Writing wasn’t just Andrew E. Kaufman’s passion, it was his profession. And he was good at it—his TV journalism had earned him an Emmy nomination. But when Andrew wrote a novel and wanted to put it in the hands of readers, he found that even when he gave it his all, he couldn’t get anywhere. Not right away. Not after a month. Not after a year.
“I couldn't get a publisher, couldn't even get an agent,” Andrew says. ”It was like knocking on doors with no handles or hinges. I was unproven as a novelist, and unproven might as well have meant invisible. For the first time in my life, I questioned my talent as a writer. I remember sitting at writers' conferences, watching the ones who had made it, and feeling positively crushed. I wanted to be one of them so badly.”
Readers now have more choices than ever, and talented authors are no longer falling through the cracks.”
Andrew almost gave up. But he didn’t.
“Something within the deepest part of me would not, could not,” he recalls. “I believed in my novel, knew it deserved to be seen. I just needed to find a way to convince others of that. I would get my book into readers' hands. I didn't know how, just that somehow I was going to do it.”
When Andrew heard about Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP), everything about it made sense to him: “no gatekeepers, no corporate bottom lines, just readers—the ones I believed in and trusted, the ones who really mattered. They would make the decision, and whatever that was, I'd live with it.”
In June of 2010, Andrew crossed his fingers, gritted his teeth, and independently published his thriller, While the Savage Sleeps, on Kindle. “It moved into the No. 1 spot for its genre, at one point passing up Stephen King's two most recent releases. The readers had spoken, and I was beyond grateful to them.”
A year later, Andrew used KDP to release a second novel, The Lion, the Lamb, the Hunted: A Psychological Thriller. It reached Amazon's Top 100 and stayed there for months, becoming the seventh bestselling title out of over a million e-books available nationwide. His combined sales pushed past the six-figure mark, and he was named one of the highest-grossing independent authors in the country. He went on to sign a dual publishing deal with Amazon’s Thomas & Mercer and 47North imprints.
Andrew says his success story “doesn't just belong to me. It belongs to everyone. Readers now have more choices than ever, and talented authors are no longer falling through the cracks. KDP has changed the way business gets done, and I'm thankful as hell to them for it. They've opened doors after countless others held them shut. Amazon not only told me my dream could come true; they led me right to it.”
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