Thursday, September 22, 2011

Readers will pay more for eBooks with music and multimedia in it

Through a recent survey, Cathedral Rock Publishing has discovered that eBook readers support additional content, such as music, audio and video, and are willing to pay more for this additional interactive content.

The survey of 105 users, conducted over July and August 2011, asked several questions to understand why readers do - or don't - access eBook content. When asked if they had downloaded an eBook, 85% of eBook device owners said "yes." Of those who had yet to download an eBook, a third said that they "preferred the feel of a book" and two-thirds said that they had a smartphone or similar smaller device and the screen size was not suitable for reading eBooks.

The survey also asked participants content would appeal to them in an eBook. More than three quarters of respondents (77%) identified music as a plus, while 19% answered "other types of audio." 56% said they would like video and 58% favored color visuals in eBooks.

The survey also asked people how they want to use multimedia content embedded in the eBook. More than three quarters (76%) wanted to import music and video into iTunes.

Finally, the survey investigated pricing. How much are consumers willing to pay for a multimedia eBook? All respondents said that they would pay more for it, with 10% stating they would pay more than $10. 16% said they would pay $10. 25% people said they would pay $8, and 40% said they would pay $6.

John David Balla, co-founder of Cathedral Rock Publishing, explained the rationale behind the survey: "This is an ongoing study to uncover what is driving the evolution of eBooks. We all know that eBook buying has exploded, but what do readers want in terms of rich content - and how different will the reader's experience be in the coming years? Understanding all these elements is important for publishers and authors as they consider how to package and present information readers want. The opportunities for content in the world beyond paper, are limited only by imagination - and what readers are open to."

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

New Kindle Exclusive: Free Subscription to Fantasy & Science Fiction Magazine is offering a free subscription to the digest edition of Fantasy & Science Fiction magazine is now exclusively available in the Kindle Store. Kindle customers who subscribe will get access to all of the magazine's editorial content -- editor's recommendations, "Curiosities" (odd books of enduring interest), film reviews, book reviews, cartoons and humor, and "Coming Attractions" (highlights of each issue) -- along with one short story, all at no cost. Customers can start reading the magazine today on their Kindle or free Kindle reading apps for Android, iPad, iPhone and iPod touch.

"Fantasy & Science Fiction is the definitive magazine of the genre," said Russ Grandinetti, Vice President of Kindle Content. "We know our Kindle customers are huge fans of this category, and we're excited to offer them a free and exclusive subscription to the magazine to read anywhere."

Stephen King, bestselling author and long-time fan of Fantasy & Science Fiction, said: "This is the best fiction magazine in America. Kindle readers are in luck."

Fantasy & Science Fiction, which publishes six times a year, was founded in 1949 and is the original publisher of classics by a wide variety of great writers, including Stephen King, Daniel Keyes and Kurt Vonnegut. Each bimonthly issue offers compelling short fiction and the science-fiction field's most respected and outspoken opinions on books, films, and science.

A subscription to the extended edition of the magazine, which is also a Kindle exclusive, is available for just $12 a year and includes everything in the digest edition plus several additional short stories and novelettes. Individual issues of the extended edition are available for $2.99.

Google Books hits 2.5 million eBooks downloaded by hungry fans

The number of eBooks sold continues to grow after surpassing traditional book sales in early 2011. In addition to the online retail industry, dominated by Amazon, there is an exponentially growing appetite for free eBooks. While Google has been successful with "Google Books", it seems that they aren't the only player and certainly don't have the last word in digital publishing despite the media attention they command.

Google Books surpassed the 2.5 million mark for eBook downloads, according to The Huffington Post on June 1st, 2011. However, there are smaller players, like competing strongly in this space. In fact,, has experienced record amounts of downloads too, as eBook reader sales double and billions of smartphone users join in, to solidify the acceptance of the "eBook."

"It's an honor for us to be on par with a giant like Google," exclaims Nicolas Gremion, CEO of Paradise Publishers Inc., who own He draws a direct comparison because coincidentally, "As of June 1st, we've also served over 2.5 million eBooks to our loyal members. That's equal with Google."'s subscriber base, now approaching the one million mark, is responsible for downloading an average of nearly 19,000 ebooks, every single day. Gremion believes that, "It goes to show that it's possible to compete and win with quality services, resourceful marketing and a positive reputation. These qualities are foundations to building value and equity anywhere, including the online world."

"Plus, we continue to innovate and leverage new market opportunities," says Gremion. "We're entering the mobile space with our popular Smartphone apps, expanding into the growing Spanish market and creating unique, technology solutions to empower more authors. This will both expand and accelerate the production and availability of ebooks, along with other creative digital content. The publishing industry is trying to redefine itself at the moment. We believe that innovation combined with social media opportunities, and not necessarily the deepest pockets or biggest company, are the keys to success."

