August 22, 2005

Amazon offers short stories for 49 cents

NEW YORK (Reuters) - On-line book store, in what
could be a literary equivalent of snacking, is now selling
short stories, and even alternate chapters or single scenes
from novels, for 49 cents each.

"Amazon Shorts," on sale from Monday, have no printed
editions and are delivered only digitally.

"Amazon Shorts will help authors find new readers and help
readers find and discover authors they'll love," said Steve
Kessel,'s vice president of digital media. "We hope
that by making short-form literature widely and easily
available, can help to fuel a revival of this kind
of work."

Publishers have always had a hard time selling and
marketing the single, short-form work -- the novella, or the
novelette, or the even shorter "novelini," he said.

Customers can now find Amazon Shorts from accomplished
authors, such as Danielle Steel or Tama Janowitz, in various
genres and formats, including alternate chapters and scenes to
well-known stories, personal memoirs, one-act plays and classic
short stories.

No digital rights management software is needed to download
and read Amazon Shorts.

Customers have three options for reading a piece:

-- View now: Takes customers to a Web page to read or print
out the Amazon Short.

-- Download: Initiates the download of a PDF file.

-- E-mail: Sends the entire Amazon Short in a plain-text
message to the specified e-mail address.