That's the proposition Amazon is offering thousands of self-published authors who distribute ebooks via its Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) arm. Details regarding KDP Select can be found here. I found out out about the offer as I logged into KDP this morning to, um, you know, eh, check out the KDP Community and what's happening with them! Yeah, that's the ticket.
Basic terms of KDP Select: if you're a self-published Kindle author or publisher, for a period of at least 90 days, you
Before unrolling this offer to all, Amazon previously invited certain high profile indies to try KDP Select for six months. Several of them said no and I would have too. Six months AND I have to rely on Amazon for revenue exclusively? Oh, and Prime members get to borrow, not buy the book? As the one book per month that they can borrow through the Kindle Library? So they have the choice of Stephen King's Dome for $19.99 or mine for $2.99, and will somehow choose the cheaper one as the freebie? As Whitney once said:
|HELL TO THE NO!|
Before you think I'm suckling at the teat of Amazon or afraid of biting the hand that feeds me every month, allow me to assure you: Amazon fucks up sometimes. Like this bonehead move announced on December 6 right here: Amazon Will Pay Shoppers $5 to Walk Out of Stores Empty-Handed. Really, Amazon? How about that $2 surcharge on delivery of Kindle in certain geographic areas, which was mentioned in a recent post? Whether or not Kindle authors choose to participate in this power play (and believe me, they're discussing the pros and cons at Kindleboards), this is another blatant attempt to create a monopoly over ebooks and tether authors to the existing system, even if it's for a mere 90 days.
So why has Amazon made this move now? Will it increase their bottom line by enlarging the offerings that make Prime membership so good? Does creating goodwill with self-published authors by inviting them to the grownups' table make Amazon the go-to guy for future authors? The reasons are less important than the fact that Amazon can do these things. Do you see any of its competitors thinking in similar terms? Part of why Amazon can make this offer as attractive to self-published authors is because ITS RIVALS DON'T DO DIDDLY SQUAT TO COMPETE. Forgive the shouting, but all of those sites, like Smashwords, like Pubit, that also offer the opportunity to self-publish do next to NOTHING to promote their authors or self-published works. If Amazon recognizes yet another area they can exploit and make some Kindle authors happy in the process, more power to them. Perhaps this move may shake up the competition. Lord knows they need it.
What do you think of this latest move by Amazon? If you're an author publishing through KDP, will you consider enrolling in KDP Select?