Authors Recalibrate for Tight Book Market

indie authors self-publishing Digital Book World Writer's Digest ebooksSlow money is better than no money, or so it appears from the 2015 Digital Book World and Writer’s Digest Author Survey.

Authors in this year’s sample who self-published their work were more likely to be satisfied than their traditionally published counterparts by more modest earnings.

One reason why, writes Dana Beth Weinberg, who authored the report based on the survey’s findings, is that “many indie authors do not seem to be making substantial investments in their publishing projects. Yet having taken little monetary risk, these authors may be pleased to earn even a little money.”

That may not just be a question of lowered expectations, though. “The time horizon is longer for indie authors,” Weinberg adds. A longer-term business outlook may be better suited to a challenging market.

Much more, including a look at the data.

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Advice for Self-Published Authors (Pub Perspectives)
In light of findings from this year’s 2015 Author Survey, the counsel this veteran author offers indie writers may already be widely understood, but it points up how scarce runaway successes have become throughout the business.

Whom Does Amazon Benefit Most? (NYT)
It’s a familiar question that isn’t getting much easier to answer. “Amazon may not make a profit,” one observer writes, “but it is a tightly run operation, and it does what it can to maximize the business. Sometimes this helps readers. Sometimes it helps writers. Sometimes it even helps publishers, as Amazon is quick to point out.” When the e-tailer reports its quarterly earnings this Friday, many expect the company’s investors to be among the more satisfied parties.

Tesco Shuts Down Ebook Business (The Bookseller)
The UK retailer is closing its ebook service, Blinkbox Books, which it acquired in September 2012. The news comes after negotiations with the bookseller Waterstones fell through.

Simon & Schuster Launches New Imprint (PW)
Scout Press debuts with a new novel by the literary agent Bill Clegg and will focus on “pushing the boundaries of contemporary fiction,” according to a statement introducing the imprint.

Subscription Audiobook Service Bows Out (The Bookseller)
The digital audiobook market may be on the upswing, but so is competition. The UK-based Bardowl service announces it’s shutting its doors after failing to win over publishers skeptical of the subscription model while squaring off with Amazon’s Audible for market share.
Related: Charting Audiobook Growth Among Ebook Readers and Beyond

Libraries Still in High Demand (Infodocket)
It’s only now that the Institute of Museum and Library Sciences is releasing a report on U.S. library usage during fiscal 2012, but it appears from those figures that libraries were still keeping up with patrons’ needs well into the digital transition. Public libraries received 1.5 billion visits from users that year.

The Next Wave of YA Fiction (Pub Lunch)
Publishers Lunch rolls out the latest installment in its BUZZ BOOKS series offering free previews of forthcoming titles. This is the second year an edition dedicated to young adult fiction is available.
Related: Ebooks Find Their Place Among Young Readers

Free Webcast Today: HTML5, CSS and Why They Matter (DBW)
Join Aerbook CTO Nick Ruffilo at 12pm EST today for a free, one-hour introduction to the fundamentals of two of the most prevalent and widely applicable programming languages in digital publishing today.


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