Monday, January 7, 2019

Is Getting Back in Book Stores Worth it?


Getting that IN STORE BOOK SIGNING Event

At one time in my publishing career, getting out there, signing books and being in a bookstore was all I wanted. It was so important that we spent months doing face to face promo and promotions. It paid off with book sales, signings and exposure.

WHAT IS THE PURPOSE?

Now in a year where most all of our book sales are in the ebook market, the push to be in bookstores doesn't seem as urgent. Not to mention the fact that many stores are closing. It comes down to the cost and benefits of the endeavor. Sometimes the benefit isn't in dollars and cents. I really enjoyed being around readers. I didn't enjoy the face to face, hand selling that sometimes came with book signings. It was exhausting and sometimes disappointing, yet rewarding all at once. 

WHAT IS THE COST?

It cost time, money and resources to do a book signing. Some stores want you to give them the books on loan and if it sells they will pay. Other stores are alright with buying at least 5 books at a discount of course. Then other venues for signing, the author takes the books and hand sells them. At the very least it will cost gas money, a day of potential writing time, books that have to be printed but may not make the profit until sold. Most times, the book store signing doesn't pay or cover the expenses.

GETTING BOOKS in THE STORES 

This is now even more of a challenge with the limited bookstores around. Most of them want your book to be able to get ordered from IngramSpark or Lightening Souce. Uploading your book to KDP Print won't get them in bookstores. For small presses with less than 30 titles, the cheapest option is IngramSpark. Planning to upload your Print-On-Demand (POD) books should include both KDP Print and Ingram Spark. However, doing so won't get the books in the store. Face to face time and sending the book through the distribution channels for the large retailers is the way and that's not always guaranteed either.

COMPARING TO EBOOK store sales

When you consider the money, time, and efforts to get in a bookstore to do a signing or to sell a book, it is much more expensive than ebook sales. Now you can even sign your ebook using Authograph. The last few years, we decided to focus the extra money on ebook sales and it really paid off.

DOING SIGNINGS GIVES FACE TIME TO READERS

Now we are in a place where we are planning to pursue signings in the coming year since there will be a few consecutive releases that the hope is to focus on libraries, schools, and what independent stores are left.

Your thoughts?

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Staying Relevant in an Ever Changing Publishing Market

Writing and Sharing My Books Is My Passion

This year in publishing has been extremely challenging. Amazon and CreateSpace made changes which cause my books to be offline.

Print Books with Print-On-Demand (POD)

Createspace used to offer this to small press and self-published authors as a means to cheaply print books and which were affordable to readers and still allowed the author or small press to make a profit. Well, they were bought by Amazon (the ever eating giant) and the choice was to move books to Amazon platform under KDP (POD) print, then link your ebook to the paperback book from Createspace or move your books to InstagramSpark.

KDP POD tried to make it simple, but the problem is, they have mixed up many of my accounts to the point I had to call them 2 times and to be honest, they duplicated my account, but each has a different password. The ridiculous part of this is, they said they have to keep both and I just have to remember the 'new' password. That new account is also unlinked my Author Central Account. It is a mess.

Other Fall Out From Amazon Changes

There is a new law on the books about Third Party responsibility of a website. Amazon and other large platforms that have a social content to it, removed and censored many of their products, media and more. This isn't an exact science, but many websites are doing an overhaul. While doing this, amazon has kicked many, many authors off their platform, either by accident or meaningful as per their new rules.

How Phenomenal One Press Has Fared

We are updating our website to be able to take orders and deliver ebooks directly to our readers. We will still use distribution sites like Amazon, B&N, Kobo, iTunes, but will also offer sales on our webpage with incentives for our readers there that won't be at any other website. It's a way of staying relevant and servicing our devoted readers.

New and Updated Website

So on January 1st, 2019, hop over to www.phenomenalonepress.com or www.lmpreston.com for a tour. Make sure to look at the store, which will have books, fan wear and more.