Lower Kindle Book Prices are Inevitable

When the publishers jacked up the prices a couple years ago on bestsellers and other popular e-books for the Kindle, they suddenly lost some appeal.  $9.99 or less for New York Times bestsellers sounded like a deal.  $11.99-14.99?  Not so much.

However, the rising prices have opened up several other free and inexpensive alternatives.  There are a ton of low priced Kindle books out there.  There are also free Kindle book lists and Kindle Library lending.  If you have time to sort through the lists, you will find some good stories mixed in.

The high prices on the big names also gave self published authors a boost.  Kindle Direct Publishing allows anyone to publish a book.  Some very successful independent authors have rivaled the big name authors with numbers of books sold. I remember the days when getting published was a feat accomplished only by a select few who had what it takes to get the attention of the major publishing houses.

There are still a lot of people who weigh the ability to share print editions, and are more willing to pay a higher cost for them.  There’s something about being able to pass a book around between friends and family members that can’t be recreated with a Kindle.  Now that the Kindle is in the hands of mainstream consumers, there is a much bigger group to share books with via the Kindle lending program. So, I can definitely see a future of e-book sharing that can rival the print book sharing idea.

So, I think it is only a matter of time before we start seeing lower prices on even the huge bestsellers.  In the end, it really is a consumer’s market.  In this economy, consumers are looking for the best bargains.

They won’t be able to compete otherwise.  Will all of these independent authors who got the chance to shine lose their visibility if this occurs?  That will be an interesting trend to watch.



Kindle Direct Publishing Helps Indie Authors Achieve Great Success

Two of the bestselling Kindle Books of 2011 were independent authors who used Amazon’s popular Kindle Direct Publishing service.  Publishing an e-book has never been easier.  This opportunity gives everyone a chance to express their voice and unique writing style.  The money isn’t too shabby either.

Darcie Chan, an attorney who lives with her husband and son in New York, released her first novel, The Mill River Recluse last year.  It is a huge hit among its readers, and definitely worth adding to your list of Kindle books to read.

Mary McAllister, the victim of an abusive late husband, spends sixty years of her life in a marble mansion overlooking the tiny Vermont town of Mill River.  This is one of those feel good books that provide a good story, but it doesn’t work the brain too hard.  It has great reviews, and Chan achieves what most authors strive to do: draw the reader into the story and make them forget that the characters are fictional.

Chris Culver was another extremely successful independent author that hit the bestseller list with his book, The Abbey.  The Abbey is a fast paced murder mystery that features a Muslim detective.  The fact that Ash is Muslim is an added twist, but it isn’t his religion isn’t the focus of the book.  He gets wrapped up in a case involving the possible murder of his niece, and well, see how the story unfolds from there.

There are many other independent authors who have hit bestseller lists, and have enjoyed great successes through KDP.  It is still important to carefully edit the book and format it so that it can be published to the Kindle.

Since I got my first Kindle two years ago, I have read a number of books by independent and lesser known authors.  It has given me the opportunity to explore new genres and writing styles.  Publishing a book is no longer this tangible thing restricted to an exclusive group of top notch writers.  Not to mention, many of these books are either free or very cheap.

The downsides to allowing such free reign on publishing e-books are the quality of books and spam.  Amazon has had to deal with some major issues with spammers flooding the market with fake e-books.

So, it will be interesting to see how the publishing industry evolves as e-books and e-readers become increasingly popular.  There has to be a balance that retains the quality of books written by established authors, and a way to give new authors the chance to shine.