But has Stephen Fry seen the research on this anomaly?
This is a sad day for all who love books. It was announced that our beloved Borders would close forever on Sunday, September 18, 2011. Rumors were flying like locust, but the starkness of the situation was a jarring reality. It's happened!!
Ebooks are now being viewed as the new bully on the block as they push forward toppling the mega-booksellers in their wake. Much like these same establishments buried the small bookstores of the past, which was the premise for the movie, "You've Got Mail" . . . if you remember.
Last week, a member of SheWrites brought an article to our attention. This article noted a decline in the sale of adult paperbooks of 64%, whereas the increase in Ebook sales was 162%. These figures are staggering!!
Technology has proven Ebooks are here to stay. We must adapt our writing careers with this in mind. The entire publishing world is changing like a giant Transformer . . . and no one knows for sure what it will look like in the end.
(Note: Much of this information has been drawn from the article listed below with the author's written permission.)
"I believe there will be a war between the writers who want agents and traditional publishers to "take care of them" and indie writers who want to control their own careers." - Barry Eisler
Another article mentioned that some publishers attempt to slow the transition from paper to digital by holding back the Ebook release date, or they may authorize insanely high Ebook prices.
We're the writers. We provide the content that is printed and distributed.
For hundreds of years, writers couldn't reach readers without publishers. We needed them. Suddenly, we don't. Publishers don't seem to be taking this into account.
It appears that most publishers offer 25% royalty on ebooks, which equates to 14.9% to the writer after everyone gets their cut. Now consider there's virtually no cost to creating Ebooks . . . no cost for paper, no shipping charges, no warehousing. No cut for Ingram or Baker & Taylor. Yet they're keeping 52.5% of the list price and offering only 17.5% to the author. Does this seem right?
NYT best seller Barry Eisler turns down $500,000 advance in favor of Self-Publishing.
I mentioned this same article in last week's blog. I don't know how many of you found the time to read it, but please do your career this favor. Google: Ebooks and Self-Publishing - A dialog Between Authors Barry Eisler and Joe Konrath." It's a MUST READ for anyone ready to publish their work. The article is extensive, but worth the time . . . then decide for yourself.
Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point. - C.S. Lewis
I'm a new kid on the block. I've spent sixteen years writing my memoir, my first book, and my journey into publishing has opened my eyes to a world I was unfamiliar with. In my other life, I worked as a Sr. Buyer in Aerospace and Electronic manufacturing, both on an international basis. That is, until these companies moved overseas in order to increase their bottom-line profit. Was this fair? Not for me . . . and the thousands of other displaced workers left behind without jobs in America. But it too happened . . .
And it taught me a valuable lesson . . . LOOK BEFORE YOU LEAP. In essence, do your research!!
"Experience is a brutal teacher, but you learn. My God, do you learn." - C.S. Lewis
My original plan was to query agents for one year . . . until November. Then move into self-publishing, if I wasn't picked up by an agent. Little did I know what was happening behind the scenes . . .
The explosion of the Internet gives writers the opportunity to do tremendous online promoting: blogs, social networking, chatrooms . . . and now with digital books, there's no more profitable use of an author's time than writing . . . traveling and book tours may become passe.
The writer must believe that what he is doing is the most important thing in the world. And he must hold to this illusion even when he knows it is not true. - John Steinbeck
Ask yourself this question . . . Are you writing for pleasure or money?
Personally, I love to write! The entire process makes me feel complete, doing what I was born to do. But it's hard work! Most people hold a 9 to 5 job, Monday through Friday, where they collect a paycheck for their time and productivity. Writing should be no different . . . but it is! We work in isolation, sometimes for years, creating a piece of work from our very soul that hopefully will touch others. And we too would like to be paid for our work . . . I know I would.
I think Henry Miller has had huge influence not because he wrote about sex, but because the memoir or the nonfiction novel has become such a monumental force in American publishing, if not in literature. - Leslie FiedlerThere are two major differences between virtual shelves and physical shelves.
- A virtual shelf is infinite. A bookstore has a limited amount of space. Books are crammed spine out, and copies are limited. A virtual shelf, like Amazon or Smashwords, carries all titles, all the time.
- A virtual shelf is forever. In a bookstore, you have anywhere from a few weeks to a few months to sell your title, and then it gets returned. A big waste of money.
If you're thinking about Self-Publishing, be sure your manuscript has been refined to perfection, as you would do when submitting to an agent.
You can make 70% self-publishing! You can set your own price. There are reams of data what show how ebooks under $5 vastly outsell those priced higher. This is a critical point. Digital books are a price-sensitive market, and it appears maximum revenues are achieved at a price point between $.99 and $4.99. You set the price, but keep this in mind. You can always lower it later . . . have an international sale!
Lessons learned . . . my two cents
If you find you are having trouble writing and nothing seems real, just write about food. Write about the foods you love most. Be specific. Details. Where did you eat it, who were you with, what season was it?
- Natalie Goldberg