Author groups are worried by changes to Amazon buy button, artificial intelligence storytelling is coming but virtual reality suffers
Worrying Changes for the Amazon Buy Button
Amazon’s buy button is the holy grail for many sellers. When a customer wants to buy a product, it’s the thing they hit. In theory they may be aware that other sellers are available. And some may do a search to compare offers or buy from their favourite storefront. But most just click buy. New changes to the way the buy button works in 2021 might have profound effects for us as authors. At the moment, if someone wants a new copy of our paperback book, and we publish with KDP Print, they click the buy button and a book is printed on demand. We get the royalty from that at a rate we know from our dashboard.
From next year, people selling “new condition” items will be able to bid for that buy button. The Society of Authors in the UK and Authors Guild in America are worried. I’m not sure there’s too much of a threat to our sales. Most people who buy our books read them. But if a sufficient proportion of people who don’t read them bid to resell them, I can see that would be an issue. A further change will come from Brexit. Access to Amazon’s European fulfilment network will be limited for UK sellers. And vice versa.
Does New Technology Offer New Opportunities?
In a three-part series starting two weeks ago, the Alliance of Independent Authors #AskALLi team explores mailing lists, how to set them up, how to grow them, manage them and most importantly, build and sustain relationships and connections with your readers. With deep thanks to all of our members who contributed insightful comments and a special thanks to members. This is the ultimate guide to mailing lists for indie authors part 3: maintaining a mailing list.
One of our staff writers is an editor and, sitting around the gruel pot the other day, she asked our opinions. Her client was in a rush to publish a book by a specific date, because it meshed with a historic event that was about to occur. It was her opinion that there wasn’t time to get the book ready. He said he didn’t care. He’d publish it now and “fix it up later.” What should she do?
Well, that’s a two-layer question. As an editor, she should keep telling the guy what is wrong with his writing, and when it reaches the point he’s happy with it, he can publish it. It’s his book, and all the final decisions are his.
What if You’re the Writer?