Years ago, when I first went Indie, I personally formatted and published My Cheeky Angel on Smashwords also. Vicious headaches, suicidal thoughts and a near divorce later, getting my book through that blasted meatgrinder and equal to their Style Guide so it would get in the premium catalogue, had put me through a meatgrinder—oh yeah! After those 2am nights redoing the upload over and over, I decided that I would rather lick clean every window of a twenty story building rather than go through that again. Funny enough, because I’m stubborn, I was eventually successful and the book was made available. In the next few months it earned such a pittance that when I finished the next in the series, His Devious Angel, I quickly changed my path. Publishing exclusively with Amazon became my goal.
I’m beginning to see that the free books aren’t such a draw anymore. Let’s face it, the market is becoming saturated. Once an author has a following, I feel that not every new book released needs to be made available as a freebie. I’m sure the readers who know they’ll get their money’s worth are more than willing to spend the few dollars we charge nowadays to be able to read what they know is worth the price.
Thanks for sharing this Mimi. As I move forward with my ms I've been debating all the pros and cons of the self-publishing world. I've heard that Smashwords has made giant strides to become more user friendly for both authors and readers, has this been your experience? Also, have you worked with Createspace and what did you think of that?
Mimi Barbour says
Hi Jacqui, First let me tell you about Smashwords and why I put myself through the grinder to publish with them. First, nothing is too hard once you know what you're doing. (Watch for a blog coming up with step by step instructions on how to format a book for Smashwords.) Secondly, they will let me put a book permanently free which is my aim down the road. Thirdly, because we live in Canada, we can't publish direct on B&N and Smashwords distributes to them. And fourthly, they send the books to a lot of other booksellers which gives one more visibility.
Createspace is a whole other ballgame. Used to scare the heck outta me until I pulled up my big girl panties and learned how to use their services. Now I think it's simplified to where even a techie nerd as myself can get through it without too much trouble. Remember there are people here to help you if you run into any problems.