KENPC: Amazon’s New Payment System For Writers

KENPC: Amazon’s New Payment System For Writers

Amazon changed things recently.

They introduced KENPC. (Kindle Edition Normalised Page Count.)

Now Amazon pays an author an amount proportional to the number of KENPC pages read – not the number of books downloaded.

This is a radical change.

Under the new system, authors receive a share of a global fund based on the number of KENPC pages read.

That means a reader can download a book today – but the author receives nothing until they start reading it.

Then they will be paid only for the number of KENPC pages read, not the number of books downloaded onto Kindles.

Each KENPC page is worth a tiny percentage of Amazon’s global fund, currently 11 million dollars.

Amazon states the total number of pages read in a month is about 1.9 billion.

That makes each KENPC page worth approximately eleven million divided by 1.9 billion, making equal to $0.00578 per page.

Therefore 100 KENPC pages read should earn the author 57 cents if the numbers are accurate.

You can find out what your book is worth in KENPCs by going to your bookshelf and clicking on Promotions and Advertisements. It’s hidden there.

For example: my horror collection The Bone Yard and Other Stories is 290 real pages – but it listed as 390 KENPC, which would pay me $2.25 if a reader read the whole thing.

Since I was receiving only $0.33 under the previous system, that is a welcome improvement.

Clearly, the new system is better for writers of long works, but seriously bad news for short story writers. Now a single short story will earn the author much less than the 33 cents paid previously. A 10,000-word short story will now earn about 15 pence.

Under the old system, which paid a fixed sum no matter the length of title, it was advantageous to publish short ebooks.

Under the new system, it encourages authors to produce longer ebooks.

Much longer ebooks.

I predict you will see an explosion of ebooks sold in box sets – but that will just be the beginning of the change.

Authors used to cutting their work during the editing process will start adding extra words wherever possible, making sentences longer and longer and longer and longer because the longer and longer they write them, the higher and higher the KENPC. Authors will add unnecessary pointless irrelevant adjectives to every sentence to make them longer, larger, bigger and lengthier. Short stories will disappear. Stories of epic length will become the new normal. In a few years War and Peace will seem like a very short novel.

I’ve just finished writing a short story. The first draft is 3600 words. I was going to trim that down during editing. But now I’ll have to rethink that. Every penny counts.

I’d love to hear your opinions on this subject.

Is the new payment method a good or bad thing for you?


Author: John Moralee

John Moralee writes crime, horror and science fiction.

8 thoughts on “KENPC: Amazon’s New Payment System For Writers”

  1. I agree, this is going to be bad news for the short story authors. I also, as a reviewer, don’t look forward to the pointless exposition that may come as a result of people trying to make their books longer. Things are always changing. I guess we make the best of it.


  2. I’m a novel person, so I guess this is good for me. I haven’t published anything yet, but if I have anything available on Kindle Unlimited, this may be welcome for me. Or at least I can try it temporarily.


    1. Thanks for the comment. The changes do seem beneficial for novelists. I think I’ll write an epic fantasy with about 1900,000,000,000 words. Just one person reading it will earn me half of the 11 million dollars Amazon have in the global fund.:)


  3. I recently released a bunch of short stories, and I didnt’ think about KENP in this way. I’m actually pretty tired of all the changing models and the way a writer has to “write for Amazon” to make stuff work. My books aren’t really genre fiction anyways, so I’m not getting high KENP numbers regardless, but I see what you are saying. At the very least though, I do get a few dollars here and then if people read my novels just from the “look inside “blurb, which is better than nothing at all 🙂


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