My Exclusivity Quandary with Kindle Unlimited

Grandma and Grandpa in the Latin Quarter medMy Exclusivity Quandary with Kindle Unlimited

Please Note: Just my reasoning for me. Please explore all options as they apply to you.


Pictured Left :

“Grandma and Grandpa in the Latin Quarter”

One of several titles available free from participating outlets.

No subscription or account needed at either Scribd or Smashwords for this title.

More FREE titles listed at end of article.


“the intent of this blog is to incrementally build a body of thought that works toward integrating various topics, yoga, fitness, and the arts – it’s a process…”


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My Exclusivity Quandary with Kindle Unlimited


Categories : Author Bio Info & Updates


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Note: I don’t agree with everything these three guys say, though most of it – but they definitely make great points worth pondering; more evenly balanced than most posts one usually sees.

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Kindle Unlimited’s Two-Tier System Makes Some Authors Second-Class Citizens

and, because this post is also posted at The Passive Voice, with its own huge comment thread –


Reminder :

Just my reasoning for me. Please explore all options as they apply to you.


I wanted to go exclusive in Kindle Unlimited, but…

A Reason : Dislike of Exclusiveness

In a very intense thread on the KBoards, Kindle Unlimited: the scoop, , in response to a post about concern of how sales would affect rankings of books, I say,

I would say it’s even more problematic than that. Search results and rankings “may” be being skewed via who is exclusive and who is not within KDP.

“If” so, this creates a two tier system. A form of gatekeeper based on exclusivity.

David Gaughran addresses some of these possible imbalances (also commented about on this thread by other folk) :

A basic possible sense of unfairness, though, didn’t stop me from once again putting a title into Select, Lunch with Grandma and Grandpa.

What prompted me to finally decide to use my three day option (very fair option by Amazon) and pull my title and make it available where non-exclusive is allowed (Scribd, Oyster, iTunes, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Smashwords, and libraries) – was simply logistics.

Main Reason – Logistical Discovery

Quite frankly, five free days (vs any number of free days I might want, at my discretion, at other platforms) has not been any boon for me. So that was not a factor, even going in during my three days.

No, it was in regard to letting folk know the new title was there.

Here’s a fictionalized account of my thoughts 🙂

Yay! Another Outlet – Great, a subscription program from Amazon! Can’t wait to tell all my customers and friends!

Devil’s Advocate – I guess you could do a blog post, tweet and Google+ it. Maybe the people who see any of that will sign up.

Yay! Another Outlet – Yeah. They can sign up. Just like with Scribd or Oyster or their library.

Devil’s Advocate Self – ‘Course, they may want to drop one of the other pay subscriptions.

Yay! Another Outlet – Oh. But I only have the one title in Kindle Unlimited (KU). That’s ok. Then folk’ll go buy the other titles in the regular part of Amazon.

Devil’s Advocate – Is that what you think would happen for people who signed up for Scribd or Oyster?

Yay! Another Outlet – Well, no, but…

Devil’s Advocate – You’ll need to shift more titles into exclusive with KU.

Yay! Another Outlet – No, I can’t do that, those are on Scribd and Oyster, and I want them there and other places.

Devil’s Advocate – You can do it. Like some bloggers have said. You can move digital content any time.

Yay! Another Outlet – Not really. Select is locked in for 90 days. I’ve tried that, well, a few other times…

Devil’s Advocate – Three other times.  Last time, all in. Maybe this time will be different.

Yay! Another Outlet – I don’t know. Anything not exclusive gets less promo suggestions, if any. And if everybody goes into KU, then it’s just back to the same thing, gotta get sales to get promos to get sales.

Devil’s Advocate – Then don’t do Kindle Unlimited.

Yay! Another Outlet – But I want to!

Devil’s Advocate Self – Wait til it goes open, without exclusivity.

Yay! Another Outlet – When is that?

Devil’s Advocate Self – I don’t know. Maybe never.

Yay! Another Outlet – I’m stuck.

Devil’s Advocate – Deciding what to do, yes, maybe. Being in an exclusive arrangement without much more benefit, maybe less, than not being in it, no. That you can decide.

