Wednesday, March 25, 2009

eBook Creation; Piece of Cake

Checked out Abbott's e Publishing website (the publisher that had written to the Amazon Kindle discussion boards that he is keeping eBook prices low and urging Kindle Owners to buy from Abbott).

I noticed two things about Abbott after visiting their website.

1) They are selling eBooks that are listed in the public domain which you can get for free on Project Gutenberg and

2) They are 'looking' for new authors to sign with them.

As I writer that has 'been there/done that' I urge new authors to consider the following:

I wondered how difficult it would be to publish an eBook on Amazon. In an experiment, I took an old manuscript and using 3 easy instructional steps on Amazon, I uploaded it (for free). I used a photo I'd taken for the book cover. I picked the price point (99cents).
I make 35% on every book I sell & there is a report link for me to check and see my sales daily/monthly. Earnings are disbursed every 2 months. My rights belong to me. My rights belong to me (worth repeating!).


Abbott takes the publishing rights (ownership) of your work for 5 years and has the right to turn your ebook into a paper book (keeping profit) or ANY OTHER FORM they choose. If you hit the jackpot and your book is made into a movie w/in ten years...they get royalties.

Abbott gives you 50% royalty. Sounds good doesn't it? Yet THEY decide how to price your book. Say your book is selling really well at 4.99 so they up it to 10.99 against your wishes - you're SOL. Not to mention, your books are only being sold on their website - which is a bit cheesy and chunky. For what Abbott provides, you can easily sell your book on your own website or blog! Most people turn to Amazon for their eBook reads. With Abbott, there is little to no mainstream exposure. They suggest they will list your eBook on Amazon, but if that happens, Amazon gets a 65% royalty, then you split the remaining 35% with Abbott 50/50. That means: A book sold at 10.00 nets 3.50 for Abbott - which is then split 50/50 - so your profit is 1.75. And you've given up your rights.

If you publish on your own, without using an "ePublishing" company, you'd keep that initial 3.50 from Amazon and your rights.

Abbott pays within 3 months (Amazon pays w/in 2).

Abbott, to me, is much like that infomercial promising you all sorts of things in the middle of the night when you are tired and not thinking straight.

Please-if you've taken the time to actually write a book, make sure you consider all avenues.

Chances are, if you can get out of bed in the morning and dress yourself, you can self publish and promote an eBook.

Here is what Abbott promises taken directly from their website:

" Q: What if I’m a Previously Unpublished Author?

A: Abbott e Publishing actively seeks out those who have never before been published authors. We are happy to “launch” the careers of those who have remarkable writing talents who have yet to be “discovered” by large, impersonal and often tough-to-crack major publishing houses.

Compensation and the Writer’s Contract:
We like to keep things simple: Authors receive 50 percent of all Internet sales of their original work, paid every quarter (every 3 months) beginning with the three-month anniversary of signing a contract with Abbott e Publishing, when the royalties amount to $10 or more. Contracts are simple, easy-to-grasp and are signed when the author’s first book is accepted for publication.

Authors receive reports every quarter, whether royalties are paid or not. Advances are never paid to authors.

Important: Authors will NOT receive reimbursement for single submissions to Abbott ePublishing-created, multiple-author anthologies. (Author royalties would be miniscule anyway.)

Book prices are set by the publisher, and vary based upon several factors, including length of the work (though this alone is definitely not determinative) the subject matter, the expertise of the author, and demand. Prices will usually be set between $4.99 and $9.99. We strive to keep most books under $10 to fit with our philosophy of providing easy-to-afford eBooks.

Publishing Rights:
Abbott ePublishing requires exclusive electronic publishing rights to works it accepts for publication as eBooks. It may publish them in any format under its name for five years, at which time the client may renew their relationship with us. Any film adaptations of works published by Abbott ePublishing as eBooks within ten years of publication with us are subject to royalties paid to Abbott ePublishing.

Abbott ePublishing will promote works it publishes both online and off, including in the mass media. Authors are encouraged to promote sales of their books and direct people to purchase them on the Abbott ePublishing’s Website, and may create outside Webpages to promote their works, linking back to the Abbott ePublishing Website."


In closing, please take everything into careful consideration...I'm not saying that ePublishing is easy, but with the right ingredients,and the correct recipe book, you can have your ebook cake and eat it too.

Mein Kampf illustrates eBook Pricing

Article from CNET News written by David Carnoy

This snippet is not about the eBook they are talking about, more about the selling practices of eBooks on Amazon vs Sony Reader.

"One other note regarding "Mein Kampf:" Based on a 65-35 split off the list price (Amazon's deal with self-publishers), Amazon is making about 89 cents on each copy, so it's possible that it's making more on "Mein Kampf" than it does on many best-selling titles that it sells for $9.99.
The terms Amazon has negotiated from publisher to publisher are confidential, but sources tell me that at $9.99, Amazon is basically breaking even on a lot of those titles. Sony, by comparison, tends to sell best sellers at $11.99, a price point at which you'd assume that it can eke out a profit.
What does this all add up to? Well, clearly the e-book business is in its Wild West stage, and it's only going to get more convoluted when Sony dumps 500,000 free e-books into its database, and Amazon continues adding more public-domain titles.
All these cheap e-books flooding the market are going to be a problem for traditional publishers (it's unclear who uploaded the Kindle Edition of "Mein Kampf," but it was certainly not a traditional publisher). They'll either embrace the brave new world, and make it work for them with lower, more realistic pricing--or adopt the bunker mentality of the music studios and risk downfall."

Special Thanks to Alice for sending me this info.