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Smashwords

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...

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...

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...

New Smashwords Survey gives more tips, stats on self-publishing sales
July 15, 2014 | 12:31 pm

Smashwords Distribution NetworkAs one more contribution to the author earnings and self-publishing debate, alongside the UK Society of Authors, the UK ALCS, and Hugh Howey's AuthorEarnings, we have the 2014 Smashwords Survey from Mark Coker's Smashwords. Available in full via Slideshare, the Survey examines "aggregated retail and library sales data of Smashwords books," amounting in this period to "$25 million in customer purchases  aggregated across Smashwords retailers," over the period April 2013-March 2014, with one or two updated insights, and then parses the results "to identify Viral Catalysts ... anything that makes a book more discoverable and more enjoyable to readers." The key...

Smashwords Summer/Winter Sale starts now!
July 2, 2014 | 12:24 pm

smashwordsGood news for both authors and readers: the Smashwords Summer/Winter Sale starts now! From the author enrollment page: "Here in the Northern hemisphere, it's mid-summer.  Readers everywhere are loading up their e-reading devices for summer beach reading and vacations. But what about the good people South of the equator, who are now in the middle of winter? They deserve to curl up in front of the fireplace and enjoy a good read too! That's the story behind our Summer/Winter promotion..." Readers can scope out the deals via the banner on the Smashwords homepage. There are both free and discounted books in multiple...

Smashwords adds daily sales reports
June 12, 2014 | 12:25 pm

swchartsSmashwords is giving more information to self-published authors. The publishing and distribution company announced daily sales reporting for iBooks, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, OverDrive and the Smashwords store. It also includes daily and total order accumulation numbers for iBooks preorders. “The reports provide authors and publishers unprecedented insight into recent sales performance across the largest Smashwords retailers,” Smashwords CEO Mark Coker wrote on his blog. “Authors can use the reports to gain rapid feedback on the effectiveness of marketing and promotion campaigns.” This type of information will help authors and publishers learn what marketing campaigns work best. Blog tours, discounts and or...

Full of dross or not, Smashwords still a boon to libraries
June 3, 2014 | 5:58 pm

Funny how quick some people jump to conclusions. On Good e-Reader, Michael Kozlowski slams Smashwords’s new public library program to bring curated lists of its e-books to libraries inexpensively via OverDrive. Kozlowski feels that Smashwords is a slush pile, plain and simple, and it seeks to convince libraries to throw their money away on poorly-written, badly-edited rubbish. Libraries are going to feel ripped off that they have bought titles that no one will read and if they do, will likely be very vocal about the poor writing quality and in the end, libraries will feel like...

Konrath vs. Stross on the Amazon/Hachette affair
May 27, 2014 | 4:37 am

So, more people have chimed in on the Amazon/Hachette thing. Most notably, Charlie Stross has blogged about it. Given that he’s published by Orbit, a subsidiary of Hachette, it’s understandable that his point of view is rather similar to Lilith Saintcrow’s: Amazon is a “malignant monopoly” engaging in predatory pricing, bullying Hachette, and so forth. Joe Konrath and pseudonymous guest blogger William Ockham have a different point of view. Konrath posted an essay to his blog in which they demolish Stross’s arguments point by point. Most of it is the same argument/counter-argument we’ve been hearing over and...

Smashwords delivers titles quicker to the iBookstore
May 19, 2014 | 12:25 pm

SmashwordsSmashwords has taken steps to improve delivery to Apple’s iBookstore, the company announced on Sunday. Published e-books have appeared as quickly as the same day when submitted through Smashwords’ distributions network recently. Previously, the items would take several days to show up in the iBookstore. “We’re working to provide our authors and publishers faster retailer deliveries and faster metadata updates with the highest possible accuracy and reliability,” Smashwords founder and CEO Mark Coker wrote on the company blog. “We’re now shipping five times daily seven days per week to iBooks, and in the months ahead we’ll push that envelope further.” Part of the...

Smashwords’ Mark Coker continues to champion with indie author manifesto
April 25, 2014 | 10:25 am

Indie Author Manifesto Yesterday’s roundup by Joanna had an interesting post from Smashwords’ Mark Coker. The site’s founder created an indie author manifesto, empowering and highlighting just how far the world of self-publishing has come. Certainly, the freedom of publishing has allowed many more to find their voices and given them a bigger platform to be heard. Some of the points from Coker’s manifesto include: - I have experienced the pleasure and satisfaction that comes from self-publishing - I have a right to publish - My creative control is important to me. I decide when, where and how my writing graduates to become a published book. The manifesto is...

How do you solve a problem like Astounding?
March 18, 2014 | 7:18 pm

20140318_190042_HDRA few days ago, I recalled a short story, called Early Bird, by Theodore R. Cogswell and Theodore L. Thomas. I wanted to share that story with a couple of friends and co-writers on a shared Internet fiction setting that uses a number of the same tropes. So I went to see where I might find it. And the answer was…nowhere. Well, not completely nowhere. It was published in one single place: a 1973 anthology honoring the late John W. Campbell. I couldn’t find it online anywhere else—not for sale via Smashwords, not published in a magazine I could...

Smashwords reaches 10 billion published words
February 25, 2014 | 12:00 pm

SmashwordsSmashwords hit another milestone on Monday. The indie book distributor reached 10 billion words published through its platform. That’s a lot of words. The 10 billion words are represented by 87,000 authors and 288,000 titles on Smashwords. The 10 billion mark is nice, but what it represents is more important. Smashwords CEO and founder Mark Coker addressed some of this in his blog on Monday. It took a little more than four years for the first five billion words to get published through Smashwords. The second five billion mark happened in fewer than two years. It took some time for self-publishing to catch on,...