You may or may not have heard of the recent changes that Amazon announced for their Kindle Unlimited payments to authors, and the ensuing flailing on the internet. Here’s the very short version, because today’s post is not even about what Amazon did:
Instead of paying a flat fee per borrow (if a book was read >10%), they are now paying authors per page read. Yes, Amazon knows the data and gets a new batch every time you synch your Kindle or Kindle App. To add to the confusion, they have created “Kindle Edition Normalized Pages” (KENP) for ebooks, which do not quite conform to the print page. Gradually, it became clear that payment for a single read page would be around 0.6 ct. And now it seems that because of that KENP setting, a borrow will bring you almost as much as a sale IF the reader completes the book. That isn’t bad at all, but again, that’s not really the point of this article.
You see, one of the biggest complaints I heard was that authors would not be able to predict their income with those changes Amazon is inflicting on them, with a mere two weeks warning (that’s when the email explaining the changes went out to authors).
They cannot predict their income with those changes!
And the sky is falling!
Frankly, that still baffles me.
Because, with all the numbers in the KDP dashboard, you know fairly well how many sales or borrows you had per book. Amazon pays the royalties due to you 60 days after the end of a month. That means, you can predict payments two months ahead. That’s actually pretty good for a freelancer.
No freelancer can ever fully predict her income from month to month.
Consider coaches. Web designers. Photographers. Musicians. They don’t know how many sales or clients they’ll have and when those clients actually pay the bills. Amazon authors have it pretty comfortable compared to that.
Yes, things usually don’t change drastically, and you will always have a guesstimate. And if rules change – which they do all the time for freelancers, let me tell you – you simply have to adapt.
I remember well the moment a change in VAT tax laws affecting all Europe basically made it impossible for me to offer a simple autoresponder email class. One income stream gone, over night. And I’ll never know two or three months ahead how many clients I’ll have exactly.
And just as a reminder, another subscription service pulled 80% of their romance and erotica categories without notifying their authors earlier this month. They just took the books out of their catalogue. There wasn’t nearly such a big outcry – but talk about income predictability there.
As an indie author, you are a freelancer. Part of that is never being able to know ahead what your income will be.
If you want predictable income, you need a day job.
It’s that simple – and yes, I’m brutal enough to say it out loud. If you have a need for a steady income, keep your job. It’ll make you happier than freelancing all out. And that’s perfectly okay.
Still, living with the level of insecurity that freelancing entails is a mindset thing. You need to have a business mindset, a can-do mindset and a smart mindset to live without knowing your income to the dollar every month. You will also have to avoid spending your whole income all the time. (Kris Rush has an entire series called The Freelancer Survival Guide here, with a lot of smart observations and tips.)
Just in case that particular aspect of being a freelancer is really upsetting to you, here’s some tapping to help you adapt.
Even though I totally hate not knowing exactly what I’ll earn, and I totally hate any changes Amazon makes, I’m okay the way I am, and I now choose to calm down and make sure I’ll be okay even if my income goes down.
Even though I hate this insecurity and it scares me when I don’t know how much I’ll earn in two months, I’m a good writer, I’m okay, and I now choose to prepare for some loss of income.
Even though I’m so afraid of those changes and what they might mean to me, I’m still a good author, and I now choose to know that I can adapt and create different income streams if necessary.
What’s your reaction to the Amazon changes?
How does the tapping make you feel?
What is your next project?
Write a comment and share the good stuff!
Image Source: F. Moebius
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PPS: I can help you shift that mindset. Instead of worrying, we can install a new pattern that lets you tap into creativity and allows you to be okay with shifting income.
EFT is the fastest way I know to shift limiting beliefs, old thought habits and other kinds of blocks. If you want help with that, click HERE and send me an email. Together, we’ll figure out how I can support you best.