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The Indie Authors Guide to Amazon Book Reviews

By Brooke Warner

Many indie authors are obsessed with Amazon reviews, and rightly so. Love it or hate it, Amazon is a massive book buying hub and a place where self-published books can get reviewed alongside traditional titles. Reviews on the site can give your book legitimacy, make you look popular (or not), and tip the scales for buyers browsing your page. If you’re on the fence about prioritizing Amazon reviews, my advice is to do so.

That said, there is some lingering confusion about how reviews on Amazon are handled. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Amazon started cracking down on nepotistic reviews in 2012, which may seem unfair to some authors. Additionally, it can be hard to understand what triggers the removal of a perceived nepotistic review. My advice is to tell would-be reviewers to be transparent. If they know you or have a relationship with you, they can say so in the review. This transparency seems to work, and Amazon largely lets those reviews stand. Read more

Source: Publishers Weekly


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Amazon Kindle: Regional language ebooks are one of the best ways to rediscover Indian culture

By Nimish Sawant

I am a voracious reader. I hoard books, both on my Amazon Kindle as well as physical books, because I never want to be in a situation where I do not have anything to read at hand. I got bit by the reading bug back in the seventh grade. But much before it, the love for reading was inculcated in me as I watched my mother and grandmother read books in their free time. I would admire the book art on Marathi books that were lying around in the house, and would keep wondering when I will grow old enough to finish one of these myself.

While I have gone on to finish hundreds of books in the English language since, there are only a handful of Marathi and Hindi novels I have read. My knowledge of regional literature in Marathi and Hindi is limited to authors I studied at school or classic books that I read growing up. I know, I have never really made an effort to read much regional literature. But I would surely love to.  Read more

Source: First Post


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Amazon Signs Deal To Acquire The Publishing Business Of Westland

Online retailing giant Amazon.com Inc. has signed a deal to acquire the publishing business of Westland, a Trent Limited subsidiary and one of India’s major publishing houses, according to reports.

This acquisition, Vice President and Country Manager of Amazon India Amit Agarwal said, will “bring Westland’s highly talented authors and their books to even more customers in India and around the world”. Earlier this year Amazon had bought 26% stake in Westland for an estimated Rs 9.5 crores.

The publishing list of Westland, which includes imprints like Tranquebar and EastWest, feature best-selling authors like Amish Tripathi, Ashwin Sanghi, Rashmi Bansal, Rujuta Diwekar, Preeti Shenoy, Devdutt Pattanaik, Anuja Chauhan, Ravi Subramanian and BKS Iyengar. Read more

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Event: Amazon for Authors, KDP in Kolkata, 8 Dec 2015‏

Amazon is doing a roadshow in Kolkata to introduce their KDP platform.

kdp-amazonAmazon is hosting a 2-hour event over lunch in Kolkata on Tuesday, 8 Dec 2015. It is to introduce and discuss their self-publishing programme– Kindle Direct Publishing or KDP. Neal Thompson, Director of Author & Publishing Relations, Amazon.com will be present. Anyone who is interested in selfpublishing their book online is welcome to attend. It could be a book or a manual ranging from fiction, non-fiction, self-help, first aid manuals, medicine, science, gardening, cooking, collection of recipes, gardening, automobiles, finance, memoir, children’s literature, textbooks, science articles, on nature, poetry, translations, drama, interviews, essays, travel, religion, hospitality, etc. Any form of text that is to be made available as an ebook using Amazon’s Kindle programme.

This event is free, but registration before 8 December 2015 is a must. Please email me to confirm participation: jayabhattacharjirose1@gmail.com

Details of the event are given below.

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The Stagnation Of eBooks Due To Closed Platforms And DRM: TechDirt

Craig Mod has a fascinating article for Aeon, talking about the unfortunate stagnation in digital books. He spent years reading books almost exclusively in ebook form, but has gradually moved back to physical books, and the article is a long and detailed exploration into the limits of ebooks today — nearly all of which are not due to actual limitations of the medium, but deliberate choices by the platform providers (mainly Amazon, obviously) to create closed, limited, DRM-laden platforms for ebooks.  Continue reading

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Don’t Blame Amazon For Dumbing Down Literature: Stephen L. Carter

Book sales fell 7.5 percent in the first two months of 2015 from the same period last year, led by a plummet of 15.5 percent in that same heretofore vibrant children’s and young adult market: Bloomberg

You might never have heard of Charles Edward Mudie, but in the middle of the 19th century he was the largest buyer of books in the world. Mudie, a British publisher and proprietor of a hugely successful for-profit lending library, was so powerful that his fellow publishers hesitated to sign writers whose works he refused to carry. He was feared by working novelists, many of whom rewrote portions of their books to avoid his censure. Continue reading

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Who is the biggest publisher of foreign literature in the U.S.?

It’s not Random House, and it’s not a specialized indie outfit like Europa Editions or New Directions. It’s Amazon.com. Last year, the company’s translation imprint, AmazonCrossing, brought out 44 new English translations from a diverse slate of literature, including Icelandic, Turkish and Korean. That’s more translated titles than any other American publisher, according to data from Three Percent, a literary translation blog at the University of Rochester. Continue reading

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Jaipur Literature Festival ready to roll with Amazon India, Amity as sponsors

Zee Entertainment continues as title sponsor for a second year, while Google, Ford and British Airways return as venue sponsors: Live Mint

The annual Jaipur Literature Festival, India’s largest such gathering, returns next week with a fresh line-up of sponsors including online retailer Amazon India, pan masala brand Rajnigandha and Amity University. Broadcaster Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd continues as title sponsor for the second year in a row, while brands such as Google, Ford and British Airways return as venue sponsors. The festival will be held in the capital city of Rajasthan between 21 January and 25 January. The event generates interest among literature enthusiasts and authors. An estimated Rs.4-5 crore worth of sponsorship revenue is riding on the back of this festival, said media buyers who declined to be named.

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Ebook sales yet to take off in India; Amazon says market is incipient

More and more Indians may be getting comfortable with online buying, but that has not translated into comfort with paying for ebooks. Publisher Penguin Random House says that e-books constitute about 1% of their total book sales currently. Flipkart and Amazon did not share numbers regarding ebook sales, though Amazon, which produces and sells the Kindle ebook reader, said that the market for ebooks in India was still “incipient”.

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