And I rescinded my decision to be in Select and Kindle Unlimited, and chose to be everywhere else…

Lunch with Grandma and Grandpa

Available at : etailers, subscription services, and libraries.

lunch with grandma and grandpa med

To my friends, and really anyone else, choosing to remain or join KU, all my best wishes for you.

I don’t like to burn bridges, though I’ve had some burned behind me as I left 🙂

One never knows where one will walk, and may need that bridge again…


The truth is, in my opinion, Amazon doesn’t even need exclusivity anymore…

  • Amazon is successfully big enough not to require exclusivity from hundred of thousands of indies that don’t make enough to make excluding themselves from everyone not in Kindle Unlimited
  • Amazon is trusted enough it will and does draw and retain customers without penalizing small self-published authors by not being able to sell elsewhere.

Not for the hundreds of thousands of struggling writers across all platforms, theirs (Amazon), Apple, Barnes & Nobe, Kobo, Smashwords, libraries.

Examples from other fields…

IBM, in the 80s, stayed closed system and things went a different direction from them. See “Halt & Catch Fire” – story of Compaq Computer. Fantastic show.

More recently, the success of Android is another example

Despite iPhone 6 hype, Android continues to dominate iOS market share

Yes, these aren’t perfect match-ups, but the part about exclusivity, I believe, fits. Mostly 🙂


Bottomline :

Amazon is successful and trusted enough to go it wide open.

When and if it lifts the barrier to all indies, and no longer favors those exclusive vs those non-exclusive that list, I’ll gladly put all my titles in.

Assuming royalties and terms are the same or comparable to now of course 🙂


Free Stuff, No Exclusivity Needed

As an example of non-exclusive and competing benefits, Scribd allows free-pricing and folk can read my free books on Scribd (thus trying it out) without an account.

I would place all my books in a non-exclusive Amazon subscription program.

If the other features remain the same 🙂


Currently Priced Free

Paris in 5 1-2 Weeks Days 1&2 med
Click to Enlarge

Paris in 5 1/2 Weeks : Around Blvd St-Germain Small Streets of Paris, Notre Dame – Days 1 & 2

Non-fiction photo-memoir.

Original Paris images from an extended stay my wife and I enjoyed in Paris late 2012.

Introduces the series Paris in 5 1/2 Weeks. Is a re-creation, with added commentary and links, to a series of free blog posts featuring the first 12 days in Paris. Day 13 begins a serial series of eBooks.

Days 13 through 30+ enjoy the benefit of more images, expanded commentary and links, plus the unexpected perspective of time, the latter mingling memories with new insights.

The Concert

Chosen because it features all six young cousins (ages 9-18) featured in many of my short stories, novels, and novellas. Set in Austin, it is also the first of four in a series that introduces their relationships and adventures for all future stories they are involved in.

Very short, cute, humorous, and very Austin-y.

Grandma and Grandpa in the Latin Quarter

One of several stories involving Rosetta and Arturo, grandparents to the six cousins. Also is a great intro to my many stories set in Paris.

Predominately about the two grandparents relationship, and how it subtly changes when they come across the six grandchildren near the end of the story.

Slumming in Paris Part Two
Click to Enlarge

Slumming in Paris Part 2 : With The Children – Welcome to Paris

First of seven novellas which finish out the Slumming in Paris series. Part One is a romantic novella featuring Arthur and Gricinda, before the arrival of the six cousins in Paris.

Nice Thing ‘Bout Getting Old(er)

My most enduring free listed title. One of my first to be formatted into an ebook, and slightly wonky and awkward because of that. Is scheduled for an overhaul this year (summer 2014), and will remain priced free.

My wife Sheila and I have been nationally certified as fitness instructors, and this book is a compilation of material from my website. Much of the material has been very important to our health and happiness. And much of that important material was information we didn’t even know we didn’t know. 🙂

Going to SXSW in Our 60s medGoing to SXSW in our 60s, Photo Memoir

Fun non-fiction photo-memoir with links and commentary.

Also provides nice background for some Austin short stories, such as, “Grandma and Grandpa @ Dirty Sixth Street.”



Please check my Free Page here on my site for any title or other information updates : Free .


namaste´- con dios – god be with you


Sheila & Adan
Sheila & Adan


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