http://www.nytimes.com/best-sellers-books/2011-08-14/mass-market-paperback/list.html

 So there it is officially. Monster Hunter Alpha is #23 on the New York Times bestseller list, and it is because you guys are just that cool. Thank you. Seriously, I love my fan base. I know a lot of other writers that are in about the same point of their careers as I am, and they stand in awe of the sheer awesomeness of the Monster Hunter Nation. I asked for people to either preorder or buy opening week, and you certainly did. You bought the heck out of it.

MHA debuted 4 spots higher than MHV, and that was with some bumps in the road. A couple thousand copies were shipped early, so they didn’t count towards release week, and my single biggest individual dealer, Uncle Hugos, received several hundred of theirs late. (so if you are just getting your UH autographed bookplate MHAs now, that is why). Between those things we probably could have been several spots higher on the list. Luckily, B&N was awesome and didn’t report any sales until release day, and nationwide they put me on the New Paperback Tower.

Getting on the list is always a challenge. Just because you got on it last time is no promise of being on there again. It is kind of like the NFL playoffs. You might have made it last year, but that doesn’t mean you can rest on your laurels next season, because the other teams might be having a really good year. (and there was a new John Grisham novel going against the reigning champ George Martin novel that has an HBO show with Sean Bean in it, so you know who’s going to the Super Bowl).

Even if you are relatively successful, it all depends on who you are going up against. There were 30 new novels out this month in just my one genre alone, and urban fantasy is tiny compared to thrillers or romances. Then you’ve got your power players, like for example there are 4 George R.R. Martin books ahead of me. (which I do think are awesome by the way, and combined with the Beer Drinking-Stab Ignoring Power of Sean Bean, make for an unstoppable marketing combo). Only 2 James Patterson novels on there, which means he was having a slow week. And I got beat by Stieg Larsson last time, and I got beat by Stieg Larsson this time. I fully expect twenty years from now to still be posthumously beaten by Stieg Larsson. You’ve got John Grisham, Dave Baldacci, Debbie Macomber, and a whole bunch of other badass, very established, very successful authors on that list.

Anytime you make the list, it is a win. But we did, because you guys rock. As my mom says, as a writer, I just get paid to lie and make crap up. The Monster Hunter Nation are who give me my success, and I believe me, I know it.

To celebrate, start thinking about the designs for your new MHI patches. (don’t send them yet though, because I’m not ready!) I’ll be kicking off a new Patch Contest soon, and the winning team will show up in Monster Hunter Legion (the next Owen book, which will probably be out in September 2012) and become an official part of the universe.

So going forward, my new goals are: 1. Get one of my non-Monster Hunter novels on the list. (Dead Six would be a good one since it is a thriller). 2. Get the next MH novel into the top 20. 3. Absolute world domination. 4. Learn to bake cookies.

Thanks, Monster Hunter Nation.

24 Responses

  1. Holy cow, buddy. Moral of this story: Get HBO to pick up MHI as a miniseries.

  2. Ok, well that makes sense on why I haven’t seen the books from Hugo’s and that really sucks if it didn’t count. Regardless, kick-ass congratulations.

    Buy frozen cookie dough. Follow the instructions. Don’t aim too high in your aspirations, my friend.

  3. World domination? In the name of the Almighty, why? Given the mess this planet is and always has been in, who wants to take on six billion (shudder) humans as a responsibility?

    Bake cookies instead. It’s a better career move.

  4. @45: “Don’t aim too high in your aspirations, my friend.”

    Actually, yes, aim high. That way your foot is out of the target zone.

  5. Yay! Patch contest time!
    I have two submissions ready and waiting…
    -Scott

  6. Gotta go wiht Mr. Kidd cookies are great you can use them to further world domination look at Mrs. Fields

  7. Chocolate chip wishes and macadamia nut dreams!
    Congrats Larry!

  8. My son just shipped out for his first duty station to Baumholder Germany today for the Army. I am going to miss him…..also my copies of MHI, MHI Vendetta, and MHI Alpha.

