What Makes Kindle Singles Publishing Different?
- Easy Kindle Publishing
A great way to profit from Kindle is to publish Kindle Singles. These are short eBooks that you can publish to Kindle. They are shorter than a novel, and can even be as short as a typical short story. Anywhere from 5,000 words to 30,000 words will fit with a Kindle Single, although it works best for shorter works.
Amazon calls them “Kindle Singles” because they think of it kind of like introducing one song of an entire album of music, but for books instead. They can be on any topic. You can publish fiction, essays, reports, studies, and even memoirs this way.
The one thing different about publishing Kindle singles is that Amazon actually vets the books they agree to publish under their Kindle Singles program. You can nominate your own book by emailing them an attachment if your book is not published, or the title, ASIN and a summary if it is already published.
You can submit works that you’re only outlining or that you’ve completed a bit of writing on to get approval, or you can wait until you publish it under your normal KDP account and then see if you can get it approved.
A good thing about being approved for a Kindle Single is that even if you price your book below the $2.99 amount you can still get a 70% commission, but you can’t price it over $4.99. The lower priced model encourages readers to buy more books. Most people don’t think twice about paying .99 cents for anything, so you’ll be more likely to catch the impulse buyers. The good thing is once they’ve read anything you’ve written, they’re going to be more likely to buy more.
Tips to Getting Your Single Accepted
Getting your single approved requires that your book is well-written and unique in some way. The important thing is that your writing must be good, and your book must be accurate and fit in with the idea of a single format.
More Kindle Singles Rules to Know:
- Get it Professionally Edited – Even though you should probably do this for all the books you publish on Kindle, this is even more important since they’re going to read it and approve it.
- Have a Professional Cover Made – Make the cover amazing so that it stands out.
- Publish on KDP First – This isn’t required, but it will make it easier. You can also pitch them with your ideas, or send incomplete works for advance approval.
- Watch Your Word Count – They don’t want works shorter than 5,000 words or longer than 30,000 words.
- Write an Amazing Summary – Your summary included in your cover letter is essential to helping you get approved. If you aren’t sure how to write something like this, find a copywriter who is experienced in writing book marketing materials.
- Follow the Rules — According to Amazon, none of the following will be accepted to be published in Kindle Singles. Read the rules as published on their site before choosing your genre as some things might change.
- Incomplete Works – You can’t publish one chapter at a time of your book with a cliff hanger
and call it a single. Each story you publish should be complete in its own right. Think Law and Order: SVU. There are many stores in the series, but each show is complete.
- Can’t Be Published On Any Public Website – Excerpts are okay, but this work may not be published elsewhere in its entirely other than KDP.
Types of Content Best for Singles:
- No Public Domain
- No Reference Books
- No Travel Guides
- No Children’s Books
- No Story Collections
- No How to Manuals
If you meet all those criteria, then you will more than likely get approved if your single is enjoyed and liked by the reviewers.
There are content types that are best for singles that you should consider before getting started. These are content types that afford themselves to shorter content and read times.
Examples of Successful Kindle Singles
- Short Stories
- Academic Reports
- Short Memoirs
- Opinion Pieces
- Short Fiction
- Short Literary Series
All of these lend themselves to keeping it short, yet interesting, and give you plenty of ways to profit from Kindle Singles.
Both self-published and house published works are in Kindle Singles. Popular authors and little-known authors all have worked in Kindle Singles. Let’s look at a few examples.
1. Short Stories from Hogwarts of Heroism, Hardship and Dangerous Hobbies by J.K. Rowling
2. Hogwarts: An Incomplete and Unreliable Guide by J.K. Rowling
Of course, she has two bestsellers in Kindle singles under Fiction. Both are about her famous best-selling series Harry Potter directly or indirectly. If you click through and visit these books you’ll see what makes them popular. One, Harry Potter fans are crazy about the books and two, the book covers are amazing, as are the wonderful titles and descriptions.
3. Cornbread by Sean Hammer
This work of fiction was published by an indie author, who at the time didn’t have that many books under his belt. But, thanks to Kindle Singles he’s now more popular. Even though his rating is lower at about 3.5 stars, he has over 176 customer reviews. He is proof that indie authors can get accepted.
4. Mayflower: The Voyage from Hell by Kevin Jackson
Everyone likes to think of the Mayflower romantically, but Kevin Jackson takes us to a new place with his historical single. The book cover is really beautiful, and professional, the angle he comes at the information is new and original. Like J.K. Rowling, he didn’t skimp on the description either. He used everything to make people want to buy his single.
