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29Mar/110

Writers Readers Direct – A new site for authors and readers of ebooks





Writers, Readers, Direct – a new site for both authors and readers to find each other.

I received an email last night from Susan Barrett, an established author, who tells me that she ran into all manner of problems about getting her work published through traditional channels after taking a break from writing.

This has resulted in her setting up a website (www.writersreadersdirect.com) which will allow writers to submit their books for publication as ebooks (PDF and ePub formats) and then if accepted, they will be offered for sale on the site.

Obviously readers can visit the site and buy ebooks from it in the normal manner.

Only just started, so not many ebooks yet… But..

As it is a very new site, ( I am writing this on 30th March 2011) it has not got a very wide range of ebooks on offer yet, but as it becomes better known, obviously the number of ebooks being offered for sale there will increase.   We all have to start somewhere after all.

Pricing reasonable:

The pricing structure is very simple, full length ebooks will sell for 3 British Pounds (I don’t seem to have the symbol for that currency here…curious), short story bundles will go for 1 British Pound, so the pricing is very reasonable in my view.   The process for purchasing  ebooks is also straight forward, pay with  a credit card or PayPal and it is done.

Good royalties for writers:

The nice thing is the amount the author gets for any ebooks that are sold, for a full length ebook they will receive 2 British Pounds, and for a short story, 75 Pence, which is very generous.    You can see that it is a site set up by a writer rather than a publisher………

However, if you submit a book to them, they will charge you a non-returnable reviewing charge of 5 British Pounds.  Actually, this isn’t unreasonable, as they will look after all the steps needed to convert your book to ebook format, placing it on their site and so on.

Writers retain rights to their work:

By the way, one important note for authors, this site does not require that they have sole rights to your ebook, you are completely free to find other ways of selling your ebook……

The site itself is well set up and all works well, so wandering around it – as I did – is easy.   The various genres of ebook are categorized properly, there is a forum (still not really being used, but once again, give it time and it should be very lively).

They also offer a professional  reviewing service to authors should they wish to have their ebook read and criticized by a small group of writing professionals, a sort of Peer review which is a rather nice idea…  But this service is pretty expensive, ranging from 75 to 300 British Pounds according to length.  But this is not compulsory, happily.

As I mentioned above, this site does not yet have a very wide range of ebooks on offer, but what ebooks it does have now cover a reasonably wide range of genres, and as it is a site that is obviously both writer and reader friendly, I am sure it will grow.

I know there are already loads of self-publishing websites out there, such as Smash Words et.al, but I don’t see that as a problem, it is a big world after all, and there should be room for as wide a choice as possible.


Also, as Rich Adin has remarked, sites such as Smashwords are now so big they have become almost too big and cumbersome for the average person to use….   Try and find an ebook that interests you on such sites…  It has become a sort of gambol, one chooses an ebook in desperation in the end after ploughing through thousands of ebooks by unknown authors, and hope to find the jewel among the dross.

So, I wish this site all the best, and hope that many writers and readers head on over to it and help make it into what I feel it richly deserves to become – a largish, friendly place for writers and readers of new writing to find each other.

Link: http://www.writersreadersdirect.com/

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So, any thoughts about such websites?   Do share them with us here.




24Mar/110

IndieReader site revamped

Indiereader logo

Got this email from Amy Edelman:

You were kind enough to respond when I reached out last year re: IndieReader and I wanted to update you on what’s happening on the site.

Last month we re-positioned, re-designed and re-launched IndieReader (www.indiereader.com) as the essential guide to indie books and the people who write them.IR’s original content is a mix of Gawker-type commentary  and Rolling Stone-type profile stories combined with news, reviews, best-of rankings and more.


We’ve also begin partnering with bookclubs (both on-line and in-person) via IR’s Library of professionally reviewed books, linked to sales sites for easy purchase. Books in the IndieReader Library include new titles from respected authors like John Edgar Wideman, Dave Eggers and Seth Godin and hot new authors including Zachary German and Shane Jones along with five star-rated novels, romances, mysteries and chick-lit.

We can arrange Q&A’s with the author (try doing that with James Patterson!), autographed books and the ability to post your book club’s feedback on the IR site.

You might want to go over and take a look.

24Mar/110

Amazon do an about face on Lendle ebook site – Lendle can function again






Amazon allow Lendle to access them again……

In a surprising change in direction, Amazon have withdrawn their blocking of the Lendle, which they blocked a couple of days ago, saying ” Lendle does not ‘serve the principal purpose of driving sales of products and services on the Amazon site.’”

I have no idea what has caused Amazon to rescind that decision, but I am happy that they have done so, as no doubt the good folk at Lendle are as well.

Since sites such as Lendle in no way hurt Amazon’s sales, and in fact probably help their sales, it was a mystery to me that Amazon took that step the other day.

Links:

amazon-declares-war-on-ebook-lending-sites/

lendle-yet-anotheer-site-for-people-to-lend-and-borrow-ebooks-for-kindles/

http://lendle.me/




16Mar/110

New eBook lending site “eBook Fling” for Nook and Kindle e-Readers

ebook lending site fling

We are quite happy with the rise of eBook lending sites, that help facilitate the love of reading from users who have never met each other before. A new entrant to the emerging realm of eBook lending services “Fling” has just opened for business and it allows eBooks that have the lending feature, such as the Barnes and Noble Nook “Lendme” feature and the Amazon equivalent.

The premise of Fling is a free membership site where users can find other users to share books with. Many eBooks have 14 day lending windows in which you can loan out your book and get it back after the expiration period. Fling is a free sign-up and they recommend you choose an email address specifically for lending books so your real email is not floating around. When you join the site you simply list the books you have available for lending and then watch the requests pile in.

