Writer. Warning: opinions. My lawyer advised a disclaimer, but didn't include any jokes to go with. Damned if I can think of any either.

My Results Using Goodreads Giveaways for Book Promotion

DangerousDanthumbI knew I wanted Dangerous Dan to come out before December, which was a bit of a stretch because I had to finish writing it, get Reid Davis of Tastemaker Communications to edit it for me, get Rich Stevens to make cover art for me, and transform the document into printable book format.

Thanks to the hard work of Rich and Reid, everything came together for me. I was shooting for Dec 15th, but I got the book out on Dec 17th. All that was left was promoting.


Getting Good Readers

I read up on some advice for maximizing Goodreads on a few blogs. WARNING: The second listed blog is annoying. Not only is it a listicle, it has one of those content-covering popups asking you to join a mailing list.

The consensus seemed to be to run short giveaways, and only give away one book. I powered up the Goodreads giveaways.

I ran a total of 5 giveaways. Some went for only 24 hours, others as much as 48. This variation was due to the Goodreads timing and approval process. If you start a giveaway for tomorrow that runs for 3 days, it probably won’t start tomorrow. A person has to approve it.

Here is the data on my five giveaways.


As you can see, my book was requested most the first-ever time I posted it, by 502 people. But I also opened the giveaway up to international winners that time. A gentleman in Vietnam won.

Shipping Costs

Rather than manage shipping myself, I just logged right into CreateSpace and had them handle the shipping. Here’s what those costs looked like. I saved a couple of bucks by only shipping to English-speaking nations from the second giveaway on.

Date Shipping Cost Country
Jan 2 $11.68 Viet Nam
Jan 7 $8.58 United Kingdom
Jan 9 $7.61 USA
Jan 13 $7.52 USA
Jan 16 $10.69 CA
  Total $46.08

So, $46.08 to get my book into the hands of five people across the globe. Okay, but what about my goodreads profile? Any movement there? Well, yes.

Anyone who likes reading and frequents used book stores, as I do, has a to-read pile. Goodreads has a digital representation of that pile, called, as you might imagine, “to-read.”

Thanks to my $46.08 of promotion, 417 people have added “Dangerous Dan” to their “to-read” pile. Is that good? Well, I don’t know. I can tell you that I’ve seen no increase in sales, gotten no unaccounted-for reviews on Goodreads or Amazon, and received no tweets, emails, or Facebook messages from readers.

Of course it’s easily possible that they got a taste of my prose and threw the book down in disgust, then probably stomped on as well for good measure.


As much as I’d like to think my money went somewhere good and I’m progressing toward my goal of becoming a khaki-and-leather-elbow-patch-wearing real-deal respected AUTHOR, I also look over to the corner of my desk and I see my own, actual, real deal to read pile. It looks like this, and it ain’t moving much.


So, if you’re thinking about doing a Goodreads giveaway, I can say for sure that you will be able to give books to people who claim to want to read it. And a few hundred nameless faceless internauts might add you to a list of people they will maybe read someday.

Conclusion: I do not plan to do any more of these.

One thought on “My Results Using Goodreads Giveaways for Book Promotion”