We keep an eye on sales and income to the penny. We know how many books I have sold in all the various territories of Amazon, and from all the other third parties.
We noticed something a bit odd, Smashwords Income fell in the last quarter. Not by much but enough for us to question what was happening. Scribd, a subscription service, in the same vein as Kindle Unlimited, fed their sales and income to us through Smashwords, and this is what we were missing.
On further investigation, it turns out that Scribd took most, if not all, of their romance and erotica titles off of their service back in July.
Why? Because apparently readers were reading them *too much*. Yep, romance readers just read too many books (tries to look innocent and then checks my own *have read* list – yep, I read a lot!)
“…Scribd has to pay the authors of the books they make available on their site, it is now shelling out more money than it can make back in subscriptions, thanks to the voracious appetites of romance and erotica readers. … The Guardian, July 2015.
All of my books have disappeared from Scribd. All gone. So, no more borrowing from their subscriptions based service for anyone. 🙁
So, what does this mean for the likes of Kindle Unlimited?
I wish I knew. Will KU pick up the subscribers who were at Scribd originally? I'm not sure, I know a lot of MM authors who don't have titles in KU, but whose books were all on Scribd. (Scribd didn't make people just put their books into their scheme – and paid the price probably.)
Will it mean more changes in KU to lower money per page if more MM books go on there and more are read?
GAH. As usual the KU question is a tricky one. Still, my MF is going KU, so we'll see how that goes 😉