E-Book Publisher Has Roots in Traditional Book Publishing

WRITERS. As you research different firms for publishing your e-books, don’t compare publishers solely on the price of their packages. For example, companies that have a history in the book-publishing business might be able to offer you services and insights that relatively new start-up companies don’t yet offer.

For example, Publish Green is a division of Hillcrest Media Group, which began as the book publisher Mill City Press. They offer a full range of e-book formatting, distribution, editing, and marketing services. Their goal is to help traditionally published authors, self-published authors, and book publishers of all sizes make their mark in the e-book publishing world.

Unlike most e-book formatters, each Publish Green e-book is converted from many different file types and perfected line-by-line by an in-house formatter.

You can submit your book as plain text, a Word document, a PDF, or InDesign file. A formatting team will then work on your book by hand to ensure that wacky spacing, missing words, or other mistakes commonly found in automated e-book formatting processes are eliminated.

After your eBook is formatted, you can perfect the final version before publication, ensuring that the e-book will be a work you can be proud of.

Publish Green uses patent-pending software with advanced features that enable virtually any form of text- or image-based book (novels, memoirs, illustrated children’s books, cookbooks, etc.) to be formatted into several different file types. Your e-book will be recognized by all major e-book reading devices.

Publish Green allows authors to keep 100% of the profit from book sales and completely own the rights to their e-books.  Through their global distribution package, you can choose to have your book distributed through many different online sellers of e-books. In addition to selling your work through Amazon and iBookstore, you can choose to have your work sold through Barnes & Noble, Kobo, the Sony Reader store, eBooks.com, Books-a-Million, Bookstrand, Books on Board, and others.

The company’s new website provides detailed descriptions of all their editing, formatting, and marketing services. I particularly liked how they listed what their editing services include (and don’t include). “Editing” often means different things to different people, so it’s helpful to find a website that clarifies the distinction between basic copy editing services and a comprehensive edit. For example, they explain that their editing services don’t include fact checking or securing necessary permissions for reproductions of copyrighted works that go beyond “fair use.”

Publish Green offers an impressive assortment of marketing services, including virtual book tours, Google advertising, book trailers, author websites, the Amazon Exposure program, and Facebook fan pages and Facebook advertising.

For newcomers to e-book publishing, Publish Green has produced a 20-page guide entitled, “The Basics of eBook Publishing.” The guide explains topics such as formats, royalties and digital rights management, and shows examples of some of the errors that can occur when e-books are converted through software that automates the process. When you download the guide, you can choose to download it in several different formats, depending on whether you plan to read it on your computer, an iPad, Barnes & Noble Nook, or Amazon Kindle.


Publish Green

Free Guide: “The Basics of eBook Publishing”


BookWhirl.com Adds Copy-Editing and ePublishing Services

WRITERS. For almost five years, BookWhirl.com has been providing low-cost online marketing services to self-published authors of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry books. Recently, BookWhirl.com expanded its services to include copy-editing and e-book publishing for self-published authors. After paying the upfront fees to convert your manuscript into e-books, you will receive 100% of the royalties.

 ePublishing Revo Services

Two types of “ePublishing-Revo” packages are available:

  • e-Pub Lite ($299) is for novels and books without images
  • e-Pub Pro ($399) is for books with images and charts.

Both packages include e-book layout and formatting, cover design, conversion to e-book formats, ISBNs, and distribution. The Pro package includes more advanced formatting and layout services.

For example, the advanced formatting in the “Pro” package can accommodate up to 25 images, drop caps, different font styles, chapter titles, page number placement, tables, charts, text boxes, graphs, lists, subheadings, block quotes, footnotes, and other features.

BookWhirl CEO Johnny Chu believes the timing is right to make electronic publishing services more affordable to self-published authors because so many people can use their mobile phones, e-readers, and tablets to read wherever they go. This means more writers have more opportunities to share their stories.

Copy Editing Services

BookWhirl’s new Copy Editing Services can help authors ensure that their self-published books will meet commonly expected standards. Professional copy editors can review your manuscript, checking for typographical and grammatical errors and consistency with the editing standards of The Chicago Manual of Style.

