Friday, February 15, 2013

Christine Presents: The New Kindle Phenomenon, Good or Bad

Counting down until its release: March 10

The New Kindle Books

The Price:

I am astounded at what readers are now expecting to pay for a book. With so many free and $0.99 cent books, we as authors, are perpetuating this phenomenon. Am I guilty of this? Yes! The first book I placed on kindle select for free was about one year ago. Sixteen thousand downloads later resulted in over two hundred sales. It also caused a jump in the sales of my other books. However, my sales are back to what they were before that and now, when I offer a free book, I have very few downloads. The number of free books is exponential. If one were diligent and watched the $0.00, a reader would not have to pay for a book.  EVER!  I have followed a few books and their reviews. It amazes me that readers believe a book on sale for $3.99 is overpriced. Don’t they think the author deserves to be paid for their work?


Oh my, and another Chrisism. Almost every review has at least one reviewer complaining of bad grammar and suggesting the author pay a professional copy editor to go over their book. I wonder, does this reviewer consider herself a professional copy editor? My book, Dakota’s Bride, was published in 1998 by Kensington. Kate Duffy was my editor. I know she did not copy edit this book, but I’m also sure Kensington employs “professional copy editors.” I also saw a review that stated that she, the reviewer, didn’t know anything about grammar, but the book she had just read had too many grammatical errors. How can a reader who admittedly knows nothing about grammar claim the book has many errors? Hmm... I’m sure that the influx of indie authors has probably caused this, but not all kindle books written by indie authors or published by small presses are poorly copy edited.


In books I personally have read, I’ve encountered outright lies from the reviewers about what occurred in the book. And at times I wonder if I read the same book. If one takes on the responsibility of reviewing a book, I do believe that exaggeration and lies have no place. Sometimes I have wondered if the reviewer has a grudge against the author.

So, enough of my ranting, I am wondering if any of you have comments to share. What kind of reviews do you like to see?
What kind of crazy reviews have you had?


Mona Karel said...

On the other side of the 'price' question is the Kindle price for backlist through a major publisher. When we can get the book used for very little but want to have it on Kindle, we're expected to cough up HOW MUCH? Especially when we know very little of that $7.99 actually gets into the writer's pocket.
Reviews? Let's just say someone complained one of my books didn't have a what in the world was that page at the front. You know, the one titled 'Prologue?' I think some people review for the feeling of power it gives them. And at least it usually means they read your book.

Mary Corrales said...

I don't mind paying $7.99 if I get a book in print. I prefer the $4-5 dollar range though If I'm downloading the book to my Kindle.

A good story is always worth the money.

Christine Young said...

$7.99 is not much for a book. But I'm actually talking about the complaints for a $3.99 book.

I remember the day I received 6% from the publishers for books sold. I love that the author gets more money now.

I agree with you, for some, I think it is for the power. But I do love a good review even if it isn't the best for me.

Genene Valleau, writing as Genie Gabriel said...

Love your rant, Chris! Pricing of books is something intriguing to me also. I think it will all shake out eventually, along with the abundance of self-published books.

Reviews are also interesting. I've read reviews for well-known authors that range from raving about how great the book was to raving about how horrible it was.

I like balanced reviews that give a bit of what the story was about without using spoilers, and offer thoughtful insights about the book and weak points if they saw them. Good grammar and words correctly spelled in reviews are also nice!

Thanks for an interesting post!