A Technical Thing re: Amazon and My Tor Books
Every couple of hours someone sends an e-mail or post saying “Your book is back up on Amazon!” and point to the same thing, so I want to post this to clear up the confusion. The one physical version of Old Man’s War that’s up on Amazon is “Bargain Price Paperback,” which is to say the remaindered trade paperback edition; as far as I know Amazon never stopped selling it.
The thing to know about this is that the remaindered books aren’t royalty-bearing books, i.e., I don’t get a cut when Amazon sells them. Amazon likely bought the books in bulk when they were first remaindered, for a substantially lower cost than “new” books, and my contract states that the cut I get for such bulk buying is very tiny indeed.
All of which is to say at the moment Amazon is happy to sell you OMW directly, just not a version I get any real payment for. All my other Tor books — the versions I receive royalties for, anyway — still appear to be down across the board. You’ll know when Amazon is no longer screwing with me when all my Tor books once again have “Buy Now” buttons in their mass market paperback (or in the case of Agent and Hate Mail, trade paperback) versions. Those are the versions of my Tor books currently in print. And, of course, when the Kindle versions re-appear.
Likewise, to address other similar posts and e-mails, only Amazon.com is doing this, so all the international affiliates have books, and Amazon’s Audible division is also still selling my audio book versions.
Finally, my non-Macmillan titles are still in Amazon (including The God Engines) and always have been, so their presence doesn’t mean Amazon’s delisting has lifted, it’s just that the book isn’t one of those affected.
I do think all these e-mails and posts make a point about how arbitrary and random this delisting of Amazon’s appears on the consumer side. I mean, heck, all of you here have been aware of this from day one. Imagine what it looks like to normal humans trying to shop on Amazon. The longer this plays out, the worse it is for Amazon’s reputation as a place where you can get anything.
Anyway. That’s the update on that today.