Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Breaking Beautiful: Breaking Through to #1 on Amazon

Today we get to hear from Jennifer Shaw Wolf, whose e-book Breaking Beautiful got up to the #1 spot in the Children's and Teen section of the Amazon Kindle store back in November.

Jennifer, first tell us what Breaking Beautiful  is about.

 Allie lost everything the night her boyfriend, Trip, died in a tragic car accident—including her memory of the event. All she has left are the scars and a sneaking suspicion that the crash wasn’t an accident after all. When the police reopen the investigation, it quickly turns on Allie and her best friend, Blake. In her search for what really happened, Allie’s memories collide with a dark secret about Trip she’s kept for too long. Caught somewhere between her past and her future, can she reach deep enough to remember that night so she can finally break free?

How did you get published: traditionally or independently? Recently or further in the past?

I’m a traditionally published author. I wrote two other books and had been through the query process (with a lot of rejections) with one of them before I wrote BREAKING BEAUTIFUL. My query was plucked out of the slush pile by my wonderful literary agent, Sara Megibow. She helped me polish it up and then (after another twelve rejections) we sold the book to Walker Books for Young Readers. There is more to the story, but that’s the extremely condensed version.

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

I was lucky enough to be an Amazon Daily Deal for $1.99. When I found out BREAKING BEAUTIFUL was going to be featured, I spread the word via Twitter, Facebook, my website and then a lot of word of mouth, but because of Superstorm Sandy, I didn’t know it would be featured until the day before it went up. I would have done more self-marketing if I had known earlier. I credit my publisher and Amazon for the amount of marketing and the sales spike that happened afterwards.

Is your book available in print format? How did your e-book come about?

The book came out in print and e-format simultaneously.

What advantages of e-publishing do you think are most relevant to the children’s literature market?

The best thing about e-publishing (in my opinion) is that it gets more books to more kids, especially young adults. In the last two years I’ve seen my teens and their friends jump on the e-book bandwagon. They can have a book easily and instantly and in many cases they can make their own choice about what they’re reading. As a mom and young adult author, I’m in favor of anything that gives kids greater access to books and gets them reading.

Learn more about Jennifer and her books at her website, or by following her on Facebook or Twitter.