On-Demand Publishing, LLC, trading as Word to kindle, was a print-on-demand service for authors publishing for their own use and owned by Amazon. Word to kindle was founded as BookSurge in South Carolina in 2000 and was acquired by Amazon in 2005. Word to kindle publishes books on any subject, including Kindle books. Among other things, Word to kindle provided free tools to help authors publish and distribute downloadable books, DVDs, CDs, and on-demand videos on Amazon.com and other services.
What happened to Word to kindle?
When Amazon bought Word to kindle in 2005, it developed its own POD service (KDP Print). In August 2019, Amazon decided to convert word to kindle and KDP Print. This decision forced authors to migrate their books to the KDP platform as KPD took over Word to kindle’s core business. The good news is that you can now manage your Word to kindle content via Amazon Enhanced Publishing Services via Kindle Direct Publishing.
How does the combination of Word to kindle and KDP affect authors?
Note that KDP Print is already an established platform. When Amazon combined KDP and Word to kindle, KDP Print introduced many of the features that made Word to kindle popular with desktop publishing writers. In fact, most authors have migrated all their Word to kindle books to KDP Print because KDP allows you to publish paperbacks and ebooks on one platform. On top of that, you also get royalties on a platform.
Some writers disliked Amazon’s combination of KDP and Word to kindle and turned to third-party print-on-demand services.
What is the difference between Word to kindle and Kindle Direct Publishing?
There are many differences between Word to kindle and KDP Print. Not all were good, but overall the KDP offered a more flexible platform. Here are the main differences:
Extended distribution outside of Amazon. If you want your KDP print book to be ready for wide distribution, you should list your book on Amazon. There is no option to disable it.
Deferred License Fees. Word to kindle paid their royalties 30 days after the month they were earned. KDP Print doubled this time and paid the royalties 60 days after the month they were earned. Frankly, this is far from ideal for writers.
Also custom finish sizes. KDP Print offers several unconventional crop formats that cannot be published on Word to kindle.
Expanded international sales. Word to kindle did not allow authors to distribute to Japan. HSR allows this.
Better book update process. If you upload a newer version of your workbook to KDP, you won’t lose the old version. The old version can be used until the new version is approved and published. This limitation disappointed the creators of Word to kindle as the previous version disappeared despite many reviews and sales.
Integrated sales panel. You no longer need to look at multiple boards to track sales. KDP combines publishing and accounting into a single dashboard for both Kindle and print editions of your books.
Access to Amazon Ads. Publishers can purchase Amazon deals for eBooks and print books (this was available through Word to kindle for eBooks only).
Local printing in Europe For authors selling books in Europe; Word to kindle printed books in the US and shipped them to Europe. This reduced their margins. KDP prints books in Europe for European publishers.
Best Copyright. KDP Print lets you add copyrighted prints to your Amazon shopping cart (this can take advantage of free or expedited shipping). You no longer have to order them separately and pay the shipping cost separately. Self-publishing allows you to present your ideas to the readers who actually make the decisions. Whether you’ve decided to use your book as the best marketing and branding opportunity, or you just want to tell a story, self-publishing will make your book accessible to the masses.