How Indie Authors Can Make Two Categories Count On Amazon

This post by Cate Baum originally appeared on Self-Publishing Review on 5/20/15.

Amazon made a decision sometime in the last two months or so to cut off new indie books to the five plus two categories allowed to all indie/self-published authors who had both paperback and Kindle formats on Amazon. Why could this decision have been made, and how can authors make the most of the measly two categories now allowed when publishing on Kindle?

Spoiling It For The Rest Of Us

What happened? Maybe the mounting problems for authors who had trad-published, or had genre books in the last couple of years with categories forced a change. Publishing companies and indie authors on imprints and small presses with money riding on book campaigns were being drowned in self-publishers categorizing their books too loosely in ways to get seen – especially in the erotica genre. I talked about this as being a problem I foresaw Amazon reacting to, and was only two pitchforks from being burned at the stake for mentioning anything that could cause a vibration through the “freedom for writers everywhere” faction.

But hey, it happened as predicted, and very quietly, too.

While some authors were releasing up to eight books of erotica at the same time to flood book charts with their ‘brand,’ and categorized them as “Westerns” when their lover boy rode a horse, or “Crime Fiction” when the book featured a gangster type doing the bedding, Amazon was flooded with books that used to stay in their own little (adult) area – it became nigh impossible to even enter the YA Sci-Fi section of Amazon without a bevvy of bare chests and chiffoned thighs gracing the listing pages.

So the greedy few seemed to have spoiled it for the rest of us. Well done, kids!


Finding “The Two”


Read the full post on Self-Publishing Review.