What is Kindle Vella and Will I Publish Work There?

What is Kindle Vella?

So, I’ve come across this cool new App called Kindle Vella, thanks to my dedicated subscription and opening emails (sometimes) to Ricardo Fayet’s Reedsy Newsletter. And today, I want to talk to you about this exciting new trend from Amazon, and whether I’m going to end up publishing work on it.

Today’s post is a good read whether you’re an author or a reader since I’ll go over what Kindle Vella is and whether it fits what I’m trying to accomplish as an author. If you’re reading today’s post as a reader, the content below will show you whether you should end up joining since they only allow a special type of book into the program. Ditto if you’re an author.

Anyway, enough small talk.

Are you ready to learn more about Kindle Vella?

Keep reading!

 

What is Kindle Vella?

Think of Kindle Vella as a way authors can publish and readers can read works in “episodic installments.” Readers can do so in many ways, either on the Kindle Vella App for iOS or Android or even on the website on your desktop or laptop.

Episodes often range from 500 to 6,000 words, so think flash fiction to short-story format. As a reader, you will have access to the first three episodes of any work uploaded onto the platform. After the first three episodes, you must earn “tokens” to unlock subsequent episodes.

The following episode’s length will determine the price of tokens that readers must spend to unlock. As authors, we are paid in conjunction with the number of tokens spent on our works.

As a reader, you can also interact with any book that you read on Kindle Vella by giving it either a thumbs up, thumbs down, or by Faving them. However, Faves are only available if you pay, and you can only Fave one story per week, so use them wisely.

Oh, and on an unfortunate note, Kindle Vella is only available in the English language and to US readers and authors only as of the Summer of 2021. This will change as the app grows in popularity, but if you live outside of the United States, it will not yet be available to you. But hang tight, because it will reach every corner of the globe.

Related: Some Free eBooks are Out, Others Headed Your Way

 

What Stories Are Submitted to Kindle Vella?

Wind Wielder
While you won’t find Wind Wielder on Kindle Vella, will you find others?

Kindle Vella is looking for anything that qualifies as an “Original Reading Experience,” and it has strict content guidelines. So if you’re reading this post as an author, remember to follow everything to a T, or else they will reject what is probably an outstanding work.

You cannot publish stories that you have already published in the form of a book, or long-form content. For example, you cannot break down your 100,000-word epic fantasy novel into 20 episodes of 5,000 words apiece. And no, you cannot unpublish a book from Amazon and republish the broken-down work onto Kindle Vella.

However, unlike Kindle Unlimited, Kindle Vella does not require exclusivity. Yet, anyway. For example, if you publish the same stories behind a paywall such as Patreon, you can still publish to Kindle Vella. However, you cannot publish on the platform if your work is free elsewhere. So if you publish to your blog or Wattpad, then you cannot publish them onto Vella.

You can eventually compile each episode released on Vella into a long-form book. But each episode must have been available on Kindle Vella for at least 30 days, the book must comprise at least 10 episodes, and each episode can only appear in one book.

 

Will I Publish to Kindle Vella?

Right now, it’s an absolute toss-up. One reason is that Kindle Vella targets an entirely different demographic of readers. A demographic that has already been used to reading on platforms like Wattpad or paid platforms like Radish. That said, Kindle Vella is nothing new; Amazon is just expanding its reach to these readers, who mainly reside in the teen and young adult category.

So, is the Elementals Universe a good fit for Kindle Vella?

At this time, none of my works would be right for it, since I did not write anything with an “episodic mentality.” So far, Chronicles of Rondure – my second reader magnet – is my shortest work, and the novelette graces the 10,000-word threshold.

While the target demographic is the right one for virtually every work in the Elementals Universe (so far, anyway), the genre in which I write is not popular there. The Elementals Universe is first and foremost, a fantasy, and it appears through my research that Radish/Wattpad/Vella’s most popular works reside in romance, mystery, horror, thriller, paranormal/sci-fi, and LGBTQ genres. While the Elementals Universe touches into each aforementioned genre to differing extents, I wouldn’t think to publish anything here until I see more popular fantasy or genre-bending-related works.

Related: Are You Part of the Target Audience?

 

The Writing in Episodes Learning Curve

Chronicles of Rondure
Chronicles of Rondure is my shortest work, at 10,000 words.

Another caveat for me to write in Kindle Vella is that I’d have to condition my mind to write in an episodic format of 6,000 words or less. And it’s not easy to do this with fantasy for obvious reasons. Beyond that, the most successful Radish and Wattpad authors, at the very least, publish one new episode per week if not per day. That said, these authors also have a strict routine down pat, such as posting a new episode at 8 pm EST every Wednesday night. Since I’m the scatterbrained type who follows no real routine than instinct, committing to a specific time to release a new work would also pose a challenge.

And as Ricardo states during his own ‘What is Kindle Vella?‘ blog post, fantasy-related works require a lot of worldbuilding and more exposition than the genres mentioned above. And remember, I would only have three episodes in which to hook readers. Obviously, it would be a tough sell to readers looking for works that don’t require so much hash.

Again, Kindle Vella is nothing new. It won’t revolutionize the game in any way for most authors unless they write in the genres that I mentioned in the above sections. And it also gives authors on Wattpad and Radish another outlet to expose their work to Kindle readers.

So with time constraints, a strict schedule, and the fact that my work does not fit the preferred episodic genres, Kindle Vella, at this point, is a no-go. However, I’d be more than willing to read works available on Vella. Especially if I don’t have time to read full-length novels. So don’t be surprised if you see my reviewing works on my sister site, Action-Packed Book Reviews.

 

Conclusion

Overall, I’m excited to see what Kindle Vella will offer my author friends if they decide to take that route. However, odds are I will not publish to Vella, but I’m looking forward to using the App as a reader. And since I live in the US (though many people think I’m Scandinavian because of my love for the region), I have early access that I can dish out to other US readers.

If you’re not living in the US, you can use my posts to gain an idea of what will eventually be coming soon to your country. So definitely read the reviews up on my book review blog because sooner than later, you too will get to enjoy them.

Thank you so much for reading today’s post,

And Go Suns, even if at the time of this writing the Bucks are on the verge of knocking us out! And that’s okay since I’ve often considered the Bucks to be my favorite team in the Eastern Conference.