Self-Publishing A Book? Here’s Your Free Guide

This fourth edition of Digital has been completely revamped to reflect the needs of self-publishers in 2020. The structure has been completely streamlined to reflect the ten steps involved in publishing your work like a pro.

Reflecting the specific challenges that writers face today, the advice on each step goes much deeper than before. Instead of just showing you how and where to find a cover designer, for example, Let’s Get Digital will show you how to brief your designer effectively, and learn what effective commercial packaging is for your niche, so that you end up with a cover which isn’t just pretty, but also very effective at appealing to your specific target audience.

And the same goes for writing, editing, formatting, pricing, metadata — all the areas where an author must make crucial decisions which affect the viability of their book.

Of course, the largest section of the book, by far, covers the entire topic of marketing from the ground up, showing authors not just how to find their first readers in the most cost effective way possible, but also how to construct a real author platform, one that will capture interest from readers and use those seeds to grow a community of fans around your work, who will send each new release higher in the charts. Read More…

The Authors Guild Dumps Author Solutions

The Authors Guild – which bills itself as America’s leading writers” organization – has terminated its partnership with Author Solutions. The Authors Guild joins companies like Bowker, Writers’ Digest, and Crossbooks in cutting links to Author Solutions – a company which has faced a sustained campaign from writers targeting its deceptive and exploitative practices, as well as multiple class actions which are still working their way through the courts. Burying the Lede The announcement was made yesterday at Book Expo America, but the Authors Guild decided to bury its own lede. No mention is made of Author Solutions, just a brief mention of the subsidiary which the Authors Guild was partnered with: iUniverse. If I hadn’t been waiting for this Read More…

Digging Deeper Into Author Earnings

The Author Earnings team are attempting to do something which hasn"t been done before, and their work can"t be refined and improved unless there is some intelligent criticism of their approach and findings. Today I"ve invited Phoenix Sullivan to blog on the topic. I"ve known Phoenix for a few years now, and if there"s a smarter person in publishing, I haven"t heard of them. KBoards regulars will already know that Phoenix understands the inner workings of the Kindle Store better than anyone outside Amazon. And I can personally vouch for her expertise: she was the biggest influence on (and help with) Let"s Get Visible and also the marketing brains behind a box set I was in, which did very well Read More…

The Hilarious Hypocrisy of Jonathan Franzen

Jonathan Franzen’s Guardian article – What’s Wrong With The Modern World – was such a monumental act of self-parody that I was surprised it wasn’t published in The Onion. Even his failures (to have sex with an “unbelievably pretty girl” in Munich) aren’t failures, but a decision he makes, right before shoehorning in mention of his Fulbright scholarship. Classic Franzen, you might say. Franzen likes to think of himself as a “lefty” but he’s really what we call in Ireland a smoked salmon socialist. (In the US, you might use the term champagne socialist or limousine liberal, but the Irish term has a certain something). In other words, while he professes to believe in equality, he’s really an elitist of Read More…

Self-Publishing Grabs Huge Market Share

Barnes & Noble re-launched PubIt! this week as Nook Press, a largely superficial makeover which failed to address some fundamental problems, like restricting access to US self-publishers only, and introduced new howler: updating existing titles causes the loss of all ranking, reviews, and momentum. There were only two noteworthy things, to me, about this launch. First, the PubIt! brand had been closely associated with Barnes & Noble. This re-launch seems like an attempt to tie the Nook Press brand to their subsidiary Nook Media, probably in advance of a sale (Barnes & Noble already sold a stake to Microsoft, and a smaller slice to Pearson – Penguin’s parent company but maintain a controlling interest in Nook Media). This re-launch is full Read More…

Self-Publishers Are Saving The Publishing Industry

Self-publishers stand accused of destroying the publishing industry with bargain basement ebook pricing. At least, that was the accusation in 2012 when this guest post was written. And it’s definitely still worth reading today because a lot of the same myths about pricing endure in 2021 – so I’ve dusted this post off from the archives and given it a quick polish for you. This guest post is so much more than a polemic in support of self-publishers or in defense of cheap books. SF/F author Ed Robertson makes a convincing and deeply researched case that self-publishers’ pricing is far from anomalous. Indeed, Ed’s analysis shows that our ebook pricing is firmly in line with the historical pricing of paperbacks Read More…

Can You Self-Publish Your Way to a Big Deal?

Self-published author Lindsay Buroker was approached recently by 47North, Amazon’s SF/F/H imprint. Today Lindsay is here to explain how you can best position yourself to attract an offer. And, despite what you may think, it’s not all about sales. Self-publishing offers a lot of advantages over the traditional path: freedom to write whatever you choose and price however you like; real-time sales figures; direct connection with readers; complete creative control over things like covers; and, of course, the famous 70% royalty rate (and more again if you sell direct). Despite all these advantages, many self-publishers are keen to leverage their success into a publishing deal. For some, it’s a nice advance, access to bookstores, and the potential increased marketability of subsidiary rights Read More…

Scott Turow: Wrong About Everything

On Thursday it was reported that the U.S. Justice Department was preparing to sue five of the largest publishers, and Apple, for (allegedly) colluding to fix e-book prices. Despite the shock expressed in some quarters, this is hardly a bolt from the blue. It’s almost a year since the European Union raided the offices of several publishers in France, Italy, and Germany, kicking off their own Europe-wide anti-trust investigation – later folding into that probe a similar move by the Competition Authority in the UK to examine the Agency Agreement. It was also widely reported late last year that a U.S. Justice Department investigation, along similar lines, had commenced. On top of that, it’s over six months since the law Read More…