Start-up Digital Publisher Bard to Publish Books in Print Based on Community Feedback
New Ebook Publisher Bard and Book Eschews Traditional Publishing Methods, Bring Authors and Readers Closer Than Ever Before
MILWAUKEE, Sept. 18, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Bard and Book Publishing announced the launch of a new publishing model that builds on the ebook revolution and is poised to transform the industry even further. Starting with digital editions instead of printed books, Bard and Book will rely on its community of readers to help decide which of their ebooks will end up in print.
The digital book revolution has allowed thousands of authors to break out of the traditional publishing paradigm but one of the consequences has been confusion on the part of readers.
“Whether or not a publisher was willing to take on an author used to serve as a ‘short cut’ for readers trying to determine if a new book was worth their time. With the publishers increasingly cut out of the loop, and thousands of new works added to the marketplace monthly, readers have to find new ways to identify quality content,” explains founder, Anthony Horvath.
“If Gutenberg had invented the ebook and print-on-demand technology instead of the printing press, the current publishing model would have never arisen,” Horvath says. He argues that the future of publishing can be summed up in one word: community.
In that spirit, Bard and Book has gathered together seven authors and is building a community of readers around them.
The community allows subscribers to read free ebooks, although free members can only read new titles for a short time after they are released. A small monthly fee lifts that limitation. This fee is the primary way the authors are compensated.
Horvath says that their model was made possible because of the capabilities of the ebook distribution platform, Smashwords. “Through Smashwords, we upload our books just once and Smashwords distributes them globally for us. Thanks to them, you can find our stories on Kobo, BarnesandNoble.com, and Sony, to name a few. Of course, we put them on Amazon’s Kindle, too. Smashwords also allows us to create 100% off coupons that we make available to our members who can then download the story in whatever format they desire.”
Horvath is not new to publishing. He is the director of Christian apologetics ministry that publishes Christian fiction and non-fiction. Of recent note is the award winning “Diamonds in the Dust” by South-African author Shirley Mowat Tucker. Tucker’s recent tour through America reinforced in Horvath’s mind that the publishing industry is in flux. He says, “Remarkably, people still chose to go to Kindle to purchase her book rather than buy the printed copy!”
The new model isn’t designed only with authors in mind. “Readers can get to know our authors at little or no risk to them. Those that sign up for a paid subscription can have the satisfaction that they are directly supporting the authors,” Horvath says. “Bard and Book puts the community authors and readers first. The publisher is a distant second.”