an author? How?

I believe it helps me tremendously. The majority of my sales come from e-books. I also receive regular emails from fans, stating they haven't read in years until they were gifted with a kindle. It's awesome to think that all of these non-readers are turning into readers now that they have e-readers and e-books at their disposal. I believe more and more people are going to find the ease that comes with purchasing e-books and sales will continue to rise for all authors based on people finding a new love for reading. 

Learn more about Colleen and her books at her websiteon Facebook or on Twitter. And have a look at today's Kids' Ebook Bestseller List for the latest Top Tens in the top stores!