I am NOT a best selling author!

So let’s get this straight: I am NOT a best selling author!

Sometimes I feel I’m in the minority. Every time I turn around or click on another page I see the following ascribed to (it seems like) nearly every author – all of whom I never heard of:

“Best Selling Author!”

(I just did a quick unscientific survey of few bestsellers on Amazon but interestingly enough, none of those authors had the title “Best Selling Author” behind their name. It’s almost as like actual best-selling authors don’t need to announce that they are best-selling authors.)

Obviously, there are a lot of variables that are taken into account when talking about best-sellers, but when is it legitimate for you to call yourself a best-selling author?

When your book hits the top 100?

When your book is a certified best-seller by the New York Times or USA Today?

When your book hits the top 10?

What about categories? What about subcategories?

Are you only a best seller if your book is in the top 100 overall? What about the top 100 historical fiction? What about the top one-hundred historical fiction romance? Or historical fiction romance time travel alien conquest?

It’s a good thing that I never have this problem or I would never know when it is appropriate for me to call myself a “best-selling author.”  That would be a frustrating moniker to have to deal with.

Perhaps I should call myself a “best-freeing author” because I’m quite good at giving books away for free. My debut novel, “Beauty Rising” topped out at #11 on the overall Amazon free chart. But I’m not sure if I call myself a “best-freeing author” if that would do me any good. I’d probably just get strange stares.

Sometimes this whole topic just gets me wondering if so-called “Best Selling Authors” are just that. Are numbers and stats being used in a fast and loose way. Is their definition of best-seller my definition? Do readers even care if that adjective is being used to describe an author? Will it really convince a reader to buy a book?

You’ll notice that I have more questions about this topic than answers, so if you have any insight, I’d be happy to listen.


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