The Kindle Publishing Program allows you to self-publish on the Amazon Store. Books can then be purchased on the Kindle devices and apps for iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, PC, Mac, Windows Phone, and Android.
The name “Kindle Publishing Program” refers to a collection of services. To self-publish on the Amazon Kindle Store you will use Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP). You can sign up for this with a standard account, so if you've bought something from Amazon you're ready to go. Once signed in you'll be taken to the account page where your published books will appear. This also provides links to the KDP Guide and discussion forums. Using my services means you don't have to worry about the technical aspects of ebook production, but the sections on book publishing, merchandising and sales are important.
Pricing Options & List Price Requirements
In the Legal section of the KDP Guide you'll find book pricing information. This may change, so check before submitting your book. At the moment there are two royalty options, 35% and 70%. You may be thinking “why should I choose 35% royalty when I can get 70%”, but while the second option means you get more from each sale it limits the list price. At the moment the maximum list price for a book sold with the 70% royalty option is $9.99, £6.99, or €8.69.
You also need to consider delivery costs. Amazon charge a small fee for delivery of each ebook, based on file size. For example, the file size for a standard fiction title is around 0.5 MB, so using the Amazon UK delivery rate of £0.1 per MB we get a delivery cost of £0.05. Amazon would take this fee from your list price before calculating your royalty. For example, if your book cost £6.99 the royalty calculation would be:
£6.99 (list price) - £0.05 (delivery cost) = £6.94
70% royalty = £4.86
35% royalty = £2.43
If your book contains a lot of images, audio or video the delivery cost will be higher, so you need to consider pricing options carefully.
Submitting Your Book
I'll create your ebook and deliver a version which is ready for submission to the Kindle Store. (If I also created the cover I'll supply a larger version you can use as the product image.) Sign-in to your KDP account and choose the option to add a new title. The first stage of this process asks for information about your book:
- Description (optional)
- Publication Date (optional)
- Publisher (optional)
- ISBN (optional)
- Publishing Rights
- Search Keywords (optional)
- Product Image (optional)
- Digital Rights Management (DRM)
You can then upload your ebook file. At this point you can preview it on the Amazon site, but I've found this isn't perfect. It's better the check the ebook on a real Kindle device, the Kindle Previewer application and the apps for iPhone, iPad etc. I do this as part of the ebook creation process and encourage you to test your book in the same way.
After submitting the ebook file you can confirm your publishing and content rights. After that you'll choose a royalty option and provide a list price. Your book should then be available for sale the next day, although non-english titles will take longer.
Kindle Direct Publishing options may change, especially royalty and list price requirements, so you should refer to the official guide before submitting your book.