More Opportunities for Self-Published Writers

Espresso Book Machine

Two recent developments in book publishing have opened new doors of opportunity for self published writers – and serve as further warning to the Traditional Publishing Establishment that radical change is inevitable and unstoppable, certainly for the foreseeable future.

EspressNet SelfServe, the web-based interface developed by On Demand Books, the creators of the revolutionary Espresso Book Machine (EBM), now allow self published authors to make their titles available for sale worldwide at brick-and-mortar bookstores, directly through the EBM. The EBM is capable of producing a bookstore-quality paperback with a full-colour cover, in minutes. The books can be printed in any standard trim size. Customers simply pay for the book and walk out with it in hand.

Founded in 2003, the New York-based On Demand Books has formed partnerships with several high-profile publishers, indie presses and book distribution companies over the years, including Lightening Source and Author Solutions Inc. Those deals have enabled over 80,000 authors worldwide (including self published authors) to publish, distribute, print and market their books in brick-and-mortar stores via the Espresso Book Machine.

With the new EspressNet SelfServe, self published writers simply need to provide two print-ready PDFs per book (interior and cover) and, once uploaded, the titles can be sold throughout the global network of EBMs almost immediately. The author retains full ownership and control over the digital files, and has the ability to modify or delete their books at any time. All sales are tracked by EspressNet and the distribution arrangement is non-exclusive. At present, the service appears to be limited to US-based authors.

“At the moment there is no fee to use EspressNet SelfServe or to participate in the EBM channel. The self-publishing author sets the suggested retail price (SRP), though there is a base minimum of $0.05 per page, plus $1.00 per book,” said ODB. Read More

Project Gutenberg Self Publishing Portal

Meanwhile, Project Gutenberg, the first producer of free ebooks, has launched the Authors Community Cloud Library, a free social network self-publishing portal that allows authors to share their works with readers and also allows readers to provide comments, reviews and feedback to the authors. Project Gutenberg was founded in 1971 by American author, Michael Hart as a “global coordinated volunteer effort” to “digitize and distribute the great works of history.”

There’s no charge for using Authors Community Cloud Library. Registration is not required for reading or downloading the publications or comments. However, you must register to upload a book or post a comment. All postings are monitored and offensive or indecent postings will be removed.

Until now, Project Gutenberg has focused mostly on the digitization of classic literature rather than the distribution of books by new authors. Their latest project is geared towards authors who wish to share their works with readers.

“In particular, this Project is our Self-Publishing Portal for ebooks presumed not to be in the public domain, but whose copyright holder is willing to allow limited access to readers for personal study and non-commercial sharing,” says Project Gutenberg. They have promised to work with the participating authors to ensure their copyrights are not infringed upon.

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