Change in Publishing: (not really) answers to (not really) questions. Writers, insiders and publishers discuss freely about 5 popular tags. Prev: Stephen Brown, _Jacob Appel, Thierry Crouzet, Paul Di Filippo_, Rhys Hughes. Follow us: RSS | Twitter | Facebook
I was amazed at how fast my reading dynamic changed after I bought a Kindle. I now read 90% of books as ebooks and am addicted to sampling. I read three times as much fiction including more from authors I haven't heard of before. This is revolutionary as a reader but as an author, it makes me even more aware of the possibilities. I can now sell my own ebooks to people anywhere in the world, right this minute. You can too.
I'm so optimistic about the future of books - not for the physical container - but for the form of story and information sharing. Technology makes it easier and easier to share our thoughts so the future is tremendous for those people wanting to express their creativity in new ways. Being an author and online entrepreneur can also be a viable future now because the barriers to entry are so low. I see the future as freedom - for what we create and how we make our income.
Indie is about choice. You decide what to write and whether your book is ready for publication. You decide on the cover, the price, how to market it or whether to give it away for free. You decide where to sell it and whether it will be an ebook, a print book, an audiobook or all three. It's also about the choice of the market. Will they buy your book? Will they like it? How will they rate it? If you've made some good choices then your book will sell and the risk will pay off. Going indie has also give me opportunity, feedback and confidence to share my writing. It's a powerful movement.
Different products sell for different prices and they sell at different volumes. You can sell half a million $2.99 ebooks and make a lot of money. Or you can sell a premium $1000 membership course and make a good living too. There are price points we can play with for our businesses but we need to be realistic. Readers voraciously consume fiction and something they buy every few days cannot be $1000 a pop. It needs to be a consumable price. Fiction is basically a consumable experience. You read a good book and you want the next one. It entertains for a short period of time unlike a business membership site that may add value to someones business and so can justify a higher unit price.
Innovation is about introducing something new which is what we'll see next in the ebook market. I think we'll look back at 2011 and marvel at how basic our experience was. Authors and publishers also need to innovate the industry and look around at what other business niches are doing with the internet, reaching a global audience in new ways. I feel that the industry as a whole hasn't embraced technology wholeheartedly yet, thinking that in some way it is "not appropriate" or not literary enough. But there is innovation and creativity in tech, and boundless opportunity for those who embrace it.