  9. Just be sure not to take on more then you can chew with the cookies. :}

  10. Beating my son mercilessly to finish patch design and send you step by step instructions for Halliday, North Dakotas’ “Monster Cookies” that are fantastic ( His Grandmother’s Recipe and Pun not intended).

    • Here I was just playing with the idea of a North Dakota patch and story and all of a sudden I run into a reference to Halliday ND. That doesn’t happen very often. We should collaborate on the story or something. I have never seen a blog comment originate from within 40 miles from me before.

  11. I picked my copy up during the first week just for that reason. I’m listening to Hard Magic again, and at this point I’ll just buy whatever has your name on it. You’ve earned it by writing awesome books.

    Standing by for that patch contest.

  12. Congrats on making the list, Larry. Now, about the 30 bucks in Keurig coffee cups I had to order to get free shipping from Amazon and the keyboard you owe me from the whole Biden thing….

  13. Straight up awesome! Congratulations…well deserved. Alpha is a great book. I have a feeling the Monster Hunter Nation is growing exponentially.

  14. 1) it’s pre-ordered, 2) can it be pre-ordered yet? 3) can’t help you with this one 4) I know several recipes.

  15. Larry if you can get Baen and Amazon to work out their differences, you could easily get into the top 20 best sellers. Remember, Amazon’s e-book sales count in the NY Times lists now, but Baen’s do not. Since I know a lot of people (including myself) who buy your books in e-formats directly from Baen because if we could buy from the Kindle or Nook web-stores that would help contribute to your release week statistics. I do have dead-tree versions of the first couple of Monster Hunter books and Hard Magic though that i’ve been sharing around with others to get them hooked.

  16. I’ve got a great recipe for “what do you mean I’m bringing cookies!?!” cookies. You know, the kind you make when your dear darling offspring/spouse/sibling/Sunday School hospitality committee signs you up for something and then tells you three hours before they need them. And the bars are rich enough they might feed a couple of hungry Monster Hunters.

  17. Congrats on yet another well deserved bestseller.

    Keep writing ‘em and we’ll keep buying ‘em!

  18. BO screwed with the shipping schedule, I heard it on 4chan, so it must be true. :D

    Congrats, MHA was badass.

  19. The e-book from Baen doesn’t count? Crap, I wish I’d have known. I would have bought a paper copy too.

    Just finished Dead Six and really need to know when the sequel is coming out. (There is going to be a sequel?!)

    On the cookie note make these http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Joses-Oatmeal-Peanut-Butter-Chocolate-Chip-Cookies-11797

    These are like the best cookies ever.

  20. Gotta concur with Nathan, although I did order (and got) my dead tree versions from Uncle Hugo… and cookies? You can HIRE someone to make cookies, get yer ass back behind the desk and write :-)

  21. Others may be in awe of your fan base, but YOU built that fan base, slowly and painstakingly, long before MHI hit the streets. I picked up a copy of MHI not because I expected to like it–I fully expected it to stink, self publishing is where bad books go to die after all–but because it was a way to help out that guy from THR who (for several years) had been helpful, knowledgeable, courteous, patient, and an all around great ambassador for gun nuts everywhere. I’m sure I’m far from the only one in that position.

    Yes, the fact that the book turned out to be a good story was what made it take off like a Los Alamos wildfire, but I’m pretty certain your pre-existing fan base is what got the fire going initially. I suspect the fact that you had previously spent years to establish your online presence as an all around swell guy who is smart and knows his shit when it comes to weapons is what got MHI the initial attention it needed to catch on. And THAT, sir, was all your doing, even if it wasn’t your intention.

    So, yeah, we may have sorta given you your success, but that wouldn’t have happened if you didn’t deserve it and if you hadn’t earned it.

  22. Um, officially licensed MHI logo GLOCK slide plate, please.

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