Is Amazon Prime Day better than Black Friday?

Images from ShutterStock.

Images from ShutterStock.

PRIME DAY, JULY 15, 2015

July 15, 2015 is Amazon Prime Day.

It’s a special one-day sale event like Black Friday, but just for Amazon Prime customers.

It was advertised to have more deals than Black Friday. But is it better than Black Friday?

Visit the Prime Deals page. Just go to the home page, and if July 15, 2015 hasn’t passed yet (Pacific time, I suppose), you should see the offers.

If you’re a Prime customer, you can take advantage of them.

  • It’s a great day to subscribe to Kindle Unlimited. You can buy subscriptions up to 40% off up to 2 years in advance, if you’re an Amazon Prime member. (Click on the Lightning Deals banner from the Prime Deals page, look to the left and scroll down.)
  • Some Kindle readers are still available, as of now. The one I wanted was gone, but there are others at good savings. One of them is just on sale; not all are Lightning Deals.
  • Prime Exclusive Lightning Deals are limited-time offers with limited quantities available. You can find a list of these from the Prime Deals page.
  • A separate list shows upcoming Prime Exclusive Lightning Deals so you can be ready when they start.
  • There is also a list of Prime Exclusive Sales and Savings. These aren’t Lightning Deals. Most appear to expire at 2:00 a.m. (probably Pacific time).
  • Amazon music has deals going on.
  • Clothing and jewelry has Prime Exclusive Offers.
  • There is an offer to save money on Amazon gift cards, which always come in handy.
  • There are more deals than just these.

I wound up buying several print books.

I didn’t see books listed on the Prime Deals page.

And most of my print books weren’t on sale; at least, not most of my bestsellers. A few of my print books were on sale today, though not as many as usual.

But I was browsing for advanced math books, and a few of the Dover editions caught my eye. A couple were on sale for $3.99 with list prices over $20. Dover editions tend to be less expensive math books. I’m not sure how $3.99 compares to the usual Amazon price, but it looked pretty good to me. I bought a whole library of advanced math books today (not all were as cheap at $3.99).

While e-books may not have been featured on Prime Day, there is good news for authors:

  • Many Prime customers purchased Kindle Unlimited subscriptions of up to 24 months, saving 25% to 40%. They will be reading a lot of books in the coming months. This helps KDP Select authors.
  • Many Prime customers purchased Kindle readers today. They will need to find e-books to read in the coming months. This helps all e-book authors.

There were a lot of deals today, most of them Lightning Deals. Was it as good as Black Friday? Maybe it depends on what you were shopping for. Maybe it depends on whether you missed out on a Lightning Deal that you really wanted.

What do you think of Prime Day?


I admit, I was a bit frustrated at first.

This morning, I checked the Prime Deals.

I wanted to buy another Kindle reader, and the one I wanted seemed to be on sale at a very good price.

But it turned out to be a Lightning Deal.

(Note: There is at least one Kindle reader on sale that’s not a Lightning Deal, and at least one other Kindle reader with a Lightning Deal that had only been 14% claimed last I checked. It’s just the one I had my eye on that had already expired.)

And I had already missed out.

This didn’t make much sense to me:

  • The more Kindle readers Amazon sells, the more Kindle e-books Amazon will sell, right?
  • So why limit the number of Kindle readers for sale?
  • Why not have any kind of sale on the Kindle reader after the Lightning Deal ends?
  • This morning, thousands of customers had already missed out on this Lightning Deal for a new Kindle.
  • Then the price shot up to regular price.
  • So thousands of people started their Prime Day with the “Sorry, you missed it!” feeling.
  • It would have been better to have a sale price, with lesser savings, follow the Lightning Deal, so you could at least get some savings on the Kindle reader, and not completely miss it.

I waited 15 minutes to chat with an agent, who informed me that many other Prime customers had made a similar inquiry on the missed Lightning Deal.

Just think of all the Prime customers who were frustrated over this who didn’t contact Amazon.

However, the 15 minutes turned out to be worth it. They couldn’t honor the Lightning Deal, but they did make an offer that changed my frown into a smile.

I didn’t wind up buying another Kindle today, but I did buy several other items.

Amazon does provide good customer service. I’m glad I contacted support.

I could have been frustrated over the Kindle reader and purchased nothing at all on Prime Day, but they made me happy and I wound up buying a small library’s worth of math books instead.

Write happy, be happy. 🙂

Chris McMullen

Copyright © 2015

Chris McMullen, Author of A Detailed Guide to Self-Publishing with Amazon and Other Online Booksellers

Follow me at WordPress, find my author page on Facebook, or connect with me through Twitter.

#Self-Publishing on #Amazon Boxed Set BLACK FRIDAY #Book Deal #AmazonCart

Self-Publishing Boxed Set


The paperback edition of my boxed set came out just in time for Black Friday.

So I set the introductory price at $19.99 (a $37 value—that’s what it costs to buy the 4 books separately). Get 4 self-publishing books for the price of 2. (It’s ÂŁ13.50 in the UK.)

