Who's Afraid of Very Cheap Books? Publishing

A common meme in publishing is that cheap books are destroying the world or literature, and that low prices are undermining the viability of publishing or writers’ ability to make a living. I’ve long thought this position is nonsense – a narrative which plays on misplaced fears of change and a confusion of price and value, which is also based on flawed assumptions and analog, zero-sum thinking. And, if anything, the opposite is true. Why So Cheap? Self-publishers are fond of 99c pricing for a number of reasons. It’s the lowest price you can set at Amazon, Apple, Barnes & Noble, and Kobo without making your book free, and it has an obvious impulse buy appeal to readers. This price point is particularly popular Read More…

Who’s Afraid of Very Cheap Books? Publishing

A common meme in publishing is that cheap books are destroying the world or literature, and that low prices are undermining the viability of publishing or writers’ ability to make a living. I’ve long thought this position is nonsense – a narrative which plays on misplaced fears of change and a confusion of price and value, which is also based on flawed assumptions and analog, zero-sum thinking. And, if anything, the opposite is true. Why So Cheap? Self-publishers are fond of 99c pricing for a number of reasons. It’s the lowest price you can set at Amazon, Apple, Barnes & Noble, and Kobo without making your book free, and it has an obvious impulse buy appeal to readers. This price point is particularly popular Read More…

2011: The Self-Publishing Year In Review

This has been a year of massive changes. Some of the older hands say that the business has always been this way. However, I don’t think we are simply seeing another year of flux. Instead, we are witnessing a process unfold which will revolutionize publishing forever (or at the very least, the foreseeable future). But hey, I could be wrong, and we might all be back querying – and fawning in the comments of agents’ blogs – by March. January The year opened with a booming e-book market as millions of Americans went on a binge buying spree to fill up their new e-readers – most of which were Kindles. That led to a handful of self-publishers posting truly eye-catching numbers, some Read More…