Friday, December 3, 2010

Paper or Plastic?

When I self-published my novel, Aure, the Topaz, I had to decide what form (and format) to use.  The choice seemed obvious and yet difficult because I know eBook sales are rising fast.  Traditional paper book aren't.  Yet I'm not sure most of my audience (or at least my initial audience) has an eBook reader.  This complicated the decision.

I finally decided to go electronic only, at least to start, mainly because that's the direction the market is going and because making revision is easier.  Since this was my first book, I accepted a few wrong turns as I sorted out the Smashwords service and the whole eBook technology thing.  

And I was right.  I had to submit the book twice to Smashwords to get what I wanted and revised the description (the marketing/packaging) at least three times before being satisfied.

Sales have been slow so far and that has prompted me to revisit my initial choice.  Paper or plastic? (By plastic I refer to the eBook reader, not the book itself)

Am I losing opportunities because there is no paper version?  Probably and there is only one answer for that.  I need to create a paper version.  I don't think there is anyway around that.  Not yet.  Maybe in 5 years or 10 years the need for a paper version will evaporate. But right now, today, people still want a paper version and so I need to give the consumer what he or she wants.

So I uploaded a copy of the book to Lulu and a test copy is on its way to me now.  Hopefully, there will be a paper version soon.  In the meantime, I'm identified markets and bookstore to place my book into.

But more on that next time.

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