At the end of the summer, Amazon offered to let all of us authors and publishers in on their new Kindle MatchBook program. MatchBook is an interesting deal. It’s set up to allow readers to get the e-book edition of a book at a very low cost when they buy the paperbound version — kind of a 2-for-1 thing.
The program has been offered to both indie authors and traditional publishers. That means you can get budget pricing on the e-book version of thousands of books at Amazon store. The budget pricing range is anywhere from $2.99 on down to Free. As an example, John Irving’s A Prayer for Owen Meany can be purchased as a paperback for $12.27 (plus shipping costs). When you choose the MatchBook option you get the e-book for just an additional $0.99. That’s a pretty good deal. (Of course, you can just buy the e-book for $2.99, which is also a good deal, right?).
I thought about this option for my own work long and hard. Both my novel, Beyond the Will of God, and my nine story collection, Implosions of America, are available in e-book and paperback formats. I finally decided it made sense for now to give away the e-book version when you buy the paperback edition. So if you buy either of those paperbacks, you get the e-book as a bonus at no cost (you just need to follow the MatchBook system in the right frame of the book page).
The reason this Amazon deal is so interesting is that it clearly targets those of you more likely to still want to read the print version of a book. Some people I know have waded into the waters of digital book land by purchasing both the e-book and the paper version. That’s a more expensive proposition, but it means you don’t have to fully give up your print book scruples. So now those people can save a bit of cash.
I’m hoping other authors and publishers figured out that giving away an ebook version when a print edition is purchased offers their readers great value. Its no skin off anyone’s back. I want you to buy my work. And I obviously want you to read it. But I also want you to understand the virtues of e-books if you’re still leaning towards print only.
Ultimately, of course, having both the paperback and the e-book version of my awesome stories is the best way to go. Leave the paperback out in your living room (or bathroom) for friends and family to see. My work needs the exposure! Read the e-book at your leisure wherever you want.
And remember, you don’t need an e-reader or tablet to read electronically. Your computer and your smart phone just require an e-reading app and there are plenty of them out there. Amazon’s Kindle Reader can be found here.
I want to point out as well, since this is a shameless self-promotion kind of running out of control, that you can also download my first collection of stories, Trying to Care, for free at Tomely.com in exchange for a tweet or Facebook share about the book. Just click on the cover over in the right frame of this web page. Trying to Care has some great stories in it. It also needs people to post reviews on Amazon. I’d be most grateful to anyone so inclined. Also, please note that you can get drastically discounted electronic editions of my other two books at Tomely in exchange, again, for tweets and shares.
Pass this post around to your peeps. Amazon’s MatchBook offering is pretty unique. One of the interesting findings researchers are coming up with is that people who buy e-books tend to read more books than they did five and ten years ago. That in itself should be reason to get on board with this deal.
Of course, the best way to save money on books is to buy digital. You can get Implosions for $3.99 most anywhere online. And Beyond the Will of God is just $4.99. (Less at Tomely!)
I have a new column coming out at Talking Writing in a few days on the coming onslaught of electronic books. Get in front of the curve now.
However you choose to read, enjoy. And make sure to pop a review up on Amazon when you’re done. Or drop me a line here at this website. It’s always nice to hear from readers.