Barnes & Noble’s Dirty Little Secret: A Partnership With Author Solutions
Barnes & Noble’s self-publishing platform – Nook Press – launched a selection of author services last October including editing, cover design, and (limited) print-on-demand… without disclosing that some services are fulfilled by the gigantic vanity press operation Author Solutions.
This post is from 3 March 2015. It has not been updated except to clean up broken links, but it’s important to preserve these older posts on author exploitation. Comments remain open.
Absent that disclosure, immediate speculation surrounded who exactly was providing these services, with many – including Nate Hoffelder, Passive Guy, and myself – speculating it could be Author Solutions. However, there was no proof. Until now.
A source at Penguin Random House has provided me with a document which shows that Author Solutions is secretly operating Nook Press Author Services. The following screenshot is taken from the agreement between Barnes & Noble and writers using the service. Read More…
Battle of the Distributors: Smashwords vs Draft2Digital
Since I started self-publishing in 2011, Smashwords has been the overwhelming favorite for savvy self-publishers who wanted or needed a distributor to reach non-Amazon e-bookstores. However, a new competitor called Draft2Digital launched a beta version of their service earlier this year and has been gaining popularity. In July, they hit 1,000 users, 10,000 titles, and 1,000,000 books sold. I’ve been getting lots of questions about Draft2Digital, and experimenting with them myself, so I thought it was a good time for a side-by-side comparison as there are distinct pros and cons to each service. But before we get into that, let’s look at the question of whether you need to use a distributor at all. The virtues of going direct In my Read More…
Amazon Also Creates Competition
The big topic (again) seems to be Amazon and competition. Whether it is a monopoly, or is heading in that direction, and if it should be “stopped” – although it’s never clear what that entails. Barry Eisler dealt with this fear, rather conclusively, in a guest post on Joe Konrath’s blog. This post is from 17 February 2012. It has not been updated except to clean up broken links but the comments remain open. But lately, the hysteria has been ratcheted up a notch by Mike Shatzkin’s (sensible) prediction that Amazon will soon be responsible for 50% of most publisher’s sales. The Author’s Guild now has Amazon firmly in their sights. An article at the end of January entitled Publishing’s Ecosystem Read More…