Hi there! Just so you know, I’m not here to make war, despite any suggestion to the contrary in the headline. I’m a peaceful person.
In fact, I’m a blue collar writer. I like that term. I
stole borrowed learned it from Robert Crais, one of my favorite authors.
You remember, right? He said that at Bouchercon, which I actually attended.
And I actually met the man, and he probably thinks I’m completely
Anyhoo … I’ve been thinking, as always, about things that are going on in the publishing world. And, boy, are they interesting.
For instance, it’s interesting that ebooks sold like gangbusters over the summer, yet I
heard read here and there that indie authors were suffering from slow sales. Now, WTF was up with that, huh?
Well … I had a theory that I never bothered to post about because I was too damn busy just freaking doing my job, okay? And I’m just a freaking writer, not a freaking prognosticator (sp?) or an industry analyst.
So I’m just a
gimpy author trying to do my job and struggling to maintain five blogs and all that, okay? But here’s my theory (and mind you, it’s JUST a theory, okay?), FWIW.
Remember those Sunshine Deals Amazon offered last summer? Do you recall who benefitted (sp?) from those?
I can assure you it wasn’t indie authors.
Yeah. Those deals were for books issued by Big Six publishers.
As an indie author, that meant I was competing with the Big Six based on price. A substantial disadvantage for me, since they had the advantage of easier print distribution to retailers.
Why does this make a difference to ebook authors? Because every component of this business makes a difference, when viewed from a larger perspective.
I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again. I’m an indie, not an isolationist.
You have to keep your eye on the grand scheme of things.
Now, I don’t want to burst anyone’s bubble, but here’s a quick reality check.
Ages and ages ago Last year, I wrote this post about Amazon.
Well … isn’t it interesting how things have changed? For both of us.
The irony here is that while the vast majority of my sales are made on Amazon, I don’t think I would have made the New York Times bestseller list without my Nook sales.
I know because I keep track of my sales and my sales for that time period on Amazon and Nook were extraordinary.
Now … let’s get down to business. There’s serious sh*t going down with Kindle Fire and Barnes & Noble and all that.
Some of which may or may not be legal. The Authors Guild sure as sh*t ain’t happy about it.
And now Amazon is signing authors to big publishing deals, along with serving as the mammoth online retailer.
So … not to mince words … can you spell market grab? Or even a certain board game? Hmm …?
Which is why I don’t want to alienate other booksellers, frankly. Booksellers are still authors’ friends.
Especially given what happened to indie author sales last summer due to the Sunshine Deals. I presume. How will we be affected by the Netflix thingy? I have no idea, at all. Assuming any of that is even legal, to begin with.
And as for setting oneself up as an online ebook retailer, consider this post, okay?
Seriously, how many visitors will your blog/Web site get? How will you compete with Amazon’s algorithms? Hmmm …?
Not to mention Pottermore … or whatever that site is called.
Because that’s the level of household name recognition you need in order to make a sustainable living selling ebooks from your own Web site. No joke.
I won’t mention any other names, but by and large, ebook authors tend to fly under the radar, so to speak.
That’s why Amanda Hocking signed with St. Martin’s. It wasn’t about the money. Hello! After a certain point, how much more money does anyone need? Oh, who’s counting? This was a career/life-changing move. A point that Hocking herself has made, over and over …
Signing with St. Martin’s was about achieving a (potential) literary legacy. That’s what I was writing about in this post.
So … how will all this shake out for indie authors? How the f*ck should I know?
I’m just a
gimpy blue collar writer. Doing what I can in order to survive over the long haul.
But times could get kind of interesting. So, I’m keeping my eyes and ears open.
Percival (with an assist from Scott Nicholson) just published her memoirs in ebook format. She’s also “still hale, hardy, and bright at age 97.”
Far as I’m concerned, Percival may be most successful person I’ve mentioned in this post. No joke.