Posts Tagged With: cons

Google E-Books Explained

In an effort to rival Amazon, Google has started their own ebook store. The new endeavor launched December 6th with more than three million titles available, though many of those are public domain books. Not that that’s a bad thing. I’m all for the classics moving into the digital age. eBook formats include Android, Sony, Nook, iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and web viewing, and they have a selection of free reads, as well. Of note, they are not compatible with the Kindle.

The question that’s floated around is whether or not this new site is indy author friendly, and the answer is yes, yes they are. In fact, here is the direct quote (which can be found here)

“If you’re self-published, or the rights to your book have reverted back to you, you can join the program yourself by sending us your books or uploading them in PDF format. Check out our Author Resources page to learn more.”

This is where things might get confusing.

To join you can create an account with an existing google account, or create a new one. But, first have to sign up with Google books. Google books is an oft debated search-able database of books that google has scanned into their system. (more on that later). Once you’ve joined and agreed to allow your books to be listed, that’s when you get the option to join the ebook store.  In fact there are separate ToS for each. This one is for the Google Books program, while this is the addendum for the eBook store.

As I mentioned about the Google Books project, there were a lot of authors who felt that their copyrights were violated when Google started archiving portions of their books in the original Google Books program. To remedy this, Google is paying out to authors who had books in print prior to January 5, 2009 that they archived without permission, and they now offer the option for you to claim your book (do so here) and add a “Buy here” link to their directory listings. (I assume you can also have the book removed, but I haven’t looked into that) However, right now those links can only go to your website (if you’re selling books on it)not to Amazon, Smashwords, or any other third-party site.

This is where the eBook store comes in. When you submit your books to Google’s ebook store, they will then link the “buy book here” button on your google book to your Google eBook listing.

But before you worry about how much of your book is being shared, know that you can change the amount. Default is 20%, but you can choose to share more or less.

One down side to their process, in my opinion, is that to submit, books must be in a PDF format, and must be named very specifically by their ISBN numbers.  Here are the details on how to do that. Of course, you can also send them a print version and they will manually enter it for you, but by the time you buy your print version and mail it, you’ve spent more than the time it would have taken to PDF is worth.

So, should you bother? If you have a book published before January 5th, I’d at least go check to see if they have it listed because they may owe you money from advertisement clicks. To sign up for the one is not to sign up for the other, so don;t have to commit to the eStore if you don’t want to. Personally, I’ve signed up for the Google Books program, and will also agree to the eStore, though I haven’t uploaded anything because I’ve been busy. As an android phone owner, I may also look into purchasing from them in the future. I’ve tried the Kindle for android and didn’t like it very much, but this may be better – or it may not. as with any new endeavor, it’s a gamble. but, the way I look at it is since you’re not signing any book rights away, what do you have to lose?

For more information, here is a link to the help section, which s actually pretty useful for a change.

 

 

Categories: Book Promotion, Self-Publishing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Q&A: The Stalker Reader

Question: Help!  Someone please make a post for me and for other writers who might be dealing with this situation because I am too close to the problem to be objective about it.

If you’ve been receiving emails every day for about two weeks from the same person who isn’t necessarily being rude but is obviously wanting to keep you answering them with questions like “What kind of house do you live in?” or “What is it like in the U.S.?” or “What are the color of your cat’s eyes?”  I mean, these emails have nothing to do with your books, but you suspect the person is lonely and probably wants to reach out and communicate with someone but you don’t have that kind of time to email this person every single day, then what do you do?

I don’t want to be rude.  But do I have a choice?  Is there a form letter I can send out? 

Answer: I wanted to have your question answered as soon as I could and later I’ll make a post on Author Etiquette. Most people on here might not know what Ruth means by form letter. This isn’t some cold letter that you copy and send out. In the last year that we have been conversing, we have made a dozen or more form letters. What they are, are letters written to answer emails that would otherwise make you send a heated email cussing the rude reader off for whatever reader reason. Our letters aren’t a publisher’s rejection letters.

First, they are written when you’re not upset. Second, they can be modified to answer specific points in the readers email, which you should do if it doesn’t invade your privacy. And third, it provides a credible, professional image.  

I’ll use Ruth’s questions for an example.

Dear (Reader’s name);

Thank you for your emails, however, I am uncomfortable with your line of questioning (or as Dave suggested, due to work / family commitments / time restraints, etc. I am only able to speak  you on the writing/reader basis.) If you have a reading or writing related question please let me know (at your email or you can place a blog address here). I also have an author blog at (address), feel free to visit and comment.

Sincerely,

(Your name)

Of course modify this for your writing style. I’m more formal in my letter writing then, Ruth. And I open this Q&A for anyone else that might have a better solution. Anyone?

Categories: The Reader, The Writer & Author | Tags: , , , , , , ,

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