Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) is an excellent way to self-publish your book without having to use the long-winded process that is traditional publishing. 

KDP is incredibly simple to use, too. Many people opt out of self-publishing as they believe it will be too difficult. However, KDP makes it so easy that many authors are surprised by the process. 

Self-publishing through Amazon is convenient, but what happens when they reject your book? Let’s find out. 

Can Amazon Reject Your Book? 

Yes, Amazon can reject your book for publishing if it doesn’t meet its content guidelines.

Once you submit a book for publishing, it will need to be reviewed by Amazon to ensure that it is safe for them to publish. 

This can take up to 72 hours for a normal book, and up to 10 days for a low-content book. 

If your book has been rejected from Amazon KDP, the most common reason is that it infringes the content guidelines somehow.

You will need to figure out why this has happened, change your work so that it is in line with the guidelines, and resubmit for review. 

What Are Amazon’s Content Guidelines? 

Amazon wants only the best novels to sell on their website, and they are vigilant about the content they allow for publishing.

They use a team of machine learning, automation, and human reviewers to ensure that the books they’re publishing are up to standard. 

They can request more information from the author, and still, have the right to remove a book from their database even after it has been published.

You can appeal this decision if you think that it is unjust. 

Let’s take a look at the content guidelines your book must abide by in order to be accepted by Amazon KDP. 

1. No Offensive Content

Amazon does not publish content that can be considered offensive to people, such as hate speech. It also does not condone the use of abuse or sexual exploitation of children. 

The guidelines also state that pornography, glorifying rape or pedophilia, and advocating for terrorism won’t be accepted,  either. 

If your book contains anything that Amazon deems to be offensive or inappropriate, they will reject it.

2. No Illegal Or Infringing Content 

Amazon takes proprietary rights and violations incredibly seriously, and they will not tolerate any infringement to take place. 

It is up to the author or publisher to ensure that the content doesn’t violate any laws.

This includes copyright, trademarks, privacy, brand, publicity, and any other rights that are deemed appropriate. 

Amazon doesn’t accept content under the copyright that can be found freely online unless it is given by the owner of said copyright. 

They will also reject books based on copyrighted work unless given permission by the holder of the copyright. This includes study guides, summaries, and companion books. 

If your novel includes any infringing material or breaks any laws, Amazon will reject your book from the publishing stage. 

3. Poor Customer Experience

Amazon cares about its customer experience and therefore will reject any books that do not hold themselves to a high enough standard.

Your book needs to provide a positive customer experience if you want to publish through KDP. 

But what does this mean? As well as the book being easy to follow and cohesive, you also need to put time and effort into your marketing materials. 

The descriptive content surrounding the book needs to be accurate without misleading your audience, and you need to put it in the correct categories and keywords.

Amazon also won’t accept content that is disappointing in quality, and you can learn more about this in the Guide To Kindle Content Quality.

You need to be vigilant with your editing and proofing of your work, otherwise, Amazon might reject it.

We recommend using the Kindle Previewer that KDP offers to ensure that your book works well and is readable in different formats.  

4. What About Public Domain Content? 

You can publish content that has been in the public domain but is now no longer copyrighted. 

However, Amazon doesn’t allow undifferentiated versions of the title if a free version can be found on the Amazon store.

You might need to provide proof that the content is in the public domain before Amazon accepts it. 

Ensuring That Your Book Is Accepted By Amazon

Ensuring That Your Book Is Accepted By Amazon

Generally speaking, Amazon will accept a great number of books onto their publishing database.

There are only four guidelines that you need to follow to ensure that your content is up to their standards. 

Provided that you do this, and your book is readable, you should get it accepted. Here are a few things that you can do to make sure your book is accepted. 

Edit, Edit, Then Edit Some More! 

The major drawback of self-publishing is that you need to do everything yourself. Editing, cover art, marketing, and more fall onto you, which can be rather difficult for an author to navigate. 

However, Amazon requires a high-quality book to publish, and won’t accept anything with errors and mistakes.

So, keep editing until you cannot possibly read your novel anymore. Use the Kindle Previewer to help read it easier. 

Remove Offensive Content

We all love a villain, but when they’re using hate speech to convey their bad-guy status, Amazon won’t allow it.

There are plenty of other ways that you can solidify a villain arc without offending your readers.

If there is no way to remove offensive content without taking vital information away from your entire book, you should add a trigger warning section to the front of it.

This might appease Amazon into accepting it. However, our advice would be just to remove it. 

Use Your Own Work

Copyrighted images and text is a big no-no when it comes to publishing, not to mention that it can get you in trouble!

Amazon has no desire to accept work that is going to get them into trouble, either, so they’ll most likely reject this. 

If it slips through the cracks and gets published anyway, Amazon can punish you if you get pulled up on it later. 

Make sure that you’re using your own work, or work that is free to use. If you’re buying cover art from artists, make sure that it is free to use or copyrighted to you rather than the artist. 

Be Patient! 

Amazon uses multiple layers of checks to ensure that your content is suitable for KDP, and this can take days.

Don’t stress that your book hasn’t been accepted yet – trust the process and wait for what Amazon comes back with. 

Don’t continue to edit your book while Amazon is checking it, as this can force the process to start all over again. 


Thanks for reading! Amazon is often great at publishing most books uploaded onto KDP, but there are a few content guidelines that need to be followed.

These include no offensive content, no poor customer experience, no illegal content, and specific rules on public domain content.

Amazon allows you to resubmit your book for publishing once you have removed any violations, so you have the chance to still get your work published.

Good luck! 

Lead Magnet - Boost Your Book Business eBook

FREE eBook: Boost Your Book Business

How Automated Ads can unlock your profit potential

This will close in 0 seconds