Amazon has a program called Kindle Select. If you are enrolled in that program for a certain book, you are not allowed to sell that book from other venues, such as Barnes and Noble online, itunes, and so on. There are lots of avenues to sell books so choosing to ONLY go with amazon is a big decision. I have some books in this program and some books not in the program. I have noticed that a LARGE majority of my books sell through amazon. Of the books NOT in the program, they sell just a few copies in other locations. So I actually prefer to have my digital books available through amazon only. And here's why...
When you are enrolled in the kindle select program, the author and/or publisher can retain 70% of the listing price. If you are not enrolled in the kindle select program, you get only 30%. That means amazon keeps 70% of your book sales. Is that fair?! I didn't see them toiling over edits!
The catch to the program is that books that allow authors/publishers to keep 70% have to be priced at $2.99 or higher. That's a bummer since I genuinely desire keeping my books at 0.99 so as many people have access to them as possible. That being said, under the Kindle Select Program, you can do a quarterly promotion on your book and price it at 0.99 for one week, during which time you still retain 70% of the profit. If you simply change the price to 0.99 at random, you get only 30%.
So, the books that I have control over (Someone Always Loved You, Beyond the Bars, and Dandelions on the Road) you will see priced at $2.99 normally. That being said, I run 0.99 sales on them every quarter. At that time, I list them with all of the promotional websites I can find so they sell a lot more copies during that week time period than any other time of the quarter.
I hope this gives you a better understanding of book pricing....at least when it comes to my books...and why I price the way I do. When I think about it closer, going to a movie for two hours costs, what $10 or more? I'm not even sure anymore, I don't get to go very often. And buying a book for 0.99 or even $2.99 gives you many hours of entertainment that you can enjoy time and time again if you not. It's not wasted money at all! You can buy ten books or MORE for the price of one movie.
I'm certainly not against movies. I love them, in fact. But comparing prices that way, it keeps things in perspective.
If there are other authors like me, watch for the sales. Otherwise, if you really want to read the book, splurge every now and then. If it's an author you enjoy, he or she will appreciate the royalties you send his or her way. Writing a book is never easy and takes many many many hours of work!
P.S. I recently finished another novel called "The Leftover." :) Details to come. And watch for "Dandelions on the Road" coming out November 5th! Join the facebook release party HERE.