Friday, January 22, 2010

CONF 622: IPAD IBOOKS

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So, Ibooks, the book version of Itunes is on its way, Stephen Fry was there and has kindly summed it all up for us.

Only available in the USA, but it has to be coming soon, Ibooks has the backing of Hachette, Penguin, Simon & Schuster, Macmillan and HarperCollins. Jobs is ready to open "the floodgates" to other publishers, wanting to "go a bit further" than Amazon.com's Kindle. So there it is, soon we'll all be able to put our books up there and watch them sink or rise.

The Amazon author tic will be replaced by the iBooks tic. Authors will know exactly how well, or not well, the digital version of their book is selling. The whole secrecy of sales figures and Nielsen's Bookscan is already starting to look archaic. It always been, and still is, so difficult for authors to know how sales are going. This is partly down to the returns system where bookshops order in so many books but return them if they don't sell. But the whole mystique is there in publishing right from the beginning. The first inkling comes with the advance. High advances mean the publisher will work on promoting the book to get their investment back. The big indicator is print run. Maybe this has changed a bit with print on demand, but that's the question authors always ask each other about their new books - if they're very good friends - how big's the first print run? But getting sales figures is impossible. Nielsen's is expensive to operate and charges accordingly. You'd think agents would be signed up and would just pass the figures on but it hasn't happened like that to anybody I know.

My eBook is nearly there. Cover done, dusted and approved. Now adding a few final stills and picking at the text. Latest teccie problem is how to make thumbnails that will then appear on the website. Are they a doc or are they a jpg? I think screenshots is the way forward but haven't quite got there yet.

Yesterday I did a final read-through and edit of the novel. Am sending that to my agent today. I think, I do really think, the climate is a little kinder now for my older woman's commercial fiction genre and keeping fingers crossed that publishers HAVE noticed how films like It's Complicated DO have an audience.

Bye bye, thanks for visiting, come again soon.

3 comments:

Now We Are Seven said...

I've followed your blog for such a long time, and have benefited from it so much, yet selfishly have rarely left a message. We did email one another some time ago - I am also a struggling writer - and I'm so pleased to hear that life is getting better for you and there are several opportunities on the go. I just wanted to say hi really, now that I've finally got a google identity (it's taken me YEARS)and to let you know that your blog has been such an inspiration. I hope, so much, that it happens for you, because if anyone deserves it, it's you.

Amanda Mann said...

Aw, thank you! Lovely to hear from you.I've just read your blog. Very moving. I wish you all the luck in the world with your fresh start.

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