"Amazon Shorts'' Gives Readers Instant Access to Short Works for 49 Cents Each
SEATTLE, Aug 19, 2005 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Amazon.com (Nasdaq:AMZN) today launched its latest
innovation for customers, Amazon Shorts, an entirely new way for
customers to enjoy their favorite authors and to sample the work of
new authors through exclusive short-form literature, for 49 cents
each. Amazon Shorts have no printed editions and are only delivered
"Amazon Shorts will help authors find new readers and help readers
find and discover authors they'll love," said Steve Kessel,
Amazon.com's vice president of Digital Media. "We hope that by making
short-form literature widely and easily available, Amazon.com can help
to fuel a revival of this kind of work."
"Publishers have always had a hard time selling and marketing the
single, short-form work -- the novella, for instance, or the
novelette, or its even more diminutive cousin, the novelini -- and
these days it's even harder. Amazon.com has created a new way for
authors to get that kind of work out there, which is incredibly
exciting," said author Daniel Wallace. "It's my hope that their Shorts
program brings a renewed interest to the genre, as well as the
opportunity for us to keep in touch with our readers in a really
direct, fun way between books."
Beginning today, customers can find Amazon Shorts from
accomplished authors in a diverse array of genres and formats,
including alternate chapters and scenes to well-known stories,
personal memoirs about everything from food poisoning to contact
lenses to potty training, one-act plays, and, of course, classic short
stories. For example:
Literature and Fiction
-- Audrey Niffenegger, whose debut novel, "The Time Traveler's
Wife," was a New York Times Bestseller and nominated for the
Orange Prize, has written a charming short story about a man
who is experiencing a celestial infestation of sorts; he is
having trouble keeping his attic angel-free.
-- Gregory David Roberts, who introduced himself to readers with
an autobiographical novel describing a life of drug addiction,
crime and prison, has written an Amazon Short in which the
unfolding lives and spiritual development of the characters
build upon one another in a consecutive timeline.
-- Daniel Wallace enchanted readers with his novel "Big Fish,"
which was adapted for the major motion picture of the same
name. His Amazon Short is a two-part illustrated fable that
takes place before recorded time and chronicles the story of a
tribe of hunter-gatherers.
-- Stuart Woods, known for his bestselling crime thrillers, has
written a personal account of an obsessive and nearly lifelong
struggle to find, obtain and hold onto the only luggage a man
could ever want.
-- Richard Rhodes is the author of 20 nonfiction books and a
Pulitzer Prize winner. His Amazon Short is an essay connecting
his experience with the birds of the Pacific and the
magnificent drawings and writings of John James Audubon.
-- Terry Brooks is a master of the fantasy genre, with over 12
million books in print and 18 consecutive New York Times
bestsellers. His Amazon Short details his writing process, as
well as his motivation and why his work is often
Mystery and Thrillers
-- Robin Cook is widely credited with introducing the word
"medical" to the thriller genre. His Amazon Short is a medical
drama about a young surgeon looking for accolades and
attention, who experiences a tremendous range of emotions in
the operating room.
-- James Lee Burke, a two-time winner of the Edgar Award for Best
Crime Novel of the Year, has been dubbed the "Faulkner of
crime fiction." His Amazon Short is a compelling new
coming-of-age drama about experiences growing up during the
Depression era and the war years.
-- F. Paul Wilson, an award-winning author of 30 novels and over
100 short stories, including the bestselling Repairman Jack
series, offers fans a special treat. His Amazon Short is a new
mystery/thriller about this popular character with the theme
that no good deed goes unpunished.
Nonfiction and Essays
-- Danielle Steel, novelist, children's book author and
non-fiction writer, shares her own experiences of the roller
coaster ride of life in her Amazon Short, "Candy for the
-- Ann Beattie, renowned novelist and award-winning short-story
writer examines the process of writing fiction, the power of
words and the mirror that we hold up to examine ourselves when
we read fiction in her Amazon Short.
-- Pico Iyer, a prolific travel writer whose articles appear in
"Harper's," "The New York Times" and "Conde Nast Traveler,"
has departed from his usual travel pieces to write about a
place he has never been.
Sci-Fi and Fantasy
-- Walter Jon Williams, a Nebula Award winner and author of more
than 25 novels, writes a lagniappe intended for readers of the
"Dread Empire's Fall" series to enrich their appreciation of
certain characters. For new readers, it's an introduction to
the sort of surprises that are found in his books.
-- Kevin J. Anderson, an award-winning science fiction author
with 16 million books in print in nearly 30 languages, gives
readers a rare advance preview of his next novel with his
Amazon Short. He offers the first four chapters of "Of Fire
and Night," the fifth installment in his "The Saga of Seven
Suns" series, a year in advance of its release.
-- Robin Hobbs's popular fantasy trilogies have been translated
into 17 languages. In her Amazon Short she revisits the
Bingtown area, also the setting for her "Liveship Traders
Trilogy," and weaves a captivating "tale within a tale" about
family perceptions and how they shape each generation.
Amazon Shorts are copyrighted works available for purchase and
cost 49 cents each. However, in order to preserve a frictionless
viewing experience, no digital rights management software is needed to
download and read Amazon Shorts. Customers who purchase Amazon Shorts
will have three options for reading the piece:
-- View now: Takes customers to a Web page to read or print out
the Amazon Short.
-- Download: Initiates the download of a PDF file.
-- E-mail: Sends the entire Amazon Short in a plain-text message
to the specified e-mail address.
Amazon Shorts will also be stored permanently in customers'
Digital Lockers, and customers are welcome to print out hard copies of
purchased Amazon Shorts from any of these formats.
Amazon Shorts is its own store at Amazon.com and can be accessed
directly via www.amazon.com/shorts, as well as from the Amazon.com
homepage, Store Directory and through the Amazon.com Books store. Each
Amazon Short product page will also feature the complete works of the
author, along with product images and descriptions of other works
available for purchase on Amazon.com.
A complete, alphabetical listing of current Amazon Shorts authors:
Kevin J. Anderson Brendan Halpin Bruce Holland Rogers
Michael Baden Robin Hobb Michael Rose
Ann Beattie Pico Iyer Mary Rosenblum
Gregory Benford Tama Janowitz Gwyn Hyman Rubio
Terry Bisson Ken Kalfus Kristine Kathryn Rusch
Terry Brooks Dave King Lucius Shepard
James Lee Burke Jonathon King Robert Silverberg
Jay Caselberg Howard Klausner Danielle Steel
Veronica Chambers Peter Kramer Allen Steele
Robin Cook Howie Mandel Olen Steinhauer
Mark Crispin Miller Alison McGhee Michael Swanwick
Jack Dann J. Milligan Gloria Vanderbilt
Harry S. Dent Jr. James Morrow Daniel Wallace
Gardner Dozois Kris Nelscott Brad Watson
Eileen Dreyer Audrey Niffenegger Lord Breaulove Swells Whimsy
Esther Friesner James Reston, Jr. Walter Jon Williams
Gregory Frost Richard Rhodes Sarah Willis
Kristine Grayson Christie Ridgway F. Paul Wilson
Lauren Grodstein Gregory David Roberts Stuart Woods
Joe Haldeman Kim Stanley Robinson
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Jani Strand or Kristin Mariani, 206-266-7180