Expert Publishing Blog

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Amazon Gambles on the Kids

Amazon’s announcement of their Kindle Kids’ publishing software platform probably caught very few in the industry off-guard. It’s been clear that Amazon’s ambition is to become both the publisher and the retailer, which, irrespective of what the industry feels, lines up perfectly with Amazon’s stated goal of delivering better value to their customers. I...

6 Steps to Overcoming Social Media Writer’s Block, Part 1

Part 1 in a 2-part series For self-published ebook authors, there’s one aspect of marketing that offers substantial exposure at a very low price: social media. It’s free, after all, and with social media, you can reach readers throughout the world. But when it comes to promoting their brands via social media, many authors freeze...

Licensing in China: A Two-Way Street

As I come to the end of a very busy and productive Beijing International Book Fair (BIBF), there have been many lessons to reflect on in what has been a fascinating week. As part of IPR License’s full launch in China, through our partnership with the Charlesworth Group, I had expected a challenge of...

New Ebook Production Tools Heighten Focus on Quality

Changes in ebook production and conversion technologies are opening up new opportunities when it comes to digital content. But that expansion is also creating a handful of challenges for those who use such tools, and quality assurance methods will need to adapt to keep pace. On its face, the ebook management app Calibre’s recent upgrade doesn’t appear to concern...

Three Common Mistakes to Avoid When Publishing a Book App

In May, I wrote a post called “Five Myths About Book Apps,” where I shared the most common myths my colleagues at the Book App Alliance and I have heard about publishing books as apps. Now I want to discuss the three biggest mistakes people make when it comes to tackling this kind of project. I’ve...

Digital Apps For Early Learning: A Glimpse At Kumon Publishing

Can digital tablets help children learn skills like penmanship? Can interactive apps foster appreciation for the sounds of language? Kumon Publishing North America is exploring these questions. The company that’s known for its educational learning centers has introduced two digital apps for kids. One, titled Uppercase ABC’s: Learn To Trace Letters, is a digital workbook...

Average Price of an Ebook Best-Seller on the Rise

For two years, we’ve been tracking the average price of a top-25 best-selling ebook: Before I talk about the latest batch of data that we can add to our posts on the subject*, let me just tell you briefly how we get this data and why I think it has some meaning. Every week,...

Before You Make a Fixed-Layout Ebook: Five Things to Watch Out For

So you want to make a fixed-layout ebook. For starters, are you sure? Publishers aren’t yet convinced that the format is much more than a niche market. But as technology evolves and ebook developers get better at producing more sophisticated FXL EPUB content more efficiently, change could soon be nearer at hand. Fixed-layout is a...

Same-Day Book Delivery Doesn’t Best Bookstores…Yet

Want a book, and want it now? Your local bookstore is probably still your best bet. With some out-of-town travel lined up for this evening but no airplane reading on hand, I thought I’d try out Amazon’s new same-day delivery service as well as Barnes & Noble’s Manhattan-only counterpart (not the newly announced Barnes...

Audiobook CDs in MP3: No More Switching Discs

Do you listen to audiobook CDs in the car? I do. They’re a great way to get through all those new titles (I’ve heard 3,500 new books are introduced every day) and it makes the commute more bearable. My only pet peeve is changing CDs—an act that just may be more dangerous than texting while driving. Some...

Does the Acquisition of BookLamp Signal Apple’s Entry Into the Ebook Subscription Service Market?

In March of this year, shortly before Apple bought ebook recommendation start-up BookLamp, music subscription champion Spotify made a very similar acquisition. Spotify bought music recommendation service Echonest of Cambridge, MA. for approximately $100 million and with it secured the industry’s leading music recommendation and data mining service. Why? Many think that recommendation services...

Man Booker Prize: Disappointing and Disappearing

Book prizes have become an increasingly key route through which to discover and champion the best writers, to elevate and highlight the brilliant above the masses of books now being published every year. That’s why over the last few years they have become increasingly frustrating, happy to stick with what and who they know;...

How Kindle Unlimited Is Changing the Amazon Kindle Best-Seller List

Kindle Unlimited is minting best-sellers. According to Publishers Lunch, the number of ebooks on the Kindle best-seller list that are Kindle Unlimited titles has just about tripled since the launch of the all-you-can-read service from Amazon last week. Amazon is counting Kindle Unlimited reads as well as Kindle store sales in its best-seller rankings. Last...

For Subscription Ebooks, Great Expectations But Few Guarantees

A report released today by the Book Industry Study Group (BISG) finds that 80% of publishers believe subscription ebooks becoming a major part of the publishing business is “inevitable.” The launch last week of Amazon’s subscription service, Kindle Unlimited, would appear to corroborate that finding — but are they? Professionals within the trade, scholarly, professional and higher...

20 Marketing Questions Self-Published Authors Must Answer

If you’re a self-published novelist, your line of books is your small business. Like any small business, you need a marketing strategy. There are lots of marketing activities that you can engage in to promote your book, but before you start doing any of them, take the time to think like a marketer by asking yourself...

Empowering Writers with Data

A close writer friend called last week with a dilemma. She needs some extra money in her pocket within the next year and has a book project ready to go: Should she sign with a traditional publisher or go indie? What’s the better choice given her money situation right now? What’s the better choice...

Risk-Free Publishing; Or, When Everyone Can Bankroll Books

Is it possible to publish books without financial risk? In the case of the traditional publishing model, publishers often pay authors money in the form of an “advance on royalties.” They also invest in the creation of the book in the form of paying editors, book packagers and often others to bring it to market....

Social Media Marketing, for Novelists, Is Relationship Building

What is social media marketing for an author? If you’re fairly introverted, humble, or shy, you may not like the idea marketing your own work.  But social media marketing does not have to mean getting on a loudspeaker and booming out self-lauding messages. That model for promotion is not necessary. Instead, think about marketing as building...

Crowdfunding for Books: Pentian’s Self-Publishing Model Expands to U.S.

In the Spanish-speaking world, one digital publishing company has disrupted the traditional publishing process by creating an online platform that combines full-service self-publishing with crowdfunding. This platform allows authors to present their projects, lets backers pledge and support them and provides financial rewards to all involved once the books sell. The company is called...

Sourcing Books on Wall Street

A company can grow organically (investing in new product, developing new channels to market, improving customer service, in other words innovating) or it can grow by mergers and acquisition (M&A). The oil industry has a name for this — “drilling for oil on Wall Street” — as opposed to investing money into wild catting,...

Are iOS Users Ditzier Readers Than Android Users?

iOS users may have cooler handsets and tablets, but Android users are a tad more intellectual when it comes to what books they read, according to a new infographic from ebook subscription service Oyster. Oyster measured the reading habits of Apple iOS users and Google Android users, having added an app for the latter...