Blogs by Lonnie Hicks
"How to Get That Book Published and Not Lose Your Soul"
2/8/2010 11:38:56 AM
A look at how to publish and not owe Satan.
February 8, 2010
The first step in looking a publishing that great novel is to understand what does the publishing environment look like today. More pointedly, "never go into the water without first checking for sharks." And sharks there be mate in these publishing waters, disguised as baby seals.
Some initial points:
1-Apple just signed a deal with the major book publishers to sell books at its new e-book store. This means that itunes has a companion store now, or soon; lets call it Apple Books for now. Amazing the brick and mortar book giants demanded that the cost of the e-book, say Kindle downloads, go up from the current Amazon price of 9.99 to something higher, like 12.99. Amazon caved and apparently agreed to change it pricing structure after posturing like it would fight this move. Now all of the players are ready to pick some serious consumer pockets. Why the move? Apple was selling at a dollar a tune and that business is sliding down and besides you have to sell a lot of tunes to make money at one dollar a tune. Now an e-book at 12 or 14 dollars is much more profitable, not shipping involved, just have the thing downloaded after you have cornered the market. It is a virtually cost free product. These e-books can be print downloads and another flavor would be the audio book. Google not to be left out in the cold in the scramble to mug the consumer and authors too, is contemplating its next move--after having threatened the entire publishing industry by scanning everything in print. How can you sell a book if Google is tooling up to give it away free? Google makes money because everyone goes to Google to get the book but meantime in the back, in the alley, the authors and publishers are getting stuck up. Hence the move by the publishers to take the Apple deal. at least they get to sell something in the new emerging e-b00k and audio book market.
So what about us poor peons slaving away in the "aren't we the only ones producing an actual product" category are ignored. Why? Because with unemployment, with the economy and millions of retirees, the number of people writing books, screen-plays, memoirs etc is enormous. One figure is fifteen millions manuscripts a years. The publishing world has it pick of the lot but due to declining sales and readership actually publish fewer and fewer books seeking to go only with "block-buster" sure thing authors. The new author, no matter how talented, gets only a "good luck" if that. Moreover, the big companies burdened with huge overhead bills and yacht payments having for some time now made authors pay more and more the costs of publishing as they disinvest in expense marketing and promotion campaigns. Advances drop. You will be lucky to get 1,000 a month to live on, just enough to keep you in Lima beans.
Meantime, the self-publishing outfits, like Lulu, Xlibris, Strategic Books etc have stepped up to the plate to meet the demand--for a price. For anywhere from 600- to 5,000 dollars you can get that book in print and pay their yacht bills instead of the big five publishers' yacht bills.
So, in this first look into these shark-infested waters what is a poor talented author to do? Let's look at this tomorrow.
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More Blogs by Lonnie Hicks
What Does America Need To Do To Survive? - Wednesday, February 17, 2010
How to Get That Book Published and Not Lose Your Soul day-5 - Friday, February 12, 2010
How to Publish That Book and Not Lose Your Soul- Day-3 - Wednesday, February 10, 2010
How to Publish that Book and Not Lose Your Soul- day two - Tuesday, February 09, 2010
"How to Get That Book Published and Not Lose Your Soul" - Monday, February 08, 2010