There’s been rumors flying about this for some time, now, but the email I got from Createspace earlier this week cemented the reality – that particular publish-on-demand model is done and gone in just a few weeks. There’s nothing on the Createspace website yet, but I’m not sure that has been updated in months if not years. So where does this leave the newly fledged publish-on-demand marketplace? That remains to be seen. It does not, however, leave Indie Authors like myself high and dry. I have all my print books through them, but the email they sent is reassuring.
We’re excited to announce that CreateSpace (CSP) and Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) will become one service, and in the coming days, we will give CreateSpace members the ability to move their account and titles. To ensure a quality experience, we will add links to the CreateSpace member dashboard in phases so authors may see it at different times. As a reminder, Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) now offers Expanded Distribution to sell your paperbacks to physical bookstores in the US, as well as the ability to sell your paperback books on Amazon.ca and Amazon.com.au (Amazon.mx coming soon). With these features, KDP’s paperback distribution will be on par with CreateSpace’s distribution. KDP also offers features that aren’t available on CreateSpace. These include the ability to purchase ads to promote paperbacks on Amazon.com and locally printed author copies in Europe.
As a result of these enhancements to KDP and our ongoing efforts to provide a more seamless experience for managing your paperback and digital books, CreateSpace and KDP will become one service. On KDP, your paperbacks will still be printed in the same facilities, on the same printers, and by the same people as they were on CreateSpace.
In a few weeks, we’ll start automatically moving your CreateSpace books to KDP. Your books will remain available for sale throughout the move and you’ll continue to earn royalties. Once we begin this process you’ll be unable to edit existing titles or create new titles on CreateSpace.
There are some differences, of course. And some things I’d have liked to see them change, but I understand why they didn’t. To address that latter bit: I’d have liked to see them move to a US based printer. One that wasn’t quite so… quirky. I encounter the cover layout crew over there a lot, because I’m not only doing my own books, which happen once or twice a year, I’m working as a cover designer with clients every month or so to get covers through Createspace, and one thing I’ve learned is that even if you follow their guidelines out to the fourth decimal place and precise DPI, they’re going to occasionally boot it back with request for changes. And the spines, dear heaven make up your minds! Over the last five years of working with them, I’ve decided it depends on the print tech you get, and their grasp of file handling. So I’d have liked to see it go to a printer who hired people with half a brain. But hey, that would cost more and then we’d pay more for books…
Which we will be doing anyway, at least with books that have a low page count. “Some low-page count books will see an increase in printing fees when they are printed in the UK and EU.” I received a separate email about this, since evidently at least one of my books fits this category – no surprise, as I have a 40 page (90 if you count blank sides and back matter) coloring book on the market. Also, the payment schedule is going to change to align with how KDP already pays for ebooks, which again makes perfect sense. “CreateSpace pays monthly royalties 30 days after the end of the month in which they were earned while KDP pays monthly royalties approximately 60 days after the end of the month in which they were earned. As a result, you’ll be paid in September for any royalties earned in August on CreateSpace and be paid in October for any royalties earned in August on KDP.”
I will probably keep publishing through Amazon for my softcover needs. I’m used to the system – quirks and all – and I have flat no time to be messing around with other venues that offer appealing options. Also, for the next little while I’m, um, let me put it this way: I now have three out of four kids in college. Yeah. So! While I have seen Lightning Source’s hardcovers – Christopher Woods uses them – and they are great, just like you’d get on the shelf in a bookstore with dust jacket and everything, I’ll hold off on that experiment a while. And while I met a nice young entrepreneur with a printing press and a dream of beautiful books, I’ll hold off on that art book for a while, too. Although I am so tempted to use Outlandish Press for some retro posters.
Speaking of books… I have some. You might want to check them out. Maybe buy one… or several!