You know, I like a good Amazon kerflufle as much as the next person, but when I read stuff like this… I mean, don’t get me wrong. I hear where that independent bookseller is coming from and I can appreciate him not wanting to give that kind of financial information or support to Amazon.
But man, does your heart not go out to that author? Finally, there’s the publishing contract. And with it, the marketing money. You are a real author! And now, a bookstore won’t carry your book, not because of something you did, but because of Amazon’s war with independent booksellers. I mean, I expected A City of Ghosts would never get into bookstores, so I didn’t think it was somehow hurt by being published by CreateSpace.
In fact, quite the opposite. I’ve had a great experience with them. Found them very easy to use and very helpful when I needed it and occasionally, I get a check.
But that’s the trade-off with self-publishing–you have a lot of control, places like CreateSpace have set things up to be super easy, but you’re never going to be in a bookstore. Fine.
But man. When you think you have a “real” publisher only to discover bookstores view you as almost worse than self-published, since you’re helping to sow their destruction?
This, though, is a bigger problem for Amazon. If people start to feel like they can’t trust your reviews, it starts to impact the credibility of the company in the mind of the public. A lot of Amazon’s issues most people don’t care about. They’re not paying close attention to the tax stuff and, if they live in a place that doesn’t have bookstores, they could really give a shit about the plight of bookstores.
But if they just have the uneasy feeling that a place is lying to them?
That’s not good.
I’m not sure how Amazon goes about fixing that or even if they can, but that seems to me to be a bigger Achilles’ Heel than “some bookstores won’t like you.”