Print On Demand & Ebooks

KindleWhat’s wrong with Print-On-Demand (POD) and Ebooks?

Sometimes we don’t feel like real writers unless we are published commercially. That means that we need the affirmation of a ‘real’ publisher to tell us that we are good writers.

A ‘real’ publisher has access to book distribution channels, print-on-demand (POD) does not have that – yet. However Ebooks are listed on Amazon and other electronic booksellers, right along with NY Times best sellers.

Will a ‘real’ publisher advertise your books? Yes, if you’re name is John

Print On Demand

Print On Demand

Grisham. No, if your name is John Smith. “You’re on your own, John,” just like you are with POD and Ebooks.

If your book doesn’t sell, a ‘real’ publisher will not do a second run. I’ve known of writers who couldn’t even find a copy of their books anywhere. POD and Ebooks live as long as the author wants them to live.

In general, Ebooks and POD are less expensive than commercially published books. More people can afford them.

I am not predicting the end of commercial publishers. Printed books will be around for a long, long time. I am saying that it’s a very exciting time for us writers. “Getting published” used to be very hard. Now it’s open to all of us. Yes, there is crap out there in Ebooks and POD, just as there is crap in commercially PODpublished books.

In the past, the publishing industry looked down on POD, hinting that it wasn’t very good. As Ebooks and POD rise, I think both parts of the publishing world will see that we need each other.

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9 responses to “Print On Demand & Ebooks

  1. Good points Ed. POD also doesn’t cost an arm and a leg for the writer. You don’t have to do a run that fills your garage with books.

    Btw – I read your book, Once a Priest, over Christmas and really enjoyed it. Thanks for being vulnerable and willing to tell your story, Ed. My granddaughter even used the section about your meeting Martin Luther King for a school paper she had to do on segregation.

  2. Spot on, Ed. The e book industry is a growth industry and indie writers are right in it. In the bestseller lists last year 1 in 5 ebooks were self-published. Also, In the last three months of 2010 in the US, Amazon sold more e books than paperbacks. But if a self publishing writer decides to go with Amazon as part of their distribution process, best not to take on Amazon’s KDP Select as that locks the writer into a 3-month contract in which Amazon has exclusive rights to distribution. Amazon KDP is fine, it’s the Select bit you have to watch out for. (For more on this, see Amazon KDP Select – a poisoned apple? at
    Hope it’s okay to put that link there, Ed.
    Best, Danielle

    • What a joy you are, Danielle. “The poisoned apple,” — I love it. My social media adviser kept me out of that.
      A small start for me that I’m excited about. Smashwords (takes 40 % and sends book to all relevant Ebook sites) said I made $16 in January. That’s small, but a start. I found it exciting

  3. Pingback: Self-publishing Advice Needed | Joanne Phillips – a writer's journey·

  4. Pingback: Take Part in The Taleist 2012 Self-Publishing Survey | The Independent Publishing Magazine·

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