Self-Publishing Platforms

During my adventures in publishing, I am also checking out various platforms to do this on.

At the moment, I have been seriously considering Amazon Direct to Kindle Publishing. It is free to do, targets a massive market, but the major drawback is that it is restricted to those with a Kindle. And now that I am having such a problem getting part of the agreement clarified, my excitement is dying down rapidly.

I know there are other places I can do this through, but with Amazon being such a huge and ‘trusted’ name, it’s hard to look at something I have never heard of before and seriously consider it.

One site I have checked out is called SmashWords.com. They seem legitimate and their market is broader than Amazon as they can publish on various eReading devices and are affiliated with other stores such as Barnes and Noble, Sony, Kobo, Apple iStore etc. This would allow me to reach a bigger audience but they are also a place I have never heard of before, so I am skeptical as I’m sure many people would be.

I have been told that Indigo offers some sort of service like Amazon does and as a Canadian I would like to explore that, however I have found very little information regarding this.

As many new authors (or indie authors as I am hearing them being referred to lately) I am not swimming in money. That makes options like those presented by agencies such as AuthorHouse interesting, yet expensive. While I do believe that you should be investing in your craft, I of course want to do as much for free or close to free as possible. I have put a lot of my time, blood, sweat, and tears into my work already. As for money, I have paid for this website and I currently have an artist working on an image of myself that I will be posting as an avatar or representation of me to the world once completed. I will be paying for that also. Which I am fine with. She is extremely talented and I feel as though she has undercharged me anyway.

So while I edit, apply for copyrights and hope for Amazon to get back to me in a timely fashion I am also hunting for other self-publishing platforms.

For those established authors out there, or even those who have self-published even one book, any information or advice on this topic would be most appreciated.

Thanks everyone! I promise I’ll start posting more fun things tomorrow as I am going to start talking about my book. Even if I can’t release teaser chapters at this time, I can at least talk about the story and the characters to get you all involved, right? πŸ™‚

Posted by Sarah Jayne

10 comments

Just to reassure you, Smashwords is entirely legitimate. I’ve had my books on there for well over a year, and they are an excellent source of sales for many people. Beware of companies like Authorhouse that charge high fees to do things you can learn to do for yourself, and then don’t follow through. Authorhouse is well-known for being a rippoff company.

You don’t need to copyright your book. Very few people do because once it’s published, the copyright is yours automatically. It’s just another expense you don’t need. In any case, I’m not sure you can even claim copyright for an unpublished work.

I’m not sure what you mean when you say you’re waiting for Amazon to get back to you, but if you’re looking for information about publishing there, the best thing to do is read and study the FAQs. I doubt that you’ll even get a response, unless it’s to tell you where to find the information you’re asking about. There’s a good deal of information to be had by following the Writer’s Cafe on the Kindleboards forum.

And you don’t have to own a Kindle in order to read Kindle books. I don’t own a Kindle, and I read a lot of Kindle books — on my computer. Free downloadable apps are available on the site for reading on your computer, phone or iPad. http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html/ref=sv_kstore_1?ie=UTF8&docId=1000493771

There’s a huge amount to learn, but take it slow and don’t fall for any scams. There are lots of them out there, just waiting to take advantage of newbies.

Sarah Jayne Nantais

Thanks for the reassurance!

My issue with Amazon right now is just this little area in their agreement for Direct to Kindle Publishing that I don’t understand. I have read the facts and that was why I wanted to contact them directly to get clarification.

It’s good to know that ignoring AuthorHouse so far has been smart πŸ™‚ I once signed up just for more information and they call and e-mail quite frequently.

I’ve never noticed the Writer’s Cafe so I will check that out as well.

In Canada, you can copyright an unpublished work and it’s actually not expensive at all. I just like to be as safe as possible πŸ™‚ But thank you for your advice!

Sarah, when a person creates a work – a book, an essay, a photograph it is automatically copyrighted. Even kids work they do at school is their copyright work – even if no t’published’ in the usual sense of the word.You do not have to pay anyone. The following is copied straight from the Government of Canada site (http://publications.gc.ca/site/eng/ccl/aboutCopyright.html)

“Under copyright legislation, the author/creator is the party that not only writes something, but that also takes a photograph, designs computer software, produces audiovisual materials, composes music, designs maps, or draws plans or illustrations in either paper format or other mediums.

It is important to note that the Copyright Act does not protect ideas, concepts, or themes, but that it does protect the language and words used to express such ideas, concepts and themes.

In Canada, copyright in a work comes into existence when a work is created. Under Canadian copyright legislation rights of the author/creator are protected whether or not he or she has marked the work with the standard copyright symbol “Β©”.”

So you can see any work is considered copyright EVEN if not marked as such. Often people will use a creative commons license if they wish to share freely under various conditions. So do not pay or apply for copyright – you already have it.

Sarah Jayne Nantais

But I thought I read that I could copyright it as well, even unpublished to help protect my rights. I can’t remember exactly where I read that but I know it was on the Government of Canada website. I guess I’m just paranoid though

You might be able to ‘register’ the work somehow, but copyright is automatic. I don’t know much more beyond that – and what I need to teach my classes πŸ™‚

Sarah Jayne Nantais

It’s probably registering the copyright then πŸ™‚ Still, $50 isn’t that large an amount. I’ve been looking and I can also get an ISBN for free too, so that will help when I get to that point.

i supect that the reply by “Amedar Consulting” is spam. It has that generic quality about it, and the link leads to a site with no content.

Sarah Jayne Nantais

Aw man! Really?! And here I was being all excited.
Thanks though! I’ll take it down. I approved and replied on the fly since I’m toiling away at my cursed ‘day job’ πŸ™‚

Yeah, it can be disappointing when you’re just getting started and every comment tells you that at least you’re being read. After a while, though, you get a feel for spam comments, even the subtler ones. WordPress does a great job of weeding out most of them, but some do slip through

Sarah Jayne Nantais

I didn’t even think to try and follow the link either. I looked at another comment I got and realized the website was basically a porn site *facepalm* damn….lol

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