Showing category "Self-publishing" (Show all posts)

Facebook, pen names and "lack of integrity"

Posted by Paul Samael on Saturday, August 29, 2015, In : Self-publishing 


Like many authors, I write under a pen name.  But because it involves pretending to be someone other than I really am (in name at least), I did hesitate a little before I took the decision.  After all, in some situations, using a false identity would be regarded as a bit of weird thing to do, if not downright creepy (e.g. middle aged men pretending to be teenage girls etc).  But then I told myself to get a grip, because there’s nothing particularly weird about using a pen name – lots of a...

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Read by robots

Posted by Paul Samael on Friday, August 22, 2014, In : Self-publishing 

In common, I suspect, with many authors, I write at least partly in the hope that at least a few other people will read my stuff.  So I was a little dismayed to discover that the overwhelming majority of my “readers” on Scribd appear not to have been people at all, but robots.

Until recently, Scribd was showing my total “reads” as being about 1.4K.  I was somewhat sceptical of this (see this post) and thought the true figure was probably in the low three figures – but felt that even ...

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The Free Indie Reader No.1

Posted by Paul Samael on Friday, December 20, 2013, In : Self-publishing 


Just wanted to draw attention to this interesting project from Tom Lichtenberg - it's a collection of short stories he has put together from self-published authors, intended to act as a "free sampler."  As Tom explains here, it's an attempt to reach a wider audience than he has so far managed by reviewing other people's work on his blog and elsewhere - so I hope it succeeds.  

I say that with a certain amount of self-interest, because it includes one of my stories.  But even if that were not t...
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Interview with James Crawshaw

Posted by Paul Samael on Friday, November 22, 2013, In : Self-publishing 





UPDATE 8.2016:  Sadly, Bibliotastic is no longer operating - apparently the software supporting the site wasn't being updated and as it was all being done for free, the owners couldn't afford to update it.  This is a shame because I liked the idea of the site, particularly its focus on getting readers to submit reviews.

Here’s an email interview with James Crawshaw, one of the founders of bibliotastic, a free ebooks platform based in the UK, which occupies a space somewhere ...


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Obooko and ebook conversion

Posted by Paul Samael on Friday, September 27, 2013, In : Self-publishing 





Just published a copy of my novel on Obooko, which is a free ebooks platform based in the UK.  The upload process itself was pretty straightforward - and you get a nice email back from a human being (yes, a real person !).  The download page is here.  I will post an update once the novel has been on there a bit longer.  Judging from how other people's work is doing, I am not expecting vast numbers of downloads.  

That said, the figures for some of the books which have been there for some time ...

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Smashwords interview

Posted by Paul Samael on Wednesday, September 4, 2013, In : Self-publishing 



Smashwords have introduced a new interview function where you can do a sort of Q&A about yourself - they have a series of questions that you can choose to answer (or not) or alternatively, it will let you do your own questions.  I decided to answer some of their questions, otherwise it felt a bit too much like talking to myself - although why I should be so sensitive about that, I can't really say, since I've been doing it on this blog for about 2 years now....

Anyway, I think it's a worthwhil...

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Copyright - is it a bad thing?

Posted by Paul Samael on Tuesday, August 20, 2013, In : Self-publishing 

This article (highlighted on Tom Lichtenberg’s blog) made me wonder whether copyright is a “good thing.”  It discusses some research suggesting that copyright acts as an obstacle to books remaining in print.  This conclusion is based on the somewhat startling finding that more books are available on Amazon from the early part of the 20th century than is the case with books published in the last 20 years or so.  The author of the research suggests that this is because the older books are...

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Interview with publisher and author Frank Burton

Posted by Paul Samael on Friday, June 28, 2013, In : Self-publishing 



Here's an email interview with publisher and author Frank Burton, who's behind non-profit publisher
Philistine Press.  I recently reviewed Stephanie Newell's "The Third Person" which is published by Philistine Press.  This got me interested in non-profit publishers as a possible alternative route for authors who can't get taken on by a mainstream publisher but aren't overly keen on self-publishing either.  Frank also maintains an extensive list of non-profit publishers on his own personal web...

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Scribd stats mystery

Posted by Paul Samael on Friday, May 3, 2013, In : Self-publishing 



UPDATE 8.2014:  I have now discovered that Scribd's "read" stats are even less reliable than suggested here and the figures quoted below significantly overstate the number of "readers" - so ignore this post and take a look at this one.

I have tended to focus my attention on Smashwords and Feedbooks as publishing platforms - since other sites I have tried, like BookieJar and especially Wattpad (click here for my curmudgeonly musings on the latter), don't seem to have generated very many downloa...

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Amazon + Goodreads = end of world?

Posted by Paul Samael on Wednesday, April 3, 2013, In : Self-publishing 

So, Goodreads is being acquired by Amazon - what does this mean for indie authors?  Well, if I put my ear to the floor, I do believe that I can hear the sound of the four horsemen of the publishing apocalypse galloping towards me at top speed, mercilessly crushing indie authors to a pulp beneath their pounding hooves.  Or maybe that’s just the kids leaping around again upstairs.

I feel a bit the same way about the Goodreads/Amazon tie-up.  At first, I was inclined to think that it was very l...

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Free Book Beast

Posted by Paul Samael on Monday, January 28, 2013, In : Self-publishing 




Although there are quite a few sites devoted to indie authors, I haven't come across that many which focus on free fiction.  Free Book Beast aims to do just that - and whereas some sites seem to feature free (or low priced) books purely as a way of generating ad revenue, this one appears to be trying to provide some useful content alongside them, so I hope it succeeds.
 
