This Is The Kind Of Competition Publishers Want Publishing

Since the huge shift to online purchasing and e-books, a common meme is that there is some kind of “discoverability” problem in publishing. The funny thing is readers don’t seem to have any problem finding books they love. Any readers I talk to have a time problem – reading lists a mile long and never enough hours in the day to read all the great books they are discovering. The real discoverability problem in publishing is that readers are discovering (and enjoying) books that don’t come from the large publishers. What these publishers have is a competition problem not a discoverability problem. Amazon regularly gets slated for purported anti-competitive actions, but it has done more to create the digital marketplace Read More…

Why Is The Media Ignoring Author Exploitation By Publishers? Bewares

The Amazon-Hachette dispute has caught the media’s attention. But what about the story the media refuses to cover? The media is more concerned with one-sided accounts of Amazon’s perceived actions – when no one really knows the exact nature of the dispute. The media is more concerned with what Amazon might do in the future, than actual author exploitation by the world’s largest trade publisher: Penguin Random House. Penguin Random House owns the world’s largest vanity press – Author Solutions – which is currently subject to a class action for deceptive business practices, breach of contract, unjust enrichment, and violation of business statutes in California, New York, and Colorado. The court papers cover the same ground that I’ve been blogging about for the Read More…

Amazon v Hachette: Don’t Believe The Spin

The internet is seething over Amazon’s reported hardball tactics in negotiations with Hachette. Newspapers and blogs are filled with heated opinion pieces, decrying Amazon’s domination of the book business. Actual facts are thinner on the ground, however, and if history is any guide, we haven’t heard the full story. Here’s how it started. In a historical quirk of the trade, publishers and booksellers negotiate co-op deals at the same time as the general agreement to carry titles. (For those who don’t know, co-op is the industry term for preferred in-store placement, such as face-out instead of spine-out, position on end-caps, front tables, window displays, and so on.) At publishers’ insistence, the same practice has continued in the online and e-book world, namely Read More…

NoiseTrade: Build Audience While Boosting Your Mailing List Resources

What if I told you there was a cool new way to share your work with the world that could help you build audience, boost your mailing list, and make money at the same time? Welcome to NoiseTrade. The idea is simple. Authors can upload ebooks (and audiobooks) and NoiseTrade’s community of readers can download them for free – for as long as the author wants. There is a tip-jar, and you can suggest a figure, but it’s not compulsory. So it’s pay what you want, but with a killer twist. In exchange for the download, the reader provides their email address to the author (in full knowledge they will be contacted in future). In other words, it’s a smart Read More…

How To Increase Piracy Publishing

I’m working on the 2nd edition of Let’s Get Digital this month and I thought it might be fun to share some of the ideas I’m sketching out. The following excerpt is part of the chapter on piracy (about a third of it, if you’re counting). There’s more details on Digital 2 (and other releases) at the end of this post, but let me open with a disclaimer: authors are entitled to take whatever approach they like to piracy. It’s their stuff. That said, I’d like to see if I can convince some of you to approach the issue a little differently, because I think taking a hard-line approach can be counter-productive. How To Increase Piracy A common misconception in Read More…

A Writer's Guide To Hustlers, Harlots and Heroes Resources Writing

One of the most popular posts here in 2012 was from author Krista D. Ball who had just released What Kings Ate and Wizards Drank. It was a brilliant book – a writers’ guide, a cookbook, and a history of food all rolled into one. Anyone who read it will be delighted to hear that Krista is back with the follow-up Hustlers, Harlots, and Heroes: A Regency and Steampunk Field Guide. It’s another treasure trove of useful information and fascinating stories (for readers and writers alike). Chapters like Whores, Wenches, and Women as well as Cleanliness Leads To Drunkness prove that this is no air-brushed guide to Victorian and Georgian London. While you get the view from high society, you will also rub shoulders Read More…

A Writer’s Guide To Hustlers, Harlots and Heroes Resources Writing

One of the most popular posts here in 2012 was from author Krista D. Ball who had just released What Kings Ate and Wizards Drank. It was a brilliant book – a writers’ guide, a cookbook, and a history of food all rolled into one. Anyone who read it will be delighted to hear that Krista is back with the follow-up Hustlers, Harlots, and Heroes: A Regency and Steampunk Field Guide. It’s another treasure trove of useful information and fascinating stories (for readers and writers alike). Chapters like Whores, Wenches, and Women as well as Cleanliness Leads To Drunkness prove that this is no air-brushed guide to Victorian and Georgian London. While you get the view from high society, you will also rub shoulders Read More…