Thursday, May 29, 2014

6 Steps to a Professional Amazon Author Page

By Marcy Kennedy, @MarcyKennedy

Part of the Indie Author Series

When you sign up for Kindle Direct Publishing to publish your book on Amazon, you’ll find almost everything you need from the menu at the top of the page. They make it easy for you to update your account information, add new books, and track your sales.

But one important piece of publishing on Amazon isn’t there—your author page.

Many authors make the mistake of leaving their page blank, but it’s a powerful tool for funneling readers to your blog where they can better connect with you and for letting them know about your other books.

Today I’m going to walk you through where to set up your author page and what you should put on it.

Step #1 – Sign Up

The first thing you need to do is go to and join. Just because you have a Kindle Direct Publishing account does not mean you’re signed up for Amazon Author Central.Because the author of a book isn’t always the same person who uploads a book to Amazon for sale, Amazon set up Author Central as a separate page from where you keep track of your books.

Step #2 – Claim Your Books

Once you’re signed up, you’ll see these options.

Your Amazon Author Central account won’t be automatically linked to the books you’ve written. The first thing you need to do is “View and edit our list of your books” to claim your books.

You’ll be able to search for your books by title, your name, or the ISBN. Once you see your book, claiming it requires only a single click.

Don’t panic if your books don’t automatically show up on your author page after you’ve claimed them. It can take 24-48 hours.

Step #3 –Update Your Book Details

You can now update the details about each book by clicking on the title.

You’ll see these three tabs.

Under “Editorial Reviews,” you can add reviews from a book blog or from an expert, a product description, a note from you about the book, content from the inside flap (if your book has a hardcover version with a dust jacket) or content from the back cover, and an About the Author paragraph. If you wanted to add fancy formatting like bold, italics, or bullet points to your book description when you uploaded it but weren’t sure how, you can easily do it from this page.

“Book Details” are filled in by Amazon, so you don’t need to worry about this section (though for print books you have the option to “suggest product information updates”).

“Book Extras” allows you to add information about the characters, a synopsis, a summary, quotations, info about the setting of the book, a glossary, awards, and a discussion of the themes and symbolism. All of this is pulled from Shelfari, however, so you’ll need a Shelfari account if you want to fill this in.

Step #4 –Add a Bio and a Photo

Next to the BOOKS tab at the top, you’ll see a PROFILE tab. This tab allows us to tell our readers a bit more about ourselves.

Use the photo that you have on your social media accounts and your website so readers can recognize you instantly.

Don’t give your entire life story in the biography section. Readers don’t care about where you went to school or where you grew up. What most readers want to know about is your qualifications for writing the book and interesting facts about your life. They want a little peek behind the curtain.

Step #5 –Link Your Blog

On the right-hand side of my Amazon author page, you can see that Amazon pulls in a link and first paragraph from my most recent blog posts.

This is an important, yet often missed, element of the author page. You don’t actually want readers to stay on your author page. You want them to come to your website where they can sign up for your blog or mailing list and interact with you. They can’t build a relationship with you through your author page. You need to be sending them somewhere that they can.

Step #6 – Update the Events Section Regularly

Are you doing a book signing or other event (either online or live)? Make sure you add it to your author page and that you keep the Events section up-to-date.

If you don’t include your events, readers who might have wanted to attend miss their chance. If you let it get outdated, it can look like you don’t care or that you haven’t done anything new lately.

Have you set up your Author Central page yet? Do you have any other tips you’d like to share?

Marcy Kennedy is a suspense and speculative fiction writer who believes fantasy is more real than you think. Alongside her own writing, Marcy works as a freelance fiction editor and teaches classes on craft and social media through WANA International. She’s also the author of the Busy Writer’s Guides series of books. You can find her blogging about writing and about the place where real life meets science fiction, fantasy, and myth at

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Both How to Write Dialogue: A Busy Writer’s Guide and Mastering Showing and Telling in Your Fiction: A Busy Writer’s Guide are now available in print!


  1. I haven't done it yet - I'm not quite ready to be published. But you can be sure it will be part of the process this Fall, when I hope to get my first book up. Thanks for the details (such as getting a Shelfari account) - this information shortens the learning path.

    And knowing that Amazon is fine with you sending people to your blog is quite useful - the blog is already there, and I can come up with one just for the book, too. I wasn't sure - since authors of Amazon seem very erratic about using their author page.

    Things you mention are like mountains - high and hard to get over - until someone like you shows us the well-lit tunnel that goes through. It is a big help. Thanks!


    1. Me pleasure. It's important that writers stick together and help each other. We all get farther when we work together :)

  2. Great step-by-step guide! Yes, I set it up and I'm glad I did. We might as well use every tool available to us.

    1. That's what I think too. We never know which tool is going to be the most helpful until we try.

  3. I bookmarked this to come back to when the time was right... and now I have :) thanks for the guide! Struggling to set up the RSS feed for step 5... Technology baffles me! Sara

  4. Thanks so much Marcy, for this clear, concise and content rich advice!
    Now, on to your guidance for international AC accounts...
    Best wishes, K.D.

  5. I just set up my account last week and completely missed the book details tab. I wondered where to put endorsements and such. Thank you! This was both timely and extremely helpful. ~Lynyetta