Amazon announced today that it will launch Kindle Singles, a new kind of Kindle book format that are twice the length of a New Yorker feature or the length of a few chapters of a book.
"Less than 10,000 words or more than 50,000: that is the choice writers have generally faced for more than a century--works either had to be short enough for a magazine article or long enough to deliver the 'heft' required for book marketing and distribution," the company says. "But in many cases, 10,000 to 30,000 words (roughly 30 to 90 pages) might be the perfect, natural length to lay out a single killer idea, well researched, well argued and well illustrated--whether it's a business lesson, a political point of view, a scientific argument, or a beautifully crafted essay on a current event."
The format will have its own section in the Kindle Store, and will cost less than a regular book, though the exact price wasn't revealed. Like any other Kindle content, Singles will come with a "buy once, read everywhere" experience. They will work with any Kindle model, iPad, iPod Touch, iPhone, Mac, PC, BlackBerry, or Android device.
"Ideas and the words to deliver them should be crafted to their natural length, not to an artificial marketing length that justifies a particular price or a certain format," said Russ Grandinetti, VP, Kindle Content. "With Kindle Singles, we're reaching out to publishers and accomplished writers and we're excited to see what they create."
Kindle Singles will be automatically backed up online in users' Kindle libraries on Amazon where they can be re-downloaded for free, anytime.
Amazon did not disclose a release date for the format offering, but has called upon those writers and publishers who wish to be considered for Kindle Singles, to contact the company.
Kindle is becoming an increasingly important format for writers to reach new and wider audiences. With not only the amount of supported devices, but iPad sales coming to places like Walmart, it's very likely that more people will continue to do a significant amount of Kindle reading. Kindle Singles should eliminate some constraints for writers and publishers.