moving into the future with Kindle Unlimited

Next year I’m going to start experimenting with Kindle Unlimited. I’ve been reluctant to do this, because some of my readers don’t use Kindle, but they’re about…15% of my monthly self-publishing sales. In theory, KU would make up for that loss of revenue by a *considerable* margin. Because, see, to be enrolled in KU, you can’t have your books available on any other platform. Amazon will crawl the web to make sure you don’t. It’s a bitch. But Amazon is already 85% of my sales. KU could potentially boost that by…IDEK.

I’m not delighted by that. I would really, *really* prefer to be able sell at the most profitable margin across all platforms. Obviously.

But real talk here. Every time we’ve gotten financially stable, we’ve had to move–7 times in 14 years–and it’s wiped us out. Rent keeps getting more and more expensive and getting our feet back under us has been harder each time. And there’s a real chance I’m cutting my own throat trying to make sure my readers can get books on the platform of their choice.

Believe me, I *get* the moral stance against using Amazon. I do not condemn anybody for it. I hate that cutting some readers out is a potential way to make more money.

But, and I think this is understandable, I also hate wondering whether we’re going to run out of fuel oil or be unable to pay the electricity bill.

So for the moment I’ve already pulled RAVEN HEART from non-Amazon platforms, and I have plans to release it through KU. I’m writing other paranormal romance to be released through KU. At the moment I don’t know how much farther I’ll go.

My understanding is that there’s a lot of value in regular releases of a long-running series there, but god, who has time to write another one? :} But I may try re-releasing the Worldwalker books thru it, just to see what happens. I can always pull them out, if it’s not worth it.

It’s clear to me that in an ideal world I’d develop a pseudonym *for* KU. It’d be Murphy Lawless or Cate Dermody, probably, depending on whether I went all-in for PNR or if I started writing a bunch of fast-paced spy stories like THE CARDINAL RULE (which, honestly, is probably my stronger suit, although PNR is huge fun to write).

This does play into the “who has time” problem, tho. If JUST releasing CE Murphy books with no particular rhyme or reason to them–not a long-running series, just a short story here, a two-book series there, etc–did the trick, honestly, I’d yank everything off other platforms.

Of course there’s kind of only one way to find out if it does the trick…

2 Comments


  1. I’m one of the 15% that does not Kindle. But if you can make more money that way then more power to you. Good luck and i hope it works. Further, if you can ALSO release your books in paper as well as in Kindle, i prefer paper format anyway. So you can still pick up my dollars that way. Speaking of, hoping the Firebird Deception will be coming out in paper sometime soon… Oh, and Happy New Year. Here’s hoping it’s a good one for us all.


    1. FIREBIRD should be out in paperback in the next couple months, and yeah, virtually everything will be available in print, although it may be available only through Amazon, depending on how dedicated to this I get. But most things that aren’t short stories should be available eventually. ♥

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