Yeah, as some authors put it, we’re the proverbial frog in the pan of cold water, who never notices as the heat gradually rises and slowly cooks you. And yes, peeps have already figured out how to game KENPC 2.0, at least for a few months.
Amazon dropped the Bezosteroid on 2/1 that they were revising all KU book page counts, to deflate certain creatively-formatted books, and deter 10,000 page bundles.
And people are already beating the new system. And you know what? Why not. If Amazon is going to screw us by upending the system every six months or less, I say go for it. If Amazon is going to treat us not like business partners, but like barbarians at their gates, like some enemy to be repelled, then we’re forced to act like it. I feel like an illegal drug chemist, who has to change my formula every few months to keep ahead of new government laws against my product.
Want to boost your KENPages back up again? Use a Mac app called Vellum to generate your MOBI files for upload to the ‘zon; the program is $200 for unlimited, or $20 a book. It’s a Mac app, but PC users can go to macincloud.com and run a “virtual Mac” for $1 an hour. And, yes, it works. Peeps are already reformatting books with it and seeing significant bumps in KENPages. (I think it’s about forcing narrower margins into the final MOBI, thus bumping up page counts.)
Jesus Christ Amazon, why don’t you just use something basic like, IDK, A WORD COUNT to determine # of pages? The Vellum solution will be good for a few months, for sure.
Why won’t Amazon fix that right away? Well, you see, for each change in Amazon policy, somebody in the Metrics Department has to present a complicated fucking PowerPoint with lots of slides and graphs and shit, with an absurdly reasoned way to count pages. I mean, you can’t prove you’re “really puttin’ in the hours” if you come up with a simple and obvious solution, right? A culture that rewards “work” not in creative output, but in terms of how long you spend warming a chair, will never come up with elegant and obvious solutions.
And of course before that PowerPoint can be presented, all the “key players” have to be cc’d on the draft, and of course then they all have to answer and add some minor change to prove they’re “in the loop,” and then there has to be another meeting where everybody will sit around on their fucking Blackberries ignoring the PowerPoint and thumbing through other emails they have to answer to prove they’re in the loop, and when all is said and done it’s like ten thousand seagulls all picking over a single crumb of bread… Man I sure don’t miss Cubicle City.
But yeah. That’s how you can buy time for a couple months. Your mission, should you choose to accept it…