I’ve been contemplating making my novels available on various electronic markets, and the Amazon Kindle market was particularly easy to convert one for, so I’ve gone ahead and taken the plunge with my scifi biopunk novel Fourwar. I initially intended to post it at the 99-cent price, but Amazon’s odd royalties mean that you have the choice of posting it at 99 cents for a 35% royalty (so I’d get about 34 cents, minus a few cents for the bandwidth of the book) or at a minimum of $2.99 US for a 70% royalty. While 35% is still significantly better than the traditional rates for a new author of maybe 2% (yes, two percent) if you’re lucky (from all I’ve read), I’m not really sure why I should give Amazon 65% of the royalties instead of 30% if I have the choice. So, rather than give Amazon the lion’s share, I’ve posted it at the $2.99 minimum price.

I’m not entirely sure what Amazon’s logic for the $2.99 minimum is. I’ve seen speculation that Amazon wants to force the customer expectations for ebooks to stay higher than $0.99 by dangling a carrot in front of authors who take the higher prices, and that may be possible. While Amazon stands to make about 65-70 cents on a $0.99 book, they will make about 90-95 cents on a $2.99 book (depending on bandwidth charges which are taken out of the author’s profit), so it seems evident that, at least at the bottom end of each range, they stand to make more money while keeping a nominally smaller cut if the author charges more. I’m not sure how this will work out, but I’m also not entirely sure how to go about marketing my book without obnoxiously spamming everything in sight, so I suppose I’ll figure both things out as I go.

Anyway, I took an hour or so last night and painted a little cover image and did a simple cover layout in Photoshop. See results below.:)

While the book is freely available as a PDF in my writing section (and PayPal donations are less cumbersome than Amazon.com royalties if you just want to tip me – see the right sidebar), if you have a Kindle and want to have a portable version, I’d certainly encourage you to get it:

Fourwar on Amazon.com
Cover for the Fourwar Novel