Expert Publishing Blog

Why Publishers Must Invest in Rights Departments

Even the most optimistic in the industry would admit that publishing has been through a tough time during its necessary awakening to a new world order. Global recession, falling margins, supermarkets, Luxembourg’s death grip, disappearing bookshops and libraries, wider competition against entertainment products–take your pick. There is a growing awareness of the need to invest...

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Lessons and Expectations as the Digital Book World and Writer’s Digest Author Survey Evolves

This year marks the third year that Digital Book World and Writer’s Digest are surveying authors on their publishing experiences and income. When I came on board last year, I began by revisiting the numbers from the inaugural Author Survey published in early 2013. While Digital Book World’s then–editorial director Jeremy Greenfield had already...

Top Four Best Practices for Writing Great Book Blurbs

When you sell your book online, your book description, or blurb, must be persuasive enough to compel people to buy. According to the Pew Research Center, 38% of readers rely on the information presented on your book’s online sales page when making a purchase choice. Your blurb must convince your audience that there’s no better...

Self-Publishing Reaches the Summit

I recently took part in New Generation Publishing’s annual Self-Publishing Summit in London, now in its third year. It is always a good opportunity to stop and consider how the self-publishing sector has evolved. The is no doubt that self-publishing, often derided in its former forms, has made a huge mark in the last three...

Book Marketing the Old Way Versus the Way That Works Today—Part 3: Ignore the Expensive Launch

Effective book marketing today is a different game than it used to be. This post continues my recent series comparing traditional book marketing methods with newer, more effective strategies. This article (the third installment) focuses on the strategic decision forego a big launch at a book’s introduction into the market. Traditional book publishing once put...

Resuscitating Enhanced Ebooks

There has been some debate recently regarding the time of death of enhanced ebooks. While the distribution of books has changed enormously over time, from the invention of the printing press to e-readers, tablets and mobile phones, how we read remains much the same as it did 2,000 years ago. Despite frequent and vocal...

Book Marketing the Old Way Versus the Way That Works Today—Part 2: Email Promotions

Selling a book today in either the self-publishing or traditional publishing worlds confronts authors with a marketing dilemma. Older methods no longer have the purchase they once did in the digital age. I’ve written a series of articles on that subject in an effort to compare traditional book marketing with more modern, effective strategies that work. This installment focuses on...

Does the Closure of Atavist Books Signal the End of Enhanced Ebooks?

Was last week’s announcement of the closure of multi-platform book publisher Atavist Books the beginning of the final death knell for enhanced books? Hardly. This is a death rattle that’s apparently been dragging out for twenty years. At least that’s if you believe, as I do, that the enhanced ebook finds its roots in the wonderfully...

Browser-Based Ebook Publishing: How Come and How-To

In the past few years we’ve seen the sales figures of tablets and phones begin to eclipse those of the e-ink e-reader, and in many developing countries access to mobile phones is often a reader’s best or only access to a digital device. Many publishers and retailers have responded by creating apps for each...

Facing Higher Education Challenges: Publishers Rethink Student Experience Lifecycle

This content is sponsored by HCL Technologies. The higher education world is going through an uncertain period. Rising costs, digital disruption and fluctuations in government policy have made it tough for institutions and publishers to chart a way forward. Amidst falling enrollments and course completion rates among students, many education publishers are charting a new...

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Big Data: Dispelling the Myths About One of Publishing’s Hottest Buzzwords

Introduction Big data was one of Frankfurt Book Fair’s hottest topics of discussion this year among digital publishing professionals. Viktor Mayer-Schönberger, professor of Internet Governance and Regulation at the Oxford Internet Institute and author of the recent international best-seller Big Data, spoke forcefully about big data’s relevance to publishers and the insights they can...

Digital Book World 2015 Agenda Evolves With Publishing Industry

I joined the Digital Book World team just weeks before the 2014 Conference + Expo kicked off in New York City last year. A few days ahead of the event, I wrote about my expectations for the three days of programming in terms of how they’d offer publishing professionals the resources to improve what they do, both on an...

More Crowdsourced Content on Its Way

Last week Amazon confirmed it’s adding a crowdsourced-based option to its current slate of self-publishing offerings. While details are still forthcoming, the fact that Amazon is taking greater interest in exploring crowdsourcing as a publishing model suggests its profile is on the rise. To be sure, that observation could rest on a chicken-or-egg formula that doesn’t reliably...

Wattpad: Digital Storytelling With a Social Twist

The digital marketplace has changed the rules for both readers and writers. Authors no longer need to be separated from their readers. Readers no longer have to wait for books to be complete before getting a peek at authors’ work. The landscape for storytelling is changing and one of the leading innovations in this...

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Why an Innovation Firm Goes to an Old-Fashioned Book Fair

Beer swilling and book selling are the two most common reasons to go to Frankfurt in October. And good reasons both. But we’re headed there for another reason: business innovation. Here’s why. Over the last few years, the Frankfurt Book Fair has undergone a steady transformation from a traditional and transactional rights fair to...

The Content Flood and Authors Whining

Sales are down for most authors. You don’t see blog posts about it or tweets, but it’s a reality. And the reason is simple: there’s more content out there than ever before. Jon Fine of Amazon calls it a tsunami but at least a tsunami recedes. This is a flood that is going to...

Want to Sell More Books? Understand Your Readers

Every self-published author wants to sell the most books possible. But not every book appeals to every reader—not even books that achieve best-seller status. The cold, hard fact is your book has unique characteristics that only interest a select group. The good news is you don’t need to appeal to everyone to experience brisk sales....

Quality Not Quantity for Self-Published Writers

One of the complaints the self-publishing community often hit traditional publishers with is that they license authors’ work and then hold onto it for 1-2 years before publishing it. I would agree the time taken to get books into the market is too long and traditional publishers can often be out of touch when...

Writing With Pictures: The Inside Story of a Wordless Picture Book

Wordless picture books are a special sub-category of children’s books. Even digital books are going wordless. What does it take to create such rich non-verbal tales? All the drama, action and emotion are conveyed with illustrations, not words. I spoke with Anne Belov, the author/illustrator of Pandamorphosis, a new picture book available on the...

Team-Produced Stories: An Author Perspective

The stereotype of the lonely writer scribbling away in isolation is an old and entrenched one. And for good reason. Being the vessel for great stories and characters to emerge into words takes a lot of thought, writing, and re-writing – and these are solitary activities. But the way we entertain and inform these...