The time is drawing closer, so I’m going to give you an idea of what to expect for when the book is released, how you can get a copy, what I need from you, and so on. Please take the time to read this, because in it I’m going to explain why things are going to be as they are in the beginning. Also, if you are curious about self-publishing, this might give you a little bit of info on that as well.
The First Step
While I know some of you might have been expecting to get your hands on a solid book that you can put on your shelf, I’m sorry to say that it won’t be happening that way right at the beginning. Nevermor is going to begin as an ebook.
This is why: getting books printed is expensive, and it’s not just the printing. There’s marketing, distribution, isbn numbers, and other things. Print on demand services are usually free, and I may go to that eventually, but I’m hoping for something a little bigger than that. Also, the cover image I created with stock images is not permitted to be used for Print on Demand services(Lulu, Blurb, CreateSpace and such), but it’s alright to use for representing an ebook, unless I can get special permissions – which could cost more – or unless I commission some art to be made, which is also expensive.
So, think of the ebook version as a sort of fundraising experience. Instead of attempting to do a Kickstarter where I ask for donations to make this happen, instead, you’re getting an ebook to read in exchange for the donation that will help bring Nevermor into print and take it to a wider audience.
Even though I would rather have a book in my hands personally; as an author, I like the idea of the ebook for several reasons. One, it’s instant. Pretty much as soon as I decide the book is ready, I can make it available to you right away, like posting on Wattpad. And if I decide I want to edit a bit more, I can easily go back in and update the version at no charge to me. No big deal at all. The buyer can then download the new version, and voila! – mistakes fixed, new content added, whatever. (I hope to have no mistakes before I release it, however.) That way, I can definitely be sure it’s perfect before I put it into print.
Kindle or Smashwords – or both?
There are a lot of good points to publishing with Kindle, even though I would actually get paid more often through Smashwords. Kindle has more exposure and is more respected. By making my book available exclusively through Kindle, I could also concentrate my sales and reviews to try and move myself forward in the selling charts. All of my purchases would happen from one place and this would push me forward in sales on the best-seller list. I can also enter the book in the KDP select program, which is like a library lending plan, which I also get paid for every time someone borrows the book with Amazon Prime.
Smashwords doesn’t have the prestige, I feel, but it pays better, more often, and no matter what country the buyer is from, all of the money I’ve earned will be paid to me as one sum. With Kindle, pretty much every country is a separate check, and I have to make at least $10 in EACH to get paid. This is one thing I don’t like, because what if I only have one sale in France or something?? I may never see that money.
As far as self-publishing, Smashwords might seem like a good choice, because they promise distribution through other channels, but even though it says your book will be distributed to other book sellers such as Barnes and Noble, the Apple Store, so on, being “distributed” is just about where it stops, because most of those other sellers have to approve your book manually before they will sell it in their store. I think publishing exclusively on Kindle has better exposure, unless of course my book gets approved…in a long line of books waiting to be approved.
I’m not sure which I’ll go with yet. I sort of wanted to concentrate all my reviews in one place; however, I may go with both and try my luck.
Don’t have a Kindle? No problem.
There is a Kindle App that you can put on your phone or ipod, or computer – pretty much anywhere. Just purchase the book from the Amazon store and you can put it right on your device with the app. Reads just like it would from Wattpad – or better perhaps. I prefer the Kindle format to the Smashwords web document ones, but those can be downloaded for other devices as well.
I plan to sell the ebook for $4.99, at least in the beginning (I decided on $1 per 25K, though if somehow I do reach 150K in my edits, I may not raise the price again). At a 70% royalty, I’ll get around $3.50 for each copy. Some ebooks (most from traditional publishers) are super expensive, but I’m trying not to do that, especially since I want to leave you with some money to buy the bound version. =) What do you think of this cost? Is it too much for an ebook? How much would you expect to pay for an ebook?
What I need from you:
Well, of course I need you to read it! 😉 But that’s only part of it. After the book is obtained, I’d like for you to rate and review it on whichever site you buy it from. This is very important! The review doesn’t have to be much, but the idea is that I need the ratings from the sales. (Those who purchased it will be shown as verified reviewers, showing that the site has recognized them as individual people who bought the book. If you do not purchase the book but try to review, the review will not be verified, on Amazon at least.) After 20+ Kindle ratings (I think) the book will start to show up on Amazon lists like “Those who purchased this also purchased…”. That means more exposure for me and my story!
Also, once it’s published, I’d like you to share it through Facebook, Twitter, Pintrest, Google+ or anything else you have connections with and can think of. The book is going to be listed on Goodreads, so if you have a Goodreads account, you can add the book to your reading list and review and rate it there. A portion of it is going to be posted on Wattpad, so be sure to add that to your reading lists there too. You won’t get the whole book there, only a sample, but hopefully that will draw more attention to it.
I’ll prompt you further about this later on and give more information about how it’s going to work out. Right now, I’m hoping for a January-possibly early February release for the book, but that does depend on my editing progress. Could be sooner, could be later. I’ll let you know of course.
I know I’ve said this 100 times, but thanks again to all of you who have been following the blog and have stuck with me on this! It means so much to have your support, and have you respond to my questions and ideas for the direction of the story. I really look forward to sharing this with you, but not only the story – the whole experience of publishing!
Keep checking in for news, contests, writing advice and all sorts of things along my road to publishing victory!