(MMD Newswire) October 5, 2010 -- The division of Amazon that oversees Kindle content announced this 1st October that they were dropping the price of 35 popular Kindle eBooks, to zero.
These titles included four titles by Australian author, Brian Lawrenson. Brian's popular Silk Road Series eBooks normally sell for $2.99. These books are in the travel genre. Twenty of Brian's eBooks are "shorts" which mean they are short stories that can be read in less than 30 minutes.
The now free eBooks immediately soared in popularity and there were over 4,000 downloads the first day. The most popular title, The Secrets of the Terracotta Warriors, jumped to #1 Best seller in the Travel, China category. This title raced on to the Kindle Top 100 Best Seller list overnight.
Brian commented, "Had Amazon told me that they were making this change, I would have been better prepared for it. My commission is normally 70% on USA sales and 35% for other locations. 70% of zero is still zero".
The Amazon action comes from a fine print clause that allows them to change prices of an eBook if they find it selling elsewhere for less than the Amazon price. Well, the Silk Road Series of books is listed as free on Barnes and Nobles eBook site. The titles are also on Diesel, Kobo, iBooks and Sony shops. These titles are distributed by Smashwords and the initial pricing was set at zero.
Brian's books are part of the 700,000 title library available on Kindle and the list is growing every day. Apart from there being easy to read as the Amazon's Kindle 3 reader that uses the sensational all-new, high-contrast E ink screen, the new version of the reader has better battery life, lighter weight and lower price.
There was no comment from Amazon over the weekend but after a series of emails Brian has agreed to a royalty that will be paid at 35% of the "list price" of his titles. That's in the fine print too. Sales of the other titles in Brian's library are running 200% above last month so it seems that every cloud, can have a silver lining.
So, if you are into free eBooks, you'd better visit the Kindle bookstore soon.
Marco Polo Press
Member Independent Book Publisher Association
57-58 Village Drive
Sydney NSW 2137
Phone 612 9739 6464