E-book publishing is finally receiving the respect it deserves. With the Nook, Kindle and iPad selling in the millions, it’s time for some content. Established Publishers are scrambling to get their content into the correct formats, so they can increase their sales reach, and now the independent publisher can play too.
Authors of books can submit their books for publication for free on all the major bookseller websites, but there are some strings attached. For this article, let’s look at the big 3, Amazon, Borders and iBooks.
Amazon’s Digital Text Platform
Amazon has the most generous royalties for publishers at 70% for each eligible book. The normal rate with them is 35%, so that is a hefty difference. Items not eligible for the larger royalty are items that are in public domain.
The process is pretty simple with Amazon:
1. Open an Amazon account.
2. Go to the Digital Text Platform
3. Fill in the tax and payment information (Check or Electronic Funds Transfer)
4. Click on “Add a Title”
5. Fill in all the information about the E-book, such as, the title, description, list price, and image.
6. Upload the E-book and preview.
6. Submit for approval.
Note: If opting for a check, the publisher has to be receiving at least $100. For the EFT, it is only $10. Pays 60 days after sale.
Barnes and Noble Pubit
Barnes and Noble Pubit involves a pretty simple process. It is similar to the Amazon one, but seems a little more flexible. Commissions run from 35-60% depending on the price. The lower the price, the lower the commission.
1. Register for the Pubit Program
2. Fill in the tax and payment information (Only does Electronic Funds Transfers)
3. Click the “Add a Title”
4. Fill in all the information about the E-book, such as the title, description, keywords, categories, price and the image.
5. Upload and preview the book.
6. Submit for approval (can take up to 24 hours)
The beauty of the two programs is that the publisher does not have to obtain an ISBN. One will be provided for them, if they choose. This saves the cost of obtaining one for a small publisher.
Apple does not make it easy to work with them. They have a lot more requirements than the above distributors. One might consider Apple as the Advanced publishing program. A publisher can deal with Apple directly, upon approval, or go through an aggregator.
1 Go to the Application
2. Make sure you fit their criteria, up to and including owning a Mac.
3. Fill in all the information to become a direct seller
4. Wait for approval.
If you don’t own a Mac or feel like doing all the formatting or the application process, Apple has another option which they call “Apple Approved Aggregator.” These are third-party publishers, such as Lulu. The basic premise of these publishers is that you have to pay a fee to get it published in the correct format.
Which is the better option?
For the independent publisher, it will take some research. If ISBN’s are an issue, then Lulu might be a good option, since they now issue them free of charge as long as they are the publisher and the E-book is instantly available on iBookstore.
Publishing is a daunting task, but with these free services, a publisher can get their works in front of the millions of readers without the huge printing expense.
I tested the Barnes and Nobel Pubit by adding some titles. Within 24 hours there were sales. They seem to update on a weekly basis. This was done with no marketing on my side.