Amazon Author Rankings – A New Obsession

Posted: October 11, 2012 in In my opinion...
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News of earth-shaking import to indie authors – Amazon has introduced the Amazon Author Ranking. I just googled “Amazon Author Ranking” and only got 46 results.  So I thought I’d get a move-on and write a post about it now, even although I’m woefully under-informed on the subject, before it gets buried by a gazillion other authors’ posts (ooh, look at me, gaming the system!!).

But first, a few other online opinions –,0,1235993.story

I’m not going to speculate on how Amazon formulates the rankings. Well, I already have in my head, but I won’t go there in this blog; Amazon’s algorithms are esoteric and constantly shifting creations, deliberately designed that way to drive publishers and indie authors insane.  And I will be watching with amusement as gazillions of authors try to figure out how best to work the system.

I’m not going to opine sniffily on how it’s all just a bunch of *insert your choice of disparaging profanity here* and we shouldn’t give the rankings a second thought. I am not going to tell you what my ranking is (if you’re not in the top 100, you can check on Amazon Author Central), nor am I going to give hourly updates on Facebook and Twitter on how my ranking is progressing, nor am I going to beg and plead on the afore-mentioned social networking sites for people to please buy my book, lest my ranking drop so low that I am tempted to commit suicide.

I am instead going to take a closer look at the Top 100 Most Popular Authors in Kindle eBook Horror as of this moment.

For these are My People.  There are writers on this list who I know personally. Making it onto the top 100 of any Amazon list is a Big Thing, regardless of what the Amazon detractors might say, and I’m pleased to give them a virtual pat on the back and say, “Well done, you!” Although, if they’re on this list, they probably don’t need my encouragement…

Here’s a sampler.

#3.  Scott Nicholson

I correspond with Scott at least four times a year when I email him the royalty statement for “Monster’s Ink”, his collection of short stories published by Dark Continents (only available in paperback – treebook devotees, take note).

#8. Jack Ketchum

I don’t really know Jack Ketchum. But we do share a ToC in Horror for Good, so I can at least claim two degrees of separation.

#25. T.W. Brown

I’m cheating a little here too. I’ve never corresponded with T.W. Brown either, but we do at least hang out together at all the same online parties.

#79. Michaelbrent Collings.

I “met” Michaelbrent through the Horror Writers’ Association.  I strongly recommend his novel “Apparition”.

#87. John Prescott.


I’m not one of the cool kids. But at least when I’m working down the hallway, I can call out, “Hey, John!” and have one of the cool kids give me a vague wave back whilst wearing one of those should-I-know-you? expressions.  I’m happy enough with that for now, until I can earn myself a spot at the cool kids’ table.


  1. I have a colleague with a book on nutrition that drilled her category down so specifically (to “fiber”) that she’s maintained a high ranking for months, so it seems she/he who finds the most under-utilized category wins. 😉

  2. C.T. Westing says:

    Thanks for the info on this. I’ll be checking this out when my novel goes up on Amazon next month.

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