Wednesday, September 22, 2010

More on Ebooks

I've gotten a few emails lately about the ebook thing so let me answer them once here...

People have been asking questions along the lines of why don't you publish through this or that service. Well, for me, the whole advantage of publishing digitally is that (1) you don't need to spend tons of time and money printing and shipping product, (2) you don't need a distributor and (3) you don't need a publisher.

Why use Apple's iBook store, or Comixology, or Smashwords or WOWIO or whoever when they're going to take 30%? They're not going to push your books - not unless you put up some money. So how are they earning that 30%? You have to scan the art, make the ebook and upload it yourself. So, I suppose they deserve 30% due to "cost of technology" (their software), server space and bandwidth. Sounds like a rip-off to me. I just think it's galling for a digital publisher to ask for so much when they're doing next to jack squat.

Plus with the push to have as many books as possible, most will get lost in the clutter. Just look at all of the crap they're carrying (at least the expense to print comics helped weed out a lot of the garbage).

Side note; I hope to have the store back up within the next few days...

9 Comments:

Blogger jonesenstein said...

I don't know a lot about the ereaders, but from what I understand, most of them can't browse the internet. They can only go to their home site to download more books. Are you able to get around that with your own store?

9/30/2010 5:40 PM  
Blogger Marc Hansen said...

Not exactly sure what you're asking, but perhaps it's the difference between an "app" and a "web app". A web app runs within a browser (so, yes, the reader could also switch to viewing a web page). An app could only do that if the browsing functionality was added to it. Not sure that would be necessary - just switch applications. But, yes, the reader I wrote is web-based, so you could switch from the reader to another web page within your browser.

9/30/2010 6:15 PM  
Blogger FJ said...

Like any other distribution network, they are charging you a fee simply to list your item on there. Same with eBay, etc., except eBay has way more volume so can charge lower prices per auction. It's just economics...very few are like you in that they would just pony up the $$ and try advertising it by word of mouth and getting people to buy their book on the iBook store, so that's where you're different. In a good way of course :)

Looking forward to more Snart! Hopefully it'll be available as a protected .pdf download again? I don't have any such device, if a mobile one is needed, where I'd be able to purchase the book via any type of "app". I have a laptop, no smartphones or anything like that.

10/01/2010 10:47 AM  
Blogger Marc Hansen said...

I'm leaning towards a protected PDF as before. More and better readers are coming out that would handle a PDF comic.

10/01/2010 10:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with FB, and I don't think 30 percent is exactly outrageous considering how cocky Apple is anyway.
Isn't their cut still 50 percent in the music store?
-jack

10/08/2010 11:21 AM  
Blogger jonesenstein said...

What I was asking is:
I don't think the Kindle or Nook can browse the internet -they can't go to ralphsnart.com - so they won't be able to browse your store. Is there a way you're getting around that or are you going straight for the iPad crowd?

10/08/2010 1:33 PM  
Blogger Marc Hansen said...

Kindle has a browser, Nook doesn't. Both are geared towards reading text-only ebooks. My opinion is that they're inferior devices that aren't worth worrying about - just iPad and whatever Android-based tablets.

10/08/2010 1:51 PM  
Blogger jonesenstein said...

Well if you're just looking at tablets, then all you'd really need to do is make a pdf file, right?
How will you (or will you not) go about putting Ralph Snart on iTunes ibook store? I think you need an ISBN for each thing you sell.

10/12/2010 5:41 PM  
Blogger Marc Hansen said...

I'm already signed up with iTunes - I just need to produce the book. Go here for more info.

10/12/2010 5:56 PM  

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