I've just contributed a guest post on where to find free fiction (other than on Amazon) and where to find recommendations/rev...

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Taking stock

Posted by Paul Samael on Sunday, January 6, 2013, In : Self-publishing 
 
It’s now more than 18 months since I set up this website and over a year since my first attempt at self-publishing.  So I thought now might be a good point to consider whether it’s been a worthwhile exercise so far.

Downloads are a fairly crude measure of success/failure – but for what it’s worth, here are my numbers as at 6 January 2013:



UPDATE 8.2014:  I have now discovered that the stats from Scribd are pretty unreliable, so in the interests of accuracy, you should ignore the totals...
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The Pirates! In an Adventure with Self-Published Authors!

Posted by Paul Samael on Thursday, November 8, 2012, In : Self-publishing 


Ahoy there, readers.  Yesterday I discovered that my novel had been put up on Amazon by a scurvy bilge rat claiming to me - and demanding that the reading public pay the princely sum of £1.92 for the privilege of reading it (even though it is available for free on Smashwords and Feedbooks).  So I wrote to Amazon and to their credit, they replied within hours and promised to remove it (although to my great disappointment, they refused to undertake to give the culprit forty lashes with the cat...

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Feedbooks - better than Smashwords?

Posted by Paul Samael on Thursday, May 17, 2012, In : Self-publishing 



Just uploaded couple of short stories to Feedbooks, to see how they do - and will update this post once I've reached a view on that.  But the download figures for other free, self-published material on the site look very encouraging. They more than bear comparison with Smashwords, where I'm still getting a steady trickle of downloads - but it's certainly no more than a trickle.  

UPDATE 20.1.2013:  I'm inserting this update here, at the beginning of the post, because I now have an answer (of s...

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Alienated by social media: Facebook and Wattpad

Posted by Paul Samael on Sunday, April 22, 2012, In : Self-publishing 
I've just created a Paul Samael Facebook page - here it is in all its (non)-glory:

http://www.facebook.com/paulsamael
 
I'm setting up the Facebook page mainly because all the stuff I have read about marketing oneself as a self-published author says you should "do social media".   I find the way that it forces you into a chronological approach quite frustrating - I'd much prefer to have more freedom to set out the page so as to emphasise things I think people might be most interested in, some of...
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BookieJar.com - worth a shot?

Posted by Paul Samael on Saturday, December 17, 2011, In : Self-publishing 


 
UPDATE 8.2016:  Bookiejar no longer seems to be operating, so you might not want to bother reading what follows. 

Just published "The Hardest Word" on another platform, BookieJar.com, which seems to be offering itself as a rival to Smashwords (although there's nothing to stop you publishing on both, which is exactly what I've done).  Click
here to view.

The publishing process was very straightforward - I was able to take the version I'd used for uploading to Smashwords, change the front materi...
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Do you need permission to quote from reviews?

Posted by Paul Samael on Monday, November 21, 2011, In : Self-publishing 

In my last post, I discussed using peer review sites as a way of trying to get positive reviews in order to promote my work.  But is it really OK to use these reviews (or snippets from them) as part of your own publicity material?  Well, this post from the management of You Write On.com (YWO) suggests that it is OK so far as they are concerned:

http://www.youwriteon.com/forum/quoting-crits-on-blurb-Topic-11796-1.aspx

But there is a lot of online commentary suggesting that you need permis...


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My self-publishing "masterplan" (hmmm...we'll see)

Posted by Paul Samael on Monday, October 3, 2011, In : Self-publishing 

 
So, how do I propose to self-publish my work and avoid sinking without a trace beneath the mind-bogglingly vast number of other books which are published every year? Well, here -  for what it’s worth - is my masterplan (or, if you prefer, the pitifully deluded ravings of a sociopath determined to inflict his mindless drivel on the rest of us):

1. Get some reviews:  if you’re an unknown author, I don’t think you can expect people to read your stuff unless you have some decent reviews fro...

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Why self-publish?

Posted by Paul Samael on Monday, September 26, 2011, In : Self-publishing 

 

This blog is supposed to be about my attempts to self-publish my novel and so far, I’ve been a little coy about how exactly I plan to tackle this Herculean task (I do have a plan, honest – more on this in later posts).  But I suppose the first question is why self-publish – why not try to get a “proper”, professional publisher to take me on?

Well, my experience of publishers is not good – admittedly, it relates to non-fiction rather than fiction, but in both cases the publishe...


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My secret life as an undercover agent

Posted by Paul Samael on Tuesday, August 2, 2011, In : Self-publishing 

 

 The first few chapters of my novel have been on the peer review site, youwriteon.com, for a few weeks now and I have so far had 6 reviews - mostly quite encouraging but with a couple of not so good ones.  It was a not so good one which prompted me to post the following in the biographical details section of the site (which I had left blank up until then):

"After a spell in the SAS, I worked undercover for the CIA on a mission to infiltrate a vicious gang of Colombian drug smugglers and drive...

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About Me


Paul Samael Welcome to my blog, "Publishing Waste" which will either (a) chronicle my heroic efforts to self-publish my own fiction; or (b) demonstrate beyond a scintilla of doubt the utter futility of (a). And along the way, I will also be doing some reviews of other people's books and occasionally blogging about other stuff.
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