KDP Print vs. Createspace: which print on demand service is better for indie authors?
Hello, writers. I got the proof copies of Jeremiah Jones Cowboy Sorcerer: The Complete First Season and Things on the Shelf: Three Tales of Christmas Terror last night. If you have your finger on the pulse of the indie publishing world, then you know that Amazon recently started its own print on demand (POD) service, KDP Print. Amazon already owned Createspace, the current favorite POD services for authors.
Though I’ve used Createspace for other projects, I decided to try out KDP Print for the print versions of the two titles mentioned above.
Today, I’m going to go through the pros and cons of KDP Print compared to Createspace based on my experience.
PROS of KDP Print
- You can access the print and Kindle versions of your book through one account. Royalty reports are also in one spot.
- The print quality is as good as, if not better, than Createspace. One issue I had when using Createspace is that the spine text was VERY off-center in at least half of the copies I ordered. This was due to a printing issue rather than an issue with the cover file. This doesn’t seem to be the case with KDP Print, though to be fair I’ve only seen the one proof.
- You can distribute to Japan? (If that’s something you’re interested in)
- You can pay with your Amazon account (a small thing, I know, but I like not having to find my purse when I order stuff online)
- I found setting up the print book in KDP to be MUCH easier than Createspace. If you’ve already set up the Kindle version, much of the description and meta-data have been imported.
- You don’t have to contact anyone to have the Kindle and Print versions linked on the Amazon page.
CONS of KDP Print
- The shipment of BOTH of my proofs, which I ordered in separate transactions, were delayed by about a week. The shipping time is already ten days unless you pay an exorbitant amount for expedited shipping, so this was very frustrating. I’ve never had it happen with Createspace.
- As mentioned above, the shipping time is outrageous, especially when you’re ordering through Amazon, which is known for speedy shipping. Even if you choose standard shipping, the cost is high. It would be nice if Prime members were allowed to get free shipping on author copies. It’s never going to happen, but a writer can dream, right?
- Ordering author copies and proof copies from KDP is a rather convoluted process. First you indicate in the KDP dashboard how many author copies you want, then within four hours they send a link to your email where you can order them through Amazon.
- KDP Print puts a band on the covers that says “Not for Resale.” I discuss this and a possible reason why in the unboxing video below. Createspace never put any sort of proof marking on the cover (they printed the word “PROOF” on the inside of the back cover.)
- KDP Print pays every 60 days. The pay period on Createspace is 30 days.
VERDICT: Overall, I will be sticking with KDP Print for future projects. In my opinion, KDP Print produces a product of equal quality to Createspace, and it’s more hasse-free. I also think KDP Print will improve over the next year or so. I believe Createspace will eventually merge with KDP Print, anyway, so I feel I might as well use it now and save myself the extra leg-work later.
I’ve never used Ingram Spark or similar services. If you have, please let me know your thoughts on them in the comments.
One of my goals for 2018 is to start doing video content. I’m making this a goal for two reasons. The first is that video content is easier to promote. The second is that I’ve never been a great speaker, and creating videos is a way to improve on that. I know it’s not 2018 yet, but I think that waiting to start goals only gets you in the habit of putting them off more… so, here’s my unboxing video of Jeremiah Jones Cowboy Sorcerer: The Complete First Season.
Links mentioned in video:
Links to information on KDP Print vs. Createspace:
What do you think?
What are your thoughts on KDP Print vs. Createspace? Let me know in the comments!