Short Links for Your Books

Just a little reference post for those who deal with making links for books, like I, and many of my friends, do.

Each site has a long, complicated URL for your title… but most also have a short, nice looking one too.


Amazon will add the entire text to the Magna Charta onto your URL if you don’t watch it.

LampLight, Volume 3, issue 1, Kindle:

LampLight, Volume 3, issue 1, print:

The easiest way to get a good link is to click the email link in the share option, and just copy the link from there. You can make it as such:

For Kindle:

Where you get your ASIN from the product details.

For Print: 10)

In both cases, you’ll see the number you need in the URL, next to the DP.

so, for our examples, we have the following:



Barnes and Noble is already a long URL, add on the remainder, and it gets a bit unwieldy.

But that’s ok! There is also Add on a short cut, and you can get nice, clean URLs for your books: ID)

Which is that ean= number at the end of the URL, so for this example:

For your print book, the formula is the same, just one detail is different—the EAN number is your ISBN-13, not the BN ID

reduces to:

Kobo and Smashwords

Unfortunately, neither of these has a good way of doing links. For both, simply copy the link for the book.


Apple presents a few challenges for links with its iTunes store. Thankfully, they have a link maker—just search for your title and poof!

So, not nice and tidy, but they are easier to find, at least. These links will go direct to iTunes if installed, or show a web view if not.

Updated – 2024 Feb

removed references to as they no longer work. Now updating all my old websites…

Response to Amazon and Hatchette

Amazon sent me a note this morning, asking me to write Hatchette and voice my opinion on this matter.

I decided to take them up on that, as I had an opinion during the MacMillan spat as well. here is what I sent:

OK, you two, this is getting ridiculous.

You both realize the entire world is watching as you play this game? Not with bated breath, as you may imagine, but more with long sighs and “oh great, NOW what?”

Well, maybe not the whole world. But as someone in the literary scene, each time something like this happens, it makes the rounds. It is more akin to watching your neighbors fight than anything else. (we’d like you to quiet down so we can get back to work)

Here is what you need to know:


Give Hatchette the same deals, the same percentages and costs you give me, Apokrupha press, who has 8 books. Let them price their stuff anyway they want. They are the ones making this stuff, they can make those choices on price. Treat all publishers, big and small, the same. It is for the author to decide if they are happy with their deal with Hatchette, and act accordingly. Your dealings are between Amazon and the publisher. Treat all of us equal.


I will never, ever, pay $10 for an ebook. Ebooks must be cheaper than the mass market. Period. It is a digital file that you are crippling with DRM, making its value about that of a cereal box. Now, this is important so listen, if you price your book at $15, I won’t just buy the mass market–I will forget the book all together and buy a different book. The price of the ebook should be YOUR choice, but never forget that purchasing it will always be MY choice.

Both of you:

Your public temper tantrums are getting worse, between this email, the public ad the other day, and it isn’t making anyone like you two more. Quite the opposite, it is seeding doubt in the minds of writers, readers, and more importantly, CUSTOMERS about both of you.

And both of you need to realize that there are options, different places to buy online, different publishers selling ebooks. If you push us, the readers, enough, we will go elsewhere.

Fix this. Restore our confidence that both Amazon and Hatchette are companies that we, writers, want to work with and that we, the customers, want to buy from.


Amazon and MacMillan, A Readers Point of View

(Yes I realize this is a few months late, but but it seems I hit “Save” and not “Publish” )

You are overcharging for eBooks!”

“You are hurting authors!”

Amazon and MacMillan publishing has started an elevated, sometimes angry, discussion on the internet about the price and value of ebooks. First I am going to throw out this idea of value immediately. An ebook has value if people want to buy it. It has no value of they don’t. So in this case, we’ll talk about the ones that have value.
Here is a diagram showing how books get from the writer to the reader.

So the reader is saying the $ is too high and the writer is saying that lowering it is hurting his bottom line. Fight!!

But here is the thing, they are both right. Prices of ebooks ARE too high (and $15 is absurd) and lowering prices of the ebooks WILL hurt the royalties for writers. The problem is that writers don’t get $ for the book. They get some smaller percentage, usually 5% – 15% of $.

Here is your problem, that black mass in the diagram. That black mass is consuming 80% of the money coming in. So why isn’t that the point of discussion? Easy: the black mass has convinced us, both writers and readers that we are fighting each other.

When readers say “$ is too much for an ebook!!” and writers say “lowering prices will hurt writers!” we are both screaming at the black mass. But the black mass is making it look like we are screaming at each other.

The black mass exists only to feed the black mass. Writers, your publisher doesn’t care about you or your readers. When MacMillan published its open letter explaining what was going on they said: “Amazon has been a valuable customer for a long time, and it is my great hope that they will continue to be in the very near future.”

Amazon is a valuable customer. Amazon. What am I? a grotesque necessity?

I am the reader. I am the elephant in the room and you will listen to me. Don’t think I’ll just go somewhere else? There are hundreds of thousands of free words on the internet from blogs to news to stories and public domain works. I can read for the rest of my life and never pay for a book again.

The thing is I don’t want to. Readers want to buy books from writers. But just like writers are worried about $, so are readers. If readers won’t pay $ for the book, that will hurt the writer’s bottom line too.

I am making a call to the writers: don’t just sign whatever the publishing house puts in front of you. Those are your rights. That book deal is how the money gets from the reader through that black mass to you.
Your rights are yours until you sign that contract. Keep them, hold onto them, this is YOUR work that MacMillan and Amazon are fighting over. Your work, and I want to pay for it. I want to give writers money. And I am not the only one.

Ebooks are not going away. They are the future. Writers need to make their stand against the black mass NOW, while ebooks are a small part of their sales. Because once they become a significant portion, it will be too late.

This fight isn’t between writers and readers. This fight is about the black mass trying to keep us apart. The black mass is trying to prove it is still needed. And while parts of it are needed, they are not needed to the tune of 80% of revenue.