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Thursday Midday Links: Mass market paperback sales decline 41.5% in February

At RT, there were dozens of workshops about self publishing. I sat on a panel myself with HP Mallory and Mark Coker. HP Mallory has sold over 130,000 copies of her self published books and has scored a 6 figure deal with Random House for publication of three forthcoming titles. As I sat next to Mallory on the self publishing panel, I could tell immediately why she was successful. Mallory knows how to market her books and spoke in terms that I hadn’t heard any one else speak about marketing in a long, long time. During the panel, someone told her that they wanted to buy her marketing book. I think she is going to write one. In any event, there were many authors who attended these self publishing panels. Authors who are routinely on the bestseller lists and authors who haven’t been published. Part of the reason is due to this:

According to AAP's monthly sales estimates, e-book sales jumped 202.3% at the 16 publishers that reported results, hitting $90.3 million. The rest of the trade segments, however, all had declines in the month with adult hardcover sales plunging 43%, to $46.2 million at the 17 houses that reported figures, while mass market paperback sales tumbled 41.5%, to $29.3 million at the nine reporting houses.

Romance, if you recall, makes up about 50% of those mass market sales. Jennifer Crusie has thrown her advice hat into the ring. She doesn’t believe self publishing can be done without professional help.   She also dislikes the terms “Big 6″ and “legacy publishers”.   I wonder what she thinks of “Agency Publishers”.   I actually agree with a lot of what Crusie says in that how you publish establishes who you are as a professional.   Self publishing is hard, particularly if it is done right.   Yet, when Crusie ends with the summary you “really need both print and e-publishing” she does something that is actually pretty misleading.   She conflates self publishing and digital publishing into one basket.   I’ve seen this time and again.   Digital publishing is going to be the norm in the future and print will not be.   Don’t conflate self publishing and digital publishing. They aren’t the same.

*****

New Yorker has a long story about the conflict between George R.R. Martin and his most ardent supporters.   Basically ardent supporters have turned bitter due to the long wait for the conclusion of the Fire and Ice series.   Laura Miller describes the readers as consumers who are impatient with the delivery of their product and perhaps not as respectful of the author’s creative process.   Some readers regret even reading the series given the tortuous wait.   Martin worries about not delivering.

It’s not that I don’t feel for the author.   Probably Martin is trying to write as much as he can when the creative muse strikes him.   But readers aren’t the patient sort and I don’t think that authors should expect that.   Impatience works in their favor.   Look, for example, at the success of the Jean Auel’s The Land of Painted Caves which has been hotly anticipated since 2002.   Impatient readers are a mark of a successful book and really, something to be celebrated rather than despised (not that I think Martin despises his readers).

*****

Courtney Milan points out how much the Google Book Settlement could have cost authors taking into consideration the most favored nations pricing require by Amazon.

But the terms that are most damaging to authors are buried after the royalty rate. Those are the terms that allow Google to set any price it wants, so long as it pays you the royalty on the List Price you have set internally. Yes, you can set your price to any price point. But Google has the right to discount off the price that you set.

Why is that worrying? Because in order to get Amazon's 70% revenue, you have to let Amazon match prices online. So if Google had rights to your backlist titles, and you put your books up on Amazon, and Google lowered your price (as it was allowed to do), Amazon could match that price lowering. And if Google lowered its price below $2.99, Amazon would match- and you'd get bumped from the 70% royalty to the 35% royalty.

*****

Publishers Lunch is reporting that several of Borders’ executives have resigned (reg req’d or Det News link) while Borders asks for millions of dollars to be paid in bonuses to the executives who have stayed.   No one likes the idea of the executives making so much money trying to bail out a company.   The argument for executive bonuses is that these execs are necessary to pull the company out of bankruptcy and that the executives are taking on an extraordinarily difficult task that has a lot of personal risk for them (i.e., if the company doesn’t make it, they are out of a job).   The argument against bonuses is that this money should be used to finance the reorganization, not line the pockets of the already wealthy.   I think Borders’ chances of getting out of bankruptcy is slim at this point.

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com

37 Comments

  1. Sheryl Nantus
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 12:34:54

    Any chance of a further recap of your panel at RT? I know Coker was ill but I’d love to see a transcript and hear the entire discussion.

