Friday, 25 January 2013

Anyone For Coffee and Books?

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Coffee and books—a natural partnership? No doubt this weekend many coffee addicts and book readers will combine the two in some leisurely spent hours by the fireside, in bed, or perhaps in a local coffeehouse or restaurant. Whether the location is Tokyo, London, Paris, New York or some quiet out-of-the-way location, millions will enjoy the indulgence throughout the world. I suspect the most concentrated period of coffee drinking and book reading happens every weekend. There is nothing unique in partnering both pleasures and many larger bookstores offer areas specifically for this, though I’m not sure I’d favour the idea on a busy Saturday afternoon.

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Has Self-Publishing Stopped Being The Road Less Travelled?

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I’ve been busy this week working on a video presentation for my consulting services provided through TIPM Media. I was working on a dialogue piece for insertion into the video about the shifting sands in self-publishing and where the road ahead now points for authors in 2013. It wasn’t too long ago authors were faced with two distinct paths—go down the traditional route through agents and publishers or forge ahead as an independent author through self-publishing. I think we are seeing a definite shift when authors look to the world of publishing for the first time. With the explosion and perceived ease of self-publishing, it’s no longer a case of the traditional highway or no highway at all. Self-publishing as an option for authors and self-published books are gaining much more attention in the media today, and not just the publishing industry media—mainstream media channels, too.

Friday, 18 January 2013

Book Country, You've Been Book-Tango'd!

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When Pearson bought ASI (Author Solutions), the self-publishing goliath and owner of multiple self-publishing imprints like AuthorHouse, iUniverse, Xlibris and Trafford, we had the usual gnashing of teeth and countless toys tossed from cots—none more so than from the self-publishing community. Savvy authors don’t like to see their fellow brethren, however naïve, fork out money on expensive, overpriced publishing packages with more marketing puff and promised dreams than reality and commonsense, and rightly so. ASI has long been accused by the self-publishing community of strong-handed and deceptive marketing to naïve authors. While ASI may be presented as the self-publishing provider everyone wants to hate, it hasn’t stopped them selling publishing packages to thousands of authors every year and entering partnerships with many traditional publishing houses, including Thomas Nelson, and more recently, Simon & Schuster. There was a hope that the acquisition by Pearson and the nestling of ASI alongside Penguin would amount to more than just another move by the publishing establishment to generate new revenue from the explosion in self-publishing. Perhaps Pearson could improve ASI’s practices and customer service, and maybe even put some manners on the unruly beast.

Thursday, 17 January 2013

CreateSpace - Reviewed (Update Jan 2013)

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CreateSpace is the publishing engine of global online retailer and publisher Amazon, the company everyone either wants to love or hate. Createspace began life in 2002 as CustomFlix Labs (DVD), originally intended to make widespread distribution easier for independent filmmakers by providing on-demand DVD production. In 2000, a small group of writers pooled resources to form Booksurge with the intention of creating opportunities for authors to self-publish their books and retain content rights and sales profits. Both companies quickly flourished and in 2005, Amazon acquired them, with CustomFlix Labs changing its name to CreateSpace in 2007. By late 2009, Amazon took the logical step and merged CreateSpace and Booksurge under the CreateSpace brand name to form a single company offering on-demand manufacturing of books, DVD’s and music formats for independent artists and businesses. CreateSpace also support on-demand products for Amazon retail and their publishing imprints AmazonEncore (for deserving author slipping under the mainstream radar) and AmazonCrossing (for foreign language books deserving an English translation).

Self-Publishing Cover Design Survey and Some Wise Words

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Book cover design is something we regularly discuss on The Independent Publishing Magazine, and along with a lack of professional editing, they are two fundamental areas where self-published authors often fall short. I've always insisted that authors should never approach self-publishing as the poor man's take on traditional publishing. If you do fail to invest in professional editing and design, then you risk severely limiting the chances your book has for success.

Monday, 14 January 2013

Guest Post: Overcoming The 7 Deadly Sins of Writing | Tom Corson-Knowles

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1. Fear

Fear is the #1 killer of success as a writer. It’s why most people wake up every morning and work in a 9-5 job they hate. It’s why more heart attacks happen on Monday mornings while people are on their way to an unfulfilling job. It’s why writers will throw away their manuscript instead of self-publishing or dealing with the rejection of pursuing a publishing contract. It’s why we put off making the important decisions in our life. It’s why we’re more concerned with what other people think of us than we are with what we think of ourselves.

Monday, 7 January 2013

The Future of Publishing 2020: A Program For Publishers and Self-Publishers (Part 1)

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During the last few months of 2012, there has been a great deal of discussion among authors, as well as the wider publishing media, about the role of self-publishing within the mainstream industry. While some have reported the successes of self-published authors like Colleen Hoover, Bella Andre, and Samantha Young during 2012—and the moves by some large publishing houses to develop self-publishing imprints—as a positive sign that old stigmas have fallen by the wayside (that not all self-published titles are poorly written hogwash; that an author should never pay any third-party to be published; that the industry should hold dear to the rigid philosophy of money always flowing to the author; that the self-publishing boom is grossly skewed by e-publishing), much of the deeper analysis has been anything but positive.

Sunday, 6 January 2013

Guest Post: My Raider Publishing Experience | Jenni Boyd

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TIPM continues to receive reports of negative experiences from authors who have dealt with Raider International Publishing. Here is just one account from author, Jenni Boyd.

Hi, my name is Jenni Boyd. I wanted to share my story with other authors who have had their hopes dashed by constant rejection, forcing them to look at other options to get their book published.

Friday, 4 January 2013

Will Gutenberg laugh last? | Rough Type

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Have we reached the e-book plateau?

"A lot of other data came out during the course of 2012 that also suggests that (a) the growth in e-book sales has slowed substantially and (b) print sales are holding up pretty well. At a conference in March, Bowker released market research showing that, even though just 20 percent of American web users have actually purchased an e-book, e-book sales growth has already “slowed dramatically” from the explosive levels of the last few years and is now settling down at an “incremental” rate. There are, reports Bowker, signs of “some level of saturation” in the e-book market, and, strikingly, the heaviest buyers of e-books are now buying more, not fewer, printed books. The Association of American Publishers recently reported that annual growth in adult e-book sales dropped to 34 percent during the first half of 2012, a sharp falloff from the triple digit gains of the previous few years. As of August, e-book sales represented 21 percent of total sales of adult trade books. While e-book sales seem to be eating away at mass-market paperback sales, which have been falling at around a 20 percent annual clip, hardcover sales appear to be holding steady, increasing at about a 2 percent annual rate."

Will Gutenberg laugh last? | Rough Type
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