Some Publishers Abandoning Amazon

People in general don’t like monopolies, and why should they?  Monopoly – the term not the board game – is a bad word. Amazon.com is pretty darn close to a monopoly in the ebook world, and the behemoth has taken quite a few steps towards alienating publishers, including dictating prices and various other strong-arm tactics.

Writer John Oakes of Publishers Weekly recently penned a piece on this topic, profiling a smaller publisher that is focusing on direct sales to the consumer. Oakes writes…

Despite a computer on every desk and exciting new marketing tools online, we perpetuate the same old system, working through retailers and treating the electronic world as simply a tool to augment our presence in the real world. And it means wrestling with Amazon over how to sell.

Although we are certainly not abandoning the Amazon e-book platform, All Star Press is like many publishers in that we are also offering our books for sale right here on our website. There is no reason publishers can’t do both. Our view is that the All Star Press books should be available to everyone and anyone.

Check out our current inventory of e-books from All Star Press:

Quiet Spaces: Hearing God’s Call in a Noisy World

The House that Richard Built

Sleep Great for Life

The Road to Recovery: Overcoming and Moving Beyond Your Grief

 

School Libraries adding more e-books

School libraries ebooksThe number of school libraries building electronic stacks is increasing in the past few years.

A 2011 survey by the School Library Journal found that 31 percent had e-books in their collections. But 63 percent of those surveyed said they couldn’t afford to buy digital books.

On a recent afternoon, 9-year-old Josh Hezel and his classmates were in the library at Long Elementary.

A generation ago, Hezel and the others might have stopped by a shelf of recommended books, or searched on his own in the card catalog. Instead, he and his classmates sat down with some of the school’s new e-readers. The book titles flew by on a digital screen as the boy scrolled through, stopping at one that caught his eye.

“I think librarians are in favor of anything that gets students reading,” said Margaret Sullivan, regional director for the Missouri Association of School Libraries and president of St. Louis Suburban School Librarians Association. “What we just want to make sure is that every student has access to technology, because some students might not have that at home.”

Read more about the Library ebook movement

eBooks Flying High in Korea

The Korean e-book market grew more than five times last year. It stood at an estimated 10 billion won, which is equivalent to 9 million US dollars in 2010, but that number jumped to a staggering 45 million US dollars last year.

“I wanted to read books while I commute, but paper books are too heavy to carry, and I sometimes forgot to bring them with me. Smart phones are too small to read on. But with an e-book reader, I can read many books whenever I want.” – Korean student

And ebooks sales in Korean are expected to at least double, or even triple this year if analysts are correct.

Read the full story about Korean ebook sales –  with interviews

 

Publishing Push coming from Apple

Apple

Apple could be hosting a special media event in New York City this month. The event won’t be about Apple’s next iPad if reports are believed to be correct. Instead, Apple will be talking directly to the publishing industry.

The theme of the event will be publishing and e-books. Considering reports indicate Eddy Cue will be prominently involved, it’s a focus area that makes a lot of sense.

Apple SVP of Internet Software and Services, Mr. Cue is in charge of the iBookstore, as well as the iTunes and App Stores, iAd and iCloud. Cue is the one who took the stage the last time the company had a publishing event, when it unveiled News Corp.’s publication The Daily.

READ THE FULL STORY



Is $9.99 still the Magic Price for an e-book?

“What ebooks I buy for my Kindle and what I am willing to pay for them has absolutely nothing to do with the price of the device itself.  And to say that it does is ridiculous.  I buy between 20 – 40 books for my Kindle per month.  I am a voracious reader.  Unless a book is by an author that I like enormously I will not pay over $9.99.  I usually don’t buy books that cost even that much.  Period.  I put books that cost that much on my Wish List & check back periodicaly to see if the price has dropped, which usually happens when a paperback edition of the book is released. I don’t read as many mysteries anymore because for some reason that genre has higher prices than any other.  I’m a patient person.  I wait until the price goes down.  Or get it from the library.

Publishers need to realize that by lowering their prices they’ll make more money from ebooks because they’d sell many, many more.  Even old books that were published 60 – 80 years ago are being put out by publishers at $9.99!  Get real.  Once a book is on the publisher’s computers for publishing, the editing and other technical details are done anyway.  The only thing they have to do for an ebook edition is to format it properly.  It’s all digital.  No additional costs for cover art. No cost for warehousing ebooks.  No returns processing for ebooks. No printing costs for ebooks.  And publishers expect us to pay the same prices they charge for hard copy books?!?”

READ THE FULL STORY FROM PAID CONTENT

Penguin stops lending of e-books to Libraries, then reverses stance

About a week ago Penguin Group USA announced that they were pulling new e-books from libraries; in addition, it was not lending any e-books to libraries through the Kindle.

