The sky is falling, the sky is falling!
Amazon changed how they are paying authors for books borrowed through Kindle Unlimited. Panic is spreading, there appears to be a great gnashing of teeth, Amazon is an evil overlord out to kill the very authors it makes money from, THE WORLD IS ABOUT TO END!
At least that seems to be the general consensus out there and I’m not sure why. Authors petitioned Amazon for this change, why is there a bunch of screaming about it now that Amazon listened to them.
First of all, despite what some fear mongers are posting, this does not affect sales. Amazon is not going to start paying royalties by pages read. According to the email I got from Amazon this affects borrows ONLY.
Before, if someone borrowed a book and read 10% then the author got the amount paid out for a borrow and the amount was the same if it was a 10 page “book” or a 200,000 word tome.
Now it will be paid per page when the book is borrowed (this does not affect sales). It’s estimated that the pay out will end up being around 1 cent per page. Which is a much better deal for those of us who write longer books.
I have seen some comments from people upset because before, as long as someone read at least 10% they got paid and now a reader has to actually read the whole book. Oh. My. Gosh. What a strange and new idea. Sorry to sound snarky about this, but if you are seriously worried about getting paid less than the average dollar and change for a borrow because someone might not read your whole book, then you need to go back and reexamine your story. If you write an engaging story, the majority of people who borrow it are going to keep reading to the end. The idea isn’t to rope the reader into reading 10% of the book and the rest can be crap because hey, you’re getting paid for that borrow now anyway.
I’m pleased to see this change in Amazon because even if it ends up being half a cent per page, I will still be making more per borrow than I did under the old system. So kudos to Amazon for listening to authors and for adjusting the way they pay out for Kindle Unlimited borrows.