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Self-publishing

GamerGate Zoe Quinn rape story self-published, pulled from Amazon
December 19, 2014 | 11:46 pm

ethicsgameI can’t say I ever expected to have an excuse to write about GamerGate here on TeleRead. The movement generally hasn’t had anything to do directly with e-books. Until now. TechCrunch carries the story of a 3,000 word e-book posted for sale on Amazon, in which five men rape a “controversial video game designer” named “Zada Quinby”—a very thinly-veiled Zoe Quinn, the game developer who has been the focus of many of GamerGate’s attacks. Lest there be any doubt, the book had “#GamerGape” (sic) in its title. The e-book has since been taken down, but the...

Finding time to write has led to publishing success for author Kathleen Brooks
December 15, 2014 | 12:25 pm

kathleen brooks headshotKathleen Brooks has story ideas constantly floating around in her mind. She tries to grab them all by putting them on paper. So far, a number of those ideas have turned into e-books – very successful e-books. Brooks is a best-selling writer with her works having appeared on the best sellers lists for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today. But it wasn’t always that way. Brooks was once a lawyer who worked for a non-profit for animals. Those story ideas were just milling around until she finally took the leap as an indie author. “I think career change...

TIPM Publishing Service Index tracks fall of KDP, rise in CreateSpace, Smashwords
December 12, 2014 | 6:00 am

DEC-INDEXThe Independent Publishing Magazine runs a regular Publishing Service Index to track the popularity and uptake of the various self-publishing support services and platforms available currently to self-published authors. Rather than tracking scammers like Author Solutions and its various offshoots, this index is more about gauging the merits of the real services that writers are likely to use, and their options in getting their work out. And the top ten list of services in the latest iteration, for December 2014, shows that Kindle Direct Publishing is falling in popularity, consistent with the reports elsewhere that KDP and Kindle Unlimited have...

Thoughts on adjusting to Kindle Unlimited as an author
December 2, 2014 | 4:25 pm

kindle unlimitedThis post started its life as a comment to Nate's post on how authors are unhappy with Kindle Unlimited. It quickly grew to a post in its own right. I agree that Kindle Unlimited has not been a good thing for authors. I've seen the impact on my own sales. Before KU was launched,  I was on track to triple my income from last year. Looks like instead I'm going to do a bit better than doubling. Yes, that's disappointing. However, I decided when I started that I was looking at this long term, and I'm still having a way better...

Are indie authors headed for doom and gloom?
November 26, 2014 | 12:25 pm

indie authors doom and gloomI recently posted a portion of Mark Coker’s keynote speech from the Self-Publishing Book Expo. The first half of the speech was about 10 trends in self-publishing, which sparked some interesting conversations. In the second half of the speech, Coker discussed ways authors can succeed, but he started with the idea that self-publishing is getting more difficult for a number of reasons including more quality works being published and an over-supply of books. The Smashwords founder recently posted the second half of that speech on his blog (saving me the trouble of transcribing it). What Coker says is right, there is sobering news...

Research showcases prominence of women in self-publishing
November 26, 2014 | 10:25 am

The Guardian recently showcased research demonstrating that women are leading the self-publishing wave, at least in the UK. And while The Guardian linked this to E.L. James and the Fifty Shades of Grey effect, the underlying data shows that female prominence in self-publishing is a broad and sustained trend. Dr. Alison Baverstock, , an associate professor in publishing at Kingston University in Surrey, whose research has featured before in Teleread, co authored the research study, "Who are the self-publishers?" with Jackie Steinitz, published in mid-2013 in the journal Learned Publishing, which demonstrated that " relative to their share of the national population the sample...

Smashwords’ Mark Coker deilvers keynote at Self-Publishing Book Expo
November 24, 2014 | 10:25 am

logoSelf-publishing isn’t going anywhere, and Smashwords’ Mark Coker recently took a look at how we got here. The Self-Publishing Book Expo was held in New York City recently with Coker giving the keynote address. Several trends have led to the explosion of self-publishing, and many of those reasons have allowed Smashwords to grow into a leading distributor of e-books. Here were Coker’s 10 trends in the self-publishing marketplace: 1. Rise of ebooks When Smashwords was incorporated in 2007, e-books accounted for one-half of one percent of the market, according to Coker. Amazon brought a lot of attention to the ebook market and it starting...

The infographic way to decide whether self-publishing is for you
November 21, 2014 | 10:25 am

Henry Herz-Flow-Chart-660px-5 The Independent Publishing Magazine, which had the good taste to mention me and Chris Meadows in their breakdown of "The 12 Publishing Shakers You Should Be Following," has also found a wonderfully useful infographic courtesy of The Write Life, which put together a flow chart based on a questionnaire by author Henry Herz designed to answer that vexing question for most aspiring writers these days - "Should You Self-Publish or Go Traditional?" With a fair dose of wit, Herz leads you through the decision-making process, and of course, much of the advice and analysis is down to his personal opinion of...

