As publishers of walk guide books, Skyware Press, we've always had a love/hate relationship with Amazon. As a retailer they squeeze profit margins till the pips squeak making it almost impossible to make a living unless you are selling to them in pallet loads. On the other hand our customers, the walkers we want to reach with our books, expect to find what they want online and if it's not there they will buy something else. After all, guide book A looks much the same as guide book B until you're lost on the moors and by then it's too late.
As well as producing guide books I also write short stories and last year I decided to bring out a collection. Our traditional route to publishing means that we have a couple of thousand copies of a title printed at once at a substantial cost. A couple of thousand books that require storage, marketing and distribution. I did not want to go down the same route with a slim volume of stories so turned to Amazon to investigate self publishing. We were able to follow the online instructions, upload my documents and produce a book for sale both as a Kindle e-book and a hard copy print-on-demand. I was able to design the cover myself using one of my paintings and order author's copies to give to family and friends. It wasn't just a single click but it wasn't difficult either and best of all it was completely free. There was no huge financial outlay, there are no boxes of books under my bed but I do have to do some publiciy to encourage sales.
So to anyone who would like to see their work in print it is an option worth considering and if you'd like to see the results click here