Really, it’s one 628-page paperback (not 4 separate paperbacks in a box), but it does have all 4 books put together.

It also includes bonus material from my blog.

The Kindle edition is currently priced at $7.99 (even less than the price of 2). It’s ÂŁ4.84 in the UK.

Self-Publishing with Amazon (4 Books in 1) by Chris McMullen:

Read Tuesday

Imagine a Black Friday type of event just for book lovers.

You don’t have to imagine it. It’s called Read Tuesday, and it’s free:

Please support the Read Tuesday Thunderclap. This will help spread awareness on the morning of Read Tuesday (December 9, 2014). It’s easy to help:

  • Visit
  • Click Facebook, Twitter, or Tumblr and sign in.
  • Customize the message. (Optional.)
  • Agree to the terms. All that will happen is that the Thunderclap post about Read Tuesday will go out the morning of December 9.
  • (The warning message simply means that Facebook, Twitter, or Tumblr need your permission to post the Thunderclap message on December 9. This is the only post that Thunderclap will make.)

Chris McMullen

Copyright © 2014 Chris McMullen, Author of A Detailed Guide to Self-Publishing with Amazon and Other Online Booksellers

  • Volume 1 on formatting and publishing
  • Volume 2 on marketability and marketing
  • Boxed set (of 4 books for less than the price of 2) now available for Kindle

Follow me at WordPress, find my author page on Facebook, or connect with me through Twitter.


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I’m Loving Black Friday—but not for Shopping

Black Friday

This is the best Black Friday ever, at least it is for me, but I won’t be shopping today (except for lunch).

Our heater has been out for nearly two weeks now. It was working fine until the weather decided to bring in a cold spell.

The good news is that it was covered by warranty. The bad news was that the company had technical issues taking the order, so it took a few phone calls and a week of waiting for them to come out.

Just one day after they fixed it, the heater went out again. This time, they were quick to respond, but didn’t have the needed part in stock.

We were hoping to get the heater fixed by Thanksgiving. Some much needed heat would have been something to be very thankful for.

But the part didn’t arrive in time. Today the heater is working again (knock on wood).

So I’m loving this Black Friday. Thanksgiving may be over, but I’m very thankful for this heat.

I feel like a caveman thawing out. I was feeling chilled to the bone until the heater started working again.

We were dressed up like penguins inside our house. We’ve been surviving on one room heater. Sitting around a heater as if it were a campfire.

It wasn’t how I planned my Thanksgiving break. At least, I still have a few days left.

If you live up north, I’m sure it’s much colder there. But if your heater was working, I’d have rather spent the past two weeks up there. 🙂

We did save some money on the gas bill, though that isn’t the way I want to save money…

No shopping for me this Black Friday. I’m waiting for Read Tuesday, of course.

Love books? Check out Read Tuesday, a Black Friday event just for books (all authors can sign up for free): website, Facebook page, Twitter

Chris McMullen, author of A Detailed Guide to Self-Publishing with Amazon and Other Online Booksellers, Volume 1 (formatting/publishing) and Volume 2 (packaging/marketing), Facebook page, Twitter

Read Tuesday would Love Your Help

It’s going to be huge.

What is Read Tuesday? It’s a Black Friday type of event just for books. In 2013, it will be Tuesday, December 10, 2013.

We’re off to a good start:

  • We have an official website up and running, with content.
  • We have a healthy start in terms of followers, especially the Facebook page and Twitter.
  • We have several authors who’ve shown interest and agreed to participate.
  • We have a press release and we’re now at the stage where we will distribute it.
  • We have been advertising on various websites to let both authors and readers know about the event.

Read Tuesday could use your help. If you can help with one or more of the following, your help will be greatly appreciated:

  • We’re looking for any name recognition that may help to promote the event. We have a little to begin with; the more we can get, the better. Any authors (or even indie publishers or booksellers), for example, who have achieved some small measure of success who may be willing to participate in Read Tuesday could help to promote the event as a whole. It’s a win-win situation, as we would include your name with our press release, press release distribution, and other efforts to promote the event (including paid advertisements and social media). This would help to advertise the authors (or entities) who have a little name recognition in addition to advertising the event. This will help to promote these authors along with the event. If you know anyone with mild success, please let them know about this offer. They can contact Chris McMullen at the email in the next bullet.
  • We can always use more participation, especially books and authors added to the catalog. We’ve had many more authors say they will participate than have taken the time to add their books or names to the catalogs. I expect they will be promoting their books on December 10 and participating. It would help the event be better if we could get more books and names in the catalogs. Simply email your ASIN (for a Kindle book that will participate) or a link to your book at a website where it will be on sale to Chris McMullen at It’s that easy.
  • Tell a friend, or several friends; tell anyone. If you like the idea of Read Tuesday, you can help make it better just by helping to spread the word. Word of mouth, email, blog, Facebook, Twitter, any way you might spread the word will be valued. 🙂

Give the gift of reading this holiday season.

Chris McMullen, founder of Read Tuesday

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Like the Read Tuesday Facebook page:

Follow Read Tuesday at Twitter (@ReadTuesday):