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Baen Books

E-commerce services can let authors avoid the 30% ‘Amazon tax,’ but is that worth it?
August 13, 2013 | 1:54 am

On Forbes, Michael Wolf has an article looking at four ways to avoid the “Amazon tax,” the 30% agent fee (or 65% if your book’s price falls outside a certain range) that Amazon takes for selling a self-published book. Wolf notes that some authors are famous enough on their own that they drive many sales themselves, without Amazon’s help, which means that 30% fee is a “heavy tax” on the sales they do make. So what can they do? Well, in today’s democratized publishing world, there are an increasing number of payment and delivery platforms that...

Can e-books be made worthwhile for everyone?
August 10, 2013 | 12:05 pm

siloOn Studio Tendra, Baldur Bjarnason has been writing a series of posts on e-books relating to the missed opportunities that make e-books not as good as regular books. In his first two posts, about e-book silos (“silo” being the term for an ecosystem that locks the user in), he discusses the way that the current crop of one-size-fits-all ereader applications cater to the lowest common denominator but fall short where readers for special needs could help students, researchers, writers, comic book fans, and so forth. They also make it difficult to export notes and annotations made while reading the book...

Baen places e-books in Sony store
August 9, 2013 | 11:06 pm

Fullscreen capture 892013 100234 PM.bmpAnother brief Baen update: Baen e-books have started appearing on the Sony e-book store. It’s hard to tell how many, because it’s apparently not possible to search by publisher, but a number of Baen David Weber, David Drake, and other titles have started to show up. Baen publisher Toni Weisskopf said on the Baen Bar that a press release had been approved and was supposed to go out today, though I don’t find any sign of it on Google News yet. The biggest surprise for me in all this is really that Sony is still selling e-books at all....

Baen news: Changes to bundle gifting; Baen Bulk fundraiser update
August 8, 2013 | 7:55 pm

Here are a couple of news items from the Baen Bar. The first and most important has to do with the way in which Baen e-book buyers are able to pass along freebies to their friends. Until now, the way it worked was that someone would buy one of Baen’s monthly bundles of e-books, in which a half dozen or so books were sold for $18 together, and would then be able to pass the exact same bundle along free in an email to any friend who was not already a Baen member. That friend could then log in and...

The ‘Cuckoo’ calls for e-books
July 18, 2013 | 8:12 pm

Laura Hazard Owen (you know, if my middle name was as cool as “Hazard,” I’d probably use it all the time too) has an article over on paidContent discussing the splash that The Cuckoo’s Calling has made unexpectedly among bookstores and and e-book stores alike. Joanna mentioned this article earlier, but missed the most exciting part: This is freaking out bricks-and-mortar booksellers who fear that by the time that they finally get print copies in, everyone will already have read it on Kindle. The New York Times quotes one store owner: “People who can’t get it...

When e-books hand you a lemon, make lemonade
July 16, 2013 | 3:15 am

insights_lemon_carFor some reason that’s unclear to me, cars seem to be one of the favorite metaphors for intellectual property. You can’t read very many discussions of piracy without some misguided soul spouting, “You wouldn’t steal a car, would you?” (And occasionally someone points out the inadequacy of this metaphor by replying, “No, but I’d happily duplicate the car and drive off in my copy of it!”) But on the blog Studio Tendra, Baldur Bjarnason compares e-books to cars in a different and rather intriguing way. They are, he says, essentially all lemons. Bjarnason is speaking in context of...

New children’s e-book program Nintendo’s first official foray into e-books, but far from first for the Game Boy
July 4, 2013 | 4:47 am

Happy Fourth, to those of our readership who observe it! Rocketnews has a comprehensive English-language report on some new Nintendo-related e-book news. Nintendo is launching an e-book program for its 3DS handhelds aimed at grade-school kids, with 300 Japanese children’s books available. Whereas Nintendo used to be the undisputed king of console and mobile gaming, and still does well in Japan, its numbers have been declining abroad as more and more kids turn to smartphones and tablets and the gaming possibilities they represent. Hence, it’s starting to explore new markets. On The Digital Reader, Nate Hoffelder mentions...

Genre fiction is extremely popular in e-books, publishers find
June 26, 2013 | 6:56 pm

red planet jupiterSpeaking of Baen, Wired misses a perfectly good opportunity to speak of Baen in an article about why big publishers seem to think genre fiction is the future of e-books. The article looks at how all the recent digital-only imprints the Big Six have been launching lately all seem to focus on genre fiction—science fiction, fantasy, mystery, romance. Traditionally, these markets’ sales have always lagged behind “mainstream” literary fiction. However, Random House VP and digital publishing director Allison Dobson says that the digital marketplace has different priorities. Genre fans were the biggest e-book “early adopters” and even now some genre titles...

Baen fans organize fundraiser to give Kindles stocked with Baen e-books to injured soldiers
June 26, 2013 | 5:28 pm

Political/military SF publisher Baen and its fans have long been gung-ho about supporting our troops, and since 2009 some fans have been running a yearly campaign called Operation Baen Bulk to raise money to send goodies to soldiers in need. This year’s campaign is aimed at sending Kindles pre-loaded with over 100 Baen e-books to soldiers recovering from service-related injuries in military hospitals in Fort Bragg, Camp LeJeune, and possibly other facilities if they beat their fundraising goal. They are campaigning to raise at least $3,500 toward that end. Each $100 they raise will pay for buying and shipping...

Baen soon coming to iBooks, finally posts announcements of changes to web site
January 24, 2013 | 8:13 pm

A month and a half since Baen made the jump to Amazon availability, the publisher is about to add another feather to its cap. On her forum on the Baen Bar, publisher Toni Weisskopf has mentioned that Baen e-books will soon be available DRM-free in Apple’s iBooks store. A formal announcement will be made when the exact timeframe has been nailed down. As with the current Amazon deal, EARCs and monthly discount bundles will continue to be exclusive to Baen. The time since the program happened has seen some minor controversy erupt on the Baen Bar. After December 15th,...

Baen/Amazon deal takes effect December 15
December 12, 2012 | 11:31 pm

Since I originally posted about Baen’s deal with Amazon, a couple more details of about the deal have come to light. First of all, the deadline for buying any of the old Baen bundles is Saturday, December 15th. That’s when the deal with Amazon goes live, and the old $10, $15, and $18 monthly bundles vanish, replaced by the higher-priced single books only. If there are any old bundles you might want, better look at and snap them up now. They’ll soon be gone. Second, there has been some discussion over what is to happen with the monthly serialized...

Baen inks deal with Amazon, makes major changes to Webscriptions and Free Library
December 9, 2012 | 11:22 pm

Toni Weisskopf has posted a series of messages to the Baen Bar indicating major changes in the offing for the Baen Ebooks (nee Webscriptions) store. Baen is finally on the verge of getting its titles placed directly into Amazon (and is negotiating with others such as Barnes & Noble, etc.) The problem is, that comes with pesky contractual obligations. The changes amount to the following: “Old” bundles containing books that have already been published will no longer be available for bundle-priced purchase. (Already-purchased ones should still be available for download, though it is possible some books may...