Amazon Crowd-Sourced Publishing

According to multiple sources, Amazon is preparing to launch a crowd-sourced, almost reality-TV-style publishing program, where authors upload unpublished MSS and those that receive the most votes get considered for Amazon Publication (by the genre/category-specific imprints, or by a new imprint, I wonder?) with fairly generous terms.

Sources:

http://www.thebookseller.com/news/amazon-launch-crowd-sourced-publishing.html?utm_content=bufferc00c0&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

http://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/digital/content-and-e-books/article/64103-amazon-launching-new-crowdsourcing-publishing-program.html

https://kdp.amazon.com/community/thread.jspa?threadID=207604&start=0&tstart=0

Thoughts? We’re in early days yet, but this looks to me like a feeder program for Amazon Publishing.

EDIT: You can sign up for updates re: this program here.

2 thoughts on “Amazon Crowd-Sourced Publishing

  1. I’ve spent the morning trying to figure out where to submit this manuscript. Another publisher just passed, although they liked it they felt it didn’t quite fit. Fitting into normative genre/category-specific pigeon holes seems to me a recurrent theme of rejection letters.

    Using popularity to determine publishing merit is an idea fraught with problems. But does that mean it won’t actually work? I think there are plenty of examples out there that might prove informative. WattPad leaps to mind. If you’re not already a big name, building a presence on that platform requires long term dedication.

    I think it is possible Amazon might be able to locate and raise some new, unique voices. I also suspect that there will be many, many voices that remain unheard in the zombie rush of indie authors that will inevitably crash their compound.

    • I am definitely excited to see any new way for works to reach publication, since it seems that every route gets a slightly different cross-section of work and provides a different set of circumstances that can lead to success. I see this mostly as a feeder program for Amazon Publishing, a crowd-sourced slush pile.

      And as someone who’s read slush piles, it can be not-so-pretty. I wonder if there will be any protections against mutual-admiration societies and logrolling. There’s still likely to be editors on the Apub end to vet quality, and if the first process doesn’t give them the type of material they want, they can refine the voting system.

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