This week, I have had Amazon on the brain for a number of reasons. I have had conversations with a book editor discussing the merits of listing a new poetry book exclusively on Amazon vs. other methods. Then, the next day I had a similar conversation with my manager, who is trying to convince me to give Amazon exclusive one-year rights to my forthcoming novel Interrogator’s Notebook.
Of course, I feel like a hypocrite. I swore off using Amazon for almost a year, and even trumpeted the merits of local bookstores in this very blog. And now as an author looking at his first three books coming out this fall, in each case Amazon has become the most important distributor for my work.
To make matters more complicated, Amazon is now planning for the future with more warehouses and quicker delivery. Is Amazon helping the lesser-known writer with a more even playing field for the digital distribution and ownership of their work? Or are they in the middle of creating a book churning and chucking apparatus that will later flex its muscles in ways we cannot imagine? Or both?