Ebook Bestsellers Breakdown: Self-published romance climbs the lists

This weekly feature examines certain ebooks’ paths to bestseller-dom, and highlights bestselling titles that are selling more copies in digital than in print.

Flat-Out Love by Jessica Park

Here’s a good way for a book to become a New York Times bestseller: Have Jeff Bezos mention it on Amazon’s homepage. That’s what happened to self-published author Jessica Park, whose YA novel Flat-Out Love got a shout-out from Bezos on June 18. This week, it hits the NYT ebook bestseller list for the first time at #25.

Park co-writes the “Gourmet Girl” mystery series with her mom, Susan Conant. That series is traditionally published by Penguin. But Park self-published her first YA novel, Relatively Famous, as well as some e-singles. She tried to sell Flat-Out Love to a traditional publisher “because I had it in my head that I needed that big-time validation,” but when it didn’t work she self-published instead.

Flat-Out Love is $3.99 on … Amazon Kindle (s AMZN) | Barnes & Noble Nook (s BKS) | Apple (s AAPL) iBookstore | Smashwords | Kobo | Sony | Diesel

Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire

Another self-pubbed book, Jamie McGuire‘s Beautiful Disaster, is #9 on the NYT ebook list this week and #24 on the USA Today list. Beautiful Disaster, a romance about college students Abby Abernathy and Travis Maddox, is McGuire’s fourth self-published book. It’s told from the point of view of Abby, but now McGuire is working on a version from Travis’s point of view. The Oklahoma mom is also expecting her third child in the fall, so after that she’ll take some time off and then start working on another book, Red Hill, about a mother’s survival of the zombie apocalypse. “It’s going to be fun, I love zombies, and I can’t wait to write it,” she says.

Beautiful Disaster is $2.99 on … Amazon KindleBarnes & Noble Nook | Kobo

And don’t miss…

  • Sylvia Day’s Bared to You, the first book in an erotic self-published trilogy snapped up by Penguin in May, hits the NYT print paperback list this week at #4. It’s #6 on the ebook list.
  • Dean Koontz has written a series of e-singles to build excitement for his upcoming Odd Apocalypse, to be released by Random House on July 31. The first teaser single, “Odd Interlude #1,” was released June 11 and is #15 on the NYT ebook list this week. The second, “Odd Interlude #2,” was released June 18 and is #11 on the NYT ebook list and #27 on the USA Today list. “Odd Interlude #3” was released on June 25.
  • Tracey Garvis-Graves, whose self-published romance “On the Island” was featured in this column in April, is the subject of a Wall Street Journal article this week. Penguin bought On the Island this month in a seven-figure, two-book deal; a paperback edition is due July 10. In the interlude, On the Island dropped off the NYT bestseller list this week.

New York Times bestseller list, week of 7/8/12

Here are the titles in the top-35 that appear on the e-book bestseller list, but not on the print bestseller list (click the link to expand the chart).

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USA Today bestseller list, week of 6/28/12

USA Today includes all formats and genres in one list and notes which format of a book sold best. Here are the titles in the top-35 where e-books outsold print (click the link to expand the chart).

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