5. I Give You My Body…”: How I Write Sex Scenes by Diana Gabaldon
Another best-selling author in the number two spot for Nonfiction singles right now (this is updated hourly). Her Cover is beautiful and expressive. It explains exactly what’s inside, and the description also further peaks your interest by explaining her other works so that people will want to read it. She also has a complete author’s page on Author Central.
6. The Long Run by Mishka Shubaly
This author has several singles and loves to publish them. This particular single, a best-seller, is about his life. Publishing a memoir if you can relate to a particular audience will be successful. With a memoir, you can use it to promote yourself and your other work. Like the other successful authors, he has a well filled out author page, a great cover on his book, and he also
wrote a fabulous description. There are several articles online that talk about Mr. Shubaly’s success and how he lives off his income from singles.
7. The Meaning of Craft Beer by Evan Rail
This is a wonderful little single that will explain to you all about craft beer. The reason this was picked is due to the fact that while the cover is simple this book is still a highly rated book on Kindle due to its interesting subject matter. It has an excellent description, good ratings, and the author has a great Author’s page, too.
There are many more examples, and not all of them are from well-known authors, so don’t despair. If you have a well-written book that fits in with their criteria, you have a good chance of getting approved regardless of who you are.
Ways to Use Singles for Profit
There are several ways that you can use Kindle Singles to help you add to your profit. These ideas should get you started thinking about what you already have that can be turned into a Kindle Single and what you may want to write about in the future.
Why Singles Work
- Test the Market — Start with a single to see if there is an interest in the topic. Write an introductory piece about your topic, while also making it complete. Use it to get feedback from readers before writing a full-length book. For example, you might have an idea to write a long historical nonfiction piece about Donald Trump but first, decide to test the market with just one story from his life. As long as the story is complete, and the book has a beginning, middle, and end and can be enjoyed and consumed without buying another one to see what happens, it’s perfect.
- Break Down Bigger Books – Sometimes, a long book has very complete chapters that can be broken down into smaller books by simply adding some content that helps it become complete without the other chapters. People’s attention spans are short today and they may be more likely to read your entire book this way if they can take it in small doses.
- Publish Interviews – If you’ve been interviewed, you can transcribe the interview, add in some back story, and then publish that as a single. This type of thing can lead to online and offline speaking engagements, interviews, and more.
- Write a Prequel – If you already have a published book, you can actually boost sales by creating a short prequel and selling it as a Kindle Single. The single has to be a complete story but it doesn’t
have to be “the” complete story. For example, if your main character has a first date that ends in a big kiss, marriage, or something else that can be a full story in and of itself. If it’s nonfiction, one day of a train trip across the West will be complete, and can market your full-length book about how we conquered the West.
- Short Story Break — Write a short story to keep interest between writing full-length books in a series. For example, you can publish short stories that further develop your characters but don’t appear in your books. Again, as long as the story is a complete story on its own it’s within the rules.
- Demonstrate Your Expertise – For example, if you’re a CPA and you have a few books about CPA type topics that are longer and more expensive, you could break it down and write about just one topic such as Accounts Payable, or why not write a single on “A day in the life of a CPA.” You might even write your memoir that explains how you got where you are.
These are all awesome ideas on how to use Kindle Singles to increase your profits in your business. It’s important to include your links to other books, your author page or something where they can learn more about you and purchase your products and services.
There are many people today who don’t have a lot of time to sit down and read a super long novel over 40,000 words. But, they do like reading in short spurts, something that can be digested within a couple of hours. Singles fit the bill, especially if yours is priced low. Some people even say that shorter works are the future of publishing.
- Price – Readers will not mind paying less for your single, in fact, they’re going to be more likely to buy because they know what they want and what they’re willing to pay.
- Time – Most people do not have the time to sit up all night reading a long novel like people used to do. But, they don’t like being left hanging either. Therefore a Kindle Single will work nicely into an afternoon of reading or bedtime reading.
- Self-Promotion – When you write a single, you can include a list of other books you’ve published inside the book. This will be a way to market your book and your business to others. Since more people are likely to buy your Kindle Single, more people will now find out about your other work.
- Easier to Write – A shorter book is easier to write. You can probably get a 5,000 to 30,000-word book finished, assuming all your research is done, within a week. You’ll just have to wait on your editor and graphic designer to get the editing and cover done.
- Earn More Credibility – The more books you publish, the more people will admire you and think you are smart. By publishing shorter books, you will laser focus on each topic showing what you know even better.
Publishing and being accepted to publish a Kindle Single is a lucrative way to increase your income on Kindle, but it will also help you increase your income outside of Kindle due to the fact that these titles have to be approved before being included in Kindle Singles. Having an editor approve your work adds more credibility to your business as a published author.