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BookBaby launches Print On Demand

BookBaby launches Print On Demand

Bookstore-quality Print On Demand for idependent authors“Thank you for calling BookBaby, my name is _____ . How can I help you?”

So starts hundreds of calls to our Philadelphia and Portland call centers every week. Most of these chats turn into great conversations for both the author and our publishing team. But not every call has a happy outcome.

More than few calls, unfortunately, come to an early halt. This is how those abbreviated calls used to go.

Author: “Do you offer printed book distribution?”

BookBaby Customer Service: “Ah, well at this time we don’t offer printed book distribution…”

Author: ______ (sound of phone hanging up).

These kinds of exchanges happened dozens of times every day. A large-and-growing-hungrier number of authors want distribution for their printed books, just like they enjoy with their eBooks being distributed through BookBaby. And that’s something BookBaby didn’t offer.

Until now.

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Forbidden print: a brief history of banned books [infographic]

Forbidden print: a brief history of banned books [infographic]

Censorship: it’s like a publicist’s dream!

Nothing makes me want to read a book more than when someone says I can’t read it.

Check out this infographic featuring some now classic books that were banned because of… well, you’ll see the reasons below:

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Try before you buy: how BookBaby lets you test drive our book printing services

Try before you buy: how BookBaby lets you test drive our book printing services

Print one copy of your bookPrinting a single copy of your book is the best way to proof your text, evaluate your design, and feel assured that you’re getting the highest quality book printing available

Try before you buy. There’s not much new about that idea – it’s been out there forever. Test drive that car. Sample that exotic- yet-stinky cheese at the high end deli counter.

But how about sampling something personal and unique — like, for instance, your own printed book?

That’s what hundreds of authors like Joshua Duttweiler of Houghton College in New York have done. Joshua was the co-founder of a graphic design group called Caffeinated Creative Studio, which provides services for the college and campus users. Joshua is one of many authors who ordered a single copy of their printed book for just $19. And like many others, Joshua placed a much larger print book order as a result of this unique “try before you buy” offer.

“Having a chance to buy a hard copy for just $19 was incredibly helpful,” said Joshua. “Our book is a showcase for artists and explaining our mission, and it was important that it looked perfect.”

Printing books is a big step for any author. But the stakes are even higher when the product is being used as a tool to help Caffeinated Creative secure more projects. “We were very nervous about buying a lot of printed books. We wanted to see what it would look like in terms of color matching and layouts. We jumped on the deal when we had the chance to get a test copy.”

Joshua used the single book to make instant improvements to the project. “We originally chose natural paper color but realized when we saw it in print that it didn’t quite fit, so we changed to white,” he said. “We changed up a few of the layouts after seeing the book. It was really helpful to have a book to mark up.”

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#BBchat recap: book e-retail trends

#BBchat recap: book e-retail trends

Transcript of Twitter chat on eBook retail trendsFor our inaugural #BBchat Twitter chat, we asked a few of our authors and literary friends from around the world, including Chris Robley (our blog manager) and Petra A. Lohmann (BookBaby author of Swans), for their thoughts on recent book e-retail trends.

Overwhelmingly, the comments on utilizing social media and book crowdfunding revealed that, while new tricks of the trade may generate buzz for established authors, such new tactics do not necessarily translate into higher revenue or engagement for those authors looking to build up their fan base.

However, almost all those participants who responded to our questions on marketing and sales techniques (such as bundling) responded that they would be open to trying such promotions if they had evidence of demand from their respective target markets. As well, they responded favorably to these ideas from a reader or buyer’s perspective.

To view the entire chat archive, please visit this link. Below is a selection of questions and answers from our discussion.

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What makes a great BookShop page?

What makes a great BookShop page?

What makes a great BookShop page?A potential reader has landed on your BookShop page by either:

* linking from a website, email newsletter, or social.

* searching for you, your book, or related subject matter online.

Now it’s time to make a great first impression, and a sale!

