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Timothy Dean
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As an indie (with an incorporated LLC publisher, in which I'm a principal), I have a few suggestions regarding ebook preparation and sale. You can use a "publisher for hire" if you want, from Lulu to Amazon's CreateSpace (and if you also intend to put your book out in paperback as a Publish On Demand - POD - you'll probably need one of these). BUT it's tough to make money as an author. You need to watch how many middlemen you put between you and your royalties! So I recommend you buy services "a la carte." Don't give away percentages of sale unless you have to! In order to keep most of the pie, here's one distribution model: 1) Upload directly to Amazon [for the Kindle platform]. It's picky work, but not hard - follow the clear instructions. You're going to want your own account with the biggest seller out there, bar none. This way, you get the entire 70% commission (when you sell at a price point between $2.99 and 9.99). You don't need someone to upload your MS for you, control sales reporting, and keep a piece of your action. 2) Upload directly to Barnes and Noble as well, for the Nook, through their own Pubit, their digital Amazon-like arm []. This way, again, you get the whole author tamale. Why not? 3) Upload to Smashwords. In my experience, their sales are much smaller than Amazon, but it's worth doing. AND you can create a coupon to give downloads of your book away at a discount, or free - you decide. This is great for promotions, and as a way to distribute to reviewers etc. After you qualify for the premium catalog (which just means they vet your book to make sure it's professional, from cover to formatting - and if you're already on Amazon, it will be) this puts you in front of the i-world (Apple). In addition, you choose where Smashwords distributes (3rd party). Allow your MS to be downloadable in Kindle and Nook formats, but don't use Smashwords to distribute to Amazon or B&N since you're already there. Smashwords goes a lot of other places! They take 15% of any sales, and more when there are other distributors involved - but the good news is, this is "off the back end." That is, you pay nothing unless and until a sale is made. There! I've just given you what I've learned in two years of online distribution and marketing! I love Dana's newsletters and info-stuffed books, by the way. As an author of fiction, I post tips I learn from selling in the real world. "Like" my page and get 'em free. (Thanks Dana!)
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Jun 7, 2011