I just “unpublished” A Gift of Ghosts on Smashwords and re-enrolled it into KDP Select. I suppose I should make sure that my sister (the only Nook owner I know) had a chance to get it first, but maybe I’ll just make her an ePub version and email it to her. As far as I know, it was never actually available anywhere. It sat for ten days in Smashwords’ Pending Review queue which gave me plenty of time to wonder whether it really made sense to distribute everywhere. “Everywhere,” after all, would probably meet my original book-publishing expectations, ie a copy or two a week, for the privilege (?) of selling at B&N and Apple. Meanwhile, Amazon’s free days were great for sales after each free day. Chances were that I’d make more money selling only through Amazon.
I’m not sure what made the decision for me in the end. Impatience? Maybe. But I think it was also reading a lot of Amazon-bashing. Scott Turow’s article about Amazon being evil might have been the turning point for me. I don’t think Amazon is evil. I think Amazon is a collection of really smart, hard-working, creative people with an amazing focus on making the experience of shopping great for consumers and that as a company, its goals match mine. Much more so than B&N or Apple. B&N, in particular, is doing an incredible job with the PR what with all the “ooh, woe is poor B&N, the tragic underdog” stories. But every time I read one, it irks me. The story was a whole lot different fifteen years ago when B&N was doing its best to destroy the independent bookstores.
Maybe I’ll change my mind again. But at the moment, going with an ebook Amazon exclusive felt like a smart decision. I also, though, paid the $25 to get extended print distribution through CreateSpace, so any indie bookstore can buy actual paper copies anytime they want.
Ooh, and someone bought a paper copy from Amazon (which I just found out by trying to look up the specifics of extended distribution). I wish I knew who, so I could tell them that they own not just the first edition, but the very first book in the first edition!