Today I've edited another chapter and have registered an account with KDP (Amazon Kindle) and set up a 'new title' to publish. How exciting you may think...but no, actually 'how daunting' would be the correct question! There are so many things to look into and make decisions on, and as I have had a few people asking me questions about the process I thought I'd share!
Decision 1 is whether to tick the option for KDP Select - this is a service where your book is exclusive to Kindle for 90 days and from what I can make out is then put in their lending library and it also gets 5 days free promo. Personally unless I hear differently I don't think I'll do this as I think I'd prefer to hit smashwords, ibooks & Barnes & Noble all at the same time.
Decision 2 is whether to buy an ISBN number. Apparently you don't need one and so far I don't know how much it will cost and whether it is worth it. So please comment if you know the answer!
Decision 3 is whether to enable Digital Rights Managment or not - which it explains is to inhibit unauthorised distribution, so I think I'll click this one.
Then I have to decide two categories to help target my book to customers - so I can tick fiction and jeuvenile fiction, but they then open loads more options and there isn't a specific YA supernatural; so do I go for horror/ fantasy & magic/ romance or sci-fi? Probably fantasy & magic will be the one.
Then there are all the account and royalties payment decisions to make - you get paid seperately for each country - so the Amazon UK pays in £, Amazon US pays in $ etc and they only pay you once you've earnt £100/$ by cheque which could take months if I'm only earning 30p a book! However it says they pay every £10/$ if you set up EFT which stands for electronic funds transfer...brilliant I thought until I looked at setting up my bank account details and it asks for all these weird things like a routing number, a BIC code and a Swift code!! I think I'll have to phone the bank as I have no idea what these are!
Then I have to decide a book price which determines the royalty percentage I get from Amazon. If I set the price under 2.99$/£1.49 then I can only claim 35% royaltys but if I set the price at over £1.49 I will get 70%. Thats a massive difference, but most unknown indie publishers seem to start at under £1 until they get a fan base... so it looks like I'll be stuck with the 35% rate for a while!
The last small nightmare I have come up with is something to do with the IRS - basically from what I can make out Amazon have to legally report all royalties to the IRS and they will take 30% tax from me (even though I pay tax here) unless I fill out paperwork. It mentions a W8-BEN and a US tax identification number Ahhhhhh...haven't got a clue and I guess I'll need to suss out UK tax returns at some point as well!