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Top 10 Reasons to Publish Through Amazon

Whether you love or loathe shopping on Amazon (I love it) and whether you agree with all of their tactics (I don't), it is still the single best platform for self-publishing. They have more tools and outreach than any other entity can offer you.

1. In addition to e-books, you can upload a print copy through Create Space for those readers who prefer paper over plastic. I cannot recommend this highly enough. I only read print books.

Tweet this: “Textbook makers, bookstore owners, and college student surveys all say millennials still strongly prefer print for pleasure and learning, a bias that surprises reading experts given the same group’s proclivity to consume most other content digitally.” @mikerosenwald

2. Their upload process is extremely easy as opposed to some of the other e-book platforms. They accept multiple file types: PDF, Word® .doc, docx, or .rtf. They offer free templates that make formatting an interior (print), e-book, and cover easy.

A Step By Step Guide to Formatting Your File

Cover and Interior Templates

3. Their preview tool allows you to read through a virtual copy of your book before hitting publish or purchasing a proof. I highly recommend buying a printed proof. You will still find errors in print that you missed on screen. You may need multiple proofs. Share copies with willing readers who may also find things you missed. Yes, even e-books should be printed on paper and proofread.

Interior Reviewer Tool

4. It’s free! There is no need to order a ton of books up front to gather dust in your basement. However, you can order books as needed in any quantity.

5. There is no need to pay someone to format and upload for you if you can use Word® for Windows (any version). But if you truly need help, they offer professional services for a fee. Note: editors, designers, etc. do not work for free, nor should they be expected to.
 6. Their algorithm promotes your book through BISAC codes (Book Industry Standards and Communications) which are used by the book-selling industry to help identify and group books by their subject matter.

7. Their algorithm promotes your book through keywords. As readers browse titles, locations, and subjects, your book may pop up below it. This list regenerates often.


8. They email suggestions to readers beyond your own email list (if you have one).

9. They have national and international market distribution. In addition to the Kindle store and, they offer your print and e-books through Amazon Europe: Great Britain (, Germany (, France (, Italy (, and Spain ( They have plans to expand to more markets. No other self-publishing platform comes close.


10. With an assigned ISBN, your book can be ordered by request through their expanded distribution at bookstores, other online retailers, libraries, academic Institutions, and the CreateSpace Direct wholesale store.

You can do all of this without enrolling in their Kindle Select/Kindle Unlimited program. So, you can also take advantage of other platforms that don't require exclusivity, such as Nook, Smashwords, KOBO, iBooks, etc.

To sum up, Amazon makes it easy to produce a quality product and helps market it. That does not get you off the hook for self-promotion, but you don't have to beg, plead, or blackmail them like you do friends, family, and complete strangers!

Diana Hurwitz is the author of Story Building Blocks: The Four Layers of Conflict, Story Building Blocks II: Crafting Believable Conflict, Story Building Blocks III: The Revision Layers, and the YA adventure series Mythikas Island. Her weekly blog, Game On: Crafting Believable Conflict explores how characters behave and misbehave. Visit for more information and free writing tools. You can follow her on Facebook and Twitter.


  1. Wow, I didn't know Amazon did all that. Thanks for the enlightenment. ��

    1. I've been using them since 2008. They have vastly improved upon their earlier toolkit. Once you publish on Amazon, google the title of your book. You will find it has been populated for sale on many sites.

  2. A great and helpful post to help writers swim through a sea of opportunity. A friend had tried to persuade me to self-publish long before I did. I wish I had. The only downside as I see it now is there are so many of us it's hard to break through. I did early on, but as more writers discovered self publishing as an alternative to traditional publishing, the harder it has become. A writer has to be careful not to promote to the point that it becomes spam, and I've seen that. But no promotion leaves you in that alternate sea - thousands of writers looking to be recognized. It's a slippery slope.

    1. Publicist is now a hat that any writer must wear. Word of mouth, recommendations on Facebook, groups such as Mystery Writers of America, Historical Writers Group, etc. are still where I get hundreds of recommendations to check out. I have found some amazing indie and traditional writers that way. It would be nice to have pages in magazines to promote your book, but so few get the nod. Oddly, most of them are books I'm not interested in reading. :)

  3. Great tips for Amazon publishing. Amazon does provide great services. An author with any kind of smarts has no excuse for not self-publishing there, if they're not aiming for traditional publishing.

    1. And, to emphasize, you don't have to go the exclusive route with them. Authors can exploit all venues.

  4. Totally agree, Diana. Amazon is the big kid on the block ... you can try to ignore him/her ... but might well end up with a black eye if you do. Just do as he/she says and life will be much easier.

    1. I remember when all of the big box stores arrived and all the mom and pops were hurt by it. Amazon is the new, bigger, international box.

  5. Thanks for this informative post, Diana. I'm getting closer and closer to trying out a self-pubbed book or pamphlet and do plan to use Amazon.

  6. Terrific post! I would love to see any of the points you made explored in greater depth - perhaps in future posts?

  7. Thanks so much for this post, Diana! I have never self-dubbed on Amazon (or anywhere, for that matter), but thank you for lessening my learning curve! It is a lessen lesson!

  8. I'm about to embark on the Kindle experience, so this couldn't be more timely. Thank you, Diana! It doesn't sound quite so terrifying now. :-)


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