Although BookWhirl recognizes the imagination, creativity, and passion of self-published authors, “We also believe that greatness in writing comes with standards Agree or disagree, great writers need great copy editors,” said Don Harold, BookWhirl.com’s marketing director. He believes manuscripts that will be shared around the world need the fierce eye of a professional copy editor.

Book Marketing Services

To help promote your e-book, BookWhirl’s experienced team of online marketing strategists, ad copywriters, graphic artists, and web designers can conceptualize and implement efficient marketing campaigns. Marketing services include website design, online advertising, print advertising, media releases, online directory listings, and more.  


BookWhirl.com ePublishing Revo

About BookWhirl.com

BookWhirl.com’s Copy-Editing Services

Learn How to Convert Your E-Books into Audio Books

WRITERS. If you want to convert your e-book into an audio book, check out the resources available through eBookIt!

Since 2010, eBookIt! has helped thousands of authors and publishers get their books converted to e-book format and distributed to all the major e-book retailers (such as Amazon.com, Barnesandnoble.com, Apple iBookstore, Kobo, Sony Readerstore, Ingram Digital, and Google eBookstore).

Now, eBookIt! is helping authors further expand their audiences by converting e-books into audio books.

Offering audio books enables you to share the information in your book with people with visual impairments and those who like listening to audio books while driving, working out, walking the dog, or doing other activities.

On the eBookIt! blog, company founder Bo Bennett notes that audio books have become increasingly popular, particularly with the proliferation of iPhones and other mobile devices: “We all have different learning styles, and we all differ in how we like to spend our downtime. Some of us read, some of us watch, and some of us listen.”

For $119, eBookIt! can use your converted e-book file to create an MP3 audio file with a computer-generated voice. You can choose to have your books read by a human-sounding American male voice (Paul), an American female voice (Julie), or a British female voice (Brigitte).  (You can hear what Paul, Julie, and Brigitte sound like on the eBookIt website.)

“While I don’t think a computer-generated voice can replace a talented actor anytime soon, it is an ideal solution for the vast majority of authors who do want their books available in audio and can afford a $119 investment,” says Bennett.

If you choose to distribute the MP3 file on your own website, you can keep 100% of the proceeds.

The  eBookIt! website also explains options for human-narrated audio-book creation as well as distribution through iTunes, Amazon.com, and Amazon’s audio-book distributor Audible.com.

For example, if you want to try creating your own audio book file, the eBookIt! blog includes instructions on how to go about it. With the right technology, you don’t have to spend thousand dollars on talent, studio time, and editing. If you have a pleasant-sounding voice, a decent microphone, and free or low-cost software (such as Audacity or Apple’s GarageBand) you can create a reasonably high-quality audio book. Just be prepared to spend some time doing it.

“Even if you are really good at reading, and make very few mistakes, expect to spend about one hour per every 10 minutes of finished audio. This includes proofing, editing, and saving,” writes Bennett in a blog post. He says it took about 38 hours to make an audio book that has a running time of 8 hours.



Audio Book Distribution Services

Blog Post: Audio Books: Are They Worth Making?

Blog Post: Creating a Human-Narrated Audio Book

Survey Shows Changes in E-Book Buying Habits

Since November 2009, analysts at Bowker Research have been tracking the habits and preferences of book consumers who say they have acquired an e-book or a dedicated e-reading device within the past 18 months.  This survey of Consumer Attitudes toward E-Book Reading is being conducted for the Book Industry Study Group (BISG), a leading trade association for the U.S. book industry.

According to recently released data from the survey, e-book consumers are buying more books—both in print and e-book formats.  More than half of e-book readers increased their use of apps to purchase books and more than one-third increased their use of general retail websites such as Amazon.com.

The gains for these digital vendors come at the expense of brick-and-mortar bookstores. More than a third of e-book buyers decreased their spending at national chains and 29% said they are buying less from their local independent bookseller.

“The e-book market is developing very quickly, with consumer attitudes and behavior changing over the course of months, rather than years,” said Angela Bole, BISG’s Deputy Executive Director.

