We work closely with Amazon to distribute your books to its massive audience. But Amazon offers its own Print on Demand service and we frequently get asked which company — BookBaby or CreateSpace — is the best for independent authors. I don't want to get too dramatic, but choosing your Print on Demand book distribution service is a little bit like… well, picking your future husband or wife. It’s a huge decision – the ultimate long-term relationship for self published authors. For better or worse, through strong book sales or writer’s block.
For the June edition of our #BBchat Twitter chat, we asked a few of our authors and literary friends from around the world, including Miral Sattar (CEO of Bibliocrunch) for thoughts on self-publishing budget strategies, as well as tips for trading services and finding freelance help. We frequently hear our author friends asking how to build a budget for their book, and Miral has penned two articles for PBS MediaShift on the subject, one detailing “The Real Costs of Self-Publishing a Book” and another explaining “How to Self-Publish Your Book on a Budget."
While your parents had something to say about what appears on your driver's license, you have a chance to craft the name that appears on your book cover. Take a look at this infographic from printerinks.com: how many of these pen names are new to you? Who got left off the list? Are you motivated to come up with one of your own? You can always use your first pet's name and the street you grew up on. No, wait, that's a different name generator...
I’ve never met a writer who hasn’t wanted her reader to get completely lost in the words on the page. While there are many things that separate fact from fiction, there’s one thing that all writers ignore at their peril: a good, hard, honest self-edit. Let’s talk dialogue. Fiction writers learn quickly that there’s nothing as terrible as stiff, unrealistic dialogue to pull a reader out of the story. The first place to start is by cutting out as many dialogue tags as you can.
When you set out to draft a book proposal, you might find the "market competition" section to be the most confounding. To start with, who enjoys staring their competition in the face? It can be daunting to sort through all the books that exist in the same subject area as yours, and the authors who have found the success you aspire to. The fact is, it’s important for an author to know his or her market competition intimately: a market-savvy author is in a position of strength.
WARNING – This blog post contains math. I promise you it won’t include algebra or those blasted hard story problems from all our middle school nightmares. Let’s start with three numbers. 66. That’s the percentage of readers who prefer print books to digital eBooks. 635 million. That’s how many print books sold in the U.S. in 2014, an increase of over 3% from 2013 sales. 100. As in the number of print books that BookBaby publishing specialists recommend for first time authors. Why 100? You’re going to need them – and probably more.
Novelists love stories and are often motivated to write by the effects a story can have on a reader. There's a real power in being able to touch the emotions of someone, a stranger, who lives far away or even far in the future. What better reason is there to write than to inspire others to follow their dreams? And yet, too many authors waste that opportunity. They confuse their reader with awkward phrasing, distract with careless typos, or turn off a potential buyer with a poor quality product.