No, new author, what do you think? Do you only want to sell to Kindles? Do you realize that Kindles don’t read epub? That it’s a proprietary format? That those books can only and forever be on Kindles and Kindle products and programs?
An author can choose to go that route if they want, but I would hope that they have reasons for doing so other than, “Someone once told me…” or “People say…”
I’ll come out and say it, no, you probably won’t make much money from Smashwords. Yes, you do have to wait forever for their extra distributors to pay. And yes, Smashwords only pays you like once every six months. So why would I suggest going with Smashwords?
Freedom. I only buy indie books from Smashwords. You can download in any format (usually, unless the author has severely limited the formats the book will appear in). Generally I go for the epubs. Why? They’re DRM free, and that’s awesome. That means I can put it on any device. Why, I used to read books on my DS back in the day before I got a proper ereader. Plus, say I do decide to get a Kindle. I can download the book in the .mobi format needed for the Kindle.
I’ll admit that if a book isn’t on Smashwords, I skip it. There are a lot of good books put out by small publishers and self-publishers. I don’t need to work that hard to find a good book to spend my money on. Granted, I’m only one sale is a sea of sales, so that might not concern an author. There are plenty of authors who do great on Amazon.
So that’s freedom for me as a reader, but what about as an author? One of my favorite aspects of Smashwords is that the site allows for me to experiment. I can generate coupons, I can post things for free, and I can even use the “reader decides the price” option, which I will probably test out for the next story or something. I was tempted to try it out for this story, and may even do that later on.
Coupons are awesome because they cost me no money. It’s an easy way for me to mark a book down while still showing it’s value. And who doesn’t love a sale? (Well, except for in-store sales because those usually involve waiting in line.)
In the next year, I’m going to try pushing Smashwords a little more when I go out to sell the book. I’m planning on getting tables at the local anime conventions, and one of the things I’m hoping to do is have a QR code that points to the Smashwords site while handing out coupons. I really haven’t used Smashwords much because I haven’t really been marketing. These are just my thoughts on why I love the site.
Anyone else have thoughts? Hate Smashwords? Like Smashwords? Have a horrible experience with the site?
The amount of support I have received has been amazing. Thank you everyone for passing on the link at work, on blogs, and on Facebook even. I was pretty sure that I wouldn’t get more than twenty downloads– just the friends who’ve been watching and supporting me.
But no, as of now I’m at 150 downloads. (Is it gauche to talk numbers? Oh well, those are all free anyway.) The point has been to get the book out into as many hands/e-readers as possible, and I think that’s been done. Will I hear from anyone? I don’t know, but I’m waiting nervously over here for someone other than those who’ve already read it to say something.
Over the weekend, I brought my ereader to Dad’s house and showed him the book. I’d mentioned it, but I knew until I had something in my hand that I could show him it wouldn’t be anything more than one of those ideas. The front page has a dedication to him (which is ironic considering the relationship of the main character to the man she learns is her father– but he don’t need to know that), and he was very happy and excited for me.
Next little magic trick will be turning the ebook into a real print book. I’ve got the interior done, I think, but I need some help with the cover. I’ve got the art for the front cover, which is large enough for print and has enough DPIs, but I need to work on the spine and the back cover part. Or maybe get someone else to do it for me. If anyone has any suggestions or recommendations, I’m open to them.