Two months ago, when my friend screenwriter and story editor Joy Thierry Llewellyn said, “Let’s talk about epublishing,” what I heard instead was self-publishing. And all my old snobbish reactions rose up and waved their insect-feelers in an agitated fashion. Well, live and learn.
I am in the process of educating myself. The thing is that conventional publishing, the kind I’ve grown up with as a writer, now asks so much of writers and delivers so little in return that I am starting to think this epublishing thing makes more and more sense. The old paradigm of bugging bookstores to put on readings where a harried writer accosts bored customers and tries to convince them to buy a book is painful for all involved. Why not go much more to where the readers are and make genuine connections? This is a very much to-be-continued subject.
Just spent some time browsing indie author Mark Dawson’s Self Publishing Formula site. The podcast section is remarkable. So far have listened to two one-hour podcasts. The first was one website design. I can boil the hour down to two specific nuggets of advice:
- Create an email list by offering giveaways. This email list will form the beginning of one’s fan base. An odd idea for a poet, to think of a fan base. Myself, I am well known to all three hundred of the CanLit crowd. Wait a minute. Make that four hundred and of the older crowd.
- Make it easy for writers to buy your books.
The second one I listened to was rather meatier. It was titled Smart Book Delivery. Do you know, I listened to it because I thought it was something about mailing books! I have cases of books in my basement. Well, no. This was much more interesting and up to date. It talks about a book delivery system called BookFunnel. This is especially for writers. For a very low price per year–$20. for entry level–it delivers ebooks to your readers in whatever format their device is in.