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Candice Gilmer

She writes Futuristic Romance novels.

6/26/06 6:57:24 PM Opening "Chat Log 6/26/06"

origjasstorm: Gonna start in a couple of minutes.
origjasstorm: Give everyone time to get their seats. :)
PHeeren: okay
W2PSushi: no throwing chairs
W2PSushi: this is NOT the world cup
ShayKay1951: Awwwwww - Paul, you're no fun!
WriterOfDreamz: good I'm sick of football
Rose1533: Or minor league baseball either.
MoonCat25: can we throw the players though?
PHeeren: England is on to the finals
WriterOfDreamz: yeah....into a tar pit
origjasstorm: Okay, I think we'll get started now... Everyone please turn off all bolded and colored fonts, if you haven't already....
ShayKay1951: hi, Adam

origjasstorm: Hello, for those of you who don't know me, my name is Candice Gilmer, although I have gone by the name Jas in this writing group for years. I am presenting on behalf of Southern Fried Writers tonight
origjasstorm: Tonight I plan on answering some of your questions about ePublishing, POD printing, Self-Publication and Vanity Presses.
origjasstorm: I would like to run Protocol tonight, and I ask that you hold all questions until I'm finished, thank you.
origjasstorm: Now, let us begin.
origjasstorm: ePublishing or electronic publishing is publishing a book that can be purchased through the internet, to be downloaded to your computer, PDA, eBook reader or other media devices.
origjasstorm: When people start breaking down ePublishing, certain questions start coming up, such as what is the difference between ePublishing, a Vanity Press, a Self Publication, and a POD?
origjasstorm: Many times, these words get mixed up and confused between people in the internet community, making many people completely write-off ePublishing as a possibility of getting their work out there
origjasstorm: There are many ePublishing companies that work just like a mass market traditional publisher. You have to submit a query, a partial, wait for a response, and if you get a request, send a full,
origjasstorm: before they'll buy your book
origjasstorm: The response time can move a bit faster than mass market, but not always. Currently, for example, Ellora's Cave is running about twelve weeks on responses to partials.
origjasstorm: One of the major downfalls of ePublishers is that many times, they do not give out advances on your book, which can be good or bad, depending on your point of view
origjasstorm: Granted, who wouldn't want a check for $5,000, but when selling to a mass market publisher who awards you such an advance,
origjasstorm: one of the downfalls is that you will more than likely receive that advance in parts
origjasstorm: (either on signing and at delivery of printable copy, or even broken down into thirds, or even sixths, if you've signed a multiple book deal),
origjasstorm: and then not see any royalties until that $5K is paid back
origjasstorm: Also another downfall is that the mass market publisher will hold back a portion of your royalties after that advance is paid, as a "safeguard" against returns on your print run
origjasstorm: So even after your book has been released, (which can be between 18 months and 24 months after signing your contract),
origjasstorm: you still may not receive any royalties at all until the book has been published for a year or more.
origjasstorm: Which means you could wait as long as three years before you see any royalties, if you even earn any.
origjasstorm: It takes on a $5K advance over 9,000 books to be sold before you can even get any royalties at all
origjasstorm: Also, to space your royalties out even more, mass market publishers usually pay royalties twice a year
origjasstorm: Now, ePublishers, are a bit more generous in paying of royalties. A lot of ebook publishers don't pay advances, but they do pay monthly royalties checks.
origjasstorm: And ePublishers who don't pay monthly royalties checks pay quarterly royalties checks.
origjasstorm: Ebooks run cheaper than standard paperbacks, ($4-5 each) verses the cost of a mass market paperback ($7-8) trade paper back ($10-16) or even hardcovers ($20-30)
origjasstorm: Why? Simple mathematics. It's cheaper to publish an ebook than to publish a paper book. Now, for royalties of a standard paperback verses an ebook.
origjasstorm: In standard mass market, the author gets 8% of the retail price of the first 150,000 copies sold, then 10% after that.
