Dean Wesley Smith asks indie self-publishers to think about publishing their works in print. He reminds us that we’re ignoring 65-70% of the market (see shot #9), and has a cool graphic showing trends in book reading & buying.
Hey – I’m the first to admit that I love the feel and smell of a book in my hands. And there is nothing so thrilling as seeing your name on the cover (or in my case, in the tables of contents) of a real live book that you can hold. When one of my short stories appeared in print¹ in a mass-market edition back in the dark ages, er, the 90s, I went looking for it on the shelves. Did a little rearranging so the book cover faced out for passers-by to see. Ahem. 🙂 Opened up to the contents and stared at my name, sitting there along with Timothy Zahn and Michael A. Stackpole.
I’d decided to go electronic only with Keeping the Family Peace months ago when I’d heard of the expense involved in setting up print-on-demand services through Amazon. But last week, a colleague at work mentioned the DIY portion of CreateSpace. Guess what I’ll be investigating over the next couple months…
I know many people don’t own e-readers, but you can get Kindle for PC and Kindle for MAC – for free, folks – yes FREE – and read e-books on your computer. All right – I get it that you can’t curl up in bed with your computer but I do a darn good job of it with the Kindle app on my iPhone. And all one-handed! I’ve read more than 2 dozen books that way, including some that are 900+ pages.
So…e- and print? Smith’s argument is a bit too hard to ignore. But will a newbie novelist’s $4.99 e-book look more attractive to the buyer than a paperback priced a good bit higher? One writer commented on Dean’s blog that he produced both versions. He sold 3 copies of the print book – to relatives. 🙂
Dean tells me I’ll sell more books going E+P. Is he right? Oh my dear readers – which would you buy? I’ll be delighted to report sales of e- and print here and hope you can make them look halfway decent.²
Self-publishing indies out there – how are you handling this conundrum?
¹From a kind Amazon reviewer: “A Certain Point of View-this is the third-best story because of the severely melancholy tone. Read it in a house with all the lights off on a rainy Saturday afternoon for the best effect. Stalemate. Excellent.”
²Reminder: Keeping the Family Peace is in the red-lining hands of my editors at the moment as I mentioned a week or so ago. I’ll be working on final – yes, final – revisions in October and November, and hope to be sending you off to Amazon & other retailers in December for your e- or print copy.