Goodbye Kindle Worlds

Amazon has announced, with letters sent to the property owners and authors, that they are shutting down Kindle Worlds. This is especially sad for me as that is where I got my start with publishing my writing.

I played with G.I. Joe as a kid and when it was announced that Joe would be part of Amazon’s Kindle Worlds program, to say I was excited was an understatement. I’d been creating G.I. Joe stories for a long time and to do it semi-officially and get paid for it? Hell yeah.

For those that don’t know, Kindle Worlds was a program for “fan authors” to create works that would be published on Amazon for the Kindle and allow these authors to get paid. Not much, as it got split between Amazon, the property owner and then the author. But to get to play in those worlds? A world was a property, in this case G.I. Joe, that the rights holder put up with a specific set of rules. Fan authors would write their stories, within those guidelines, and once they passed Amazon and the right’s holder quality control, they would get published and be eligible for purchase.

Fanfiction that you got paid for.

I published a lot of stuff on their. It was fun. I met some amazing authors that published on there.

It’s sad that it’s coming to an end.

Without Kindleworlds I might never have gotten up the courage to start publishing my work. I’d been writing and creating forever but just never was able to publish anything. I’m not my biggest fan. I tend to dislike my writing. But KW, for whatever reason, helped push me over the hump and put my stuff out there.

I never made much money from it, but that wasn’t the point. I got to write, people bought it, it provided me motivation to continue to write.

And I got to play in the sandbox of something I’ve loved since I was a kid. I got to put my own stamp on the Joe mythos. And I even got to have a creation featured in a contest to be made into a figure. I didn’t win but I have design artwork from Robert Atkins who, besides being an amazing artist, did work for G.I. Joe comics.

It had been awhile since I’d published anything on KW, as my own projects take up most of my time, but I had a lot of things I’d been working on. Including finally finishing my epic March of Cobra. I’ll post snippets and such on the site over the next days and weeks. The last day to submit is tomorrow (5/17) so no way will anything else be done in time.

I’m sad to see KW go away. I’d always hoped Hasbro would add their other properties to it and that Amazon would support it more. It was a good experiment and I’ll be forever grateful to it.

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