Episode 127 – InstaFreebie, Library eBooks, and Crosswords

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Question of the Week: Would you put your free ebooks into the New York Public Library? Why or why not? What kind of results do you think you’d see from entering into the catalogue?

Jim and Bryan definitely didn’t wear white for their first post-Labor Day episode. After Bryan chatted about his comedy Kickstarter (at http://kicksomethingnice.com ), they took on tips related to giveaways, launches, and fairy tale retellings. Following the much-deserved props given to Randy Stapilus and his book What Sells Books (available at http://www.ridenbaughpress.com/whatsellsbooks/ ), the self-publishing stalwarts talked fighting fraud, Pew surveys, indie crossword puzzles, library ebooks, and KU vs. Wide. This week’s Question of the Week: Would you put your free ebooks into the New York Public Library? Why or why not? What kind of results do you think you’d see from entering into the catalogue?
What You’ll Learn:
  • How authors can simply giveaways with Instafreebie and Bookfunnel
  • What strategies successful authors use during a book launch
  • How authors can write for an existing fan base with retellings
  • How co-authors are fighting back against an impostor
  • Why the latest Pew survey on reading is no longer relevant
  • How indies are revolutionizing crossword puzzles
  • How Library Simplified program is drastically improving ebook rental
  • How indie authors can control the future of publishing
Links:
Question of the Week: Would you put your free ebooks into the New York Public Library? Why or why not? What kind of results do you think you’d see from entering into the catalogue?

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  • Spider McGee

    Sure, I’d love to see my ebooks in the New York Public Library. Would be an honor and give me a great feeling…right up to the time the villagers arrived with the torches, ready to remove and virtually burn every digital copy of my work. I can’t say I’d blame them, either.

    • Bryan

      Oh those digital-huntin’ villagers.

  • Spider McGee

    As for your “wearing white after Labor Day” comment, that was once serious business. I am reminded of a time when every man had to wear a hat in public, and summer was all about straw hats. However, after the agreed end of summer (about Sept. 15), you’d better be back to your felt hat OR ELSE. This led to the New York Straw Hat Riot of 1922. A real thing that actually happened, and people were literally killed. I was working on a story about it, but I got bored and threw in WWI aviators and a magical gremlin. I admit, I got off track. If I were Stephen King, it would already be out there selling millions of copies, but the ending would absolutely suck.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straw_Hat_Riot

    • Bryan

      Straw Hat Riots! I would love to read something about that.

  • Marie M.

    I would absolutely put my free e-books into any public library system. I think sometimes we forget that not everyone can afford e-readers or smart phones or a Prime membership and the library fills the void. The library should be thought of as a discovery tool. The best recommendations for books I have gotten over the years were from librarians. They can point you in directions that an algorithm might not. Also boughts tend to create echo chambers.
    Growing up, the library was the only way I got to read books. I didn’t become a buyer until my 20s and then I bought hardback copies of all my favorite books. I have made a return to the library since I can request books on line and get an email when they come in. I have two e-readers: a nook and a kindle and have ended up not using either one and am loathe to spend money on new equipment when those funds can go to buying books and supporting authors.

    • Bryan

      Thanks for the comment, Marie. I agree, I think it can be a great discovery tool. I was obsessed with the local library in middle school :).

  • Laura Martone

    I’ve always loved libraries. As a child, I’d spend countless hours among the musty stacks throughout New Orleans, never running out of books to entice, entertain, and educate me. So, of course, I’d be willing to make my free ebooks available to public library-goers – not just in the New York system but anywhere they’d have me! Being in the catalogue might not result in a ton of book sales – at least at first – but it could certainly increase my exposure among bibliophiles – and over the long haul, widespread discoverability is more precious than the instant gratification of a purchase or two. At least, that’s what other indies tell me!

    • Bryan

      I worked in a library in college and I loved it. Haha, glad to almost cause a spit take. Keep up the insightful work :).

  • I’d rather put my non-free books in the library for free.

    • Bryan

      I bet that could work too, Roland. I’ll have to talk to Leonard about it.

  • Lavie Margolin

    Just wanted to drop a note that I purchased Randy Stapilus’s book as a result of your show. It is really great. I highly recommend it. And… proof that patronage works to sell books- especially one geared to the audience of listeners!

    • Bryan

      Nice! Good to know, Lavie. Glad you’re enjoying the book.

  • I’d be happy to have any of my books in libraries! I never would have been able to go full-time without giving away free books. Readers who love a book they got for free will tell their friends about it. I’ve had readers say that they’ve bugged their friends until they finally picked up my book. You can’t put a price tag on things like that!

    • Bryan

      Indeed, Stacy. Great point!

  • Crissy Moss

    YES! I would give my books away to any library who wants to take them!
    What I’d expect to get is about what I get from library books. I read tons of library books, and then I blog about, or review a bunch of them. I also add them to my goodreads. I tell friends about the really good ones, and some of them buy or borrow the book too. Word of mouth and getting people to notice you is the most valuable thing you can get. The best I could hope for is having one of my books be placed on the front shelf of a library saying “this book is great, you might like it” just so that people take a second look.

    • Bryan

      I love the idea of word of mouth coming from the libraries, Crissy. I hope that we can get this working for indies!

  • Daniel Martone

    Being less altruistic, I would ok allowing the first books in each series we’re writing to be offered in libraries. I know even self-published books cost readers money, but most are at considerably lower price compared to trad pub books. I think most people checking them out in the library would be willing to purchase the other books in the series. The library books would simply act as a loss leader.

    • Bryan

      My thoughts exactly, Dan.