Another Indie Author Fringe, another boat load of great information. I was ready for it this time, though, devouring each precious tidbit until there was no more. Now, armed with knowledge, I can better reflect on my self-publishing choices. Here I will discuss one of the things I learned from the Indie Author Fringe, and how it affects my publishing plan.
If you missed the May Indie Author Fringe, you can still find all the articles and videos at Alliance of Independent Authors: How-to For Authors.
Everything there is useful, but there were two sessions in particular which instantly caught my attention.
- How to Hit the Bestseller Lists with Ebook Pre-orders by Mark Coker
- Should Indie Authors Do Pre-Orders? One Author’s Cautionary Tale by Elizabeth Spann Craig
In the months leading up to my book release, I’ve been debating whether to broadly distribute, or try Kindle Select. Pre-orders sound like an amazing opportunity to build buzz about my book, but not if I choose to go with Amazon KDP and KDP Select.
- Pre-orders don’t count toward sales on book launch
- You can’t have your book on pre-order anywhere other than Amazon while you are in KDP Select
To go KDP Select or not go KDP Select, that’s the question.
This will be my first novel, so KDP Select is tempting to see how well the book will do, but the system isn’t perfect. I found this article on Written Word Media: Amazon KDP and Kindle Unlimited: What It Means for Authors and Publishers that goes into more detail about it.
UPDATE May 28, 2016 – Derek Haines at Just Publishing Advice posted an interesting article: Should I stay In Kindle KDP Select or Open Publish? His insight has shown me yet another possibility for my publishing plans. To stay with KDP Select for 6 months (or until sales have diminished), then distribute with other retailers for awhile, then return to KDP Select, and so on.
So here are my options:
- Publish Everywhere
Use awesome pre-orders to build buzz about my book. I will still put my book on Amazon KDP but won’t use pre-orders there.
- Choose KDP Select
Go exclusive for 90 days, and see how my book does.
- KDP Select THEN Publish Everywhere
After the 90 days, leave KDP Select and put my book on Amazon KDP and everywhere else.
- Stay with KDP Select Until I Have More than 3 Books
Depending if my book does well or not for the first 90 days, and how fast I can write and get the next 2-3 books out there. Also, Derek Haines makes a good point in his article KDP Select Exclusivity Works – But Only for A While.
- Give Up
Just joking! I’ll never give up! Never!
In any case, if I can’t use pre-orders right now, I will definitely be looking into doing it for my future novels.
Do you have any suggestions I haven’t thought about, or a success story you’d like to share? All comments are welcome!