Once upon a time, there was a writer named Andy who created stories she wanted the world to read in whatever manner the world was willing to read them: on Kindles or on Nooks, in iBooks or in a favored Android app, maybe even on paper. So when she released her first two published novels, Pride, Prejudice, and Curling Rocks and I’d Rather Not Be Dead, she was very much against the idea of being exclusive to any given store and format. That’s why she made them available in as many places as possible.
Yet when Andy released her third book, Of Fur and Ice: A Werestory, she entered it into a program at a mega-store, even though doing which meant that, for a period of time, she could only sell the e-version of her novel at that mega-store. Why would she do this?
Well, if you’re a writer you can probably guess. The mega-store is, of course, the monolith digital distributor Amazon, and the program our heroine enrolled in was KDP Select. The upsides of KDP Select are many, but the most important one is it allows your book into Kindle Unlimited. (Kindle Unlimited, or KU, for the uninitiated, is a monthly program whereby a reader purchases the right to read unlimited books for the set price of $9.99. It’s a great deal if you read a lot and don’t care about actually owning your reading material.)
Andy wanted to be in Kindle Unlimited, at least for a little while, so she stifled her moral objections to exclusivity and signed up the new book up for Select. Her novel comes without DRM, she reasoned, so people are free to convert it into an epub if they want to, and the paperbacks are still distributed to all major outlets.
The Select agreement is for three months at a time and Andy fully expected to do three months, then take her lovely little novel over to Smashwords and Nook. But during the initial three month period, she made over twice as much money from being in Kindle Unlimited as she did from copies sold. A few of those people may have bought the book if it wasn’t in KU, but she was fairly certain most of them wouldn’t have. In fact, they probably found the book in the first place by searching for new KU material.
Not only did Andy extend her novel’s stay in Select, but after a discussion with her business partner/husband (Jimmy Brokaw, author of the recently released ski comedy A Midwinter’s Night Dream), she moved all of her imprint’s books to KDP Select.
Another side effect of being in Select is that you are given promotion days, which can be used to make a book free for a day, thus increasing downloads and overall visibility. Andy did a little experiment earlier by having a free day for Of Fur and Ice, about which she told no one but saw a significant amount of traffic for. She’s now going to see what happens if she actually tells people about the promotion!
So, for today, all of Andy’s novels are free to download, sans DRM, on Kindle. Which means that if you’re at all curious about them, but don’t already have them on Kindle, you should download them! (Even if you have the print copy or a different digital version, please consider downloading as a way to boost the signal to others.) Links on the graphics below!