Back in December I blogged about how I had abandoned Smashwords in favour of joining Amazon’s KDP Select programme for sales of The Hidden Masters and the Unspeakable Evil. If you want to know the details you can read the blog post here but in summary I’d discovered that Smashwords sales had been appalling over the previous twelve months whereas Amazon had been comparatively good.
However, KDP Select requires exclusivity in return for some special promotional opportunities, so there were some issues when Smashwords outlets were still selling the book after I’d enrolled in KDP Select. It was a genuine mistake as it takes some time for the Smashwords servers to update and for their sellers to remove the book from their sites. At worst I was guilty of being too keen to work with Amazon and give them an exclusive deal. The first people at Amazon were quite understanding when I explained and they reinstated me but there followed some quite heavy, almost bullying, messages and eventually I found I’d been removed from the programme.
So I waited until almost two months had passed but still when I click the link to enrol Amazon responds with a pop-up that says the book still does not qualify because it is available elsewhere. So not knowing what to do, but being of the ceremonial magician persuasion (see the recent blog post here about my background) and in an attempt to link The Hidden Masters and the Unspeakable Evil to the current fashion for vampirism I’ve offered them a deal.
Here’s the message I’ve just sent them:
You won’t let me enrol IN KDP SelectHiI enrolled my book in KDP Select in December at the same time that I took it off of Smashwords. Shortly after it was enrolled there was a stream of messages between us where I told you that I had taken it off of Smashwords in all good faith but it took some time for Smashwords to process it through their servers so it still appeared on one or two seller’s sites. Some of your emails were quite threatening and I felt they were unnecessarily so and when I explained the situation I was reinstated. However, later my book was removed from KDP Select again. Rather than risk upsetting you, after all you have the power to ruin my career chances, I have waited two months before trying to enrol again. However, I have just clicked the enrol link and you say that my book does not qualify because it is available elsewhere.I would be very interested in you telling me who is selling my book elsewhere as I have done everything you have asked me. I do not believe it is available on any other web site. You have all the power here, I am trying to play by your rules but you could easily continue to say it’s available elsewhere and I can do nothing to disprove it. I’ve offered you exclusivity, what else do you want from me? I would offer you my blood but I don’t think my keyboard would really like it. Readers of all those vampire books think it’s cool though, so about it, I reckon I could spare you a pint, would that sweeten the deal?
I've always believed that a sense of humour gets you further than a scowl…good luck, Jack!
Concerned that they might be referring to the paperback copies of the book I checked their FAQ but it clearly refers to digital formats only.
Can I re-enroll my book in KDP Select if it was removed previously due to violation of the exclusivity requirements?
Yes, you can. Once you ensure that your book is not available elsewhere in digital format, it is eligible for re-enrollment.