While Douglas Preston finalizes a letter, already signed by hundreds of authors, slighting Amazon in its request for the retailer to resolve its terms dispute with Hachette, another group of authors, many of whom rely on the Amazon publishing platform, has begun to publicize its position in support of Amazon.
Twenty-seven writers, including J.A. Konrath and Hugh Howey, posted a lengthy petition on change.org in which they framed the dispute in a completely different way. "The players,” they wrote, “that deserve your derision in this standoff are Hachette in particular, and the New York ‘Big Five’ in general. ... At stake here is how e-books are priced." They urge Hachette to stop hurting its own writers and agree to reasonable terms with Amazon.
As for those pre-order buttons that have been discussed so much in the press, the authors note that most self-published writers don’t have pre-order buttons, and urge readers to discount "self-serving industry and millionaire author propaganda."
The writers, who claim to have set up the petition without being asked to do so by Amazon, have struck a chord with a number of readers, evidenced by the number of signatures they petition has received. By early Thursday afternoon, more than 1,250 readers had signed the online document.