I stumbled upon Debbie Weil’s thoughtful take on publishing through Amazon’s fabulous “new” concept, Kindle Singles. Weil is the author of one of the first and most definitive books about business blogging: THE CORPORATE BLOGGING BOOK.
Her article intros with perception I’ve wrestled with myself: your book is your platform. In Weil’s case, she is intrigued by her research about Baby Boomers and social media, but she knows all too well that when an author releases and speaks about her book, it becomes accepted as her area of expertise; young at heart, Weil is reticent about becoming the “old person” expert. I get it, too. I have a collection of published nonfiction materials on the topic of family and spirituality, and the makings of a nonfiction book outlining (what I believe could be) an entirely fresh take on making every part of your life more enriching. On the flipside, my novel in progress is decidedly more edgy, not always “pretty,” and my characters are not necessarily interested in thinking about spiritual or religious ideas.
Debbie Weil explains, “Amazon was clever enough several months ago to identify a new publishing space in the age of short attention spans. It’s called the Kindle Single and it’s for almost-book ideas, 10,000 to 30,000 words in length. For those who’ve written a book, a typical chapter is 5,000 words. Amazon calls a Kindle Single ‘a compelling idea – well researched, well argued, and well illustrated – expressed at its natural length.'”
“This is brilliant,” Weil adds. “It combines the possibilities of rapid self-publishing with the natural appetite of readers for less – quick, compelling and digestible.”
I couldn’t agree more. Like most writers with a variety of niches, this digital format gives the opportunity to cast a wider net to a variety of audiences.
Weil also included a solid list of Kindle Single related links:
- Amazon news release about Kindle Singles (Jan. 26, 2011)
- My Amazon Kindle Single Publishing Experiment by Larry Dignan (editor-in-chief of ZDNET)
- Kindle Singles Will Bring Novellas, Chapbooks and Pamphlets to E-Readers (Wired.com)
- Living Singles by Virginia Heffernan (her final New York Times’ The Medium column)
- Shorter E-Books for Smaller Devices by Jenna Wortham (New York Times)
- 1,900 copies: how a top-selling Kindle Single is generating new audiences for ProPublica (Nieman Journalism Lab)
Named one of the Most Influential Women in Technology in 2010 by Fast Company, Debbie Weil is a rare species – a Baby Boomer who is a digital native. She launched her first website in 1995, she has been blogging since 2003 at debbieweil.com/blog.