Hubpages and Amazon Changes: The Plight of the Online Writer and Self-published Author
Hubpages and Amazon have made some significant changes over the past couple of years and for the most part, they seem to be for the best.
These changes; good and bad, affect the online writers and authors who dedicate their lives to the written “word”. Of course, the financial aspect is a great incentive for many writers who write online. But anyone who is a writer in their heart would agree; if having to write for free were the only option, they would still write. Thus the plight of the online writer. What will you do if things change and it affects your opportunity to earn money with your writing?
After spending some time away from Hubpages and concentrating on writing ebooks, I came back recently to update a few hubs. I noticed right away that some things had changed, although this wasn’t my first visit back home. I actually came and wrote another hub earlier in 2016. The hub contained substantial information that could benefit readers, while tooting my own horn about a book release at the same time. If you read the hub cited here, you’ll notice that I’m a fan of self-promotion (as most of us are), but I do try and do it in a quid pro way. I want readers to benefit from the content of the article.
When I looked at my Hubpages Account Page and saw all the hubs I previously “unpublished”, I considered whether I should actually delete them all and start out fresh in 2017. This prompted me to see what some of my fellow Hubbers had to say on the matter, so I checked out some recent comments. To my surprise, I found a lot of grumblings about deleted hubs and affiliate revenue issues. Apparently Hubpages has been doing some house cleaning and some Hubbers are not happy. While I can understand the dissatisfaction that many of my fellow writers may have, I can also understand what is at the root of the problem, from Hubpage’s perspective. I saw the same kind of dissatisfaction over Amazon’s policy changes about writing customer book reviews. Talk about some unhappy campers on that issue!
Things Keep Changing
Hubpages and Amazon are big players in the online writing and publishing scene. That is why they continue to make changes that impact freelance writers and self-published authors. Things keep changing because the need for things to change continues to be the case. From article plagiarism to fake and fraudulent reviews in the past; the owners and administrators at Hubpages and Amazon have had their hands full. With so many online writers and self-published authors, these companies have a huge responsibility, just like the rest of the online publishing industry.
Popular writing and book publishing platforms like Hubpages and Amazon are constantly doing things to maintain the integrity and professionalism we writers associate with their sites. That means taking actions that don’t always seem to benefit us when they’re first implemented. But the truth is, as humans change is always kind of hard for us to accept. We may even find ourselves complaining about it, months after the change is no longer “new”. Some stubborn individuals might even continue complaining, even when they recognize the change is in their best interest. That is why it makes no sense to buck against the system. The bottom line is, if there is nothing positive we can do when things change, it is usually best just to try and make the adjustments.
As a writer and author, I know firsthand how disruptive to your routine a sudden change (or any change) can be. The typical Hubber and Amazon self-published author is literally starved for the attention and recognition of readers. We spend more time seeking feedback than we do on actual writing. At least that’s how it was when I used to be a diehard Hubber, and that’s exactly how it is, now that I’m a self-published author. In one way or another, we writers have an obsession with words. The words that we actually write and the words we need to get from others as a form of validation. Once the words we finish writing, publishing and putting on display for the world are set free, we anxiously await the outcome.
Whether the results comes in the form of page views, revenue shares, book sales, or book reviews, these kinds of feedback validate that someone is reading your words. It is no easy task trying to get people to those words, regardless of if you’re a self-published author or a dedicated article writer. That is why once you have established a system of doing things and you begin to get positive results; to have things change can be jarring. But before you make any hasty decisions, it is best to wait and see for yourself what the outcome of the change will bring.
Remembering that change is not always a bad thing is something that all of us should keep in mind. Sometimes when we do things differently, it can actually result in positive change. If it wasn't for change, I would have never stopped hubbing long enough to write a book!
Companies like Hubpages and Amazon seem to recognize that change is part of growth and they clearly believe in continued growth. As writers and authors, we must be patient and wait to determine how any new changes affect our online writing and publishing careers. While you’re waiting, you can look for ways to make positive adjustments to the change. For instance, I notice many new design elements here on Hubpages that were not available when I was hubbing daily. Whenever I write new hubs, I plan to take full advantage of the social media links across the top of the page. There are also some policy changes that I need to go over in detail, but I will definitely do so with a positive attitude.
I’ve already taken advantage of one of the recent changes at Amazon that relates directly to me as a self-publisher. Amazon has now started publishing paperback print books and I believe this change will definitely be one for the better. I still wish they would give some additional thought to their customer book review policies, but I applaud their latest change. I used the new paperback publishing service to publish the print version of my new novel: “Skipping Childhood: A Novel (From Abused Foster Child to Adolescent Serial Killer). Feel free to pick up a copy.
For more details about this Amazon resource for self-published authors, you can check out the press release I wrote about it. I used the article to help promote my print book release. More book details are available on my website: http://charmbaker.com/novels/skipping-childhood/