smash it up

So this morning, as I was doing my morning routine ‘net wanders to check up on news and happenings around the interwebbies, I found myself once again directed over to Smashwords – and online self ePublishing site I’ve glanced briefly at before.

The news article that drew me there was some sort of agreement Smashwords has with the Sony eReader and eBookstore which, honestly, for the most part just rolled over my pre-coffee brain as rather unimportant in the grand scheme of things.

As much as I am, and do, feel strongly about eBooks being a huge portion of the future of publishing, I’ve been wary of much of the news concerning them as pertains to we Indy folk. Mostly because of the whole DRM and Kindle kerfuffles out there that get in the way of an Indy author handing his/her work across the lines to the general public.

Much has been made of Smashwords since it first hit the scene, and many touted it as some kind of bonanza to the Indy publishing author – a quick route to eReaders, fame, fortune, bla bla bla.

Don’t fall for the hype. Smashwords is, at best, another tool we can harness in our arsenal and stuff in our belts. The appeal I’m taking notice of is the power they have of taking your eBook and formatting that file into every version out there. Kindle, PDA, smartphone, etc. which will increase your chances of finding readers. They offer a contract of Non-exclusivity, so you can still put your title out via Lulu, sell it on your web, hand it out on the street corners. They offer a comprehensive formatting guide that must be followed to the letter in order to give your eBook the best chance across platforms, and if you follow those formatting guidelines then Yes, your eBook will be available to people who use the Sony eBookstore.

They do swallow a percent of sales, looks to be about 15%, which is no big deal in the grand scheme of things. Price your eBook at $2.00 a pop and they’re keeping .30, but you’re taking home $1.70.

I’m bringing out my newest title tomorrow evening, and I’m going to give Smashwords a try for the exposure. I’ll let you all know how it goes, if it was easy to do, if I see any results, etc.

But just as with Lulu or any other formate, venue or avenue out there, it’s all going to come down to advertising – and Indy or Traditional (like it or not), that’s all on the author’s shoulders. Smashwords won’t help me one iota if I’m not out there advertising on sites, spreading the word, and telling anyone and everyone who’ll listen that I have a book I want them to read.

I had great success using Project Wonderful, and this Friday I plan to do another advertising blitz, not only for Midnight Reading, but also for my lapidary business, Fable’s, and the new online store at www.Fables.artfire.com

Which is a subtle way of saying, HEY – I’m selling agate and jasper pendants online, check me out! Jewelry and Jewelry-making components just in time for the holidays.

That’s me, Ms. Subtlety.

Power to the People!

Make Love, not War!

OMG, Christmas is only 85 days away!

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