March 5, 2012

It is all about Free market and Change


Okay I said I was going into hibernation but I have to respond to Sandra’s comment on my post of March 1st.

Just so you all understand where I am coming from in the first place, I publish my paper books using Amazon owned CreateSpace and I publish them as ebooks on Kindle and on Barnes and Noble’s Nook.  Barnes and Noble also carries my paper books.  In my March 1st post I was not referring to a decision to publish on Kindle but just to use one of the publishing plans it is offering to its authors.  I already publish and will continue to do so on Kindle.

To me, the whole discussion centers around free markets and change.  When I wanted to publish my first book I wrote over 100 letters to agents and to traditional publishers asking them to publish my book.  Many politely refused, some didn’t even reply.  It was a heart wrenching experience but I accepted it as reflective of what is going on right now in the publishing industry.  Traditional publishers are becoming more and more exclusive in their selections as the sales of paper books gives way to the use of reading devices.  It’s called progress.

Yes, progress in a free market economy can be brutal.  Yet, just as Amazon in the form of Kindle is refusing to list some publishers, so independent books stores do not carry some publishers.  And for the same reason!  The publishers will not give either Amazon or the Indies enough margin to make it worthwhile for them.  Horrors!  Amazon and Indies in the same boat. 

But it is true.  For an Indie book store to survive these days it must trim its cost of doing business.  In the same way any merchant operates on the back of its’ margin so does Amazon.  In the case of the Kindle books that Amazon recently rejected it is wholly possible that Amazon did not feel the price point at which the publisher wanted to place their works was an acceptable profit point for Amazon.  The Indie store doesn’t always have the same clout as Amazon but this war with the traditionals might be something that eventually benefits the Indie book store.

As for me as an author.  I had no clout with the traditional publisher.  To be fair using the same logic as above, they felt as if they would not make money on the novel of a untried author.  It is their prerogative.  BUT.  I wanted to publish.  Amazon said, come in, make yourself at home.  Oh you may only sell a few copies?  Well we’ll let you give it a try.  No agent or traditional author said that to me and my local Indie bookstore was even less helpful.

It’s about the free market and change.  I will go where I can accomplish what I want to and if someone wants to give me a chance then I will be grateful to them.  I may not accept every offer they make me (after all we don’t buy every new fangled gadget on the market) but I will take advantage of things that forward my dream for me.  Bring it on Amazon.  We all need change, whether we like it or not.

1 comment:

  1. My problem isn't your going with Kindle; I fully understand the difficulty of getting into "print." It's with going with a Kindle package that *requires* ONLY Kindle publication, and removes all other options. That's good for Amazon, but not good for you. It limits your distribution capabilities, and as you already know, you do indeed have those capabilities. Why cut yourself off from them? Why cut yourself off from customers who don't a Kindle, either because they have a different e-reader, or no e-reader at all?
    Sandra

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