Amazon Is a Weird Company

amazon, kdp, ebooks, self-publishing, publishersThere isn’t a company that more directly affects book publishing than Amazon. The e-commerce giant’s tentacles are firmly wrapped around all publishers, just waiting to tighten when its terms are deemed a speck below satisfactory.

And in recent years it has taken a further jab at publishers by being largely responsible for the self-publishing boom that allows many authors to circumvent the traditional publishing system.

Not a week goes by on this website or similar ones in which we don’t discuss one of Amazon’s latest moves. But rarely, if ever, do we ask a very basic question:

Why is Amazon so weird?

It’s an unusual question, I know. But I think it’s appropriate to ask.

Much more.


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How to Carry Readers to a New Book (BookBub)
If you’re launching a sequel or companion to a previously published book, how can you carry your audience to the new book? And how might your marketing strategy differ if the newest book is self-published, and the prior books were traditionally published?

AAP: Ebook Sales Down 12.7 Percent (DBW)
According to the latest StatShot report from the Association of American Publishers (AAP), ebook sales remained down 12.7 percent through November 2015, compared to the same 11-month period (Jan.-Nov.) in 2014. Additionally, Adult ebooks saw a 7.3-percent decline compared to that same timeframe.

Survey Identifies Top 5 Book Promotional Services (BookMachine)
The latest Book Marketing Survey carried out by KindleBookReview provides a number of interesting insights into the best ways self-published authors should be promoting their ebooks. With over 300 indie authors participating in the survey, questions ranged from the best places to seek book reviews to how much money authors spend on promoting their books each year. In the second release of the survey, KindleBookReview asks authors about the best places to advertise their books, with recommended best practices to get the best from these book promoters.

Will Ebooks Ever Circulate Freely in Europe? (Pub Perspectives)
Considering accessibility, standards and interoperability within the frame of the European single digital market: A viewpoint.

Writing the Book on Artificial Intelligence (Pub Perspectives)
“The process of writing decides what is to be written next.” Hence, says Nick Bostrom, Artificial Intelligence isn’t as big an “existential risk” for publishing as for other fields. Maybe.

Keep Your Eyes Open: Tips from an Indie Author (PW)
After a 24-year career in publishing, Erika Berg began running visual storytelling workshops with refugees—mostly ethnic and religious minorities from Burma, people whose voices were rarely heard. It was this experience, that inspired Berg to self-publish Forced to Flee: Visual Stories by Refugee Youth from Burma.

Ask the #IndieExperts: Book Trends and Marketing (PW)
BookLife’s panel of indie experts fields self-publishing questions submitted by authors and readers via email about literary trends and marketing a first novel. Asked via email by multiple authors: Is it worth following the literary trends? Is there a way that you can figure out what the next trend will be, early enough that you won’t be seen as a copycat?

Kadaxis and Inkshares Partner to Improve Discoverability (DBW)
Inkshares will integrate with Kadaxis’ data analysis APIs to determine industry standard BISAC categories, topics and other data from author manuscripts. The extracted data will be used as input to Inkshares’ own discovery platform, helping to match manuscripts with titles from outside the Inkshares ecosystem. Readers will be able to find similar Inkshares books to titles they already enjoy.

Penguin Random House Reports Record Profits in 2015 (PW)
Revenue at Penguin Random House rose 11.8 percent in 2015 over 2014, parent company Bertelsmann reported this morning. The publisher’s revenue jumped to 3.7 billion euros, while profits (EBIT) rose 23.2 percent, to 557 million euros. The revenue gain was due almost entirely to favorable exchange rates, while the improvement in earnings was attributed to exchange rates and savings achieved through the further integration of Random House and Penguin.

One thought on “Amazon Is a Weird Company

  1. Sabrina Chase

    “Sure everthing is fine now and everyone is happy, but someday soon when you least expect it Amazon will turn on you, crush you, and revel in the lamentations of your women. Because reasons! Your doom is coming.”

    Reply

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