Author Topic: How can I tell if Amazon has my most recent file?  (Read 245 times)

LilyBLily

How can I tell if Amazon has my most recent file?
« on: July 04, 2020, 12:40:17 PM »
I could go into Bookshelf>Edit Details and see the file name, but as you know, that will cause Amazon to want to re-approve it. Even though I'd like to believe that Amazon will not take the book off sale while it is deciding all over again to approve publication, I don't want to take the chance this weekend.

Is there another way? I went to Content & Devices>Read Now and what came up on my Kindle for the computer was my original text, even though it has the correct, newer cover.

Is this another instance of Amazon never updating the file it sends to new purchasers? Others have said here previously that it won't bother unless there are substantial changes. But if that is so, how does anyone ever update a file to eliminate typos? Which is what I did a couple of years ago, but now I'm wondering if Amazon ever bothered to acknowledge the update and what can be done about it.
 

TimothyEllis

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Re: How can I tell if Amazon has my most recent file?
« Reply #1 on: July 04, 2020, 12:45:11 PM »
Assuming you bought your own book, if you look in Manage Your Kindle on the Amazon site, and see an update button on your book, then Amazon has provided the means for readers to update to the latest version.

But they almost never push it through automatically.

When you do an update, it does take a while to percolate through to the download. People get what they get. If they get the old copy, then it should show up with an update button on their MYK page fairly soon after.

Cover changes happen faster than content ones do.
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RPatton

Re: How can I tell if Amazon has my most recent file?
« Reply #2 on: July 04, 2020, 02:47:28 PM »
I could go into Bookshelf>Edit Details and see the file name, but as you know, that will cause Amazon to want to re-approve it. Even though I'd like to believe that Amazon will not take the book off sale while it is deciding all over again to approve publication, I don't want to take the chance this weekend.

Is there another way? I went to Content & Devices>Read Now and what came up on my Kindle for the computer was my original text, even though it has the correct, newer cover.

Is this another instance of Amazon never updating the file it sends to new purchasers? Others have said here previously that it won't bother unless there are substantial changes. But if that is so, how does anyone ever update a file to eliminate typos? Which is what I did a couple of years ago, but now I'm wondering if Amazon ever bothered to acknowledge the update and what can be done about it.

So, this is how it's supposed to work. Once files are updated any new purchasers will get the updated file. Previous purchasers will only get an update notification with a significant change. Correcting for typos isn't likely enough, unless you have several typos per page. To get an update pushed out to previous purchasers, you almost always have to make a request to Amazon and they will either push it or not.
 

Simon Haynes

Re: How can I tell if Amazon has my most recent file?
« Reply #3 on: July 04, 2020, 06:15:51 PM »
They wouldn't push my original Hal novel as a forced update (2011 vintage) even though the current version has a whole chapter removed along with minor edits throughout. I asked, they said no and made it optional. This, even though the audiobook version matches the current version, so whispersync will be useless for the ~200,000 people with the original, unless they update manually.

BTW the look inside on the product pages can be very slow to update, even if the cover has been updated. I guess KDP are used to dealing with publishers and their update schedule (never?), not indies.

 
 
 

 
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TimothyEllis

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Re: How can I tell if Amazon has my most recent file?
« Reply #4 on: July 04, 2020, 06:36:17 PM »
I got it done with my 2 second editions.

I used Word to compare the old version with the new version, and then took screen shots of all the crossed out and changed mess which resulted, and sent them those.

They okayed the push.

I'm seeing regular Update buttons on the books in my library, and I think Amazon changed their policy a while ago. Now when you flag a version change in the metadata, it puts an update button on Manage Your Kindle, and lets people update if they want to.

I've been doing regular updates for quite a while now, and most of these are Indie books.

So if you want to test it with a book of yours you bought, change something, change the version number, upload the new one, submit, then a few days later, see if the update button appears.

I'm going to test this myself if I remember in a few days. I've been doing some some backmatter updates, and one of them is the only one of my books I've bought (free), so hopefully I'll see the button in a few days time.
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LilyBLily

Re: How can I tell if Amazon has my most recent file?
« Reply #5 on: July 04, 2020, 10:31:42 PM »
I added a couple of pages to a scene of another book back in November and there is no update listed on that title. As I recall, I got a snippy, self-satisfied note from Amazon saying the update wasn't important enough to push. At the time I did not argue with them but perhaps I should have, since the added bit takes that romance from no sex to closed door--which is a huge category leap within romance these days. I'm not actually worried about the lack of a push update right now.

What I'm concerned about are changes to the frontmatter and backmatter links. As I publish more books, I update the lists and the links in my books to encourage readers to buy them, too. Last year I added an entire page to the frontmatter with the cover of the free novella people get when they sign up for my newsletter, and I changed the backmatter to show my newer newsletter sign-up link pointing at Mailerlite instead of MailChimp. I did this in several books. Previous to that, I added sample chapters to the backs of some books with links and ad copy urging readers to pick up the next books. Now I fear none of those marketing ploys have actually been published by Amazon at all.   

