Why I love Smashwords

Back in 2010 I came across an eBook publishing house called Smashwords. It was kind of big at the time, but not like it is today.

I remember trying to upload my very first book to the site and pulling my hair out because I kept getting vetting errors. I fussed and fretted about the meat grinder (that’s what they call their formatting tool for making all the different formats for the venues they submit to). Finally after about the twentieth try I did it. It was such a frustrating experience. I had two choices at that point. I could either give up hope of ever publishing my book on their site or persevere.

Well we can all see what really did happen.

Over the years I have heard Authors complain about Amazon. It is always the same kind of complaint. Their too big – they keep changing the rules – they don’t seem fair – but I’m making money.

Okay – yea – so – Let’s look at Smashwords:

I don’t like the meat grinder – why – because you don’t know how to format your book properly.

Once you learn it is pretty easy peasy.

What else don’t you like about Smashwords?

I can’t think of anything that comes to mind.

What do I love about them?

They distribute our books to lots of great venues, plus Mark Coker is always out there trying to find us more venues.

He never gives up. He is for the author.

Mark gives us tips and trade secrets and hope to be a great writer someday, the hope that the readers will discover us the way we discovered Smashwords.

He has given us ways to be found and not just by using SEO as Amazon does. Coupon codes are one of his great features on the site. These allow us to distribute our book for free or a reduced price to those who are part of our growing platform. This is a great way to secure reviews.

He takes part in Read an Ebook week on the site and also promotes NaNoWriMo.

The best part is, Mark Coker is always out there advocating for the authors, it does not matter if they are the little guy who has no platform as of yet or the best-selling author with millions of followers. Mark is always there for us.

So I want to say: Thanks Mark Coker for all you have done for us since 2008

Mark’s latest post: http://blog.smashwords.com/2013/03/how-libraries-can-launch-community.html

Advertisements

Independent Bookstores Alliance Themselves with Kobo

I guess it is now official, the Indie Bookstores have allianced themselves with Kobo eBooks and it is about time they partnered up with an eBook Powerhouse. Maybe now they will be able to recover some of their sales by being able to offer their customers some of those great eBooks coming from Smashwords authors around the world.

I am really excited about this news.

In the past I went ahead and loaded my books onto the Google eBook site. Their site is a horror show. It is hard to maneuver and it is just plain quirky. And when they post the reviews for my books that are coming off of GoodReads, for some reason they like to grab all the lowest review ratings instead of the top ratings. I thought this to be an odd practice for a company who was looking to sell eBooks.

Now with the new Kobo deal with the indie bookstores, anyone who publishes with Smashwords and selects the distribution to Kobo will be able to have their books distributed to the US Brick and Mortar Stores.

It was not too long ago that I spoke to the owner of our local bookstore. He really didn’t know what to expect with this new Kobo deal. He was kind of apprehensive about the eBook movement and was afraid that eBooks would replace print books just as mp3 files took over the CD market.

Hopefully he decides to carry the Kobo eReader so he can actively promote eBooks from his store.

So move over Amazon, the Independent Bookstores are back in business.