Paradise Publishers Inc. is a U.S.-based, global, online publisher of both fiction and non-fiction books. It distributes digital eBooks at no cost via and is about to launch a highly anticipated social publishing site aim to help anybody become an author and easily publish, promote and profit from their own eBooks.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Science Fiction/Fantasy Books Expected to Grow 3.4% in 2011

Representing just 6% of the total trade book market, the science fiction/fantasy segment will grow 3.4% in 2011, reaching $578.6 million, despite the overall market's expected 5.2% decline. According to a report published by media and publishing forecast firm Simba Information, the science fiction and fantasy categories experienced double-digit increases in title output, along with stronger ratings on the consolidated bestseller list in 2010.

According to the report, the science fiction/fantasy segment is gaining market share, adding half a percent in 2011 compared to 2010, as it more than triples its 1% growth rate from the past two years.

"The sci-fi/fantasy segment has been a stable growth segment for the past few years," notes Michael Norris, Simba Information's senior trade analyst. "Since the book market took a big hit in 2007, it has been inching closer to its previous high-point."

Title output for fantasy rose sharply to 6,389 titles, growing 14.6%, followed by science fiction with 3,714 titles, growing 10.1% in 2010. Simba's report, which uses a consolidated bestseller list comprised of ratings from USA Today, The New York Times and Publisher's Weekly, finds science fiction performed strongly on the list with 76 titles by 58 authors, while fantasy held 321 titles by 192 authors, although its success was led by the Twilight Saga.

"Even though a lot of titles are hit or miss with audiences, both as books and as media tie-ins, there will continue to be a thirst for this segment of fiction for the foreseeable future," added Norris.

Simba's report, Business of Consumer Book Publishing 2011, details the overall market for trade books, segmented by 18 major categories including health & fitness, romance, self-help, science fiction/fantasy and others. It includes demographic and psychographic information on the average book buyer, along with company profiles of the leading publishers including Penguin Group, Macmillan and Random House.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

A Few Pros About Self Publishing

By Kim G Lain

• Creative Control - Design your own cover or let us help you!
• Financial Control - Determine the number and type of books you want!
• Inventory Control - Order when you want to and when you need to!
• Competitive Pricing - (as in VERY affordable - compare for yourself!)
• Fast Turnaround - As quick as 7 days!

You can develop your manuscript on your time, at your leisure, at your own pace, right at your PC and then simply upload and wait for your professionally bound, bookstore quality books to arrive. You determine the amount you want to publish and you determine the amount of money you feel you can spend at any given time. Again, many authors publish a hundred or so books at first and then find themselves ordering hundreds more.

Creative Control -
You may have a favorite literature category, you like to read and there are scenarios you have never seen written in your genre, then you've most likely experienced frustration. Now you are left to ponder and to speculate. The reason your favorite sub-genre has been ignored is money matters in book publishing companies of today.

A great example is fantasy fiction literature. Until a few years ago, the number of fantasy books (i.e. Dragon books and Warlock books) that had been published could be counted on two hands. Without saying there's current development of ebooks. And ebook sales are only getting bigger. A large collection of fantasy fiction literature has entered the marketplace and is available or in some cases free of charge. Some offer their ebooks free of charge.

Why are all these bizarre and wonderful sub genre literary selections appearing? The new "e" platforms [electronic] platforms allow authors to self publish their creative works, as we know them in the literary field. These writers have about 100% freedom to write about virtually anything that comes to their creative mind. Do not feel left out. Start writing. Write until you've put down all your ideas, then edit. Your goal is to get self-published to an ebook format to share on the world-wide web. Then think about publishing in normal book form. Note, before ebook formats - self publishing became easy and affordable for almost anyone. However, the editors in publishing companies made the decisions on what choices we had to read. Now, readers and authors can make those decisions.

*** Self-Publish! ***

The Internet and companies like Amazon have made this all possible with their self publishing platforms. They allow writers to publish their ebooks on their websites and gain access to large numbers of potential readers. This particular business model has become very successful. Publishers are scrambling to try to figure out how they will survive in the age of digital books.

If you are an author who has an agreement with a traditional book publisher, I am sure you have had issues with their editors in making changes to your creative work. Moreover, I bet you have some wonderful manuscripts lying around that no one would purchase. With the self publishing options of today, you can publish your manuscript without a publisher or editor who changes your book in a fashion you are not satisfied.

Retaining creative control of your content is but one of the many advantages of self publishing your ebook. Remember you have control with self publishing.

Some of today's top selling authors are still with traditional publishers, but this will change soon. The superstar authors of tomorrow are likely to be self published authors.

USA TODAY Launches ', to Expand Coverage of Books

USA TODAY has expanded its coverage of books with its new online destination The new site allows consumers to discover, discuss, share, preview and purchase books online. It is available on computers, smart phones and tablets. provides readers with an interactive experience to browse books across a variety of genres, including fiction, non-fiction and children's books; read reviews; and, share personal recommendations in conversations that also allow for tweeting about books or responding to other readers' comments.

Unique to the site is the opportunity for consumers to now preview a book from the USA TODAY Best-Selling Books list and purchase it from a vendor of their choice, including Amazon, Barnes & Noble, the iBookstore or IndieBound, an association of independent booksellers.