    And yes, people are confusing self-pubbing and digital pubbing too much.

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  2. Jia
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 12:46:00

    The main reason why many GRRM fans are bitter is because he himself said that A Feast for Crows and A Dance of Dragons were the two halves that made up a book and that he was splitting the book because it was running long. So when Feast came out, we expected Dance to come out in a year or so because hey, GRRM said he was splitting the book, so that means he must be done with it, right?

    Foolish, foolish us.

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  3. Man of la Book
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 12:47:37

    I’d like a recap as well, maybe some bullet points about the adverting aspect.

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  4. Isobel Carr
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 12:59:23

    In other news that terrifies (esp when coupled with e-book sales jumped 202.3%), the severe under-reporting of eBook sales on royalty statements:

    http://kriswrites.com/2011/04/13/the-business-rusch-royalty-statements/

    I too have been waiting for Martin's next book, but I've waited a lot longer between books in P.C. Hodgell’s God Stalker Chronicles (9 years between 2 and 3; 12 years between 3 and 4), and it never occurred to me to complain. I'm always just overjoyed when another one comes out.

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  5. AmyW
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 13:04:34

    Re: GRRM: Besides the structure of book 4, I think seeing him work on other projects other than writing Ice & Fire contributed to readers’ frustration. Regardless, I’ll still be buying Dance of Dragons on release day…

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  6. Cathy KJ
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 13:05:05

    While I am a frustrated GRRM fan, I also agree with Neil Gaiman: George Martin is not our bitch. It’s not like A Song of Ice and Fire is the only quality spec fic series out there. There are plenty of books to fill the 4 (or more)- year gaps.

    I’m not directing this at anyone in particular, just generally frustrated with the whineatone and entitlement.

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  7. Heather
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 13:19:23

    The mass market news kills me, since I’ve dropped a bundle on paperbacks in the last couple months. If I want it, I’ve bought it. But, apparently, I can’t single-handedly support the publishing industry. sad

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  8. Kerry Allen
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 13:22:45

    I loved Neil Gaiman’s “George R.R. Martin is not your bitch” post about a year ago.

    I’d just love to meet the offspring of these adults who’ve embraced Veruca Salt as their role model. They’ll expect… what’s faster than instant gratification?

    *cue goose song and plunge into the incinerator*

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  9. Elaine
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 13:52:03

    Is there any speculation about what caused such a huge mass-market decline? Borders stores closing, digital sales, publishers pushing for hardcover or trade rather than mass market format?

    (I would have bought Kiss of Snow the day it came out if it were going to be in mass market format. Now I am waitlisted at the library for the hardcover when it comes out. I am number two on the list, so I hope they buy at least two.)

    And add me to the PC Hodgell fans. I am so happy Baen picked up the series.

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  10. Jane
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 13:57:58

    @Sheryl Nantus: Yes, I’ll try to recap it at some point. I have fairly extensive notes from the reader roundtable that Smart Bitch Sarah and I held.

    @Elaine: I think it is a combination of a number of things. Rise of digital, fall of Borders, the drawback of Wal-mart and other retailers of stocking mmpb (which also leads to increased trade publications because trade is being stocked at more places).

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  11. Tina
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 14:34:16

    Eh. I think the manner in which we’ve learned to acquire things has changed so much what with so much immediate information and access all the time that people have forgotten that things haven’t always been quite so instantaneous. Nor should they be.

    I refuse to be bitter or impatient about the wait between A Feast For Crows and Dance of Dragons. Yet.

    The reason I first stumbled upon A Game of Thrones in the first place was because I was waiting for the next Wheel of Time book to come out. As Kathy upthread states, there are tons of quality SFF — or any other genre — to read in the meantime.

    So in the meantime I’ve discovered Michael Sullivan, Brandon Sanderson, Patrick Rothfuss, Scott Lynch etc. and have enjoyed them immensely. The long wait also gives me opportunity to go back and re-read the earlier books, all of which together come in at about 3,300 pages. It allows me to pick up things that I missed, remind me of stuff I’ve forgotten and relive those ‘Holy Frickin’ cow!!’ moments again.

    And, I’d much rather get a quality product once it is finished than something that feels like it has been slapped together and rushed just appease impatient fans.

