My Experience with KDP Print

kdp logoA few months ago, like a lot of you, I received the email stating Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) was going to be “merging” and taking over the print business from CreateSpace (CS). I’ve long been a customer of CS, and 99% of my interactions with them have been positive. So when I heard they were being pushed to the side, I was rather bummed.

I ignored KDP for a while since I didn’t have any books to publish. When it came time, I logged into my KDP account and followed their directions to merge my books. At least it wasn’t difficult. Then I decided to poke around in one of my files since I was going to upgrade the covers on a series of eBooks. Nothing had really changed on the eBook side (and I did not expect it to), but when I logged in to the print side, oh, that was interesting!

It seems KDP is trying to model their print manager software after the eBook manager, and I found this to be a good thing. In the matter of three days, I was able to upload new covers for print books, upload a new manuscript for one book, and order a proof copy. Normally I don’t order physical proof copies anymore since the digital proofer is so handy. But I had heard some folks saying they ordered books and it took 2-3 weeks for them to be delivered. And since I had this article in mind, I figured I’d see how long it would take.

Once I got the email from Amazon stating the book was available for purchase, I ordered a copy. This was on January 27th. On the 31st, I received another email stating my book was being shipped. I got the book on the 5th of February. Six days did not seem too bad of a wait, so I tested the waters further.

With the Lexington Comic Con rapidly approaching in March, I wanted to order several of the series with the snazzy new covers, so I placed another order on the 17th of February, and Amazon said my order would arrive between Feb 28 and Mar 4. This is considerably longer than CS would take, and I’m hoping Amazon will update their tracking and I’ll get the books faster. If this is the case with ordering multiple books/titles, authors should calculate this into their schedule to allow plenty of time to receive books for events. I did receive the books in the timeframe they’d specified.

Overall, I found the migration to have been relatively painless. I appreciate the ability to upload new covers and manuscripts for the print versions with nearly the same ease of uploading eBooks. Their customer service has remained very good, as I had a questions about how to have the same series with original covers and then offer ones with new covers as well. They responded in less than 24 hours and gave me a thorough answer.

I believe KDP may have a few growing pains in their order processing and shipping, but perhaps this will get ironed out as they adjust to their new business model. Personally, this is not a major enough factor to drive me away from using Amazon’s services. I admit, I’m a busy person and don’t have a lot of time to deal with making sure my books are available on their website. It’s so much nicer they put them there for me.

Author: Kathy Rowe (K. Rowe)

K. Rowe is an experienced and prolific multi-genre author. She draws from over twenty years of active Air Force service. Kathy lives in eastern Kentucky with her husband and a zoo of farm animals. Among her many duties she finds time to offer services as a publishing consultant for new authors. Learn more about Kathy from Facebook, and her Amazon author page.

6 thoughts on “My Experience with KDP Print”

  1. I’ve already published a few new books on the new platform and the only challenge was the new Cover Creator; that took a bit of fiddling with to figure out, but now it’s a breeze.

  2. My own experience with the new KDP Print service has been a bit better. I ordered multiple copies of a recent print book and they arrived around the same time as when I ordered from the old CreateSpace. The convenience of having both print and e-book on the same platform outweighs the slight delay in shipping in my view, but you’re right. They should work to improve shipping. I’m willing to give them time to improve.

  3. The problem I had… well, have, actually… is that you can no longer use the HTML version of the book to upload. What this means is that you can no longer tweak the book. Much of that tweaking is not totally necessary, but one thing that really bugs me is not being able to control the size of images, which was easily done with setting the width to 100% or whatever in the HTML code.

  4. Thank you for your blog. It’s good for indies to swap experiences. I am a UK writer and I started using CS in 2015 for my Jack of All Trades crime series. It meant I could sell paperbacks in the US, not that I sold many, mostly ebooks. For me in the UK when I made an order for paperbacks, books were flown over from Atlanta. This took a few weeks, as I imagine they had to have enough books to fill a shipment to make it cost effective for the author. KDP though print in the UK (CS didn’t), so turnaround is quicker. Just one published so far, no complaints. And another coming up in May.

    DH Smith

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