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Showing posts from August, 2014

An unusual source for inspiration

I love stock photo sites. Even if I don’t actually need a photo for a book cover, I browse them just for fun. If I find a good photo for a future book, especially for my Two-Natured London series – because let me tell you, those similarly posing men are difficult to find – I buy it or save it for a future purchase.
Every once in a while the process goes the other way round. I find a wonderful picture that would make a great book cover and I immediately start to imagine the book I would write to that cover. Nothing ever comes of those books, usually because I don’t have time to write all of them.
Nothing, that is, until now.
A while back I found a couple of beautiful photos that I knew would make a wonderful cover together. Seeing the cover in my mind’s eye, I knew exactly the book I would write. The best part was that I already had the beginning of that book. So I purchased the photos and even tested the cover I would make before starting with the script.
I realised pretty much immediatel…

Change in Amazon algorithms?

Another Amazon related blog post, this time in the form of a question. Namely, have you noticed anything unusual in the rankings of your books on Amazon? The question is brought up by a post on kboards I read today. Its author states, rather unhappily, that books enrolled in Kindle Unlimited enjoy much higher ranking than those that aren’t in it. That one borrow moves a book up in charts much more than it used to and more than a sale does.
Personally, I haven’t noticed the same. What I have noticed is, however, that both sales and borrows make books jump in charts more than they used to, whether or not they have been enrolled to KU. A particular book of mine, not in KU, hadn’t sold in months, yet one sale made it jump from the uglier side of a million-something rank to a hundred thousand. Unheard of before. The drop was deep too, when there were no more sales.
The author of the post on kboard is convinced that Amazon has changed its algorithms and is favouring books that have been enrol…

Amazon’s margins

This weekend turned out to be another busy chapter in Amazon-Hachette saga. First Amazon approached KDP authors by email, asking them to appeal directly to Hachette CEO, who then responded with a letter of his own. Everyone had an opinion about everything, although most of it seemed to concentrate on “what Orwell really said” about paperbacks.
Among the commentary were two posts that stood out with their different approach: Making Sense of Amazon-Hachette by Jake Kerr, and Wobbly Amazon by Baldur Bjarnason (both are worth reading in full). They concentrate on Amazon’s low profit margins and why the company is so keen to maintaining them.


“Amazon isn’t thinking offense, it is thinking defense”
According to Kerr and Bjarnason, Amazon doesn’t aim to push publishers or bookstores out of business. Its biggest fear is the big technology companies, Apple, Microsoft and Google, and what would happen if they entered the e-book markets in force. In that scenario, Amazon would lose its dominant pos…