    I do, however, reserve the right to be mightily pissed if, after waiting six years, I read the book and feel as if it wasn’t worth the wait. Then I’ll get mad. LOL.

    Until then, Winter is Coming to HBO this Sunday and I have already pre-ordered DoD and will have it in my hot little hands on July 12th.

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  12. Courtney
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 14:48:24

    I don’t know what prompted HP Mallory to self-publish, or the woman who sold 1M books on Amazon and just signed the $2M deal (with ST. Martins, I believe), but when I read about self-publishing success stories (and by success, I mean loads of readers love their work and want to keep buying more), I’m reminded by something a very successful author once said. (I can’t remember who it was, so forgive me). It was something along the lines of “Great stories are never told and books are never published because agents are the gatekeepers to publishers.” This was five or ten years ago so long before the advent of self-publishing, but the tie-in I’m trying to make is that agents pass on books that they don’t think they can successfully market to editors and publishers. Given the new world that we’re living in where authors are doing the majority of their own marketing, I’m wondering if agents shouldn’t be paying attention to HP Mallory on how to market since they are, in fact, the first sales agents of their authors’ work.

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  13. Jane
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 14:51:21

    @Courtney: Actually HP Mallory did have an agent but the agent up and disappeared. Stopped returning phone calls/emails. So HP decided at that point to self publish because the Kindle thing had come along.

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  14. Courtney
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 15:03:30

    Sorry-I just assume (which I know I shouldn’t do) that folks who self-publish do so because they haven’t been able to find agents or their agents were unable to sell their manuscripts. My bad!

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  15. Jackie Barbosa
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 15:12:08

    Yet, when Crusie ends with the summary you “really need both print and e-publishing” she does something that is actually pretty misleading. She conflates self publishing and digital publishing into one basket. I've seen this time and again. Digital publishing is going to be the norm in the future and print will not be. Don't conflate self publishing and digital publishing. They aren't the same.

    Word.

    A fair number of self-published authors offer their books in print (Zoe Winters and Selena Kitt among them). There’s nothing about self-publishing that prevents the resulting book from being distributed in multiple formats. In fact, Zoe recently released a book (I think it’s Blood Lust) in audible as well.

    That said, I have a certain amount of sympathy for the notion that it’s going to be somewhat easier for a new author to build a platform with a traditional publisher than by going it entirely alone. This isn’t because having a publisher relieves authors of the reponsibility for promotion and marketing, but because being relieved of the need to subcontract for cover art, professional editing, and formatting gives the author more time (and theoretically more money) to spend on the promotion and marketing aspects. Of course, there are no guarantees either way, but self-publishing is not a shortcut to wealth and fame–it’s just another avenue.

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  16. Gretchen Galway
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 15:41:32

    I’m a huge fan of Jenny Crusie. I started writing (hell, reading) romance because of her. When I went to RWA in DC, I became breathless and weak-kneed when I went over to caress the hem of her garment after a workshop.

    When Bob Mayer made such a huge self-pubbing transition last week (over the past couple of months, but last week in particular), I was afraid to hear what she would say. Because I was afraid she’d be against it–and I’ve decided I’m very much for it.

    But as she says, what’s right for you is just that–right for you. I disagree that new/debut/unpubbed authors are better off first pursuing traditional/legacy/commercial/big6 publishing–if just because I think that avenue is closing day by day.

    As Nathan Bradford (great blog) says, the slush pile is moving from agents to Amazon & BN. The readers will decide. I don’t know how the “Big6″ will fare in the years to come, but I do believe the current system of how a new writer starts a career has already changed. Query letters were never a very good way to get a book published. Having good e-book sales on your own, I believe, is the new price of admission to getting anyone’s attention.

    The next question–whether the successful self-pubber will want to 1) “sign away” her rights and pursue a more traditional career, 2) never sign any contract and just keep self-publishing (both print and digital), or 3) do a combination–that’s the recipe each writer will have the fantastic choice to decide.

    But the rules of entry to any flavor of career–those, I believe, are changing for everyone. Jenny Crusie loves her editor and I imagine I would too. But to get to that level–I think in future the road travels right through people’s Kindles, Nooks, and iThings.

