Once again I learnt a lot, forgive me if I copy-paste directly from our News Page on P'kaboo.net.
2011 - A Year of Firsts
It was an interesting year. While in 2010 P'kaboo grew from one to 5 and, right at the end of the year, 7 titles, we did several things for the first time in 2011.
- We launched our first external author.
- We battled our first debtors :-) (and won).
- We published our first republication of a previously published book!
- We published our first American author!
- We found our first distribution agent.
- And our first literary agent, Bookseeker Agency in Scotland.
- We brought out our first ebook.
Still, it could have been better: I could have missed fewer deadlines. This way, Solar Wind 3, "Forest Circle Quest" by LHW Noble, and the American edition of "Not Another Scale Book" by Alan Solomon all stand over for next year.
Once again the lesson was reiterated: Online marketing is not as effective as direct, live sales.
Getting past the systems that the larger bookshop chains have built in self-defence, is "merely" a matter of presenting the books at a cheaper price to the agents (without agents, no large bookshops!). In terms of money it would mean larger runs... which is why it isn't easy building a publisher on small runs. Not easy - but not exactly impossible either! Personal promotion and sweet reviews in the public media (newspapers, magazines) help. And the critical importance of having striking cover graphics... people buy with their eyes.
A cover sells a book.
A book sells an author.
And the author sells the sequel.
But in all this, the price must be right.
E-books: (I mean the electronic variety, not the beautiful chain of bookshops that has been of so much help this year, again):
We are experimenting with e-books. Our first one is a free giveaway, for testing the waters and the systems, then again it is a part of the Solar Wind saga, the first part, imminently readable for people who have about 4 hours on their hands and love excitement.
Download "Donegal Trouble" here.
In fact there are a few free downloads at the following link:
Happy New Year.