Amazon, Goodreads and an Idea

I had this cool idea after Chantelle Atkins, a fellow author, was reminding her readers and the world Amazon does not link up the reviews across country.  This means a review at Amazon US will not be seen by a person on Amazon UK.

I thought well they are the parent company to Goodreads so why not streamline the whole review process for the book section only through Goodreads.  How hard would that be?  I mean granted there would need to be office meetings and Goodreads and Amazon would have to strike a deal together on how it would work.

Other than that…?  Not seeing a whole lot which would be bad or complex.  I also know parent companies make money off their little companies under them though they do not usually make their choices for them about business.  A few parent companies might have more involvement but others might have less.  Still, Amazon is making money off of Goodreads so to promote it you would think would be in Amazon’s favor.  You would think, right?

Well, me being me sent them an email.  I got the worst email back I’ve gotten from any company.  It only stated the facts which I already knew, something about a highlight review (this part didn’t even really make sense) and how Goodreads is separate so they don’t share data with Amazon.  Ok, so?  I thought the least they could do was review the idea and send it to someone who might be higher on the food chain.  I guess not.

Thinking companies should want more ideas and less upset sad customer service

Terra Ann Spencer


IPA Annual Report

IPA stands for International Publishers Association.  They have a report out every year.  I’ll try to do a link to the PDF file but if you can’t access it, google IPA annual report.  PDF file.

Now why read it?

Well, first it contains some interesting information about publishers.  There is one article by Jens Bammel not liking the value of Amazon.  It goes on to quickly cover the idea Amazon is not caring enough about books so the customer isn’t getting enough value for the money.  I openly disagree with this.  I believe customers are bright people who over time will weed through the authors not worthy of their money by Goodreads and other sites.  I have enough fair in the customers to not worry about the huge amount of self published authors.

Second, it really gives you a sense the publishing companies are starting to get scared by the recent and upcoming changes to their once powerful hold on the book market.  Now it’s the authors along with the customers deciding who gets the big bucks and who gets left in the dust.  Publishing companies use to and still do not publish most of the books which land on their door step. Now with Amazon authors don’t have to be controlled or pushed aside for a publishing companies agendas.  This means more freedom of speech and less control at a company level.

It leaves me thinking if this isn’t already in place someone needs to start the ISPA.  International Self Publishers Association.  This would help to defend self publishers rights to publish and promote self publishers around the world.

If anyone has heard of anything like this, please let me know.

Supporting the ISPA in her head for now

Terra Ann Spencer

Who owns Goodreads? Really.

I was looking for something else which by now you as the reader should realize is how I come up with most my posts.  Today I was looking over at Amazon and thinking of doing polls where you get a sad amount of money to do them.  I couldn’t find it.  I was at the bottom of the page.  You know, where it lists out all the extra site stuff no one ever reads and on Amazon it lists out their other companies.  Amazon being so huge is a parent company to places like Zappos, IMDB and CreateSpace.

Did you know they are the parent company to Goodreads as well?

I did not.  I thought at first maybe those little companies at the bottom were paid ads.  Right?  Could be?

So off to Goodreads I went and I looked and looked.  No where is there anything about Amazon there.  There is how the company got started, there is a ton of photos of geeky people (um, sorry nice people) who work there and lots of up sounding junk to make the Goodread story sound cool.  Everything but the fact Amazon is their parent company.

Off to Google I hurried.  YAY, GOOGLE!  I punched in ‘Who owns Goodreads?’ and the first thing in a big box was Amazon is the parent company to Goodreads.  Hmmm…so if I pay the huge ad money on Goodreads for the novel which is listed on Amazon, Amazon is making extra money off my sad attempt to sell my novel?  Yep.

So wishing things were a little less Amazon some days

Terra Ann Spencer

Tiny Post

I talked to a person from my local book club and found out they get their ideas for books from Goodreads.

So here is a site called Self Published Author to check out with a great amount of details on what and how to use Goodreads.  I don’t believe this will neccercarly help you but it won’t hurt.  Doing nothing will hurt your novel’s sales.

Liking the tiny post

Terra Ann Spencer

Let’s cover the book

Book cover design is money the self published author will have to deal with in the end.  If you can do it yourself, that is great but most out there will have to pay for it.  So where to go and who to use?

I did a quick search online and found these sites.  Remember always use common sense and get references of their work so you can check how others liked working with the artist and were they happy with the final result.

First one up is 99 designs.  This is a main stream design site and recommended on several other sites along with a top ad on google.  They are higher in price.  The cost ranges from $299 to $1199 for covers.  They do design more than book covers so if you are looking for a website design as well, this might be a great option.

Second is a list of book cover artist listed at Goodreads forum.  The artist posted their information on the forum and their contact information such as a website.

Third is a website called Cover to Cover.  It’s a cheaper service at only $145.  Look over the designs and again be careful as I’ve never used any of these sites so I can’t say for sure if they are on the up and up.

Lastly, Cover Design Studio is where you can get a template and let’s you DIY book cover.  If you’re not great with a photo software like Photoshop, this might be a great help to you.

It took me less than 5 minutes to find these sites on Google.  It isn’t hard to find people are who are willing to do you a cover for your novel.  You could even check out other writer forums online to see if anyone has used the one you are thinking of going with before you do.

Thinks it’s time to get away from her blog and to her novel today

Terra Ann Spencer