The Indie Author Power Pack aims for the NYT Best Seller list
November 7, 2014 | 6:29 pm

indie-power-pack-blogDavid Gaughran blogs that he and some other authors are attempting to reach the New York Times Best Seller list with a super-cheap bundle of writing advice e-books. The Indie Author Power Pack bundles together three writers’ guides at the low low cost of 99 cents: Write. Publish. Repeat. by Sean Platt & Johnny B. Truant Let’s Get Digital (2nd ed.) by David Gaughran How To Market A book (2nd ed.) by Joanna Penn PLUS exclusive content. Gaughran also suggests that it would...

How does Author Solutions treat authors like roaches?
November 4, 2014 | 10:25 am

That's today's non-trick question. And the answer? Because roaches check in, they don't check out. Thus the motto at Author Solutions, if Helen Sedwick is to be believed. Thanks also to David Gaughran for unearthing and sharing this, but I thought it important enough for some potential Author Solutions clients to share it on. In her latest blog post, Helen Sedwick outlines some mostly ignored but highly important clauses in the standard Author Solutions contracts that also crop up in agreements with its daughter entities, including AuthorHouse, Trafford, and Xlibris. And as she parses them, these forms of agreement essentially give the Author Solutions entities...

Why NOT self-publish exclusively through Amazon?
September 19, 2014 | 7:50 pm

I first saw a post by Hugh Howey discussing the potential cost versus befits of going exclusive with Amazon a few days ago. I was thinking of saying something about it, but it kind of takes on added significance with the news about Barnes & Noble removing the “Download” button from its e-book library. Howey’s post is worth reading, but lends itself to easy summarizing. Essentially, Amazon provides a number of added benefits and incentives to writers who publish exclusively via Amazon either temporarily or continually: free giveaway days, or inclusion in e-book subscription services such as the...

Reedsy brings Scottish-backed self-publishing services marketplace
September 3, 2014 | 10:25 am

A new UK-based self-publishing services startup Reedsy has just rolled out "the first version of its website, progressively inviting editors and designers to join their marketplace over the course of the next 48 hours." Reedsy aims to offer an online skills marketplace that "helps authors collaborate with expert editors, book designers, marketers and translators to take their books to another level. Reedsy will only work with certified, industry-experienced freelancers so authors can find the best partners for their project." Founded in 2014 by a small team out of Seedcamp, "Europe’s top accelerator," to "change the way the publishing industry works," Reedsy is financially supported...

Webcomics: Another new medium of the digital age
August 25, 2014 | 7:09 pm

schlockNew media for broadcast create new forms of media for consumer consumption. The invention of the cinema led to short films, newsreels, serials, and feature films. Later on, the emergence of television largely killed all the forms but feature films, but it brought TV series—like serials but they could keep going for years. Computers brought video games, and of course e-books. The Internet…well, the Internet has brought a number of new media forms. Blogs, fiction mailing lists and newsgroups, social media, YouTube videos…the list goes on and on. But the one I’ve been thinking about today is webcomics. ...

Amazon asks Kindle Direct authors and readers to lobby Hachette in contract negotiation
August 9, 2014 | 3:37 am

Amazon’s PR push in the Hachette negotiation seems to have moved beyond simply posting announcements to forums. I just had a rather lengthy email show up in my inbox from “Kindle Direct Publishing,” which begins with the salutation “Dear KDP Author.” I’m not sure if I received it because I created a KDP account at some point while looking into it, or as a member of the press. Either way, I’m reproducing the letter here in full. The letter essentially expands upon Amazon’s recent forum post about the situation, laying out Amazon’s belief that Hachette wants to charge too...

Amazon says it would be content with 30% of revenue if Hachette e-books were $9.99
July 29, 2014 | 8:42 pm

Amazon has posted another update to its Kindle user forum, dispensing more information about the nature of the dispute between itself and Hachette. In fact, this is pretty much the clearest statement of what the actual argument covers that we have yet seen from either side, including those Hachette leakers. (And, interestingly enough, it doesn’t actually agree with some of the content of those leaks! Imagine that?) I haven’t looked for any reactions yet, but I predict the same howls of outrage we got with Amazon’s last such announcement in May, from Hachette partisans complaining that Amazon didn’t have...

July Author Earnings report surveys DRM, genre sales
July 18, 2014 | 3:34 am

ae-julyHugh Howey and Data Guy have done it again, producing another interesting report on a sample of data scraped from Amazon. The July report re-runs the numbers for their main chart based on the new data, then branches out into a couple of interesting new measurements—including one that I specifically asked for back in May. The main measurements show basically incremental change from the last few reports, In terms of daily revenue to authors (taking into account royalty percentages from publisher sales and Amazon revenue percentages from self-published works), Big Five authors take 37% of total Amazon daily revenue...

RR Haywood fills London’s streets with zombies
July 17, 2014 | 10:25 am

Undead billboard ad Horror writer RR Haywood pulled off one of the UK's more striking self-publishing promo stunts in London recently - but focused on something more serious than just driving sales. Struggling with lack of recognition from established publishers and agents despite self-publishing bestsellerdom for his The Undead Series (currently running at some 16 volumes), he decided to take a mobile billboard on lorry-back to London's literary quarters, to get the message across at first hand, with the help of door-to-door calls round agents and flyer handouts. The result you can see above, with Haywood, who writes pseudonymously owing to his day...

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