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Self Publishing and you…

As I am listening to the most recent This Week in Tech podcast, I hear an interview with Bob Young, the former CEO of Red Hat, discussing his newest venture. That venture is LuLu. This allows authors the ability to self publish and consumers can then acquire books on demand either in print or in an ebook format. They have a section dedicated to Sci Fi/Fantasy. So a question to those authors who visit us and share thier wisdom, would this change the way you release a novel or would you ever consider this as a mechanism for distribution…

6 Comments on Self Publishing and you…

  1. A question about self-publishing at SFSignal

    I’m just starting to make sales with my short stories, and I’m looking for an agent for an SF novel, hoping to go the traditional publishing route, but I’ve also written a 100k word YA fantasy with my 10-year-old daughter, and for several hundred dolla…

  2. All the advice I’ve ever read about becoming a professional author says don’t self-publish. Not sure if this is now changing? I’ve heard about a few success stories going this route.

  3. I come at the idea from the indy comics world, where self publishing is considered valuable street cred.

    Self publishing has usually been a bad deal because often the only ones who did it were vanity presses that would charge you thousands and thousands of dollars and leave you with 5000 copies of your book sitting in your garage.

    The genius of LuLu is that it’s print-on-demand. You can print one. Just one. For 5 or 6 bucks. The automatic e-commerce thing is nice too, but it’s the single print for a reasonable price that is truly awesome. I’m publishing a small black & white comic anthology through them, as well as a full color comic art book. Though I need to be honest here, they need to work on getting their costs down for full color. That being said, there aren’t that many full color novels.

    It’s the first serious push of the technology that will eventually bury the concept “out of print.” It’s only a matter of time until the big publishing houses adopt it.

    I find that very exciting.

  4. My mother self-published a travel book. There’s no way LuLu would have worked for that – you need to have that book sitting in the travel section of stores and on the counters in area atractions.

    Unless of course LuLu kiosks show up in places like that – now that might be interesting!

  5. How have your mother’s sales been on Amazon, Scott? If someone’s searching for travel information on the Ozarks, it makes sense to me that a good travel book might turn up.

    Also, Lulu does allow you to print your books, and if you can get them in local stores then that’s your business. They also allow you to save a step by purchasing an ISBN number through them, and they can include barcodes on the covers.

    In the interest of disclosure, I should mention that I’m one of Dave’s partners on the above-mentioned comics.


  6. Online sales were about 20% of brick and mortal sales. Certianly nothing to sneeze at, but she considered them purely ‘extra’ sales. Note that she sold the book to a publisher for the 2nd edition (that’s why it now lists as being published by a small publisher rather than herself.)

    I wonder if somebody who is internet savvy is really going to buy books on a travel destination rather than just rely on the internet to tell them about places to see.

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