USA TODAY's respected Best-Selling Books list ranks the 150 top-selling titles each week, based on analysis of sales from such U.S. booksellers as bookstore chains, independent bookstores, mass merchandisers and online retailers. More than 10,000 books previously ranked on USA TODAY's Best Selling Books list are also now included on with a dedicated page. complements USA TODAY's print books coverage. Anchored by Thursday's USA TODAY Best-Selling Books list, USA TODAY in print continues with Book Buzz, which reports on new best-sellers and publishing news, and includes special code tags for smart phones for an extended, interactive version of the booklist.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

8 Easy Steps to Self Publishing Books From Your Website Content

By Shelley Hitz

Interested in self-publishing books? If you have a website, you can re-purpose your top articles into a book. Think about it. After you write heaps of quality articles and lots of traffic on your website, why not reuse it, all the same articles in a printed book, PDF eBook, audio books and Kindle book getting the most out of your time and work.

These are My 8 Painless Steps to Self Publishing Books:

  1. Write down an layout for the book chapters with the top articles from your website.
  2. Enter your book in a Microsoft Word template (or your preferred software) formatted for your preferred book size.
  3. Save your book to PDF.
  4. Select a book designer for your book cover or choos a DIY format.
  5. Decide amongst all the publishers who you want to use to publish your book.
  6. Sign up for an account with self-publishing and upload your documents, if relevant.
  7. Now begin your book marketing by selling copies online at Amazon, via your own website and in person when you speak or at events.
  8. Now it is the time to layout the book into a PDF ebook, audio book and Kindle book.

This is what I did with my website Teen-Beauty-Tips.Com. That was the autumn of 2008 when I stumbled upon the concept of self-publishing books. One of our associates, also a speaker, showed us his self-published book.

Quality was great and we found out that he was able to buy his self-published books on his cost of just $ 2-3 for every book. Not only would there be added revenue to promote books at speaking events, but it also gives immediate credibility of a "published author." "I thought," Wow... I can I do this."

The Nuts and Bolts of Publishing My First Book

And so, I put together an draft for my book based on the finest articles on my website. So, I came up with the title.

Next, I started to copy and paste my articles into a Word document template. I subsequently converted my Word document using the free of charge edition of PDF995 (click on properties, then advanced option and select the "Statement [5.5 5 X 8.5 5] "From the dropdown menu for the paper format.)

Despite working full time as a physiotherapist and speaking, as well as travelling from time to time, I had a 190-page book ready to print in a month.

I had a low budget (or should I say no budget) so I took the DIY method. I researched styles of my template and did a book cover in Photoshop. I researched self-publishing and decided to go with Createspace (a company with Amazon), since there are no upfront costs and they list you quickly on Amazon.Com.

As an example, my 190 page black and white soft cover book only cost me $3.13 + Shipping, with the help of the Pro Plan. The Pro Plan is a fee of $39 the first year and then an annual fee of $5, but is well worth the cost in an increase in royalties and decreased cost to buy books. I highly recommend the Pro Plan, by the way. There is actually no reason to go with the Pro Plan (that is, unless you don't sell any books at all!).

Same Book, Multiple Formats

When my book was released on Createspace and Amazon, I also had it offered in the PDF eBook format. I give away the PDF format away to my newsletter subscribers, which once more has helped me to build my list in a very small niche (Christian teen girls) to about 2700 and expanding.

I therefore decided to make my book as an audio book using Audacity and a $ 30 microphone to record it. I am now selling MP3 downloads through ClickBank and also sell a Disc of my audiobook on Kunaki.C Com. The Kunaki can I buy Disc's at cost for as little as $ 1 (+ shipping), as I also sell them at my events and online through my website.

Eventually, I took my Word document took out the pictures embedded in my file and saved it as an HTML document. I subsequently uploaded it to Amazon's digital text platform, and I now offer Kindle version from my website as well.

Making Money Selling Books

In such a small and specialized niche, I'm not getting rich by selling books from my website. But there is a regular paycheck from both online and offline sales, and as my traffic increases (now over 1000 visitors per day), so my sales.

Of course, if you want to "Hit it Big" in publishing, you will want to hire a professional to design your interior book template and your book cover design. I ultimately decided to have a designer update my book cover for me.

If you want to go the TRUE self publishing route and do all the leg work yourself, then you can form your own book publishing company and use Lightning Source. In this case, a book like Dan Poynter's Self Publishing Manual is a great resource to guide you step by step.

You Can Do It!

Given that you've already put so much time and energy into writing your website, it could be worth taking some extra time and re-purpose identical articles to a hard good, as a paperback book, CD and digital products as a PDF eBook, Kindle book and MP3 downloads for your visitors.

If you do not want to be a national bestseller, but simply want to provide extra resources to your website visitors and another paycheck, then download my free book templates, sign up for a free Createspace account and get started! Oh, and have fun...Soon you'll be a "Published author."

Download your free book templates at and get more advice about self publishing books.

Shelley Hitz is an entrepreneur, speaker, author and consultant to organizations, individuals and businesses who want to multiply their impact through self publishing. She teaches from personal experience. Over a two year span, (More...)while working full-time, she self published five books, multiple audio CDs, authored two websites that attract thousands of visitors each month, and created multiple products that she sells through her website and at her speaking engagements.