After a lot of debates and turmoil, it looks like indie writers are slowly embracing Amazon’s Kindle Unlimited platform in favour of selling their ebooks directly through the Kindle Store. Not only is Kindle Unlimited a slightly better option in terms of finance, but it also awards writers for every page being read, rather than forcing them to sell their entire book.
Tech Giant Amazon Changes Content Creator Reward System
Even though Amazon will never admit it publicly – or not at this time, anyway – Jeff Bezos and his staff have been keeping a close eye on the decentralized revolution. This new technological movement started gaining a foothold when Bitcoin gained popularity in 2012. Ever since that time, a lot of major companies in and outside of the technological market have been adopting alternate business models.
Until a few months ago, indie writers who wanted to sell their ebook on Amazon only had one centralized option. Listing your book for sale on the Kindle Marketplace at the price of US$9.99 may sound attractive, but when you do all the maths, the authors will only receive US$1.49 per book sold.
There is a simple explanation as to why this amount is so incredibly low. Selling your book on Amazon directly means that 70% of the royalties will go to the publisher while the rest goes into the pockets of Amazon. Of that 70%, 25% goes to the author, which is less than 20% of the original value. Keeping in mind the author agent will deduct a fee of 15%, on average, from whatever amount remains, the average author receives US$1.49 per book. It is important to keep in mind this amount will be paid only if the entire book is being sold.
Kindle Unlimited works in an entirely different fashion, as it will effectively pay the author for every page of the book being read. Keeping in mind that an author gets paid US$0.006 per page read, they could earn a total of US$1.80 for the same 300-page ebook. That is a 20% increase in money earned by the author, and they are not even “forced” to actively sell the book.
Even though neither solution is as lucrative for indie writers as it used to be, things are looking less bleak in the publishing world compared to a few months ago. That being said, there is still a long way to go if you plan to make a living by writing novels or short stories.
Indie Writers to Adopt a Bitcoin Paywall System For Content?
While writers keep struggling to make ends meet, they might want to look at alternate payment methods. Several companies and platforms in the world of Bitcoin and digital currency are looking at creating micropayments to “unlock” additional content. This same method can be adopted by writers as well, once they publish the book on their website and restrict access until a small payment is made.
Bitcoin and blockchain technology could play a major role in the way we distribute and consume content in the future. Rather than relying on sales or advertisements, micropayments and paywalls seem to be the right way to go. And if there is one payment method that lends itself to such small transactions with no fees involved, it is Bitcoin.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Amazon and Kindle Unlimited