Regular readers of this blog will know that one of the reasons I chose to distribute Bedsit Three via Smashwords is the access it gives to Overdrive, a platform which supplies e-books to public libraries. My original blog post can be read here.
Recently Smashwords announced the addition of a new library distribution channel via Bibliotheca. Bibliotheca is the operator of the cloudLibrary™ digital lending platform which is used by over 3,000 public libraries in America, Canada, U.K. and Australia. So the Smashwords distribution network now includes almost all major library e-book platforms including OverDrive, Baker & Taylor Axis 360, Gardners UK (Askews & Holts and VLeBooks) and Odilo. Those of us indie authors choosing to distribute our e-books via Smashwords can now reach 30,000 public and academic libraries across the globe.
Many libraries today lack the funds to buy print books. E-books are a cheaper option and can offer a way into the library system for indie authors. Unfortunately e-books do not qualify for PLR payments so writers only receive their standard royalty on the e-book sale. But being in the library catalogue generates exposure that may lead a reader to purchase other books (print or digital) by the same author.
The biggest factor in the indie author’s decision about whether to take advantage of Smashwords wide distribution channels is the abandonment of Amazon KDP exclusivity and the potential benefits that scheme can bring.
#1 by martin gosling on February 20, 2017 - 9:40 am
Sally ~ thank you for your post on Smashwords.
Can you please recommend a source of information (book or e-book) that would guide me through the basics of self-publishing?
Like other hopefuls, I have had a novel seeking a conventional publisher or agent for many years and feel I should now explore the alternatives.
Specifically, I am looking for a simpleton’s guide to the benefits, drawbacks and dynamics of going it alone.
Any pointers you may offer would be gratefully received,
#2 by Sally Jenkins on February 20, 2017 - 2:00 pm
Martin – I’m not sure there is one book that covers the whole of self-publishing. Firstly you need to decide whether to ‘go it alone’ or use a self-publishing company like Matador or Silverwood. If you ‘go it alone’ then publishing on Amazon Kindle and in paperback through Createspace is often the route. Kindle Direct Publishing for Absolute Beginners (by me!) is a good introduction to publishing your work on Kindle. Format Your Print Book with Createspace by Tim C. Taylor deals with paperback publishing. You might find the Alliance of Independent Authors useful. And for marketing a print book, you could have a look at Sell Your Books! by Debbie Young. Hopefully that’s enough to get you started, Martin! Best wishes with the project.
#3 by Patsy on February 22, 2017 - 1:45 pm
I wasn’t aware that we could get our e-books into libraries in this way. I’m not sure it’s enough incentive to make me give up kdp, but it’s something to think about.
#4 by Sally Jenkins on February 22, 2017 - 5:47 pm
I know, Patsy – it’s a difficult decision about whether to give up KDP Select.