origjasstorm: With ePublishing, the royalties' rate for authors is 35-45% of the retail price of the book, with no sliding scale of royalties.
origjasstorm: So let's put that in numbers: On a paperback that's $6.99, the author gets $0.5592 on each of the first 150,000 books sold.
origjasstorm: On an ebook that retails for $5.20, the royalties are $2.08 (at 40% royalty rate).
origjasstorm: Now, let's be realistic about the royalties, because it's very unlikely anyone's going to come out of the chute selling 150,000 books.
origjasstorm: Let's say the two above books sold 3,000 copies. (For argument's sake all things are equal, and no advance was offered on the book.)
origjasstorm: The mass market paperback would make, after 3,000 books sold is $1,677.60. The ebook would make the author after 3,000 books were sold is $6,240.00.
origjasstorm: Now, on the average, ebooks do not sell as many copies as paperback books, at least not without serious marketing.
origjasstorm: However, the numbers are steadily rising every year. Larger houses, like Ellora's Cave, will boast heavier sales than a small, newly formed company
origjasstorm: Also, one of the smaller benefits for the impatient out there, because I know I am, and publishing can be slower than molasses in the winter
origjasstorm: is that the average length between signing a contract and releasing a book can be less than a year.
origjasstorm: In my own experience, my book Unified Souls was accepted in March of this year, and it's slated for release in September - a six month turnaround
origjasstorm: Not all ePublishers work that way, but it is by far shorter than mass marked publishers which can run 18-24 months, if not longer before a book makes it to shelves
origjasstorm: Also, another side to ePublishing is that most agents and publishers, if you are published with a reputable ebook company, will consider this publishing credit.
origjasstorm: There are a decent number of agents out there who won't work deals in the ePublishing world,
origjasstorm: so if you're considering that aspect, be sure to make certain your future agent deals in ePublishing.
origjasstorm: Now, let me clarify some different aspects of print on demand publishing
origjasstorm: First and foremost, Print On Demand is a digital technology to publish books from a fixed electronic copy per book regardless of order size.
origjasstorm: This allows orders of one to be printed, or orders of a thousand, it makes no difference to POD printing.
origjasstorm: Many ePublishers are starting to use this technology for their ebooks to get more books out there for people to buy
origjasstorm: In and of itself, POD printing is a good thing for an ebook company, because the costs of setting up a "print" run
origjasstorm: where literally thousands of copies of a book are made all at once can be very costly. Then the publisher has to find a place to store the books until they're sold,
origjasstorm: which adds to the cost as well.
origjasstorm: With POD printing, a copy is made only after each copy is requested, therefore there's no leftover books to try and get rid of if the book does not sell.
origjasstorm: It is also what many Self-Publishing and Vanity Presses use
origjasstorm: Now, as most of you know, Self-Publishing and Vanity Presses are ways that authors can pay to have their books published
origjasstorm: So what's the difference?
origjasstorm: To sum it up, the difference in Self-Publishing and Vanity Press is who retains the rights to the book
origjasstorm: Does the author retain all rights to the book? - it's Self-Publishing
origjasstorm: Does the printer retain all rights to the book? - it's a Vanity Press
origjasstorm: That's how you tell the difference. If you're considering the Self-Publishing route for your work, read the contracts carefully
origjasstorm: because you want to make sure you do retain all rights to your work.
origjasstorm: Then you can distribute it however you choose, and even sell it to a large "mass market" house if you so choose to down the road
origjasstorm: Of course, to sell your Self-Published book to a mass market publisher, you'll need to have some incredible sales of your book.
origjasstorm: Now, let me run some numbers by you about Self-Publishing.
origjasstorm: First and foremost, these numbers were taken off of IUniverse.com and Lulu.com. For these numbers I'm using a book that is 98,000 words and runs 450 pages.
origjasstorm: With IUniverse, they have packages starting at $300 and going all the way up to $1200.
origjasstorm: These packages can include listings at Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble.com, cover concept evaluations, and editorial evaluations.