Lending an ebook?In a statement provided to Library Journal‘s Digital Shift blog, Penguin stated that due to security concerns, it finds it “necessary to delay the availability of our new titles in the digital format while we resolve these concerns with our business partners.”

No doubt it is unusual among the “big six” publishers in that it allows e-books to be borrowed through libraries at all. Here is a summary of the big six. Macmillan and Simon & Schuster do not distribute any e-books to libraries. Hachette Book Group does not allow new titles to be lent as e-books, and HarperCollins only allows new e-books to be borrowed 26 times before the library has to buy a new copy.

Unfortunately, this leaves Random House as the only “big six” publisher currently allowing access to its e-books through libraries.

Then, a few days later Penguin Group USA reversed their stance and decided not to pull the e-books from the libraries. We will keep an eye on this dynamic news story!

All Star Press presents “Quiet Spaces: Hearing God’s Voice in a Noisy World”

Quiet Spaces by James HaleThere are two types of callings: the loud, drama-filled, unmistakable directions that make the good Bible stories, and the quieter, more subtle, personal nudges meant for one person. These latter ones are not intended for public viewing. They are soft, personal, one-to-one messages from God to someone for whom He has a purpose. Maybe for you. 

All Star Press is proud to announce the e-book release of James Hale’s “Quiet Spaces: Hearing God’s Voice in a Noisy World.” This powerful book is available for the Kindle and all e-book formats

Of the two types of callings, the quieter ones are the more common, but less understood. These are ones that Jesus and so many others experienced in biblical times…and today. It’s these quieter callings Hale teaches the reader to hear. These are much more subtle than the dramatic ones. These messages cascade gently down from on high, and we do hear them, but we often do not listen to them. 

The great physicist Albert Einstein understood the goodness of God – like most people do – but he also understood the quietness of so many of God’s greatest works and how we often miss his messages or think he’s being elusive or tricky. Einstein observed that “God is subtle, but He is not malicious.” Yes, God is deep and profound, but not devious. Understanding God often baffles and confuses us, but there is no deception, no false path. God places the cookie jar within our sight, and invites us to stretch to reach it, without any traps in the way. He calls to us in quiet, subtle ways, and none of His callings are evil or misguided. There are no tricks, no deceit, no misdirection. 

In “Quiet Spaces” author James Hale teaches you the simple steps to make your work your calling. This influential book includes an easy-to-use 45-day devotional on career choices that everyone can benefit from.

TESTIMONIALS

“Any young person who reads this book and follows its suggestions is bound to become a better and happier person.” Bethany Holt – Entrepreneur 

“Even though I am past choosing a vocation in life, I still have a road to finish traveling. This book has helped tremendously.” Angela Masters, Retiree 

“God often speaks to us in ‘gentle whispers’ (just ask Elijah). Quiet Spaces will prepare you to hear God’s call to your heart. This is another great resources for Christian workers from a great Christian organization–Path Choices.” James Smith- – Senior Minister, Mt Carmel Chirstian Church, Cynthiana, KY

Are you ready to incorporate your calling into your daily work? Download “Quiet Spaces” today to your Kindle, Nook, iPad or other eReader.

Spanish newspaper launchs an e-book publishing program

Flag of Spain

Spanish newspaper La Vanguardia is launching an e-book publishing program, entitled “E-books De Vanguardia.” La Vanguardia is Barcelona’s leading newspaper, and the third largest in Spain.

La Vanguardia is starting its program with two free titles, both of which are available in EPUB, PDF and MOBI formats.

Next up are two more books: ¡Adolescente en Casa! (“Teenagers at Home”), a guide for parents living with teenagers, which will sell for €5.99, and another free book, Las 30 Webs Más Relevantes de 2011 (“The 30 Most Important Websites of 2011”).

This is a growing trend as several English-language newspapers, including the Guardian, Boston Globe and Washington Post, have published e-books of varying lengths this year.

Micro Publisher analyzes growth of e-book sales

Author Walter Shiel has written several books on aviation and history. Shiel, who is also a regular blogger, takes a close look at his book sales over the last couple of years with a breakdown of each electronic book type, along with a comparision of book sales versus print sales. Interesting stuff for any aspiring author.  Take a gander.

More Authors Opting to Self Publish

Ipad as a reading device

The New Way

This spring, best-selling thriller writer and former CIA agent Barry Eisler wrote a piece in the New York Times about why he turned down a half-million dollar advance from St. Martin’s Press to self-publish instead: He believes he can market his books better on his own.

Neal Pollack, author of several books, including “Stretch: The Unlikely Making of a Yoga Dude,” wrote in another New York Times piece called “The Case for Self-Publishing” that “self-publication crackles with possibility as never before” and vowed to bring out his next book himself, as an experiment. He writes… READ MORE