FOMO No More


FOMO - Fear Of Missing Out

The advent of self-publishing has done a lot for the romance community.

In today's reading landscape, I know it feels like one of two things are happening, and it leads to all of us feeling like we're missing out on something.

1. Every book is in Kindle Unlimited.

2. Authors are pulling their books out of Kindle Unlimited because of dropping payouts, or some other reason.

I realize that these situations are contradictory of each other, but it's what a lot of readers run into, depending on how they choose to consume their books.

I'm here to tell you, you're not missing out on anything, because there are numerous ways to consume your media, and none of them are the right, or wrong, way.

The most accessible for you, is definitely the way to go.

Below you will find a list of vendors, and ways that you'll be able to consume your audio or e-books. Have I listed all of them? Probably not, and there will always be a new one. These are the most popular and widely available.

Settle in, and I'll explain to you all the ways you can read your favorite romance authors.

- Kobo and Kobo Plus

Kobo has two options for anyone who wants to read from their platform.

Kobo Plus is a subscription based program that is similar to Kindle Unlimited, but unlike Kindle Unlimited, which caps borrows at twenty, Kobo Plus is truly unlimited. There is also an audio option that can be included with your Kobo Plus Subscription.

You may also download the Kobo app on your phone or tablet and read in it, without getting a subscription through Kobo Plus. In order to do this, you will purchase each e-book or audiobook individually.

Kobo has both an app, and a dedicated e-reader. If a dedicated e-reader is a plus for you, Kobo is a great option.

- Scribd (Everand)

If subscription based programs is the way you prefer to go, there is another option as well. A program called Scribd (please note they have very recently changed their name to Everand). It's much like a Kindle Unlimited or Kobo Plus subscription. You pay a monthly fee, and you're allowed to borrow the e-books and audiobooks they have in their library.


Not all books are available in this program, but there is a wide variety of romance that will keep you entertained for months. Authors tend to rotate their books in and out of this program, and readers should be able to find enough to keep their binge-read streak going.

Please note, this program is only available as an app. They do not have a dedicated e-reader, or physical books to purchase.

- Apple Books

If you use an iPhone or an iPad, then you're more than likely already familiar with Apple Books. It is an app that can only be downloaded on an iOS device. They have no subscription service, and you will need to purchase each e-book or audiobook individually.

While they do have the iPad that many consider their device of choice to read on, Apple Books is an app only program. They do not have a dedicated e-reader, and they do not have physical books to purchase.

- Barnes & Noble

Barnes & Noble is one of the only brick and mortar stores available for booksellers any longer. Because of that, they are one of the only vendors other than Amazon to offer e-books, audiobooks, and print books. In many ways they harken back to the days where you would get in the car, head to your favorite book store, and flip over to the back of a paperback that catches your interest.

While they are a bit old-fashioned, they are branching out into the new world of apps, and e-readers.

They have an app that is available through phones and tablets. Much like Apple, they do not have a subscription service, and you will need to purchase each e-book or audiobook individually. One thing to note – they do not allow purchases anywhere other than the United States. If you are an international reader, you will need to purchase elsewhere.

- Google Play

If you are an Android user for your phone or tablet, then you probably already know about Google Play.

Because they are so internationally focused, you can find a more robust market here for anime and k-drama type stories. I know for a certain section of romance readers, that is something they are constantly looking for without having to pay per episode. This is the option for you.

Their app is downloaded on your android product, and while they don't have a subscription service, they do have a very robust bundling option for authors to make series cheaper for readers.

They do not have a dedicated e-reader or physical books. However, any Samsung or Android tablet will be integrated with Google Play Books.

- Libraries

For readers who are looking to save some money, the one place they head is the local library. Over the past few years, libraries have upped their game to become relevant in the digital age. They now have their own app called 'Libby' that allows users to download e-books and audiobooks.

While there sometimes may be a bit of a wait, there is no cost to you, unless you want there to be.

There are a number of libraries in the US that allow you to purchase a yearly card with them for a small amount of money, and you can have access to their library when you purchase their card. Some off the top of my head are Las Vegas, Houston, and New York.

- Chirp

This is one of the newer services out there. It is an audiobook program that has its own app. They run deals every single day. There's a possibility you can get free audiobooks, or deeply discounted e-books. Many authors choose to feature their audio on there, and while you may not be able to listen to their entire backlist at a discount, it gives many who can't afford Audible prices, a place to get their listening in.

- Serial Apps

There are a lot of these, so I'm going to group them together.

These are much more popular in countries outside of the US. In some countries, this is the only way for readers to get their fix of romance novels, because of certain laws they have on their books. All serial apps will require you to purchase chapters using coins one at a time – oftentimes they will provide you with a certain amount free, and then the user will need to purchase the rest that they want to read.

Many times they are not edited to the degree that normal books are, and they are high on angst, because the author would like for you to continue purchasing the episodes. There are a large number of stories that are on-going and don't plan on ending. Please know that if you get sucked in, you will be spending quite a bit of money to read a massive book.

However, you can also get titles from your favorite romance authors on there, if your country doesn't allow you to have access to the other vendors. Just be aware, there isn't a lot of policing on these apps.

Some serial apps include - Radish, Yonder, iReader, Moboreader, Dreame, and KISS.

As you can see, there are a lot of options out there for anyone who wants to read. There isn't a one-size-fits-all, and there is a program out there for everyone.

The most important thing?

Read those books! They take us away from reality for a few short hours.