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HF Reader Survey results

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annis
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HF Reader Survey results

Post by annis » Fri January 10th, 2014, 11:22 pm

The results of MK Tod's HF Survey have come and and show some interesting though reasonably predictable results. Just for the record, I'm not one of the respondents who wanted ridiculously cheap prices for e/print books- I believe the labourer is worthy of his or her hire.

Results here:
http://awriterofhistory.com/2014/01/10/ ... y-results/

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Amanda
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Post by Amanda » Sat January 11th, 2014, 6:13 am

I don't ask for ridiculously cheap ebooks, but what I do believe is that with digitial delivery of ebooks, there should be one price for all worldwide for each book, not the different prices for different countries that there is now.

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MLE (Emily Cotton)
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 3562
Joined: August 2008
Interest in HF: started in childhood with the classics, which, IMHO are HF even if they were contemporary when written.
Favourite HF book: Prince of Foxes, by Samuel Shellabarger
Preferred HF: Currently prefer 1600 and earlier, but I'll read anything that keeps me turning the page.
Location: California Bay Area

Post by MLE (Emily Cotton) » Sat January 11th, 2014, 5:45 pm

I read the survey with great interest, as I am preparing to launch a series and need to know how to market it. I beta marketed the middle novel in the series in 2008, at which time the landscape looked very different. Back then you couldn't track HF alone, or even fiction, and had to make do with 'trade paperback' market statistics (everything except textbook and reference). At the time, brick-and-mortar bookstores still accounted for more than half of book sales, altho Amazon, et al, were creeping up. The ebook format was less than 1% of the market.

But all the gurus who knew what was coming (Seth Godin, Michael Hyatt, Mark Coker, etc.) predicted the current future, so I figured it was better to set the sails to the wind that was coming instead of rowing away in the publishing doldrums.

I was most encouraged by the answers to the following question: "Reflecting your favorite HF book, how important are the following?" Of the ten options, (you could pick several) the top answers were 1. Superb writing, 2. Feeling immersed in time and place, 3. characters both heroic and human; and a tie between Dramatic arc of historical events and authentic/ educational. Romance and sex were second-to-last in importance, which is fine. My novels have both, but they are not the main drivers of the story.

It sounds like what readers want most in their HF is storytelling excellence. That's wonderful! That can be achieved with practice, feedback and hard work, whereas marketing takes lots of money and time and besides, most of the methods are a total crapshoot.

It's also very comforting that I'm writing in the period most readers want to know about. Yay renaissance! :D And that Europe is the venue which piques the most interest. :D That's good, my stuff is now set in 1500's Spain. I already discovered that there are very few people willing to pick up a novel set in conquest-era Peru. :o (not even people who raise llamas.)

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DianeL
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Post by DianeL » Sat January 11th, 2014, 7:11 pm

annis, thank you for posting it! It is good info, particularly as I'm just into querying mode. :)
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Divia
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Post by Divia » Sun January 12th, 2014, 9:57 pm

I dont think people want super cheap ebooks, but I think they want cheaper ebooks. If you are only a few bucks cheaper than a print one what's the point? I can get used books for even cheaper!

I was disheartened to see that people still want to read about the Tudors. *sigh*
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Ash
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Post by Ash » Mon January 13th, 2014, 4:15 am

Very interesting - I really wasn't that surprised by the results except this:
MEN & UNDER 30s MORE TIED TO PRINT – men read print books in higher
numbers than women (51% versus 42%); ‘under 30s’ are reading print books at
slightly higher %ages (50%) than the average (44%)
I would have thought women and over 30s were more tied to print.

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MLE (Emily Cotton)
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 3562
Joined: August 2008
Interest in HF: started in childhood with the classics, which, IMHO are HF even if they were contemporary when written.
Favourite HF book: Prince of Foxes, by Samuel Shellabarger
Preferred HF: Currently prefer 1600 and earlier, but I'll read anything that keeps me turning the page.
Location: California Bay Area

Post by MLE (Emily Cotton) » Mon January 13th, 2014, 4:26 am

[quote=""Ash""]Very interesting - I really wasn't that surprised by the results except this:

I would have thought women and over 30s were more tied to print.[/quote]
The over 50's probably skew that number--give me enlargeable e-books any day (or night!)

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Post by DanielAWillis » Thu January 16th, 2014, 11:48 am

[quote=""MLE (Emily Cotton)""]The over 50's probably skew that number--give me enlargeable e-books any day (or night!)[/quote]

Another point to consider is the under 30 crowd probably still has room on the bookshelf for more books. I'm nearly 50 and couldn't fit another book in my bookshelves if I wanted to and don't have the room for more shelves. So Kindle me baby.
Daniel A. Willis
Author: Chronicle of the Mages series
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Carla
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Post by Carla » Wed January 22nd, 2014, 8:55 pm

[quote=""MLE (Emily Cotton)""]The over 50's probably skew that number--give me enlargeable e-books any day (or night!)[/quote]
Quite possible, especially as the numbers are not very different - 50% vs 44% might be within the margin of error, depending on the sample size.
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