Monday, December 11, 2017

Addressing Amazon Issues and Myths

If you're an author publishing through Amazon - and let's face it, that's about all of us - there is apparently some issue with the reports.  I've been getting an error message for the past week or so. I did some research last night by going into the community forum at KDP and it's not just me.  Loads of people are getting the same message with a subsequent drop in reported sales.  No need to panic.  I'm sure they're addressing the issue.  Also, some actual sales are showing up as free in the reports, even when your books are not free.  This morning the graph is telling me I gave away three books. None of my books are free right now.  However, the month to date report is showing them as sales, so it's all good. 

It does bring up an interesting quandary, though.  How do writers know whether the actual royalty deposits are correct when the reports are off?  No clue.  But there wasn't really a clue before.  I did see one person claiming this was a way for Amazon to steal from us.  Umm, and they call me paranoid. 

I guess we just have to trust that someone somewhere is keeping an eye on it.  Because, seriously?  There are certain people who are so hot to damn Amazon, you know darn well the company would be in deep shit if they tried to fudge this stuff.  So, it would be stupid of them to do it.  And they don't seem stupid. 

So, anyway, hang in there.  I'm sure this stuff will get cleared up eventually and we'll all get the money that's due us. 

In other Amazon related stuff, I saw a new report that Amazon is screwing us in the reviews.  The person posting this even had a link to Amazons terms for reviewing books, and guess what?  I read them and they don't seem any different than they were the last time some arm-waving fearmonger claimed Amazon was screwing us out of reviews.  Again, no worries here.  Yeah, reviews seem to be down, but it's across the board, not just at Amazon.  I think it has to do with people not wanting to write a review.  How many of us have a boatload of Goodreads ratings without corresponding reviews?  Yeah.  So, again, I don't think this is anything to get excited about. 

Hell, maybe the fearmongers who keep saying 'Amazon won't let you review that' are actually keeping people from trying to review books.  Jus' sayin'. 

Oh, and the whole thing about having to spend $50 at Amazon to be able to write a review?  It's not new and it's not stopping people from reviewing your books.  For one thing, it's cumulative across the entirety of your online purchasing lifespan and includes everything you've ever bought at Amazon (except gift cards, I guess.  :shrug:).  If you've never in your whole life bought more than $50 worth of stuff at Amazon, you can't write a review.  Who hasn't bought $50+ worth of stuff through Amazon??   I see this as a non-issue.  So, if you want to review a book at Amazon, go for it.  If they, for some reason, deny your review - reword it and try again later.  (I had a couple reviews get denied because they had curse words in them, so I fixed it and resubmitted and it worked.) 

Any other Amazon issues out there that need to be addressed?  Anything you've heard/read but haven't had time to confirm/deny yet? 


  1. My sales have been so down the last month or so I couldn't tell ya if my sales are showing up or not. Yeah, I'm getting the message too. Even my KENP pages are down. I am getting a few showing up. If things don't improve, I'm probably going to take everything off KU and go wide with them. My royalty for December so far? $34. Yeah, you read that right. I get sick to my stomach every times I check my page.

    I keep seeing people complaining about losing reviews--ie, Amazon has deleted reviews from their books. Not sure if that's really happening or not. This probably goes back to the scammers who offer reviews for pay. I'm just sick of the thieves who game the system. And pirates. And...yeah. Anyway, crawling back under my rock now.

  2. This isn't the first time I've seen the "having troubles" warning. They'll get it fixed in a week or so.

    As for reviews, I make a policy of not reading mine (though I do peek at my nonfiction occasionally) so that's something else I don't worry about.

    There are enough real problems in the world!