Transferring the Rights from One Smashword’s Author to Another

For the last year or so I’ve offer Smashwords formatting services. Many authors ask me about pictures in Smashwords books, and it was a pain to try to find one they could look at for free so I dusted off an old children’s book I’d written back in 2001 (complete with those pesky images) and uploaded it as a free read. That way, I could show curious people what it would look like. Fast forward and, to my dismay and surprise, one day I notice that this free kiddy book has not only “sold” over 400 copies , but it has reviews on B&N as well as Smashwords and was even featured in a blog!

I have other kiddy books I wrote at the same time and with all the downloads I thought “hey, maybe I should upload them too.” But, I don’t want to be known as a children’s author. I have a tough enough time trying to convince people that my vampire books are not YA (There is a rape scene in the first book, for crying out loud! this is not twelve year old material), so linking that same author name to books that ARE child friendly… well, that’s what you call cross genre nightmares.

A pen name fixes the problem, but what about the book that’s already uploaded? The one that has reviews and links to it? Smashwords allows authors to transfer book rights to Publishers, and from publishers to authors, but what about author to author?

Turns out yes, you can do that.

I sent a mail to Mark and he explained that they have to do the switch manually (Neurosurgery, he called it) but that if you send the links to the book and both author pages – the one the book is now under and the one you want it moved to – either he or Bill will make the swap for you.  How handy is that?  Just another example of the excellent customer service aspect to Smashwords.

Thought I would share this as I’m sure I’m not the only one something like this has happened to, and this method is a lot easier then un-publishing and re-uploading.

8 Comments

  1. Lovelyn says:

    Thanks. That’s great to know. I’m exploring the idea of using pen names now.

    1. They can be pretty handy for things like that! 😀

  2. Christina Busby says:

    wow. that is totally neat. thought about writing a book in a pen name but not sure yet.

    1. I went back and forth when I first started, but I’m too egotistical to do the main body of my work under a pen name (sad, I know!). A good factor to help you decide is to a google search for your name and see if a lot of other people and/or writers come up. If so, then a unique pen name might be a good idea.

      1. Jo, I’m too egotistical too. I’m lucky that no one had my name in the author arena.

        Christina, Kate Page wasn’t an author, but she is a singer, so I used the name but had to put ‘authorkatepage’ before my email and blog. So that’s something you might want to consider when you’re looking into names.

        1. AHA!! I thought Kate Page was a singer – everytime I saw it on FB for awhile I was like “Why do I have a singer added?” and then I would facepalm and “duuuh!” Nice ot know I was kinda right :p

  3. Thanks for telling us how you did it. 😀

    1. Still waiting for the move to happen, though I know Marie told me when she submitted her book this morning there were over 3,000 in queue before her, so Bill and Mark are busy guys!

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