    /crystal ball out

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  17. Courtney Milan
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 16:10:08

    Re: GRRM. I was at one of his first book signings for his last book (and I don’t even remember–was that Feast or what?) and he said that the bad news was, he split the book up and so we wouldn’t hear about some of our favorite characters, but the good news was that Dance was almost done so we should have the new book in our hands in nine months to a year. The whole place broke out in cheers.

    I know GRRM is not my bitch, and I know he didn’t intentionally lie, but I also don’t trust him to deliver anything when he says he will ever again, and that does make me reluctant to commit to continuing to read his series. If I don’t like it, I’ll be disappointed, and if I do like it, I’ll be disappointed.

    But of course I’m buying Dance on the day it comes out because I can’t help myself.

    P.S. And when I say “on the day it comes out” I do not mean to imply that I believe it will come out on July 12th. It’s mid-April and he’s not done yet, so…

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  18. Moriah Jovan
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 16:50:33

    @Courtney:

    Sorry-I just assume (which I know I shouldn't do) that folks who self-publish do so because they haven't been able to find agents or their agents were unable to sell their manuscripts. My bad!

    Well, that’s why I did, but I knew I had good stories and I was almost certain I was halfway decent at telling them. It’s just that I couldn’t figure out WHAT they were, and certainly not enough to express that to an agent.

    My attitude was: If I liked what I was writing, certainly one other person in the world might, and I wanted to find that person. With any luck (hope? wishful thinking?), I could find more than one.

    Let me tell you, that first step was a doozy and I was terrified.

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  19. Moriah Jovan
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 16:52:29

    @Jackie Barbosa:

    A fair number of self-published authors offer their books in print (Zoe Winters and Selena Kitt among them).

    I do. I’m also changing trim sizes now that 6×9 trade paperback’s becoming synonymous with POD.

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  20. liz talley
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 17:05:18

    First, I don’t even know who GRRMartin is. Yeah, I know. Some of you are snorting coffee right now, but I don’t. So by all means, dude, write the book and get it right…or there will be even more mad people.

    As to the future of publishing, I’m stymied. I don’t currently have a self-pubbed book out there, but bully for those who do. I’m all for it. But, I really don’t see the demise of the paper book happening. I just see it as another choice. There are too many people who don’t have an ereader. Gasp! I know. But there are many people who have ereaders who also like to read paperbacks too. I’m one of them. I’m currently reading several paperbacks that I could have gotten on my kindle, but didn’t. I went to the lovely bookstore, where I bought a coffee and browsed the shelves and came out $60.00 poorer. People still buy books. Trust me, the lines were long. Maybe it’s because I live in the South, and you know, we don’t trust those cotton-pickin’ machines down here :) But kids still have to read several books for school. Sorry my kid doesn’t get a kindle, not at 140.00 a pop. I know where it will end up…lost. Maybe I’m a thirtysomething dinosaur, or stupid, or stubborn, but I don’t want to see books disappear. And I do think they’ll weather the storm only to settle down and co-exist quite happily with the ereader. I hope.

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  21. sarah mayberry
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 17:07:48

    Re: GRRM. I will admit to being impatient for the next installment, but I’m not about to go harass the man. I do wonder what will happen if the HBO series is a huge hit (first 12 minutes are available on youtube, and it’s AWESOME) and they catch up with where the story is at and he hasn’t written the other books. But that would take a while, I suspect. It will be interesting to see how much story they chew through in each episode. My huge fear is that he’s going to not be able to finish (ie health reasons) because I flat out adore his writing and think he is so amazing and I need to know the rest of the story. The other thing is that I plowed through those first books, waited and waited for Feast, then held my breath for Dragons, and now it’s been so long I really need to go back and read all the books again because I’ve forgotten so many important details. I think I’m just going to sit and wait till they’re all out and read it all again from the beginning. And in the meantime the Rothfuss books keep getting big kudos so I’ve added him to my list, and there should be a Robin Hobb due out soon….
    Edited to add: Just read the Newyorker article and want to clarify that I am not hating on GRRM – just loving him so much it’s painful to wait. Like counting down the sleeps till Christmas. Gentle love, not scary angry love!!! I felt for him after reading about his paralysis and self doubt. It would be terrifying having all those expectations pressing down on you. I actually think it’s a testament to his basic decency that he’s not stroking around thinking he’s king of the world, but instead wanting to do his best.

