Kobo join the print-on-demand game — but should you play?

Many Kobo Writing Life authors recently received an invitation to take part in a beta print-on-demand program at Kobo. Not all Kobo authors received this invitation, myself included, because the program is a subcontract to the POD manufacturer Lightning Source International (LSI): if you already have print books distributed by Ingram, the print distributor and parent company of LSI/Ingram Spark, and if your print books’ ISBNs are in Kobo’s system, then there is no point in them contacting you. For this new POD service, Kobo is charging authors USD $25.00 Read More …

Why Italy is charging higher VAT on ebooks without an ISBN

In their most recent email reminder regarding changes in VAT in the EU, Amazon added a footnote regarding Italy: that also of January 1st, Italy has implemented new legislation that charges a higher rate of VAT on ebooks that do not have an ISBN. eBooks that do not contain an ISBN are charged 22% VAT, while ebooks with an ISBN are charged a rate of only 4%. Before the indie forums light up with declarations that this is a war on ebooks and/or Amazon or Kobo (where ebooks can be Read More …

The offensive against the offensive: self-published erotica comes under fire

Amazon have removed from their catalogue several self-published ebooks that depict violent acts of rape and incest, and today Kobo Writing Life authors will have received an email from KWL director Mark Lefebvre indicating that Kobo are following suit. The current offensive is the result of an article on the British technology website The Kernel that found for sale on Amazon pornographic titles such as Naughty Daughter Abducted And Pounded By Daddy’s Cock: Anal Sex And BDSM With My Step Father (taboo daddy daughter erotica) by Shannon Leigh. It cited Read More …

Amazon opens Kindle in Mexico but there’s a downside

Amazon has just announced the opening of Kindle in Mexico, and authors can now set a separate price in pesos. Mexico remains a 35% royalty territory but, as with India, authors who elect to give Amazon exclusivity by way of KDP Select will be paid 70% for sales in Mexico. This, to me, points to two alarming trends on Amazon. The first is that, in my opinion, the payment of only 35% to authors who do not give Amazon exclusivity amounts to blackmail: give us exclusivity or else. The second Read More …

The Global Indie Author, 2nd Edition chosen for promotion at Self-Publishing Book Expo, NY

I am pleased to announce that the 2nd edition of The Global Indie Author, published this month, has been selected by Kobo for promotion at the Self-Publishing Book Expo in New York on October 27th. Visitors to the Kobo booth will receive a coupon for 50% off the book. If you’re going to the expo make sure you stop by the Kobo booth for this and other great deals! And with Baby Jane holding its own at #21 in its category on Kobo — in company with the likes of Ian Read More …

How to read ePubs on your Kindle Fire — even DRMed ones!

Today I learned a wonderful trick: a way to put onto a Kindle Fire an ePub ereader that will read PDFs and ePubs — even Adobe DRMed ebooks — purchased from major retailers such as Kobo, Sony, and B&N, and the myriad of smaller ebook retailers worldwide. Apple ebooks, which use a different DRM, are not transferrable. The principle is this: the Kindle Fire works on top of the Android system, and with a simple click in your settings you can tell the Fire to read Android apps purchased outside Read More …

Baby Jane reaches #14 on Kobo

I was excited to learn yesterday that my novel, Baby Jane, has reached the #14 spot on Kobo in the category of Mystery & Suspense > Police Procedural. This puts the the novel in good company with authors such as Kathy Reichs (Bones: Buried Deep), Val McDermid (A Darker Domain, The Distant Echo), Micheal Connelly (Angel of Investigation, Suicide Run, The Drop), and James Patterson (Roses are Red). I couldn’t be more excited! Thank you to my readers who helped put me there!

If it’s free, it isn’t a bestseller

On her blog, MsElenaeous Rants and Raves, fellow indie writer Elena DeRosa asks, If a book is free, is it really a bestseller? She concludes that it isn’t. And I agree wholeheartedly. More importantly, while the sudden rush of downloads of one’s free book provides a lift to the author’s ego, the long-term effects may prove a letdown. DeRosa speaks of free books within the context of Amazon’s new lending library. This is the only legitimate way an author can offer their book for free on Amazon. Other free books Read More …

ISBNs and the Self-Publisher Part I: The ISBN System

(This is modified text from The Global Indie Author.) The ISBN System ISBN stands for International Standard Book Number. The rules and regulations governing the use and distribution of ISBNs are determined by the International ISBN Agency, based in London. The international agency allots ISBNs to national agencies, who in turn allot them to their publishers; thus, a publisher cannot acquire an ISBN from a foreign national agency: a British publisher, for example, cannot buy an ISBN from the American ISBN agency and vice versa. Publishers then assign their ISBNs Read More …