Why Amazon has to win this Race!

Amazon is in the race of its life with ebooks.  It has to win.  Why?  Well, if you self publish and want to keep the big publishing companies on their toes, Amazon has to win.  Right now Oyster is trying to push harder into ebook sales only those ebooks are only from the Big publishing companies.  No self published.  No little publishing company.  Period.  It’s like Walmart wants to open for business in a small town where there are three home town stores.  Guess who wins that battle?  Most times Walmart which is why most small towns don’t want a Walmart these days.  Granted I can’t kick Oyster to the curb but I can promote Amazon and why it’s important to buy from them right now.

Or any other service which is for the little guy.  Oyster isn’t just going against the self published world, it’s going against any publishing company which isn’t the big five.  Please spread the word, Amazon and every other ebook service needs to win!  Or we all lose.

To read more on this story, click here.  Yahoo wrote and covered the story.

Doesn’t want to promote companies but feels this is one time we need to

Terra Ann Spencer

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Amazon, Goodreads and an Idea

I had this cool idea after Chantelle Atkins, a fellow author, was reminding her readers and the world Amazon does not link up the reviews across country.  This means a review at Amazon US will not be seen by a person on Amazon UK.

I thought well they are the parent company to Goodreads so why not streamline the whole review process for the book section only through Goodreads.  How hard would that be?  I mean granted there would need to be office meetings and Goodreads and Amazon would have to strike a deal together on how it would work.

Other than that…?  Not seeing a whole lot which would be bad or complex.  I also know parent companies make money off their little companies under them though they do not usually make their choices for them about business.  A few parent companies might have more involvement but others might have less.  Still, Amazon is making money off of Goodreads so to promote it you would think would be in Amazon’s favor.  You would think, right?

Well, me being me sent them an email.  I got the worst email back I’ve gotten from any company.  It only stated the facts which I already knew, something about a highlight review (this part didn’t even really make sense) and how Goodreads is separate so they don’t share data with Amazon.  Ok, so?  I thought the least they could do was review the idea and send it to someone who might be higher on the food chain.  I guess not.

Thinking companies should want more ideas and less upset sad customer service

Terra Ann Spencer

IPA Annual Report

IPA stands for International Publishers Association.  They have a report out every year.  I’ll try to do a link to the PDF file but if you can’t access it, google IPA annual report.  PDF file.

Now why read it?

Well, first it contains some interesting information about publishers.  There is one article by Jens Bammel not liking the value of Amazon.  It goes on to quickly cover the idea Amazon is not caring enough about books so the customer isn’t getting enough value for the money.  I openly disagree with this.  I believe customers are bright people who over time will weed through the authors not worthy of their money by Goodreads and other sites.  I have enough fair in the customers to not worry about the huge amount of self published authors.

Second, it really gives you a sense the publishing companies are starting to get scared by the recent and upcoming changes to their once powerful hold on the book market.  Now it’s the authors along with the customers deciding who gets the big bucks and who gets left in the dust.  Publishing companies use to and still do not publish most of the books which land on their door step. Now with Amazon authors don’t have to be controlled or pushed aside for a publishing companies agendas.  This means more freedom of speech and less control at a company level.

It leaves me thinking if this isn’t already in place someone needs to start the ISPA.  International Self Publishers Association.  This would help to defend self publishers rights to publish and promote self publishers around the world.

If anyone has heard of anything like this, please let me know.

Supporting the ISPA in her head for now

Terra Ann Spencer

Around the internet with a frown again

A site called PressBooks sounded good at the google stage.  It had the idea on a low-budget you could get your book done as an e-book and had tips to do this.  I went over with half a hope it might turn out to be as good as it sounded.  Again, I frown with the lost hope a site will ever be worth my time when it comes to self publishing.

First when was it written?

Seriously, it has one section which says you need their site because doing covers requires complex digital software.  Wrong.  Today, many of the self published places like Create A Space have templates a designer can use and there are low-budget software like Gimp one can use to do the cover art.   With a few ‘How To’ videos and a few hours of messing around, most people can figure out the software.  Granted not everyone can design a book but that is a art issue not a complex software problem.

The site also promotes it can publish your book for a low $99. No. Once, you get to the pricing section you realize the $99 does not include the cover art or editing.  I guess they didn’t realize it’s free to publish a book on amazon and most other e-book spots.  Not sure why they are charging $99 at all.  The cost to most self published authors is the editing and cover art.  Save your cash and find somewhere else as this is such a waste of money.   Use the $99 for marketing!

Frowning again

Terra Ann Spencer

Quick post on Agents

Should you get one?

If you are looking to go the traditional published route, yes.  I would look into getting an agent.  If you don’t, you end up on ‘slush piles’ which is the nickname for all submitted unsolicited novels.  Unsolicited means novels without agents.  It is harder for you to get published if you are on the ‘slush pile’.

If you are looking to self publish but might like a T.V or movie deal, I would look before or after self publishing for an agent.  Look for one who is listed out as being able to get you the movie deal or cable deal you are seeking out.  Also I would let them know you don’t want or plan to publish with a traditional publishing company.  Some agents may not want to take you on due to this fact but I believe the longer self publishing is around and the more of us going this route, they will become warmer to the idea.

If you plan to only self publish on a site like Amazon and have no current plans to sell your work for the movies, I would recommend not getting an agent.  At this point, you would not get anything out of having one and could always look into it farther down the road when you have a larger audience or feel you would like to look into other avenues for your novel.

Looking tomorrow for links to post where you can get lists of agents to send your novel to

Terra Ann Spencer