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  22. Isobel Carr
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 17:20:18

    I can’t help but wonder if paper publishing will become a subsidiary right that authors sell off after self-publishing electronically (i.e. I’m not giving you my eBook $$$, NY, but you can deal with all that printing and distributing if you're willing to pay me to do so).

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  23. DS
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 18:41:42

    About GRRM– I haven’t read anything by him above short story length, but I do remember how anxious I felt between Ringed Castle (1971) and Checkmate (1975) by Dorothy Dunnett. I also worried about her being able to finish the Nicolo series. I got rather impatient with all her two Johnson Johnson books that came out between 1971 and 1973 when I thought she should be concentrating on Lymond. But she did get the job done.

    And I hope GRRM’s fans get to feel as excited as I was when I finally had Checkmate in my hot hands.

    ETA: Bob Mayer has had an interesting guest post Duty, Honor Country and why he chose to publish digitally. I wasn’t real keen on the books he co-wrote with Crusie but I think I may enjoy this one.

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  24. Andrea K Host
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 19:27:28

    Self-publishing is just another option. It’s not going to replace other forms of publishing, nor should it – any more than other forms of publishing should prevent self-publishing.

    Whichever option is followed, success is something which takes hard work, good sense, a dose of talent and more than a pinch of luck.

    Kristine Kathryn Rusch’s advice to take advantage of both self-publishing and working with a publisher seems by far the most sensible approach out there. There’s such a lot of hostility for and against self-publishing, and all I can do is hope this dies down eventually.

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  25. sarah mayberry
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 19:49:31

    @DS Thanks for Bob Mayer link. Very interesting.

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  26. Brian
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 21:42:59

    I personally don’t have a hate on for GRRM, but I can admit to being a bit frustrated a couple times over the years. I remember how long it took for Feast to come out after Storm (5 years) and how the whole deal with it being split so floks didn’t have to keep waiting and how Dance was almost done yadda yadda so can understand how some fans get a bit worked up when he’s constantly talking about this or that other project but yet Dance, which the back pages of Feast said would be in 2006 IIRC, just never seemed to get done. Part of the problem is of his own making by the updates he’s posted over the years. In 2006 he “still hoped to deliver” that fall. In 2007 when he announced the HBO deal Dance was “almost finished”. 2008-2010 various comments from both him and his editor about it being close. I think he just needs to quit trying to predict or post updates on his progress as all it does is build disappointment when he doesn’t meet his predictions. Just tell folks it’ll be done when it’s done and post an update once the manuscript’s been submitted.

    I know I’ll be buying Dance. I’ll probably re-read at least Feast before hand just to refresh things.

    @ sarah mayberry, the HBO clips so far sure do look great.

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  27. Nadia Lee
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 21:46:45

    @Courtney: I self-pubbed a contemporary romance because I decided to walk from a pub offer, which we couldn’t agree on. And to be honest, I’m happier doing it myself for this project, though I just signed with a different publisher for another book. I think it’s all case-by-case, and what people want.

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  28. sarah mayberry
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 22:17:13

    @Brian Isn’t the first ep airing soon? I bet it will be like Battlestar Gallactica – bit torrents all over the shop. I am not a big downloader (too lazy and technically challenged) but I don’t know if I can wait for the box set on this one. Which I will definitely have to have.

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  29. Brian
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 22:26:25

    @sarah mayberry: The first episode is in 3 days and I’m sure there will be all kinds of downloads out there within hours of it airing. I don’t have HBO, but I’m thinking about getting it just for the time while this is on.

    For folks with DirecTV, Verison FIOS, Dish Network and some Cox Cable customers (maybe other services too) there is a free HBO preview this weekend (4/15-4/18) so you can catch the first episode even if you’re not an HBO subscriber.

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  30. Nikki Jewell
    Apr 15, 2011 @ 02:21:12

    My trouble with GRRM is that it’s been SO long a wait that I’ve lost pleasure in the entire series. It is impatient, and perhaps it’s entitled – but so many years for a book that doesn’t sound as if it’s going to advance the story much has made me think, do I really want to keep the faith for the rest of my life here? – and also resolve never to start reading a series again until all the books are out there.

    Of course there are other series out there, but that’s not much help when I want to know what happened next to GRRM’s characters. :) It is a compliment to the author to have created so much “need to know” but it is a two-edged sword.