Short of having a friend subscribe to Kindle Unlimited and then pick up all those titles to read, I can't think of a way to check on what readers are actually receiving. Actually, that might work.   
 

alhawke

Re: How can I tell if Amazon has my most recent file?
« Reply #6 on: July 05, 2020, 01:39:34 AM »
There's a neat trick where you can look at your ebook contents and then click the back button or close without saving. It be nice if KDP just had a review mode, but I find that doing this works just as well and doesn't re-publish. As long as I don't hit the save or save and continue button, the book won't go through the re-publish mode. Check your information by going direct into "edit contents" and, after you check your information, hit the backward button or just close the browser (if you're worried it'll still re-publish, you can test this on another book first).
 

alhawke

Re: How can I tell if Amazon has my most recent file?
« Reply #7 on: July 05, 2020, 01:40:59 AM »
I tested it and you can do this ^^ and launch previewer as well, reviewing your ebook, as long as you don't "save" or "save and continue".
 
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MonkeyWithAPen

Re: How can I tell if Amazon has my most recent file?
« Reply #8 on: July 05, 2020, 04:00:28 AM »
I could go into Bookshelf>Edit Details and see the file name, but as you know, that will cause Amazon to want to re-approve it. Even though I'd like to believe that Amazon will not take the book off sale while it is deciding all over again to approve publication, I don't want to take the chance this weekend.

Is there another way? I went to Content & Devices>Read Now and what came up on my Kindle for the computer was my original text, even though it has the correct, newer cover.

Is this another instance of Amazon never updating the file it sends to new purchasers? Others have said here previously that it won't bother unless there are substantial changes. But if that is so, how does anyone ever update a file to eliminate typos? Which is what I did a couple of years ago, but now I'm wondering if Amazon ever bothered to acknowledge the update and what can be done about it.

If you add a timestamp to your file you can just click "Edit Content" and view it to determine whether they have the right one. They show you the file name. No prompt to save and no changes register that would require a review.

But as others have said, if you already downloaded/purchased the book prior to the changes, they don't automatically push the new edition out to you (or any other reader who bought prior). You could try from another account, or you could check the "Look Inside" from the book's sales page.
 

LilyBLily

Re: How can I tell if Amazon has my most recent file?
« Reply #9 on: July 05, 2020, 06:30:39 AM »
Thanks, guys. I did both. Got my spouse to enroll in a free-two month KU subscription and download the ten books that are in KU. Then I tried the "Edit Content" trick on the others and got exactly the information I needed about which file version was on Amazon.

What I will do with it is a different story. I do not format my own books, and in the past I've had my formatter update them. As I got busy and the formatter did, too, not all of them got updated before that formatter turned me loose. Starting over with a new formatter who says any changes in a book he did not format would require a complete reformat, I don't know if I'm walking into the a spiderweb for the future. Plus the idea of paying all over again for formatting is daunting. I don't know enough about formatting to understand why a file would have to be reformatted from scratch. I've been considering sending one of my books as a revised Word doc to D2D instead for their free formatting, although I'm not sure how much prep work I would have to do in advance, such as not indenting the first paragraph in a chapter, and the like.   

I'm not sure of the value of all the updates I've done in the past, either. At first it was just dealing with a few typos. Then it was updating my Books By pages with links in the frontmatter and backmatter to encourage instant purchases. Then I changed covers and needed to remove the old cover design credit from my copyright pages and have the old embedded cover removed. Then I added some first chapter excerpts at the ends of some of the books. Then I finally got it together to produce a free novella as a newsletter signup incentive, and I had that, with the cover of the novella, added to the frontmatter, and I also updated my link to Mailerlite from MailChimp in both front and back. A lot of fiddling, but my old formatter would do it for peanuts.

That's a lot of activity. I felt my edits to text were important, but I don't have evidence that all these pleas to sign up and to write a review and to buy the other books I have out have produced much of anything.
 

DmGuay

Re: How can I tell if Amazon has my most recent file?
« Reply #10 on: July 06, 2020, 01:11:44 AM »
"I could go into Bookshelf>Edit Details"

I've never had any problem checking files this way after publication, nor have I had my books taken off sale if I checked files this way. This seems like the most direct way to check your files. I'm wondering why you're afraid to. Did something happen to you this way once?
« Last Edit: July 18, 2020, 05:06:21 AM by DmGuay »
 
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Marti Talbott

Re: How can I tell if Amazon has my most recent file?
« Reply #11 on: July 18, 2020, 05:03:18 AM »
After a billion changes to my books, I added a mark under the title such as ~    *~*   **. That way all I had to do is review the title to be sure. IMPORTANT. ditch the old versions quick before you get confused like me.
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