Tuesday, 26 January 2016

A FREE EBOOK: Please read the preview. You'll be glad you did!

The whole ebook is FREE on Amazon and elsewhere - not just the preview.

The Privateersman: Evading the hangman’s noose in England, low-born Tom Andrews finds himself on board a privateering ship before fleeing to New York at the time of the Revolutionary War. It is a very corrupt town where opportunities abound for the unscrupulous. Betrayal forces a quick return to England where he and his business partner Joseph Star, a half Carib freed slave, ruthlessly pursue  riches in the early industrial boom, investing in iron, mines and cotton. But will Tom’s phenomenal luck desert him as he seeks respectability and lasting affection? NOTE: This extensive series has gained an average of 4.5 out of 5 stars from hundreds of reviews. The Privateersman is free in major online stores and Book Two, Nouveau Riche, is currently discounted by 80% as a further introductory offer to this highly-acclaimed series.

JKR Reviews:  "The Privateersman is intelligently written and packed with historical facts, skilfully interwoven into a varied and compelling story-line. Highly recommended." 
Books best read in series order. 

Published by The Electronic Book Company...
A New York Times Best-seller Listed Publisher

Saturday, 2 January 2016

Why publish as an ebook?

Anyone who has ever tried to get a publisher interested in their precious manuscript will tell you that even with the help of a well-connected agent, the chances of securing a publishing deal are at the very best, remote. Having your work published as an ebook is a cost-effective way of bringing your book to the attention of the millions of people worldwide who frequently download electronic books. After publication, should your ebook sell well, this success within the online marketplace could help you secure a conventional publishing deal. In effect, by taking the ebook route you are testing the market and should your book achieve healthy sales figures, this will serve to reassure the publisher that your book is a safe proposition for conventional publishing.

Authors, particularly those who feel at home with the technology, have formatted and published ebooks and are finding that with good online reviews and a lot of online marketing, their books are selling well. However, many authors are discovering that to produce a professionally formatted ebook with user-friendly navigation and a well presented layout is a lot harder than they anticipated. So rather than struggle on alone they are seeking out the services of companies like ours who can expertly and economically format, publish and distribute their work while they get on with their next literary classic.

Find out more by visiting our main website, here: www.theelectronicbookcompany.com

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Kindle Unlimited - good for authors?

Will Kindle Unlimited, limit authors' earnings?
Last year Amazon announced the launch of a new subscription based service; Kindle Unlimited. It was originally only available for readers in the US, but it has recently been rolled out to other countries, including the UK. Subscribers are able to read as many books as they want from a selection of over 600,000 titles for a subscription of £9.99/$9.99 a month.

Participating authors get a share of a monthly fund. The actual amount they get depends on how many users read their books. 

However, will authors ultimately benefit from Kindle Unlimited? Amazon set the payment fund but many authors fear that they could find their incomes are dictated by how generous Amazon will be in allocating funds each month.

Another major concern that has surfaced among a significant number of authors, is that they suspect Amazon has introduced the service solely to squeeze out new kids on the block, Oyster and Scribd, who have been attracting thousands of new customers every month with their subscription based models - Scribd already offer over 400,000 titles to their subscribers; that's only a third less than Amazon's initial offering. Many are worried that once Amazon has market dominance in the subscription sector, they will drastically reduce the monthly author fund.  

Furthermore, authors can only put their titles into Kindle Unlimited if they have signed up to Amazon 's KDP Select program. To be eligible for KDP Select, they must not sell their digital books in other outlets. If Amazon do reduce payments, some might have to wait up to three months to get out of the KDP Select contract. So in effect, during this period, Amazon will have total control of the authors' pay packets. This aspect really rubs with indie authors - especially the full-time writers. Although Amazon is seeing authors enrolling new books into Select/Kindle Unlimited, a sizable number have left, or are intending to leave the program. However, it is too early to say whether enough will 'jump ship' to seriously impinge on Amazon's plans. 

Whatever happens, Kindle Unlimited is likely to have a huge effect on how people buy/read books, and how authors are rewarded for their work.

The next few months could prove quite interesting...

Thursday, 1 January 2015

2015 starts here!

A Happy New Year to our authors and to our readers. Without readers there would be no authors... (Correction. There would probably be a few starving ones!)

