It’s not entirely clear why an author should take up the ‘pre-order’ option on the Amazon/Kindle platform. I believe this hiatus between submitting a book, and it becoming available to customers, allows for both revision of manuscript and book details, as well as a recruitment period for beta readers to contribute comments and reviews of their ‘Advanced Reader’s Copy.’
What I don’t actually know is whether reviews can be posted during the pre-order period, or whether they can only go up when the sale is actually live. [Quick update: Google says that reviews cannot be posted during this interval, but only once the publication date has arrived, which could mean reviews might come crashing in then. I’ve read about a work-around in that actual printed books can receive reviews which can then be shared to the eBook site during its pre-order interval, but I don’t have a print book created yet.] The sense of being ‘live’ is also confusing, since the pre-order capacity is live, but the book will not be distributed until the ‘publication’ date.
Another confusing component of the pre-order gambit is that Amazon/Kindle inserts an assessment period, after new copy has been added, before the new copy is actually live on the site. The author receives a ‘live with unpublished changes’ notification, while the changes await human intervention. Just at the moment, I’m waiting for approval of my change of details on the book blurb, which I’ve done in response to being rejected by a ‘group promo’ opportunity for reasons I’ve tried to explain in a previous post [update a couple hours later –> the book details, ie the hundred or so words of blurb, have been changed to what I hope is a more apt description of the series –whew!].
I hope the changes will go through in the next couple of days, so that the first complete book of the Biome NE47 series will be available for real when the actual publication date of 1st June is reached.
In the meantime, in addition to the question of the book blurb, there may also be a few snags to correct on the manuscript itself (I’ve already identified one small age discrepancy, for example) that beta readers may find. So those corrections will be another component of the pre-order interval.
It’s all a bit of a mystery until everything is up and sorted, but I’m cautiously optimistic that things will work out in the end.