Saturday, February 23, 2013

The End of the Free Ebook Lists? Not If I Can Help It!

Beginning March 1, 2013 you may notice fewer lists of free ebooks on the internet.  This is because of a change to Amazon's affiliate program terms that make it so if a certain percentage of "sales" in an affiliate's account are freebies and there are more than a certain number of downloads, that person gets nothing, even if there are lots of other things that the individual was pushing that were paid items.  Nothing, for hours and hours of work each month.  Doesn't seem fair, does it?

Rather than abandoning my free ebook lists right away under this threat, I'm going to take a gamble.  Ordinarily, I hate gambling, but I love you guys, so I'm going to do it this time.  I'm going to post my free ebooks in March and as many months beyond as I get my paycheck.  If I don't get paid for a month's work, I'm done though.

Unlike gambling at a casino or playing the lottery, there are actually some things you can do to help me in this situation.
  • First, anytime you buy anything from Amazon, even if it is a song download, a television episode you watch online, or a $0.99 Kindle ebook, please go through one of my links to do so.  Since part of the requirements for a poofing paycheck has to do with percentages, every little paid purchase helps.  This may sound more difficult than it really is:  just click on the link for any Amazon item I promote and start buying.  Alternatively, there is an Amazon search box on the side bar of my blog that you can begin your shopping to help me out.  Either way gets the job done.  (ETA on 3/2/13: Either they changed the exact nature of the purchases since I first posted this or I misread it the first time, but I'm leaning toward they changed it before it went into effect, since there were other things that I could have sworn it said and others commented on as well that are gone now, but now it reads that it is a percentage of paid vs free ebooks.  I'm leaving this up though, since if you are in the habit of buying everything though my links, you'll get your paid ebooks through there as well.)
  • Second, encourage your friends and family to go through my links to make purchases.  Same concept as above, but it doesn't require you spending any money.
  • Third, I'm going to start posting stuff for you to buy in conjunction with the freebies.  It will be clearly marked which is which, I'm not trying to trick anyone here, I'm just looking to boost my Amazon sales so I can afford to spend the hours a day it costs me to give you free ebooks.  Some of these will be products I like, but I'm going to start a section of my list with reader recommendations of items that can be purchased on Amazon.  To make a recommendation for posting, you can mention it as a comment on any post, post on my Facebook page, send me a Tweet, email, or personal message.  See?  Easy peasy.  If you would like your name and/or a personal website or blog (no businesses please) posted with your recommendation, let me know and I'll be happy to do so, otherwise, I'll assume you want to remain anonymous.  I'll also be posting items for purchase on my Facebook and Twitter feeds from the same pool of items.
  • Fourth, don't download free ebooks if you don't actually want them, at least not through one of my links.  The days of "oh, why not? It doesn't cost anything." are gone as far as I'm concerned.  The more bad downloads there are the more likely I'll cross the threshold into not being paid.  As such, I may end up holding ebooks to an even higher standard before promoting them as well.  I don't want to lose hundreds of dollars because I promoted garbage!
  • Fifth, you can give me money.  I just said I had to be paid, not by whom, right?  So if you want to help ensure this service continues, there is a donation button on the sidebar of this blog that you are always welcome to use.  Even if Amazon poofs my paycheck, if I'm getting enough donations for the month that I'm making at least minimum wage (I'll keep my standards low.  lol), I'll keep the list going.  Of the options, this is my least favorite, but it is there so I'm being up front about it.  Edited to add: from here on out, I will apply any donations made toward months that Amazon poofs my paycheck, so you don't need to wait until the lists are in immediate danger to chip in to save them. Just a little something to keep in mind if you get any extra funds at some point.
I just found out about these changes today, but this is what I've come up with to handle them.  If you have any additional suggestions, I'll be happy to hear them as well.


  1. I actually "chipped in" several months back and was promised an ebook of yours per month. I got the first one. Since then, I received an email, saying you were delayed due to time constraints or something else equally vague, and nothing since. So, no, I won't be "donating" anymore. I work hard for my money also and would keep my word, no matter what. Oh, by the way, I did get your second ebook, but from somewhere else, not you. Thank you for your time. See you around on the net.

    1. I sent you the second ebook about a week after that email. Maybe your spam filter grabbed it or something. Do you have my email address listed in your contacts to ensure that doesn't happen? Yes, I am running a bit behind on the ebooks, but I will be emailing the third in the next week or so and the fourth will probably be a week or two, and a fifth a couple weeks after that since March is looking to be a slower month for me in some other things so I can finally get caught up from the delay that things beyond my control. like poor health and family problems, caused. I'm sorry you haven't been satisfied with what you received so far but will work to correct that in the future.