From the Editor: Kindle Unlimited and Castalia Books Direct

Wednesday , 19, December 2018 Leave a comment

Today, Castalia House editor Vox Day discussed at his blog changes coming to how Castalia House will sell its books and audiobooks:

Amazon is increasingly seeking to control and sell its own content rather than serve as a middleman. That’s precisely why Kindle Select and Kindle Unlimited have been adopted, to change the structure of the ebook market as Amazon increasingly shifts the revenue split between Amazon and the author toward Amazon at the expense of the author.

In other words, now that Amazon has drained about as much of the revenue stream as it effectively can from the traditional publishers, it has no choice but to do the same to the independent publishers and the self-published authors if it is going to increase its sales. Because the overall market is not growing, the book market is a zero-sum game and Amazon cannot grow except at the expense of the ebook authors who in recent years have profited with Amazon at the expense of the traditional publishers.

This is why we are no longer participating in Kindle Select. And this is why it is going to be increasingly important for independent authors to either a) become part of the A9-favored Elect or b) find a way to succeed outside of Amazon.

Now, there is nothing wrong with what Amazon is doing. This is just a business strategy and it can’t be compared to the deplatformings and civil wrongdoings of companies like Indiegogo. One can still work with Amazon, one simply can’t take the risk of working exclusively with them as we have for the past four years. That is why we will be selling all of our new audiobooks from the Arkhaven store and why we are removing almost all of our books from Kindle Select, including the comics. We expect to have all of them removed from the exclusive system by the end of February.

This is great news for those of you who prefer DRM-free epubs, as we now have eight of the ten THERE WILL BE WAR books available for sale on the Arkhaven store, including the newly available Volume II, Volume III, Volume VII, and Volume X. The books also come in Kindle-compatible MOBI format for those of you who prefer to read on your Kindle devices.

We hope Castalia ebook and audiobook fans will continue to migrate to our direct stores, as so many of our print book buyers have already. Even though we only began our print direct sales in March, and even though the direct sales will not be available in the UK, Europe, and Australia until sometime in 2019, ONE-THIRD of all our growing print sales now go through Castalia Books Direct.  This is a tremendous strategic success. While Amazon is massively convenient and will always be an important retail outlet for us, it is vital for us to maintain our independence from it and it is those of you who buy our books that permit Castalia House, Arkhaven, and Dark Legion to do that.

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