Tuesday, August 26, 2014

That Is So Cool: Paperbacks.

Ian Cooper

That is just so cool.

My first two paperbacks have been produced, and are available from Lulu.com at what sure looks like cut-throat pricing. This is one attraction of the 4 x 7” format, (a pocketbook.) The other is pure esthetics. If I have always wanted to write pulp fiction (and I have) then putting them out in the regular ‘paperback’ size makes some kind of sense. They are the modern counterpart of the dime novel.

Each file took a couple of hours to prepare, upload and publish. We’re using existing cover shots, hopefully costumers on other platforms are hip enough to read the product descriptions. On this project, we’re using Lulu as a single, stand-alone online store. We don't have any ebooks on Lulu  at this point in time. We’re not using their extended distribution channels. For one, Smashwords does a reasonable job of that, and we have gotten books into iTunes through OmniLit, (although it’s their only other distribution channel so far.) We do sell books on OmniLit, so it’s important to learn every site.

Using some pretty basic covers and Lulu’s older cover creator keeps the investment of time and money down.

Both books are still processing through Createspace in the 5 x 8” trade paperback format. This allows us to take advantage of Createspace’s six full expanded distribution channels. We’ve published one of those titles directly through Createspace into the Amazon website.

We just want to see what happens.

There’s a form for that at the end of the publishing pages. This saves the uploading, although you have to sign into the account and go through the publish pages, set prices and territories, etc.

There is some difference in formatting from what I would have normally done. In that sense, any new thing has the potential to be a learning experience. For one thing, going through Createspace probably precludes internal and external navigation (hot links) in the ebook product.

That’s because there is no real good reason (we assume) for Createspace to make provision for live links…my logic here is that they are useless except as website names in a paper product. You could put them in, I don’t know if they would be live in the ebook.

Going through Smashwords, for example, iTunes insists on internal navigation, i.e. the table of contents, which takes a few minutes to create. Some authors report good results with external navigation, taking readers off to blogs, websites, previews of new stories, social media interaction, etc. We have put some thought into that…but perhaps not enough.

The paperbacks rarely have a web address or anything. It’s just something we don’t tend to think about when making a paper product. That’s backwards thinking, out of touch with the 21st Century. Much food for thought there, but is really is a learning curve, ladies and gentlemen.

Looking for Love is something we all do once in a while. The results can be surprising, from lonely middle-aged bachelors, to college boys with a plan, or Cro-Magnon raiders and predatory beachcombers.

Here is the pocketbook on Lulu.com. $4.49

Love, or lust, is a many-splendoured thing. Moonshine, a collection of short stories by Ian Cooper, will raise the pulse rate and possibly the eyebrows.

4 x 7” paperback for $4.99 (erotica.)