While dedicated e-readers remain the dominant e-reading platform, the study shows that multi-function tablet devices and smartphones are gaining in popularity.
Almost 17% of respondents indicated that tablets were the devices most used to read ebooks— up from 13% in the previous survey.

Dedicated e-readers were preferred by 60.9% of all respondents, down from 71.6% in the previous survey.

Respondents who preferred smartphones jumped from 5.3% to 9.2%.

The data in the Consumer Attitudes toward E-Book Reading survey is derived from a nationally representative panel of book consumers (men, women and teens).


PDF: Summary Report Consumer Attitudes Toward E-Book Reading

About the Book Industry Study Group, Inc.

About Bowker


Folium Book Studio Upgrades Cover Design Capabilities

WRITERS. Earlier this year Folium Partners, Inc. launched a self-publishing toolset for converting  manuscripts created in word-processing programs into the digital formats required for electronic books (e-books) such as the Apple iBook®, Amazon Kindle™, Barnes & Noble Nook™ and Sony Digital Reader®.

Through the online Folium Book Studio app, you can upload a manuscript you wrote in Microsoft Word (or other word-processing program) and have it converted into the standard EPUB format needed for e-book distribution.

Folium Book Studio also gives you the tools to design the book layout, create cover art, and upload and insert supporting photos and illustrations for your books. All work can be reviewed and edited multiple times directly in the WYSIWYG editor. The finished product can be exported for distribution or saved securely online for a year. A free ISBN is provided for authors who require one.

This week Folium Partners, Inc. announced plans to upgrade Folium Cover Designer™. Folium Book Studio will be releasing hundreds of new image layers as well as core feature upgrades to their cover design tool.

Through exclusive arrangements with contributing designers, some of the new stock elements will not yet have been made available for use anywhere else on the web.

“Like it or not, people do judge a book by its cover—even a digital one,” said John Lee, CEO and co-founder of Folium Partners. A good cover: captures the essence of the book;  draws attention to the book; and makes it distinguishable on the e-reader shelf.

Lee observes that until recently, e-book cover art was either painfully unprofessional or very professional (and quite expensive). Folium Cover Designer was created to help independent writers and smaller publishers achieve a great look at a lower price point.

The upgrade to Folium Cover Designer includes a broad assortment of graphic elements that can be used as layers to build up rich textures, shadowing and light, or as starter templates. There collection includes an expanded selection of stock photos, fully designed backdrops and other useful pieces.

Folium Book Studio offers the cover design tool and gallery elements as part of its complete package. It is free to all customers of the service.

Through February 14, 2012, you can use the complete service for only $29.95 per project.


About Folium Book Studio

Folium Cover Designer


Book Futurist to Discuss Digital Bookmaking Tools

WRITERS:  In a free one-hour webinar entitled “Digital Bookmaking Tools Roundup #3,” book futurist Peter Meyers will explore existing options for creating digital books and answer questions about what options are best and  easiest to use.  Part of O’Reilly Media’s Tools of Change for Publishers series of educational programs, the webcast is scheduled for Thursday, February 23.

Meyers has been reading, writing, and designing digital books for years. In the mid-1990s, he co-founded Digital Learning Interactive, a pioneering multimedia textbook publishing company which he sold to Thomson Learning in 2004. At O’Reilly Media, he worked in the Missing Manual group and led a number of projects aimed at figuring out how to transition from print to digital.

In addition to his expertise in publishing and online learning technologies, Meyers is well-attuned to the concerns of authors and lovers of printed books.  He studied American history and literature at Harvard and has an MFA in fiction from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop.

He publishes the blog “A New Kind of Book,” and is currently working on a book entitled “Breaking the Page: Transforming Books and the Reading Experience.”

Can Digital Books Be As Satisfying as Print Books?

In the book, “Breaking the Page” Myers raises the million-dollar question: “How do we make digital books as satisfying as their print predecessors?”

Meyers wants to help authors discover reader-friendly ways to use the digital canvas to convey their best ideas.  He explains, “As app book tinkering flourishes, and as ePub3 emerges as an equally rich alternative, the time felt right for a look at the difference between what can and what should be done in digital book-land.”

