Monday, February 13, 2012

Remembering Who Matters In The Entertainment Game

Lately, I've been seeing and reading about writers who make decisions on aspects of the business that have nothing to do with our customers.

Who are our customers? Ultimately, the readers. These are the people who really pay us. Not the agents. Not the publishing houses. Not Amazon.

The readers.

Let's face it--if you write fiction, you are an entertainer. In today's economy, folks have fewer entertainment buck to spend. Sure Nora Roberts emphasizes her theme of how important families are, but people read her books to escape just for a little while.

Frankly, the writers who don't forget these point are the ones who will see a long career. It doesn't matter if you're indie published, trad published, or some combination. Just remember who really pays you.

Now, that being said, cutting off your customer from your product, i.e. your stories, does not endear you to your customer. If your customer has a NOOK, and you only sell on Amazon, who are you really hurting? If you only sell e-books and your customer prefers paper, who are you hurting?

That's right. You. It's your sale that's lost. Your customer will take their money and buy someone else's book because it's available to them. Yours isn't.

I realize that sometimes, especially if you're an indie, doing everything at once isn't always possible. I'm in that position now. I'd like to be selling on the iBookstore, but I need ISBNs for Apple to accept my e-books, and I rather have my own than be subservient to someone else. I want to sell my books in hardback and paperback versions, but I'm still learning how to format for print.

There's a big difference between "I can't do X yet, but I will" and "I refuse to do X". A huge difference. A GINORMOUS difference.

Just think about who you're really affecting before you make the blanket statement, "I can't/won't do X."


  1. Doesn't Smashwords distribute and sell your books to Apple??? Or have I missed something and they're not doing that anymore?

  2. Either you can supply your own ISBN or you can buy one from Smashwords. But I'd rather have my ISBNs registered to Angry Sheep Publishing than to Smashwords. Which ever way you go, Apple will not accept a book unless it has an ISBN.

  3. Okay...I'm not sure where SW distributes to Apple, but I know it's sold at I guess my next question is...what is ibookstore?

    BTW: I do have ISBNs...I bought them back after reading your blog one day...then figured out later I didn't really need them, but I use them anyway! I love them and will always buy them.

  4. Apple owns all the i's - iTunes, iBookstore, iPhone, iPad. You can access the iBookstore directly or through your iTunes account. Unfortunately, you can only read a book bought from Apple if you use a device (iPad, iPhone, etc.) with their proprietary operating system, iOS.

    Glad you got your ISBNs, Tess. Every time I save up the money to buy my bundle, someone has ended up in the ER. Then last week DH broke a tooth. ARGH!

  5. Ouch, so sorry to hear about DH...

    So there is a way to publish through them??? Forgive me for being so stupid, but I hate this end of it. What format do they use (epub, prc)? Do you know?

  6. Sounds like it's time for an update on the various e-tailers. That will be tomorrow's blog post, just for you, Yess. *grin*

  7. And if your publisher/retailer refuses to sell to libraries your missing out on a lot of potential readers.

  8. Too true, Cheryl. It's sad that many public libraries are trying to respond to their patrons desire for e-books, only to be denied access by the current pissing contest between the Big 6/Amazon/Overdrive et al.