Kindle – The Future of Publishing?

Kindle 2

Kindle 2

I’ve been thinking for a while now that e-publishing is about to really take off.  The Kindle, with Oprah’s help via endorsement on her show, has proven that people are willing to read this way.  Heck, I’ve gotten to where I prefer to read this way. 


A friend lent me a book last week.  It’s big. It’s hardback size, but paper back.  It’s hard to read in bed, or to carry around.  I read enough to know that I’m interested in reading the whole thing, but then turned to a book waiting for me on my Kindle.  I returned the big honkin’ book to my friend and downloaded the free sample of it from Amazon.

Now, here’s the thing about the free samples… 

I’ve already read enough of the book to know I want to read more, but I use the free samples as a virtual TBR pile (that’s a To Be Read pile for those of you that aren’t book horders).  I’m in the midst of another book at the moment but I don’t want to forget to read the loaned book.  If I go ahead and buy the ebook it may get moved off my front page and I’ll forget if I’ve read it or not.  Really, I will.  I’m bad with titles.  But if it’s a sample, then I know that 1. I haven’t read it yet and 2. I was interested in it enough to put it in my Kindle.

When I get done with my current read, I’ll look through the four or five e-books in my virtual TBR pile (samples) and decide which one I’m ready to read.  I can choose to download it right from the last page of the sample and voila, another book has moved off the TBR pile and is getting read.

That’s why I, Laurin-the-reader, love my Kindle 2. 

But I’m also Laurin-the-writer and I’m really intrigued by the idea of publishing through Amazon/Kindle.  Author Joe Konrath shares his experience (meaning royalty statement info!!) with Kindle publishing as compared to traditional NYC paper publishing on his blog: Kindle Numbers: Traditional Publishing Vs. Self Publishing.

Now, compared to Mr. Konrath, my books are unknowns to most people, so I know that my numbers would be smaller. To date my publisher has only published one of my books in electronic format and it has typically sold a handful of copies per year for the last four or five years.  My last royalty statement shows 24 copies sold in the previous 6 months.  That would, theoretically at least, equate to 50 ebooks sold this year.  Wow.  It’s an old, mostly forgotten book, but it’s e-sales are rising without me doing any promotion.  And while I make a generous 15% on these e-sales, I could set my own price and reap a 35% royalty from self-publishing through Kindle/Amazon. 

Unfortunately I don’t have my rights to my books back yet, but when I get them (soon I’m hoping) I will definitely be experimenting with this new way form of publishing.



2 Responses

  1. Hi, Laurin!
    I’ve been hearing great things about your new critique service. Way to go!

    I have a Kindle2 and LOVE IT. I’m reading more than ever. I use the sample reads as you do exactly. I also have downloaded a lot of the free out-of-copyright books, some from the Regency era.

    Another thing I like to do is download my own ms to the Kindle and read it over that way.

    Hope all is well with you!

  2. Hey, Diane!

    Thanks for the WTG on my critique service. I’m having so much fun working with new-to-me writers and old friends, too. It’s nice to hear word is getting around!

    Like you, I’m reading more, and buying more books with my Kindle 2 than I have in a long, long time. I’m thinking of just asking for Amazon gift cards for Christmas to support my once more ravenous reading habit. 🙂

    I haven’t downloaded my ms yet, but I do regularly convert newsletters to be read on my Kindle. That way they don’t languish on my computer any more and they actually get read.

    I am definitely a fan of the technology!

    Thanks for dropping by!


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