When you successfully lend an eBook you earn “Credits,” these credits are used to make “Requests” for other users ebook libraries. If you do not get into the habit of lending books you can pay .99 per credit to make a request. Even though it might cost a bit, most people read books fairly fast. If you know you are under the gun to finish a book within the 2 week lending window you are in good shape.

We are aware of many other sites that help users connect with each other to lend and share the love of reading and are happy that sites like  Lendle and BookLending exist to help users connect. Although these two sites only cater to the Amazon Kindle crowd, we know of other private communities exist as well to share out books.

Check out eBook Fling today and see what the buzz is all about.

Related posts:

  1. How eBook lending clubs will extinguish eBook Piracy
  2. How eBook Library Lending works with e-Readers
  3. The Differences Between Kindle 2 and Nook – Which is Better
  4. Amazon launches ebook gifting for the holidays
  5. Is Barnes & Noble’s Nook a Kindle killer?
  6. Libraries are starting to boycott Harpercollins
10Mar/110

New Netherlands self-publishing site starts: mijnbestseller.nl

From the Google Translation of the site’s front page:

Publishing your own book: easy, quick and free!

Je eigen boek uitegeven in 5 stappen
Start met je boek Start your book




4Mar/110

Calibre starts drm-free ebook site

Drmfree home1

Calibre has just started a new site for drm-free ebooks.  Here’s what they say:

calibre introduces Open Books, a site for easy browsing of DRM-free e-books (e-books without DRM) that are not in the public domain. calibre has a cornucopia of features including library management, e-book conversion, syncing with devices, news download, e-book viewing etc, but to make the most of these features with your e-books you need to ensure your e-books do not carry DRM.

Open Books is a compilation non DRM e-books from various sources linked to enable readers to browse and download them.

Open Books invites you to submit links to DRM free e-books that you would like added to the database. Contact us with details of your DRM-free e-books on the calibre facebook fanpage or #calibreforum page. Please do not include links to books on Smashwords or Baen as we are already aware of them.

For DRM-free public domain books visit the Project Gutenberg website. The Project Gutenberg catalogue contains public domain e-books free of cost as well as DRM-free in various languages.

Open Books is a developing resource. We will be adding books regularly and will introduce a search function and other features as our collection of books increases.

Thanks to EbookNewser for the heads up.

3Mar/110

Interview with founder of Argentinian ebook site Liibook

LibbookbigThe Argentina Independent has a story about Federico Roma, founder of the Liibook website. Here are a couple of snippets:

Liibook is a website founded by Federico Roma, a thirty year old Argentine from Lomas de Zamora, in the south of Buenos Aires. Developed from an idea which originated while backpacking around the country, it provides writers with an online space to publish their work. Be this a twenty word poem or a five hundred page novel, all are welcome. The author can select whether to allow the work to be viewed for free or whether the reader needs to pay. The majority of the material available on the website is available without having to pay, but longer pieces, which would normally be read as a book, come with a charge. All are available to be downloaded for iBooks, Kindles and other types of ebook readers. …

Liibook’s popularity is growing, with people submitting their written work from faraway countries, such as Spain and the US. While most people only publish their pieces in their native language, there are a number who also submit translations of other languages. For anybody who would like to share a piece of literature which they have written, however short it may be, Liibook provides this opportunity, for free, and to an ever increasing readership.

Lots more info in the article.

17Feb/110

Lendle – Yet another site for people to lend and borrow ebooks for Kindles





For you lucky Americans another website to lend and borrow ebooks.

Since Amazon introduced the possibility to lend and borrow ebooks purchased from them at the beginning of the year, more and more groups are being set up to make this easier and better organised, and most importantly, to spread the possibility beyond the range of friends and family.

The idea behind these sites is to bring people together to share their ebooks…  A sort of “contact point” really.   From what I am seeing they tend to originate in Social Sites, such as Face Book, which is an interesting use of such sites.

Lendle, the latest of these sites is one such, where you can place a list of the ebooks you own, and are prepared to lend, or place requests for a particular ebook you want to read.  And then these ebooks are exchanged online. While the ebook is lent, the lender looses the ability to read the ebook for the 2 weeks that it is lent, while the borrower happily reads the ebook.  At the end of that two weeks, it is automatically deleted from the borrower’s computer, and the lender can once again read the ebook.   A simple idea, but brilliant!

What makes it even better, is that you don’t need to actually own a Kindle to take part in this idea, any device that has a Kindle App on it will also work fine.

Only for Kindle  ebooks:

But, all the titles are in Amazon’s own ebook format, so this only works for Kindle (or Kindle App) owners…  No use if you have a Sony or Kobo or Nook……

Currently Lendle has about 1800 titles available to borrow, but this number will increase rapidly as more and more people join in with the idea.

Obviously it is all free as well, which makes it even more attractive to us.

Only for the USA……

Sadly, this is only available to people living in the USA, but I am sure that it will spread to the rest of the world quite quickly.

Ownership:

One very interesting point about this new development, which will obviously grow and grow, is that it begins to give us ebook “owners” more ownership of the ebooks we buy.  Until this idea came along, the ebooks we bought were not really ours, as if we wanted to let a friend read an ebook we had particularly enjoyed, we had to lend them our ereader for them to read  it on… a daft and obviously unhappy situation.   Amazon, with this idea (Nook have a similar scheme by the way) have given us at least the power to lend people any ebooks we wish to lend, albeit it with restrictions, but it is a step in the right direction.  If somehow we could all work out a method to give us the same degree of practical ownership of our ebooks as we have with our paper books, then ereaders and ebooks will have come of age finally.

Share with us:

What are your feelings about this interesting development in the ebook world?  Do let us share them here.




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