Wednesday, 4 April 2018

R.I.P. Kindle Scout

Goodbye, Kindle Scout, it was fun.

Back in February Kindle Scout stopped selecting books. The weeks passed, and speculation grew. No books chosen for four weeks, five, six... then the announcement appeared on the site.

With hindsight, the signs have been there since the end of summer 2017, after the Kindle Scout/Press team changed. Megan, who everyone liked, was promoted to Montlake, Amazon's romance imprint. The new team encouraged NaNoWriMo authors to submit their books to Kindle Scout, which struck me as quite odd - they wanted books that had been written in four weeks, only a month afterwards so with minimal revision? Then they offered critiques to the top non-selected books. I didn't understand this. Why spend time and money on books you are not going to publish?

Kindle Press will continue, but the new team do things their own way:
  • They have announced that Kindle Press is no longer interested in sequels, just the first book in a series or a standalone.
  • Though some books still get good promotions such as Bookbubs, this seems to happen less frequently. Instead books are getting price drops without accompanying promotion.
  • Kindle Press will no longer update the back matter to include links to later books in a series, even though when a reader has finished Book 1, that is the very point at which she needs a link to Book 2. 
  • And of course, new authors won't be offered contracts through Kindle Scout.
So what happens now to Kindle Press authors? I love Kindle Press. I've sold over 10,000 copies of my first two Time Rats novels because they were KP books. I wear my KP tee shirt with pride. But nothing lasts forever, and everything changes.


  1. I don't understand how it worked but it worked for you and now it's stopping, so that's a shame.

    1. Thanks, FH. At least Kindle Press hasn't been phased out, which is good news for the authors of the existing 293 KP books. I don't know if KP plan to publish more books, and if so, where they will find them.

  2. I do not understand Amazon. As a customer, I love them. I'm so glad Amazon pioneered the inexpensive ebook. But, as a wannabe writer and reader of other writers, they really act quite preemptively with regard to author's interests.

    Why aren't they interested in series? Isn't it the case that authors who have series sell more? Doesn't that help Kindle Press?

  3. Kindle Press have bought follow on books before, but the new KP staff don't seem to understand about series. "We're excited to publish The Philosopher's Stone, Joanne, but recommend you self-publish any sequels with KDP."

    It's a no-brainer; if they promote Time Rats 1, that single promotion will sell Time Rats 2 as well. That's the reason I wrote a series in the first place, though I find standalones easier to write. But the thought processes of Kindle Press staff are shrouded in mystery right now.

  4. I was unaware of the model, but I've read every word you've written that's available on Kindle, so if this model changes the ability for that kind of thing to happen, I'm sorry. And if that devalues my Prime or Kindle Prime membership, I'll have to consider that.

  5. Thank you, Lil :o)

    I'll just go back to self-publishing, while keeping a beady eye out for the next opportunity to appear over the horizon. I'm a big Amazon fan, and it'll be interesting to see what they come up with next in publishing.

  6. I don't understand this whole publishing/selling/promoting thing but no matter how it works, I'll continue to buy everything you write.
    So many authors have been doing series (I prefer standalones myself) but I always feel like I'm paying $4 a chapter. However, with Time Rats, it's more like standalone books with the same characters. It's a subtle difference that is hard to describe, but thanks for that.

    (FYI) Time Rats 3 review was just written, should be up soon. I made a little error but I'm not going to bother to correct it. I rec'd Time Rats 2 for free because I Kindle Scout nominated it. Forgot about that. I would have spent money for it though.