No Thanks, Amazon

As of now, the last book I had available on Amazon, “Fat Mop Zoo Presents: The Interludes”, is no longer available in any format. (My first three novels were pulled late last year in relation to a publishing deal. Look for updates in the coming months.)

As some of you may be aware, Amazon decided to fold CreateSpace into Kindle Direct Publishing(KDP). This has caused problems for numerous authors beyond all scope and imagination. For some stupid reason, I decided to try publishing a paperback edition of “The Interludes” anyway.

It failed. Miserably.

Oh, I was able to put it together all right. I even have a proof copy of it. It wasn’t perfect, but I deemed it acceptable and put it into print on Amazon.

Then I tried to buy copies of my own book.

It failed. Miserably.

The proof copy took a few days to print, but I got it in a reasonable amount of time. I canceled my author copies after waiting two weeks. Yes, TWO WEEKS.

How long would my customers have to wait? Three weeks? Four? I gave up and I’M THE AUTHOR. Do you really think a customer is going to be like “Yeah, cool. I can wait a couple months to get this book”?

So that’s why I dumped the physical copy.

I’ve now dumped the e-book as well. I refuse to continue selling on Amazon via KDP. Here’s why.

Those of you who know me also know that I live in poverty. Like, I literally live below the federal poverty line. My debt has also climbed to astronomical levels. My only hope right now is my tax refund.

I had my W-2 from my day job the first week of January. I’ve been waiting (mostly) patiently for my 1099-Misc from Amazon ever since. This past Friday, the website said it was there. JOY!

I went to download it today (Sunday) and not only is it gone, but so is my 1099 for 2017! I have NO forms now! Are you fucking kidding me…

I am well aware that the IRS isn’t even going to start accepting returns until January 28th. But this is KDP, and my form is missing. This is the latest in a long line of fuck-ups from KDP.

I’ve read horror stories about under-reported Amazon Unlimited page counts, unreported paperback sales, e-book sales… I could go on. The latest I’ve heard is late-paid and unpaid royalties. Yes, the multi-BILLION dollar company is having trouble paying royalties in the two to three digit range.

For this and, like, JUST so many other reasons, I’m off of Amazon. I have enough to worry about, barely living paycheck to paycheck, without adding this bullshit to the heap. Depending on how late my tax refund comes in, I might literally run out of money next month. I don’t need this!

So what happens now?

I still want my indie titles to be available for purchase. I’m currently working on finding acceptable alternatives to Amazon. Here’s where I am right now…

PAPERBACK: Right now I am thinking that I will be publishing the paperback edition of Interludes through Ingram Spark. That’s going to cost me somewhere around $100, however. Due to there not being enough interest in the book right now, I will be postponing this process until I’m more financially stable.

E-BOOK: I am currently looking into which markets I want to sell the e-book version of Interludes through. I may start with Google. Barnes & Noble is a possibility as well. Apple… Don’t get me started on Apple. Stay tuned to Fat Mop Zoo for updates as to availability.

MY LIFE: It’s a shambles. I’m doing everything I can to keep my head above the sea of bills, but things are looking pretty dim. I’d say there’s a sixty percent chance I miss a payment on something next month, and a fifty percent chance I end the year post-bankruptcy.

I won’t reflect on that mess any further. That’s not what this website is about, but it had direct bearing on my anger and decisions regarding Amazon. Pray for me, if that’s your thing. Otherwise, here’s fingers crossed.

May this be my darkest hour. May this be the point where things changed. May this be the moment that I have finally atoned for my sins, paid my dues, completed my punishment.

Now would be a great time to stop being pissed on by life. Just saying.

— John

UPDATE 21/1/2019: I must not have been the only one affected by missing documents. That’s the only way to explain why they magically reappeared so quickly. Now it’s time to wait on the IRS.

I’ve also managed to establish Interludes on Barnes and Noble, and it’s slightly cheaper! You can get it for $2.49 by clicking HERE.

Availability through Google is still a possibility, but they are accepting new “publishers” via invitation. I’m not holding my breath.