Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Kicking About With Kindle

I don't know where you stand on the 'eBook' issue, but my attitude is that physical books will never die. There are times when a physical book is the right tool for the job (reading in the bath, or that huge, heavily illustrated tome on the coffee table, for example). I do think that eBooks are a new market, not a competing one. I have just ordered an eBook reader, because I have limited space and, horror upon horrors, have found myself in bookshops recently, putting books back DOWN on the shelf because I don't much space left for them!

I will still buy physical books, but I will buy more books overall as a result of having the eBook reader.

So, I decided that I ought to get into the eBook market, and today, my second dog humour book, One Hundred Muddy Paws For Thought is now available in Amazon Kindle format. It can be downloaded onto Amazon Kindles from the UK store and the USA store. (And if you have the free PC or Mac version of the Kindle reader, or the iPhone App, you can download it there too.)

The print version of the book was published in 2004 and sold 50,000 copies, but by 2009, it was out of print. So, having checked my contract with the publishers, I wrote to them and asked for the rights to revert to me. Once this had happened, I was then able to start working on the Kindle version, because I held the electronic rights once again.

This illustrates the importance of keeping a record of which rights you have sold in your text and which rights you have retained. It does annoy me a little, when publishers buy the eBook rights to your text and then do nothing with them!

So, if you happen to be the owner of an Amazon Kindle, and fancy reading a short, humorous book about how dogs train their humans to cope with the great outdoor life, then why not take a look?  It's currently £3.44 including VAT (yes, VAT does apply to eBooks - oh, there is still so much for the publishing industry to sort out!)

There are some writers who have uploaded their books to Amazon in Kindle format and seen sales that have attracted physical book publishers. It won't work for everybody, but it's a different stepping stone to consider. 

Good luck!

4 comments:

  1. Wouldnt it be great if all ebooks could be read by all readers? I have a sony ereader (birthday pressie 2 years ago) and love it. I buy lots more books than I would normally, and probably more than I will ever find the time to read!

    I still enjoy physical books. As you said, you dont want your ereader in the bath!

    I use my ereader for magazines as well, especially USA ones - easy to get hold of a back issue and don't have to wait for it.

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  2. Simon - this is currently a hot debate but I have acquired a Sony eBook reader from Waterstones and I love it - I have just read the 2nd and 3rd Steig Larsson's (great stuff) - it is easy to use and I have downloaded 'Calibre' software (free) to manage my eBooks (it does format conversions etc)I think this year they will really take off in the UK (lower prices, easy availability)

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  3. I agree - I don't think ereaders will ever replace books. They're just another format, giving us yet more choice. Which is no bad thing.

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  4. I have to confess to knowing zero about this. Simon - is there an article for a writing mag here? How-to convert your book Kindle? Or - for know-nothing me - How-to get started on writing for Kindle? I'd read it...

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