How to optimize your BookShop page to capture the most sales

1. You need a striking book cover

It’s the first thing someone sees — because it’s HUGE. And that’s good. BookShop puts the attention where it should be, on YOUR book.

Hopefully your book cover makes people want to read more about it. If so, well done. If not, you still have time to capture a visitor’s imagination when you…

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BookBaby will handle new VAT changes for EU authors

BookBaby will handle new VAT changes for EU authors

Have recent changes to EU tax law got you down? Don’t worry, BookBaby is handling it for you!

Many of our European authors have worried about how a new law in the EU concerning VAT (value-added tax) — which is similar to sales tax — will affect them.

The short answer (at least in terms of your sales through BookBaby’s BookShop) is: not at all!

We will be collecting and remitting the VAT for all eBook sales on BookShop on behalf of our artists and label clients in the 28 EU countries.

If you live in the EU, the VAT will be paid by your customer and will not affect what you make on sales of eBooks. This will save you from having to worry about reporting and remitting the VAT yourself.

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15 powerful quotes from writers we lost last year

15 powerful quotes from writers we lost last year

15 quotes from famous writers that died in 2014Buzzfeed compiled a series of quotes from some of the influential writers that passed away in 2014.

Inspiring. Grumpy. Funny. Wise. The quotes run the gamut, but they’re all worth reading.

Here are a few of my favorites:

“Each moment is a place you’ve never been.” – Mark Strand

“Once I began to read, I began to exist.” – Walter Dean Myers

“It is not true that people stop pursuing dreams because they grow old, they grow old because they stop pursuing dreams.” – Gabriel García Márquez.

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The key to your writing career? Ask a faux cable repair guy

The key to your writing career? Ask a faux cable repair guy

Git-R-DoneFor my first post in the new year, here’s a little story for anyone who has yet to publish a book:

A failed comic strip artist, a faux cable repair guy, and you walk into a bookstore.

OK,OK…so it sounds like the start of a bad joke. It isn’t, I assure you. Just stay with me:

The comic strip guy, Jeff Kinney, goes to the children’s book section and sees an entire shelf of his “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” series. The books already look well used; probably dozens of kids have already thumbed through them without buying.

The cable guy – otherwise known as comic Larry the Cable Guy – walks to the comedy book section. Near the shelf full of Dave Barry, Tina Fey and even Grumpy Cat he finds a single dusty copy of “GIT–R-DONE”, his 2006 New York Times best seller. (Yes, really.)

As for you….well, that’s where the story ends. Because your book isn’t on these — or any other — shelves. Because you’re not an author. At least not today.

Every time the calendar rolls over and adds a digit, the media is full of …

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The bookshelves of your dreams and nightmares

The bookshelves of your dreams and nightmares

Creative bookshelf ideasIf we book geeks played our cards right, we got a bunch of new books for the holidays. New books that now need a place on our beloved bookshelves.

In my case that means cramming a bunch of poetry collections into tiny spaces in already overstuffed bookshelves, which inevitably leads to me rearranging the books and dreaming of a completely new shelving system.

The folks at Bored Panda have been dreaming of new bookshelf options too, and they’ve featured a bunch of interesting, ugly, beautiful, impractical, weird, and wonderful designs for us book lovers to ponder. Check out “33 creative bookshelf designs.”

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The prolific author: how many words per hour can you write?

The prolific author: how many words per hour can you write?

How to measure your productivity as a writer[This is a guest post by Bob Baker of www.FullTimeAuthor.com.]

Would you like to be much more productive as a writer? It’s possible, and you don’t have to turn into a machine or ingest huge amounts of caffeine to do it. (Although a bit of coffee might help goose your enthusiasm.)

If you’re like me, you wouldn’t mind increasing your writing output so you can get more books and information products to market.

This aspiration naturally leads to the question, “How much content can I reasonably expect to produce?” The best way to quantify it is to find out how many words you actually crank out per hour.

I wondered the same thing recently.

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