Amazon hit me and a lot of other writers with a Monday morning bummer: there is no ABNA 2015 this year. I suppose they thought (correctly) that there wouldn't be too many authors lurking around first thing Monday morning (most people have to work for a living after all and they're certainly not making enough off their KU borrows to survive these days).
But, just as I did in my reporting days, I seem to have retained the luck (or bad luck) of always being in the right place at the right time. I stopped work on my ABNA 2015 entry to briefly check to see if anything new was posted about the contest.
Surprise. There is no contest.
Now Amazon, most certainly, has the right to do as they like. But they've managed to turn off a lot of writers in recent months and that trend is accelerating. Like a lot of writers, I think KU was a mistake. And I think this is a mistake. A lot of writers hanging on in KU just lost their last reason to stick around.
This time, Amazon has managed to piss off whole nations of us. I wouldn't mind them dropping the ABNA competition so much if the Kindle Scout program was open to Canadians, Germans, Indians, and so on. But writing well in English and working hard is not enough. The Kindle Scout program is limited to Americans only (you have to have a U.S tax number is how they put it so it doesn't sound so blatant). So it's particularly annoying for non-Americans to have their announcement parrot that this program is available to those feeling bereft at the demise of ABNA. Well, it is. But only if you're American.
Is Amazon arrogant enough to think readers of other nations are going to limit their Indie reading to American authors? Forget it. In fact, I think that anywhere on my Amazon profile page where I can announce I am a CANADIAN and a NON-AMERICAN WRITER, I think I will.
Because this is going to piss off a lot of people.
And rightly so.
Some readers may go so far as to refuse to buy the works of American authors which isn't right either. (But I would you encourage you to buy mine if you do.)
Joking aside, I truly wish Amazon had made the Kindle Scout program international before they pulled this one. Their credibility was dog-paddling already, but now its head has sunk underwater.