Amazon as we all know is a colossus in the book market and their sales ranking is pretty much the only indicator that your book is selling. Even though I am aware that the lists are changed every two hours, I have been known to check them at two minute intervals, constantly pressing ‘refresh’ hoping the universe has delivered a miracle and that overnight I’ve sold enough copies to retire to Provence.
You can imagine my delight then when yesterday Letter From Paris hit Amazon Bestsellers in French Literature sailing in at number 22. Ignoring a nagging thought that my book was possibly in the wrong category, what with it being women’s contemporary fiction (and more to the point, written in English,) I took this screen shot.
You will see, that not only am I in stellar company with Marcel Proust nudging ahead of me at 21, but also that Emile Zola and Baudelaire are lagging behind and coming in at a tardy 23 and 24 respectively. Okay, so I know they’ve all been dead for over a century, but that’s hardly important. The point is my friends. I am uniquely placed. The 2014 Pulitzer is surely mine for the taking. Emile Zola was nominated for the Nobel Prize in literature, so you never know; I might be in with a chance there too.
Zola had his portrait painted by Cezanne, which is impressive, but I’ve had my photograph taken by a knight and it has appeared on my Facebook page. Clearly Zola’s publicists are not keeping up with the times.
When I think about it, I also have much in common with Baudelaire. I can afford to be generous spirited. I too can write poetry. I just haven’t really bothered. There’s another advantage I have over him; his work is done, my best is yet to come.
I’m not knocking the competition here, but Marcel Proust’s In Search of Lost Time does run to more than three thousand pages and I think you’ll find that Letter From Paris is faster paced. I mean why use long words if shorter ones will do? It’s only a matter of time before I edge ahead of him.
With the newfound confidence that has come from being flanked on either side by titans, I plan on having my novels translated into French. That way they will soon appear on the bestseller list for ENGLISH Literature, if you follow Amazon’s logic.
Thérèse is the author of India’s Summer and Letter from Paris. You can learn more about her and her books at our website.