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Open Book Blog Hop new

Thanks to Stephany Tullis for the introduction. You can read her blog here www.stephanytullis.com/blog, and check out her books here http://www.amazon.com/Stephany-Tullis/e/B00D3P052W/

Do you like to read? Would you like to know more about your favourite authors? Well you have come to the right place! Join the MMB Open Book Blog Hop each Wednesday and we will tell all. Every week we’ll answer questions and after you’ve enjoyed the blog on this site we’ll direct you to another. So come back often for a thrilling ride! Tell your friends and feel free to ask us questions in the comment box.

This week’s question:

As an author, do you sell your books exclusively on Amazon or do you sell your books on all platforms? Why or why not? Which platforms do you like best?

When I started out on this authoring business in 2008 all I wanted to do was write a book, and so I did.  It was a non-fiction book under my real name, and I was very pleased with it.  However, my boss at the time told me that it wasn’t any good trying to find an agent.  He had tried himself, and had been unsuccessful. Apparently agents were like ‘gold dust’.  He told me the name of a publisher to use, and blindly I followed his advice.  After all, he was a respected doctor, and I knew not my ass from my elbow.

To publish the book with this company cost me over £600.  To this day I am hounded by them to spend more money marketing the thing.  The book never did sell very well because it is a specialised subject, and I wish fervently that I could turn back the clock and self-publish it and save all that wasted money.  A lesson learned the hard way.

Fast forward five years and Stevie’s got the writing bug again.  This time I decided to trawl my debut novel ‘The Porn Detective’ around some agents.  I had a very good response, and one agency even had a conference amongst its hierarchy to consider representing me.  After a nail-biting week the answer was ‘no’, but I was encouraged and sent it around a few more.  Always the answer came back in the negative, but by then Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) had got into its stride and I was all set.

I did some more research on the internet and also discovered Smashwords, which gives authors a free ISBN number for their e-books.  ‘The Porn Detective’ and my next six novels were all published on Smashwords and KDP, but recently I discovered that Smashwords do not apply Digital Rights Management (DRM)  to any books.  I emailed them to ask why, and was informed that ‘it is not worth it as it is easy enough to get around’.  I started to find that ‘A House Without Windows’ could be downloaded for free on some unscrupulous sites charging only an initial fee for registration.

Now we are up to date.  I discovered the delights of CreateSpace, which print paperbacks.  Six of my novels are now in both e-book and paperback form, but my eighth and latest novel ‘The Daughter-in-law Syndrome’ has been published on KDP and CreateSpace only, through Amazon.  I wish to apply DRM to all future novels, and so will stick exclusively to Amazon from now on, as this is not available through Smashwords.  Amazon have the lion’s share of the market anyway, and so it makes sense for me to have my books for sale with them.  Also I found out that Amazon e-books do not need ISBN numbers anyway!  With Createspace your work can also be featured in libraries (if it is approved) for a fee of $25 dollars per book for the LCCN number (just don’t give it a publication date, or you will not obtain an LCCN number).

Recently I added on a few chapters of my non-fiction book, gave it a new title, and self-published it on KDP.  It sits there at half the price of the one that cost me £645 to publish, and has sold more copies.  The reps from the publishing company have even taken to phoning me as well as emailing almost daily.  Oh dear, their profits are falling…..

Pricing is the problem when publishing companies get involved.  For them to take their cut of the profits the price of the book has to be inflated.  If you have other self-published books on sale for $0.99, any book published with a small publisher will be much more expensive if they do not want your whole back catalogue.  Readers on the whole are looking for cheap books (some readers are proud to say they never pay for a book at all), and therefore in my opinion it’s better to publish the book yourself if you haven’t got a literary agent and one of the bigger publishers.  You are in charge of pricing, and I for one go along with Frank Woolworth’s motto ‘Pile it high and sell it cheap’.  My books sell for around $1.50, and are selling better than I ever expected.

Now that I am exclusively with Amazon ‘The Daughter-in-law Syndrome’ is available to ‘Kindle Unlimited’ readers.  I have also become an Amazon Associate, have the next book ‘Revenge’ on pre-order, and look forward to buying an ocean-going yacht very soon…….(it can’t come soon enough!).

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Which author platforms does Christine Ardigo use?  Check out her blog here http://christine-ardigo-author.com/  and her books here http://www.amazon.com/Christine-Ardigo/e/B00K9A9AQ6/

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