The reason I'm attaching the Feb. 16 article is the somewhat groundbreaking news that Amazon's AmazonEncore will directly publish the newest book in bestselling author J.A. Konrath's Jacqueline "Jack" Daniels series, "Shaken." The Kindle edition of "Shaken" will be available in the Kindle Store (www.amazon.com/kindlestore) in October ($2.99 on pre-orders) but the print version of the book won't be available until February 2011.
That is noteworthy and may raise alarm bells with publishers already tender over the idea of Amazon (and, the NY Times mentioned, Apple) working directly with "self-publishing" authors.
As described in the earlier article, Konrath has also written under the names Jack Kilborn and Joe Kimball and has published over a dozen books using Amazon's Digital Text Platform (DTP) with quite a bit of success noted with sales of his Kindle books.
' "My Kindle readers have been incredibly faithful fans and I'm excited to be able to release the Kindle edition of 'Shaken' several months before the physical version is available to purchase," said Konrath. "Since it's easier, faster and cheaper to create an e-book than it is a physical book, Kindle owners will get to read the seventh Jack Daniels before everyone else. The ability for authors to reach fans -- instantly and inexpensively with a simple press of a button -- is the greatest thing to happen to the written word since Gutenberg." '
Here's an interview by mediabistro's GalleyCat with Konrath about the AmazonEncore deal. Another interesting Q&A, by himself, is at his site today in connection with this book.
Also, Konrath has a guest post by Boyd Morrison, who was signed by an imprint of Simon & Schuster after his Kindle books took off -- it's a fascinating read. Don't miss it.
There's also an excellent interview at mediabistro with Karen McQuestion, whose recent successes were mentioned in the earlier article below. GalleyCat asks her about her publishing contract with AmazonEncore and the movie deal written about earlier this year.
Her Kindle books can be found here.
End of Updates
EARLIER RELATED ARTICLE FROM FEB. 16
In A Newbie's Guide to Publishing, Joe Konrath, aka Jack Kilborn, continues to write about how he has managed to do very well on Amazon book seller lists with the many books and short stories he releases through the Kindle Digital Text Platform ("DTP") feature, and this is before Amazon starts paying 70% to publishers using the platform in June 2010.
The current blog entry, titled "Kudzu and Kindle," explains:
' There's a plant known as kudzu, which is widely hated in the south because it takes over cropland. It grows fast, and uses runners to spread. Kudzu can quickly saturate an entire field. One patch becomes two patches, then four patches, then sixteen patches, and pretty soon it's everywhere you look.There have been a number of success stories though the weed-like aspect threw me, including (of the ones I've run across) one writer (Boyd Morrison) whose Kindle book was doing very well, partially with the help of some exposure at the three most-attended Kindle community forums, and he subsequently was signed with Simon and Schuster, an end obviously helped by the attention his Kindle book was getting at Amazon.
I'm noticing a similar phenomenon with writing in general, and ebooks in particular. '
Here's a far more detailed story of how a very proactive Morrison marketed his books (and himself, an important factor) to build on his writing and some great blurbs from bestselling authors (whom he'd met years ago at a writer's conference) for books that had received rejection slips.
In the Q&A session quoted, he mentions and links to the Kindle forums in which he received very positive responses and gives tips on how not to overmarket ('spam') the forums since that would only irritate the assembled who will associate some bad things with the titles of one's novels :-)
As his writer friend, Susan Tunis, describes at her blog, he took his rejection slips in stride and just started working on a new story. But he was
' a pretty savvy guy... He didn't just offer them for sale, he joined several online Kindle user's sites and made contact with potential readers... Before he knew what was happening, unknown, unpublished author Boyd Morrison was climbing the Kindle bestseller charts. His agent thought it might be time to shop The Ark again.Obviously, some very effective writing was at the heart of the success but the Kindle provided the opportunity.
Suddenly the New York houses were a lot more receptive. And Boyd may well have made history. He may be the first author to turn Kindle success into a major publishing contract! Boyd has a two-book deal with Simon and Schuster and The Ark has also been sold in seven foreign markets! You'll see the hardback release of The Ark on store shelves next summer... '
The Kindle book A Scattered Life, by Karen McQuestion, was recently optioned for a film - announced by the author in the Kindle forums. It's been quite popular and has 25 customer reviews, with an average of 4-1/2 stars, and is #2 under 'Family Relationships.'
Jan Curran, writing of her new life in what's termed an "active senior living facility," has had an enthusiastic response from Kindle readers on the forums, and her book, Active Senior Living, currently has 14 customer reviews, and an average rating of 5 stars out of 5.
The level of success varies of course but it's at least easier to find an audience now and actually be read -- and be paid for it.
Joe Konrath ends today's advice on his blog with:
' I used to be known as the guy who wrote nine unpublished novels and got over five hundred rejections before landing a book deal.
Now I'm known as the guy who pays his mortgage selling books on Kindle that NY rejected.
Be the kudzu. Join the revolution before everyone else figures this out and it's harder to get noticed. '
AND FROM A KINDLE READER'S POINT OF VIEW
I noticed the following comment under JA Konrath's blog post on "Kudzu and Kindle" and remembered that I see this change of heart on almost a daily basis as I wander the news columns and comment areas. It usually comes from writers, those for whom words are Life, but who love traditional books and have resisted the Kindle.
' I just received a kindle for my birthday, and I had a very negative view of the thing. Now that I'm using it, I LOVE it. I can see more and more people moving in this direction. '
See the ongoing Guide to finding Free or Low-Cost Kindle books and Sources
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