Cinderella turns down offer to go to the ball with Amazon Publishing

A self-published author has turned down an offer from Amazon Publishing to take over her latest best-selling book and has revealed the advance offered was less than she made from the book’s first month of sales.

Me, Cinderella? by Aubrey Rose was self-published in June for the Kindle and Nook formats and has sold very well. It’s also available in paperback through Amazon’s Createspace.

Rose says Amazon’s Montlake Publishing romantic fiction imprint offered her $5,000 and 35% royalties but the $5k advance was less than she earned in the first month of self-publishing the book.

As well as the low advance, Rose was also concerned about having to withdraw the book from outlets other than Amazon and losing control over her book covers and promotional pricing.

Me, Cinderella? is Rose’s first full-length novel but she’s a prolific writer who has also published the successful Big Girl Rockstar Romance series of short stories/novellas.

At its present digital list price of $4.63 on, Me, Cinderella? would be earning Rose 70% royalties of around $3.22 per sale, double the Amazon royalty offer.

On her blog, Rose says: “Naturally, I was thrilled. A real publisher wanted my work! I chatted with her briefly on the phone and asked her a ton of questions: What kind of cover would they create for me? What promotions would they do? What control would I have over everything? Although I was excited to work with Amazon, I wanted to know that they would treat my book right. She told me my novel was a great read and very clean writing, and that she would love to ‘partner’ with me in relaunching my book through Amazon’s imprint.

“However, she couldn’t guarantee anything – from cover image to pricing to marketing. The advance they offered was less than I had made in my first month of sales. And I would have to pull my book from every publisher except Amazon.

“It was hard for me to say no. Ever since I was a little girl I’d dreamed about being a ‘published author’.  However, I needed to make the best decision for my book and for my fans. The praise that really matters comes from my readers who are the ones who’ll make or break my books and I want to make sure I’m always doing the right thing by them.  If I mess up, I want it to be something I can fix. I’m a control freak like that.

“So sorry, Amazon. It’s not you, it’s me.”

In a later post, Rose goes further into the reasons for her decision: “Pricing was a major issue – I couldn’t do a ton of promotional stuff I had planned if I couldn’t control pricing, and Amazon gives no say in how they price their work. This deal was Kindle-only, so I wouldn’t be getting the benefits of paperback publishing, which to me is one of the greater advantages of a traditional publishing deal.”