Another war is brewing as libraries seek ebook file ownership

This is an excerpt from the upcoming second edition of The Global Indie Author, slated for release in October 2012. A new war is brewing over ebooks, this time between libraries and publishers. Libraries want to be able to buy an ebook once and loan it in perpetuity, “just like with print books,” they argue. This is, however, nonsense: physical books deteriorate, get lost or stolen or damaged, and must therefore be replaced. Digital books do not unless the format becomes obsolete, which is unlikely to happen with the open-source 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 …

Will Amazon lose indie authors to Apple?

Following on my recent post about Apple’s EULA, I thought it might be interesting to look at this latest corporate manoeuvre in light of its origins in the Apple-Amazon fight for dominance that has been going on for some time now, and what these new developments might mean down the road for indie authors. Amazon owns and uses a proprietary format for its ebooks, the azw file. The azw file is a variation of the mobi file, or prc file, first developed by Mobipocket Creator who licensed their code to Read More …

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 IV: The Hidden Cost of Free ISBNs

(This is abbreviated text from The Global Indie Author.) The high cost for individual ISBNs in some jurisdictions versus the inexpensiveness of a block of 1000 ISBNs—costing as little as $1.00 per unit—has created an opportunity for vanity press (“author services”) companies and ebook aggregators to offer free ISBNs to their clients. Most vanity publishers, in fact, make use of their ISBN mandatory. But there is a hidden cost to accepting this ISBN: by doing so the indie author is technically no longer self-publishing: the vanity press or aggregator becomes Read More …

The Battle for eBook Supremacy: Amazon versus everybody else

While self-publishing my novel, Baby Jane, to Amazon’s Kindle was relatively easy, publishing to the other devices is proving more challenging. Sony, who own the eReader, Apple, who own the iBookstore, Kobo, which is mostly owned by Indigo Books and Music Inc., and Barnes & Noble, who own the Nook, have all adopted business policies that exclude small publishers and self-publishing authors or, as in the Nook and iBookstore, have installed barriers that make it difficult for non-Americans (or non Mac users) to sell on the their sites. Sony and Read More …