    For me it’s similar to authors starting off with a trilogy and then expanding a series endlessly. I almost feel like it is taking advantage of the love and anticipation their stories have created in me, and I start to resist & baulk at the idea of continuing.

    I happily waited for the last Ayla book, though. I think because the 5th book left me with such low expectations for the final one. Loved the first four despite there being so many laughable aspects to them – I read them when I was a young teenager – but I don’t think the last two are anywhere near as good.

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  31. Merrian
    Apr 15, 2011 @ 05:53:34

    I want to join in the love for PC Hodgell’s God Stalker Chronicles (AKA Chronicles of the Kencyrath) I am so glad that subsequent books have been able to appear even though I read the first back way back in the 1980′s. Hodgell is an unsung fantasy author and I believe has had bad luck with her publishers.

    Thinking about the turning from print to e books and the reported decline in mmpb sales leads me to think publishers are not the key so much as is the decline of distribution networks. Most people living in rural or regional areas here in Australia can only buy new books at supermarkets or places like Target or Big W and we all know what a small range of books they sell. Either people stop reading or they turn to the internet.

    So the internet becomes the main distribution mechanism for books whether print from a warehouse or ebooks. You can’t sell print books if there is no place for people to see them and buy them. Then the issue becomes why wait 21 days (as it is easy to do here in Australia) for a book to come through the post when I can buy books to read in a few minutes spent on a website?

    An example – my manager and I wanted a technical book so we googled it, found it on book depository and ordered it all within 20 minutes or so. No Australian bookseller’s website came up with it as available and none of us had the time to either phone or visit bricks and mortar bookstores and then pay them to order it for us.

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  32. JenD
    Apr 15, 2011 @ 08:05:28

    Merrian, said:
    So the internet becomes the main distribution mechanism for books whether print from a warehouse or ebooks. You can't sell print books if there is no place for people to see them and buy them. Then the issue becomes why wait 21 days (as it is easy to do here in Australia) for a book to come through the post when I can buy books to read in a few minutes spent on a website?”

    I couldn’t agree more with this. My example is always this: I can lug my wheelchair downstairs, put it in the car, drive half an hour in traffic, find a parking spot, unload the wheelchair, deal with oblivious shoppers and then do it all in reverse- or- I could sit here and in ten seconds have a book in my hands.

    If I am already out, I never look at the book sections in Walmart, Target or Meijers; I already know they are limited so why bother to look? I end up, through lack of brick n mortar stores, buying more ebooks. (Yet, there are still books I refuse to buy because of their horrible pricing- so that’s another loss and another topic.)

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  33. Isobel Carr
    Apr 15, 2011 @ 09:51:19

    @Merrian: You’ve seen the Hodgell bundle on Baen Books, right? I think I’ve bought these books like five times now, LOL! So happy to have them all, plus the shorts, as eBooks now.

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  34. Stumbling Over Chaos :: Linkity wants spring to arrive in Minnesota
    Apr 15, 2011 @ 11:06:30

    [...] Lots of good stuff this week in Dear Author’s book and publishing news. [...]

  35. Merrian
    Apr 15, 2011 @ 22:15:34

    @Isobel Carr:

    All mine are mmpbs I have picked up over theyears and I know I don’t have all the short stories. I do have ‘to ride a rathorn’ as an e book I didn’t realise there was a bundle. I will have to go back and buy. Thanks.

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  36. Janelle Madigan
    Apr 18, 2011 @ 21:05:46

    Wow. This is such a hot topic. I’m an aspiring paranormal romance writer, and I’m currently reading Zoe Winters’ “Smart Self-publishing: Becoming an Indie Writer.” It looks like a hard road, but as I move forward, I feel fortunate to have so many options. Every other art form has its indie artists; perhaps the digital age is allowing writers the same chance. I don’t know what my path will be yet, but I’m glad that there’s so much conversation going on about the potential for writers to go it on their own!

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  37. Possibilities: The changing face of publishing in the 21st century « Janelle Madigan
    Jul 29, 2011 @ 16:14:13

    [...] an all-out nosedive—in mass-market paperback sales: 41.5% drop in sales in February. (See the Dear Author blog post here.) E-books, thanks to the number and affordability of e-book readers like the Nook, Kindle, and Sony [...]

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