Friday, June 6, 2014

Casualties of War

Whatever your views may be on the Amazon / Hachette spat, please think carefully before jumping on board the 'boycott Amazon' bandwagon. As far as I can see, neither party is blameless and neither one is really in it for the good of the creative people who actually write the books. It’s all about the money. Regardless of which billion dollar corporation ends up having the biggest dick in this pissing contest, it is the small presses and indie authors who are getting a literary corn-holing.

I’m all for the freedom to choose. I want you to be able to purchase the books you love from a vendor of your choice. Amazon has the right not to stock Hachette’s titles in the same way that other bookstores, such as Barnes & Noble have the right not to stock titles published through Amazon’s publishing arm, Create Space. But as an author, who is signed to independent publishers I don’t have the luxury of choice. I know that Amazon has massive flaws, but it is the best and in the case of my self-published short story collection, SMOKE ‘EM IF YOU GOT ‘EM, the only viable platform I have.
Maybe, if people were to keep boycotting Amazon for the year or so it would take to make them financially sit up and take notice then things might start to change. It could even herald the arrival of new companies to provide both Amazon and the traditional publishers with some fresh competition, although somehow I doubt it. One thing I know for sure is that any prolonged embargo will mean the end for a lot of small presses and indie authors who depend on Amazon to get their words out into the world. If you stop buying your books from Amazon, for thousands of writers that means you stop buying their books period.
I have a day job. If you don’t buy my books I can still pay my mortgage and feed my family. That’s not the case for every independent author and publisher. It’s all about the money for them too.


No comments:

Post a Comment

Got something on your mind? Well have at it.