Today I welcome author Daniel Arenson to Terry's Place. With ebooks surging in popularity, many authors are going indie—abandoning their publishers, uploading their novels to ebook stores, earning more money, and selling directly to readers instead of to booksellers. Daniel has some insights to share.
Ebooks are the biggest revolution for reading since Gutenberg... and not because we're switching from paper to digital.
In the 15th century, the invention of print changed the world.Reading and writing were skills few owned. Producing books required copying every word by hand. Print brought knowledge and light to thehuman race and was, perhaps, the most important invention since language itself.
Now, in 2010, we're seeing a new revolution for the book. At a dizzying pace, ebooks are taking over. Millions of readers have already switched to ereaders such as Kindle or Nook. They carry hundreds of titles in their handheld devices whose monitors mimic paper. But it's not the medium--an electronic device vs. a paper book--which is significant. This is a revolution because for the first time, authors can sell their work directly to readers.
Until now, authors did not sell books to readers. They sold books to bookshops or libraries. When promoting their books, they relied on reviews in publications such as Publishers Weekly, Kirkus Reviews,Library Journal, or Booklist--publications librarians and booksellers read. They promoted their books in catalogs sent to booksellers. And they needed a publisher to do this. Without a publisher, authors would never see reviews in these publications, never see their books in bookshops. Authors wrote for publishers who sold to booksellers; the reader was far down the chain. Some authors self-published, but this was an expensive option, and critics and booksellers ignored these titles, leaving readers unaware of them.
Today many authors are going indie, even authors who already sold novels to traditional publishers.On their own, they're uploading their novels to ebook stores, such as the Kindle store. And these authors are marketing their books directly to readers. Instead of sending copies to critics and hoping for reviews, they're going online; they're hitting the blogs, the social networking sites, the various discussion boards devoted to fiction. They're interacting directly with readers, and they're selling books. Many books. And without a publisher keeping most of the profit, these authors are earning more money than ever.
This is a great time both for authors and readers. We have more books than ever to choose from. Publishers are no longer literature's gatekeepers. For the first time, we're seeing a real author-to-reader relationship. It's an exciting time to write. It's an exciting time to read. Literature is more alive and kicking than ever.
Daniel Arenson sold his first short story in 1998. Since then, dozens of his stories and poems have appeared in various magazines, among them Flesh & Blood, Chizine, and Strong Verse. He also wrote "Firefly Island", a fantasy novel. Now available for Kindle, it tells of a girl who seeks her long-lost brother across an island full of monsters and magic.
For free stories, recommended fantasy novels, writing tips, and more, visit: http://www.DanielArenson.com