KindleScout is a program run by Amazon that allows you to submit a complete novel for a chance at a contract. The campaign runs for thirty days during which time you use social media and whatever connections you have to get votes. The goal is to show Amazon editors that you have a product worth selling. If your book attracts enough attention, they’ll read it and if they like it, they’ll publish it.
I’m running my own campaign this month for my women’s fiction novel, Finding Charlie. There’s a lot that I considered before going this route and I thought it might help other writers to share the process.
To start with, there are important things to consider before you sign the contract that’s required at the beginning of the campaign. Signing means that if they select you, you agree to their terms – there’s no contract negotiation and for the course of the campaign, you can’t enter into any other publishing agreement.
In some respects, this is not a great contract. The advance of $1,500 is (unfortunately ) more than most self-pubbers make, but it is not a lot of money for the kind of control you’re giving up. I would not recommend this program for writers with a first book who are hoping to build a career. As a hybrid writer with one traditionally published book out already, I see KindleScout as one of several ways I can get my work out there.
Before submitting your book to KindleScout, here are some things to think about:
- Is the book complete and edited?
- Do you have a professional cover?
- Have you tried other avenues for publication and determined this is best?
- Has the book been read and enjoyed by more than just your mother?
- Do you have some sort of social media presence?
I’ve written and rewritten Finding Charlie over the course of the last two years. It won the crowd-sourcing competition at Authonomy.com in September and I have dozens of beta readers who have given helpful and encouraging feedback. I queried many literary agencies and had several positive responses that ultimately went nowhere. In the process of self-publishing my second novel, I’ve started to get a hang of this social media thing.
So, I feel ready. We’ll see if it works! Check out my campaign where you can read an excerpt and decide if Finding Charlie is worthy of your vote: https://kindlescout.amazon.com/p/1ZEZ9K2DLCYOB