In December, Meyers released three preview chapters so he could get feedback from readers on the digital book examples he provided as well as additional ideas.

The full edition, planned for release later this year, will cover questions such as:

  • What’s the best way to integrate—and not just add—different media types?
  • Is it possible to make the viewing experience as seamless and immersive as reading is in print?
  • How do you pick the best balance between personalized design (reader-controllable font sizing, for example) and author-driven fixed layout? Are there any acceptable compromises?


Book Preview: Breaking the Page: Transforming Books and the Reading Experience

Blog: A New Kind of Book

Free TOC Webcast: Digital Bookmaking Tools Roundup #3: Feburary 23

Book Publishing Trends that Will Affect Aspiring Authors

Books on library shelvesWRITERS. Here are a few links, quotes and predictions from a variety of expert sources in the book-publishing industry. Reading these posts can help you think strategically about how you develop your skills and manage your writing career.

E-book Market Forecast to Hit $2.5 Billion as the Book Industry Burns

In this post on GigaOM, industry analyst Michael Wolf states “I’ve never seen a market changing faster than the digital publishing market of today, where the sudden love of e-books has created a ‘digital backdraft’ that has set the entire publishing industry value chain aflame.”

He notes that book discovery is going social: “Whether readers are learning about new books from friends or general-purpose social networks like Facebook or through reading-centric networks like Goodreads, social recommendations are becoming increasingly important in the age of ebooks.”

Why 2012 Will Be the Year of the Artist-Entrepreneur

In another post on GigaOM, Michael Wolf observes that: “Everywhere you look, artists are taking more control over their own economic well being, in large part because the Internet has enabled them to do so. You see it in all forms of content, from books, to video to music.”

He says the web has democratized everything: content production, distribution, and monetization. He also sees a generational shift toward more tech-savvy artists who are creating their own apps and websites.

Ten Bold Predictions for Book Publishing in 2012

In this post on Digital Book World, Jeremy Greenfield includes these predictions:

  • We will see more self-published best-sellers next year, with an exponential rise in the number of million-selling authors”
  • Authors will become disenchanted with the rights they sign away to publishers. Shorter and more flexible copyright terms will become more attractive to authors.”
  • The standard ebook royalty from major publishing houses will rise next year and will escalate with increased sales.”

David Farland Predicts That the Release of the iPad3 in 2012 Will Spell the End of Reading as We Know It Within 3 Years

In a press release issued on PRWeb, the author who founded East India Press predicts that “enhanced books” are about to change how we read. He believes we are at the start of a new era in which creative troupes of authors, artists, musicians, and publishers will collaborate to produce “books” in which text, images, and sounds come together in a collage.

The Publishing Industry, 5 Years from Now: Theories from the Frankfurt Book Fair

On the BookBaby blog, Chris Robley suggests 5 ways he believes that publishing will look different 5 years from now.  Here are two of his predictions:

The market for shorter works (10 pages to 10,000 words) will expand. He says, “Size really doesn’t matter. It only matters how useful and engaging the content is. So, pretty soon the novella will be back in vogue. Short stories will sell individually. If you’ve got something valuable and succinct to share, you no longer have to pad it out with fluff, filler, or filigree.”

Digital books will be serialized, including non-fiction books. Readers who purchase an upfront subscription will receive each chapter as soon as it’s finished. Meanwhile, as an author, you can get instant feedback from readers, so you can revise as you go. Robley writes: “By the time you release the full book, it will have gone through an invaluable editing process (for free) and it will be completely up to date.”

Publishers will recognize two types of consumers: those who like the “enhanced” ebooks that include video, audio, and interactivity, and those who prefer “old-fashioned” text-only ebooks. He predicts that publishers will “market these two kinds of products in increasingly different ways.”

Because of the increased costs involved in printing and distributing physical books, Robley also predicts that five years from now publishers will produce e-books for all of their authors, and physical books for only a few.

So, what’s your take? Would you like to share any other links to other big, bold predictions for the future of book publishing?