Discuss as:

Amazon: 295K Kindle e-books borrowed in December


Amazon Kindle Lending Library home page image

For Amazon, December 2011 will go down as a highlight of the year, with record-topping Kindle sales and now, the successful launch of the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library, which put 295,000 KDP Select e-books into the hands of readers last month.

Amazon released that statistic, as well as information about its Kindle Direct Publishing program, which allows for self-publishing in the Amazon Kindle Store for 70 percent in royalties. KDP authors earned $1.70 per borrow in December.

The company has set up a fund for the authors which it increased by $200,000 this month, to $700,000.

It seems to be an area with potential income possibilities for self-published authors, as described by Amazon:

The top ten KDP Select authors earned over $70,000 in the month of December from their participation in the Kindle Owners' Lending Library, a 30 percent increase on top of the royalties they earned from their paid sales on the same titles in the same period. In total (paid sales plus their share of the loan fund), these authors saw their royalties grow an astonishing 449 percent month-over-month from November to December. The list of top 10 KDP Select authors includes Carolyn McCray, Rachel Yu, the Grabarchuk family and Amber Scott.

McCray, who writes "paranormal romance novels, historical thrillers and mysteries," earned $8,250 from the fund last month, while 16-year-old Yu made $6,200.

Some popular titles readers may recognize are in the library, including 100 former and current New York Times bestsellers. 

The lending library launched Nov. 2, and now has more than 75,000 titles. Amazon Prime members can borrow a book a month, with no due dates.

Amazon's popular e-readers practically flew into consumers' hands this winter, with weekly sales of over a million of the devices throughout the month of December, including the newest, Kindle Fire.  

More stories:

Check out Technolog on Facebook, and on Twitter, follow Athima Chansanchai, who is also trying to keep her head above water in the Google+ stream.