Friday, 3 January 2014

Effective ebook cover design

Designed by The Electronic Book Company 
When buying an ebook, the cover image is the first thing a prospective reader will see of your title. This is true whether the person is browsing online for an ebook or whether they are browsing for books in a traditional high street bookshop. An eye-catching and well-designed book cover will create an initial interest and make the prospective buyer want to open the book to discover more.

If you are designing a cover image for an ebook, it is very important to bear in mind that in digital retailers like Amazon’s Kindle Bookstore, the image of the ebook's cover on the product page is displayed small. The ebook cover is in effect, an over-sized thumbnail image. With this in mind, the ebook’s title and the author’s name must be displayed as prominently as possible.

For exactly the same reason, the cover imagery used should be distinctive and not intricate or over-fussy. The cover image should also impart a strong indication of what is contained within the cover; the book's genre, topic, setting and mood.

Get all these elements right and you are well on the way to designing a cover that will make your ebook stand-out from the crowd.

Friday, 27 April 2012

Authors: Make the most of your KDP Select promotion days

Amazon's KDP Select program allows authors to reap benefits, such as earning a share of a monthly fund when readers borrow their ebooks from the Kindle Owners' Lending Library and a promotional opportunity to offer their ebooks free to readers for up to five days every 90 days. 

These freebie days are a great way to get your books noticed, and they could result in a sales spike and some valuable reviews.

Let's say you've enrolled your book into KDP Select, and today is one of your chosen promotion days. This is an ideal opportunity to remind all your friends, family and other contacts that they can download the book for free.

It's certain that they’ll appreciate a chance to read your book for free, so this is a good time to ask them if they could return the favour by writing a short review after they’ve finished reading it. Although reviews don’t necessarily guarantee sales, books with few or no reviews rarely get purchased.

As long as someone has an Amazon account and has bought something 
on any Amazon website – not necessarily a book - it’s possible for customers to write reviews on Amazon.com. So when you ask people to write a review, make sure they do it on amazon.com. Why? Because reviews written on Amazon.com will be read by between 10 -20 times more people than reviews on smaller sites such as Amazon.co.uk.

No Kindle, no problem

What if your contacts say, “I can’t download your book, because I don’t own a Kindle?” Easy,  tell them that Amazon offer free software for their computers which allows them to download and read ebooks without the need to buy a Kindle. All they have to do is visit Google and search for “Kindle for PC" or “Kindle for Mac” (in quotes) and they’ll find the free download page. They also have apps that allow people to read Kindle books on iPads, Android devices, Blackberrys and iPhones. 

Finally, if you have a Facebook page or Twitter account, don't forget to announce your freebie book to all your friends and followers.

Friday, 20 April 2012

Should ebook publishers use Digital Rights Management?

DRM (Digital Rights Management) is a way to protect ebooks – and other media – from being copied by the end user. Some people think DRM is curse and others, a blessing. The anti DRM brigade thinks that by applying copy protection, authors are implying that their readers are all potential thieves. Whereas the pro DRM fans insist that it’s a legitimate form of protection.

DRM: For or against?
I can appreciate both sides of the argument, and although I'm generally an advocate of DRM protection, I can understand that it's not everyone's cup of Darjeeling. Publishing ebooks without DRM clearly has its upsides, but if authors want to use this admittedly imperfect method of copying protection, it should be their prerogative. And by opting for DRM, authors are no more treating readers as potential thieves than a storekeeper would be by locking his shop at night. But if there are some sensitive souls out there who are repulsed by the actions of the nasty storekeeper, they can always elect to shop elsewhere.

A non DRM book could be a very useful promotional tool for some authors.

For instance, If an author had a number of books and decided to have one published without DRM protection, he or she could throw it to the pirates (who would no doubt relish not having to squander valuable micro-seconds stripping out the DRM coding) and stand back watch as tens of thousands of copies are downloaded from the illegal torrent sites across the web. This would be, in effect, a kind of un-time limited and anarchic version of Amazon's KDP Select promo program. By sacrificing just one book to the Long John Silvers of the e-publishing world, the author might stimulate an interest in his or her other ebooks. So it could turn out be an effective marketing tool. My only concern would be that are those who download ebooks from pirate websites the kind of folk who would consider paying actual cash for a book?