Nowadays every turn you turn you hear the news about a new Kindle, or a Nook or some other eReader. On the trains people are reading from their iPads and Kindles. It is a great time for technology and for creative people.
The holidays are coming and many people will be giving e-Readers as gifts. That is great for the sellers of e-Readers and those who have a product to sell to those who have an eReader. That is where the publishing companies come in. I cannot begin to tell you the number of frustrated writers there are in America. They are waiting for a contract from some big publishing house and it is yet to happen. Big publishing houses like to go with proven authors. That’s why self-publishing has become so big for the first time author. So self-publishing is big business. Like anything in life it has advantages and disadvantages. One advantage is that within a couple of days you can have a printed copy of your book for proofing.
One disadvantage is that with self-publishing you have a lot to do with the marketing and the sale of your book. Some companies will do this as part of a package. If you have the money it is worth it. You won’t have that headache. If you don’t have the money, then use social media to get the word out. You can also buy a few copies, sell those and then reinvest the profit. Today’s secret is that if you self-publish you have to do a lot of the leg work and you have to pay for it at the same time. Don’t let that stop you. I have a few self-published books and one is now available as an epub book in Apple’s iTunes store. So, don’t give up. There is a secret to everything in life. When you know it- it is no longer a secret. Click on the link http://www.blurb.com/bookstore/detail/2522344
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E-Readers Are Here To Stay
Nowadays almost everyone has an E-reader of some sort, whether it be a kindle, or an iPad or Sony reader, Nook or another devices. Despite Borders closure, people are still reading and people are still buying books and things to read. The shift though is to e-readers and so you have to create something for people to download. Gone are the days of lugging around a big book. We are all looking for that one gadget that can do it all and when we find it we put our trust in it. So this brings me to self-publishing and what to do as an author. The big news is about the EPub platform, but print is not out. People still love the feel and smell of a book. The key to being successful in the self-publishing business as an author is to make your material available in all formats.
EPUB versus PDF
Yesterday I wrote about two self publishing companies that I was working with for these series of blogs. I am going through the process to see how you would benefit from self-publishing. In other words should you look into it or keep praying and hoping for a cal from a big traditional publishing house. Go read it now and come back here. Alright, now we can move on. Today’s blog is about Epub format. Simply put Epub is a format that has flowing text. When the text flows it means the reader using a Nook or any reading device is able to adjust the size of the text and they can flip the pages like a real book. They differ from PDF files which are static. With the popularity of Nook and Kindle and now Kindle fire you want your work in the EPub format. It does not mean you cannot do PDF format, but just remember that you will be limited to a few devices. Lulu will convert your document to EPub file and Createaspace (part of Amazon) will allow you to do that also. Again, there are other companies out there that do this, but it would not be fair to write about them because I have not used them. I want everything here to be what I have gone through myself, so I can tell you the real deal. My suggestion to you is, self-publish until you don’t have to anymore.
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Book Publishing 101 Part 2
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you will see me publicizing my books that I have published through Blurb mostly. I am doing that because I am testing how effective self-publishing is. Let me start by saying that it is not hard to get your book online. Most of the self-publishing companies are pretty good. The results you will get comes down to how much money you have, and that is really the cost of doing business. So far, I have tried Blurb and Lulu. Here is the difference. Blurb gives you magnificent quality books. The paper is bright and it is rich and smooth., but their base price is high. In order to make any money you have to charge a lot. Until they find a way to lower their base price, just be ready to lay out a lot of cash. Also, at this time they do not do Ebooks but it is coming. back with Blurb is that you do not get an (International Book Standard Number) ISBN, so you need your own. That means your book cannot be sold in bookstores, but you can sell your books in Blurb’s bookstore. You can also sell them from your website.
Print Books versus E-Books and EPubs
The other company I am working with is Lulu. The main advantage of dealing with Lulu is that if you do not have an ISBN number they will give you one for your book and your book can be sold in bookstores. I must say that I was not happy with the book I got from Lulu. The print was so small I needed a magnifying glass to read it. Luckily, it is in Ebook form so maybe that explains the small print. It did not make sense to leave half the page blank and have the writing so small. May I missed something, so we will leave that alone. One major plus with Lulu is they also covert your document to EPub and PDF files. The news nowadays is all about EPub and I will explain EPub tomorrow, so make sure you subscribe today so you don’t miss it. I had one book converted to EPub and it will soon be in the iBookstore and on Amazon.com. We will see how long that takes.
The idea here is to be creative. While your waiting on the big publishing company to offer you a million dollar contract you can help yourself. Your beginning might be small but your latter shall be greater. Steve Jobs died a billionaire, but he started small in his parents garage. Mark Twain self-published Huckleberry Finn, and he walked door to door and sold it. Self-publishing companies have come along and leveled the playing field. Let’s go out there and play. If you enjoyed this blog please share it.
I am deviating from my usual hot topics today to talk a bit about getting your book published. I once spoke with a woman who had received 300 rejection letters in the mail. I spoke with another woman who was waiting for about five years to hear from a publishing house where she said she sent her manuscript. I told her that if after five years she had not heard from the company, she should just move on with her life. That was about three years ago.
Seriously, if you have written material and you are still sending unsolicited manuscripts to publishing companies, you really have not jet caught up with the 21st century technologies. Every time I ride the subway I do my unscientific survey of people who are reading traditional books, those listening to music and those with an e-reader or a device capable of reading Ebooks. Most of the time, those listening to music are 40 percent, those reading a book about 10 percent, and those with e-readers, about 30 percent. If you are seen in public with a CD player or even those DVD players people will think you just came from Jupiter. The point is times and things are changing. So what does that have to do with you wanting to get published? I am glad inquiring minds want to know. Well, here it is.
You can self publish your book. You can do it word or even download a template from the Internet and format your pages, write your content and then google “self publishing companies” and you will have a plethora of companies to choose from. You can get one printed so you can check for errors and see what changes you want to make and then you order even 25 or 50 to do a test run. Set your price so you can make a profit. So, if the cost to you is $12 per copy you can sell for $19 and make a tidy profit. From there you can contact a traditional publishing company or you can sell them on your own website. The main point of this article is to get you thinking how you can start where you are and not get discouraged before a traditional publishing house comes calling. Please add your ideas or your comments.