More About Kindle Scout

31 Jan

As I wrote last week, I currently have a campaign running on Kindle Scout. In that post, I talked about the book that I have listed on that page, but I didn’t talk a lot about the Kindle Scout site itself. I want to take some time to do that, because regardless of whether or not my own book gets published through the site, it still presents a great opportunity to budding young writers.

This post isn’t meant as a guide book for Kindle Scout, or an in-depth investigation into the pros and cons. It’s just my own take on the site.

 

So, what is Kindle Scout? 

It is a program which allows authors to upload their completed, edited manuscripts (as well as cover art, author info, etc.) and have Amazon readers vote for–Sorry, “nominate”–the books that they would like to see published.

 

What do the writers get out of it?

The writers get a chance to be published by Kindle Press, along with a $1500 advance and featured Amazon marketing. While I’m a big supporter of publishing independently, through Kindle Direct Publishing, the perks of being published through Kindle Press would offer a big boost for writers. The $1500 is shiny and swell, but featured Amazon marketing could take a lot of weight off of the shoulders of an indie author. Even a chance of being promoted through Amazon’s system could potentially jump start a writer’s career.

Does this mean that you won’t have to promote anything yourself? No. you’ll still have to jump through those hoops, and of course you will still need to have quality material that will generate good reviews and positive buzz once people become aware of it. It doesn’t take all of the work off of our table (in fact, you will have to work to promote your campaign), but it could help quite a bit.

If your book is not chosen for publication, you have the opportunity to tell those who supported it where they can follow you. You can still publish independently, and you can take all of those supporters with you. You could even offer advance copies to generate early reviews.

 

What do readers get out of it?

Readers get the chance to support their favorite indie author! Isn’t that reward enough?

No?

Fine!

Readers who vote nominate your novel will receive free copies of the Kindle book once it’s published. They’ll also be introduced to a site which could keep them supplied with free Kindle books for years to come, since they can nominate three books at a time and then pick a fresh batch once their nominees’ campaigns have ended.

A free book for three seconds of their time is not a bad deal.

 

In conclusion…

I’m not an expert on the site. I’m just trying it out for the first time, and my opinions could change for the better or for the worse in the future. But for right now, I think that it’s a great opportunity for indie authors to get out there, post their work on a site before it is officially published, generate some buzz and support, and possibly walk away with some pretty nice perks.

If you are going to do it though, make sure that your book is solid. Make sure that the cover art is worthy of being a book cover (and fits the guidelines for cover art on the site). Edit your book, have as many people read it as you can possibly find (people who will tell you the brutal truth), run it through programs like the Hemingway App (but use your judgement on when to follow their recommendations)… basically, put your book through a dozen rounds of hellish second guessing, just as you would if you were putting the book up for sale through KDP. This is not a game. This is not where you go for feedback (that would be Write On by Kindle).

All in all, Kindle Scout looks like it could be a very interesting opportunity for indie authors.

 

If you’d like to support my book, Freedom/Hate, head over to its campaign site and give it your nomination. Your support is very much appreciated.

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