Is Kindle Unlimited Worth It?
“If you don't have time to read, you don't have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.”
— Stephen King
When it comes to writing, I know I have seen this quote more frequently than any other. It pops up everywhere. Case in point, check out the opening line of this bloggy. There it is! So sneaky, Mr. King! You know what, though? He’s absolutely right. And of course he is. He’s been doing this writing thing for awhile now and he’s gotten pretty good at it. Maybe you’ve heard of him? Perhaps you’ve even read that quote before? If you are a writer, I’d be surprised if you haven’t. It is attributed to his book, On Writing. If you have any thoughts whatsoever on becoming a writer, drop everything and go read that book, if you haven’t already. And yes, that means not finishing this bloggy. I’ll understand. After all, this is King we’re talking about.
Are you still here? Great! Then that means you’ve read the book. The rest of this bloggy will have nothing to do with it. But congratulations! No book report is forthcoming, you win! Now you’re a writer! What have you written? Perhaps more importantly, what other books have you read lately?
Get Thee To A Kindle(rry)
Yeah, that didn’t translate well. They can’t all land without a crash and burn, can they?
Let’s face it, you love your Kindle. It’s OK! I know. I know. Maybe one time not so long ago you imagined yourself as a purist, literary type? Sure, you’ve had a Kindle for as long as it’s been available, but you’ve also said out loud on numerous occasions, “Nothing beats the feel of holding an actual book in your hands.” Am I right? You’ve said this before! You know you have! Heh. Don’t run away. I said it’s OK. I’ve been there too, friend. Because it’s true! Nothing does beat the feel of holding a book in your hands! And I’ll even one-up you here — nothing beats the smell of a well-aged novel! The way those pages crinkle ever-so slightly as you turn them. Even the faded yellow look they give you after being stored up in the attic or down in the basement for years and years, possibly decades. Your books hold no ill will against you, reader. Know that. They understand you’ve moved on. And it’s OK. I tell you from a place of love. I am with you.
In fact, over the years, I’ve spent good money on a number of digital copies of books I already own in print. One time, there was this ludicrous Kindle sale where Amazon was offering all of Vonnegut’s novels for (I think) $2.99 each. I lost my mind that week and bought them all. Even though they are all sitting on my bookshelf crying themselves to sleep at night. God bless you, Mr. Vonnegut.
Reading on your Kindle is just easier. For me, it is especially a blessing when I am trapped underneath my sleeping baby boy at night. I’ve yet to train him to sleep on his own and it’s a phase we are in right now. He goes down around 8:00 and I’m left to either stare up at the dark ceiling or turn to my beloved digital reader. Yes, I suppose I could use a dim book light clipped to a paperback but that has its own perils — one of which is that you need two hands to hold it and turn the pages. More times than not, the boy is nuzzled up on my shoulder and I drape my arm around him as he snores. Awww. Yeah, it is sweet. After awhile though it gets sweaty and uncomfortable and I have to toss him to the other side of the bed and hope he doesn’t come crawling back. Haha. I’m an ass. I love him. Where was I?
Maybe Amazon Should Be Paying Me?
I don’t know how to monetize. I’m not getting purse coinage to say any of this. Clearly. I don’t have the mouth or mind for marketing. That’s a whole other insurmountable problem I’m going to be facing when my book is published next week. Sidebar: Holy Bologna! My book is going to be published next week! <End Sidebar>
Regardless of the fact that this looks, feels, and tastes like an ad for Amazon, boy do I love Kindle Unlimited! Caveat: I do have a few issues. So take that, giant, earth-swallowing corporation! Bryon thinks the service he pays for is not perfect! As my daughter would say, “Nanny nanny boo boo!”
OK, Kindle Unlimited is awesome. You pay $9.99/month and have thousands upon thousands of books at your fingertips. Can you read Stephen King within this program? Er, no. How about J.K. Rowling? I hear she’s got some books. Not so much. You still have to pay the big money for the big names and their big books. In fact, there’s quite a lot of novels out there you can’t read “for free” in the paid Kindle Unlimited Program. If you’re thinking of a title right now, chances are it’s a popular one and you won’t get to borrow it in KU. So, in that sense, I guess the Kindle Unlimited service is, um, somewhat limited. Man, this is kind of bumming me out right now. Let’s turn it around.
Kindle Unlimited Pros
I’ve reviewed a few books so far on this bloggy. The Night Gardener, The Storyteller’s Secret, Some Distant Sunrise, and In Farleigh Field. All of these I borrowed “for free” within the Kindle Unlimited Program. You can borrow up to 10 books at a time. It sounds like a lot but once you get hooked, you realize it’s actually not. I have 10 books in my KU library at all times just sitting there because otherwise, I might forget about them.
The aforementioned novels I have reviewed were ones that I may never have picked up on my own if I had to “pay for them.” I keep using quotes because the borrowed books in Kindle Unlimited aren’t really free. You are paying $9.99 per month for the service. But it feels like you’re reading for free so quotey quote quote.
The Kindle Unlimited service is also an excellent way to <ahem> discover new independent authors! Or indies, as I am so inclined to wear the cutesy moniker. Indie authors get paid per pages read. So if you borrow a book by a self-published author and you like what you’re reading, go all the way to the end, my friend! We writers on the other side so appreciate it!
Amazon gives you a 30 day trial to give KU a test run. I gotta say, I was pretty skeptical myself when I tried it out but it didn’t take long for me to 180 the sucker. I don’t know about you, but whenever I pay for something, I want to get the full benefit of it. Or at least get the most out of it that I can. In that respect, Kindle Unlimited forces me to read more. And I often find it a blessed joy when I find the time. I’m reading books from all genres now, stories I never would have picked up without the impetus on my back. And if I really want to read the latest King novel (which I always do) or whatever other literary gem HarperCollins or Penguin pushes out, I can always just bite the bullet and pay full price or (here’s a mind-blower) go to the library for my fix.
What am I reading with KU now? It’s some wildly popular Armageddon novel. What the heck is it called? C’mon brain. Oh, it’s Pandemic, by A.G. Riddle. Yup, I totally cheated and went to look. That’s OK. I’m getting old and reading a lot and don’t really take a lot of stock in titles. At any rate, it’s great so far which is kinda funny because I started reading another of Riddle’s books in KU and had to put it down after about 15 percent through because I wasn’t feeling it. What the hell was that one called. I’m not even gonna play here. The Atlantis Plague. Thank you Amazon history. I thought the writing of The Atlantis Plague was good but the story just didn’t grab me. So I quit it and moved on and felt no guilt because, guess what? It was “free!” No skin off my nose. Anyway, I’m sure in the near future I’ll post a review of Pandemic. Because so far, it’s one of those very-hard-to-put-down stories.
End This Non-Advertising Ad, Please
Yeah so that’s all I got for now. Kindle Unlimited is the bees knees. Go try it out if you want. If not, I’ll still be your friend. One final note on this, however:
I Am Marcus Fox
Will be available “for free” on Kindle Unlimited May 7.
That’s next Tuesday, ya’ll!
Wait a minute. Hold up. This just in! — You can now pre-order I Am Marcus Fox to read on your very own Kindle! Say whaaaaaa?
If you aren’t enrolled in Kindle Unlimited, you are still able to pre-order my debut novel as a digital copy now. The paperback will be available May 7.
Also, speaking of being unlimited, Marcus has no limits. He is limitless.