Having published through Smashwords, I’ve somewhat familiarized myself with Oyster and Scribd, how they allow customers to pay one membership price and read their stock of books. I think that’s a great way to help authors reach new readers and build a loyal following, especially for shorter works or series. Kindle’s new Unlimited program offers the same, but with one HUGE catch: Exclusivity.
I’m one of those folks who doesn’t like to put all her eggs in one basket, so I probably won’t be enrolling in their KDP Select program. If I don’t do that, I won’t be eligible to participate in Kindle Unlimited either. If they were to open the program to authors who wish to publish elsewhere, as well as with them, I’d jump right on it in a heartbeat.
I’m just curious how others feel about Kindle Unlimited. Are you willing to cut out every other ebook retailer and stick with Amazon exclusively just to participate in something that is, in fact, offered elsewhere, albeit not directly?
Also, and this is extremely important for indie authors, how about the pre-order feature that you lose access to with that exclusivity? Smashwords allows independent authors to offer their books up for pre-order in the hopes of accumulating sales for the big day, moving their book up in the ranks faster than otherwise possible. Kindle Direct Publishing does not allow indie authors or even small presses to offer pre-order options. This is an incredibly huge mark against them, in my book, and the main reason(s) why I don’t want to put my eggs in that particular basket.
via Kindle Direct Publishing: Introducing Kindle Unlimited