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Posts Tagged ‘GoodReads’

Amazon, the Empire strikes back

Posted by G.A. Matiasz on September 15, 2018

Amazon has consciously cultivated the image of writer’s patron and author’s best friend. Along with the Kindle device there’s Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) which has launched a number of new voices and sometimes allowed writers to earn decent money. Hugh Howey was discovered by serializing his novel Wool on KDP. Then there’s CreateSpace, Amazon‘s self-publishing arm which allowed authors to easily produce attractive print-on-demand analog books with digital accompaniment. And Amazon-owned Goodreads has permitted writers to promote their works through a variety of built-in gimmicks. Finally, the Amazon website had a giveaway feature which gave authors the opportunity to promote and distribute their work online to build their name and boost their presence.

All that has dramatically changed a few years ago. First KDP instituted a devious “revenue sharing” scheme to pool the sales of KDP-exclusive works and dole out a portion of the earnings to their writers. Then Amazon severely restricted the self-publishing services it offered through CreateSpace before deciding to fold CreateSpace into KDP, eliminating it altogether. Finally Amazon has recently gutted its giveaways, making it much more difficult for non-name authors to build a reputation and create a buzz for their work by using that marketing feature. Goodreads’ giveaway policy has also changed, but less drastically.

Writers who’ve ignored Amazon’s predatory, monopolistic business practices, or thought they could criticize Amazon while taking advantage of the few seemingly generous/liberal byproducts of the company’s terrible methods, are now hoist with their own petard. I went with IngramSpark and Barnes & Noble when I decided to self-publish my novel 1% Free, refusing to consider KDP or CreateSpace from the start. But I did use Amazon and Amazon-owned Goodreads to give away the Kindle and POD versions of my book. While Goodreads remains a viable if more limited way to give away analog editions of my novel, Amazon’s giveaways have become a nightmare. They no longer work for struggling authors nor for small product sellers on Amazon generally. When you make a pact with the devil…

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GoodReads reviews

Posted by G.A. Matiasz on May 11, 2016

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GoodReads Reviews

Jim Beckmann rated it it was amazing

Planning on re-reading this as all I really remember was that I really liked it. It will be interesting this time around to read a future history set in 2007. 9/12/13 Just finished it. Even better than I remember. So much going on in this story but it never gets confusing. What I liked most were the political commentaries of the main character. He was a peripheral member of the anti war movement till a chance encounter puts him in the middle of the action. Though this book comes from a left perspective, there is extensive critique of all manner of leftist ideologies and actions. He dissects the good from the bad in Marxist/Leninism, Anarchism, violence, non violence, consensus, etc. This book is so many things, a detective story, a future history, science fiction, and a commentary on politics, and relationships. Refreshing and rare to see an author so thoroughly take apart his side of the political fence. highly recommend this book.

Smiley McGrouchpants rated it it was amazing

G. A. Matiasz’s mini-opus covers an awful lot of ground in just over 200 pages; considering the ideological (as in: the thought patterns people subscribe to, and the divergences that occur when they try to put them into practice) and mechanics (who knew this much about computers who was writing fiction in ’97 — except Gibson, Sterling, and Shirley?) apparati which drive the people in this high-caliber work of speculative fiction, you wonder why so much other acclaimed stuff is, by comparison, so half-awake and lazy.

AK Press brought out a winner! Try and catch up. Be as surprised as I was.

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