origjasstorm: Notice I said evaluations on the cover art and editorial work. If you want, say, to have your book copy-edited (spelling and grammar checked),
origjasstorm: it costs you $0.015 a word, or an additional $1,470 for a 98K book.
origjasstorm: And if you want it "content edited," where they check for inconsistencies, etc., it will cost you $0.024 a word, or $2,352 for that same 98K book
W2PSushi: whew!
origjasstorm: So, we have, say we'll pick the middle package, which is $899.00 plus copy edit for our tome of 98K, $1,470.00, and a content edit, to check for inconsistencies, of $2,352.00.
origjasstorm: Our total for that Self-Published book at IUniverse? $4,721.00.
origjasstorm: Now, after that, for every book you sell through IUniverse, you get 20% royalties off your book, and they pay you quarterly for your royalties.
origjasstorm: Now, what about Lulu Publishing?
origjasstorm: Lulu doesn't require purchasing a package up front for their printing services, however, you are expected to have your manuscript laid out
origjasstorm: including all cover art, and formatted to their specifications in PDF format and error proof before publishing.
origjasstorm: If you want any editing, cover art services, or other "a la carte" features, you'll be spending anywhere from $50-$1700 a service.
origjasstorm: Also, these services are not offered by Lulu employees, but by contractors that contract from Lulu, so basically, if you get a bad job done, you can't sue Lulu for it
origjasstorm: An example of services: a "Medium" copy edit on a book from 70-100K, is $1700.00, and $350.00 for proof reading a work 60K and up.
origjasstorm: $299 is the charge for a full color cover art. $245.00 for a light copy edit and Lulu formatting of your manuscript.
origjasstorm: So, let's say we decide for our 98K book to go with a full color cover for $299.00, and a $350.00 proofreading service
origjasstorm: That's $649.00 so far for our little book. Now, for the printing costs.
origjasstorm: We figure, using Lulu's handy - dandy cost calculator that our book will cost to print one copy of our 98K, or 450 page book,
origjasstorm: for a 6x9, black and white, perfect binded book (how paperbacks are published) it'll cost $13.55 a copy to print.
origjasstorm: Now, if you want to buy, say 1000 copies for you to sell, you get a 24% discount off the printing costs, which makes that size run cost you $10,340.00
origjasstorm: So, we're looking at $10,989.00 for 1000 copies of our book to be distributed to sellers or for us to sell it out of the trunk of our car.
origjasstorm: But what about pricing?
origjasstorm: Lulu adds a mark-up, whatever you choose it to be, say $4.00 to the book cost, (your royalty for the book), then they take 25% of your mark up and add their own,
origjasstorm: and wallah - your book cover price.
origjasstorm: In this book's case, it would be an extra $1.00 to the mark up, and that's added to the price, which makes your book sell for $18.55
origjasstorm: What does this mean for you in profit? If you sell all 1000 copies from the trunk of your car, you'll make roughly $7,561.00 if you sell it for the Lulu cover price.
origjasstorm: All in all, Self-Publishing can be lucrative if the author is interested in putting in the work to market it properly, (which is another topic all together)
origjasstorm: However, a lot of cash can be required up front before any profit will be seen. If you have the cash and want to "do it yourself," then Self-Publishing may be for you
origjasstorm: So, to recap what I've mentioned:
origjasstorm: ePublishing: Though they offer no advances (currently), they pay a higher royalty rate than mass market and you receive those payments sooner.
origjasstorm: Agents and mass market publishers consider ebooks to be legitimate publishing credits, especially if your sales are good
origjasstorm: POD printing: This is simply a methodology of printing a book via a digital medium, allowing one book to be printed at a time.
origjasstorm: Many ebook publishers use this to promote more sales of their books. Self-Publication and Vanity Presses also use this medium to publish books
origjasstorm: The difference between Vanity and Self-Publication is that the press retains the rights to the book if it is a Vanity Press
origjasstorm: and the author retains the rights to the book if it is Self-Published.
origjasstorm: Self Publishing is a faster, yet costly method of printing your book, and many additional services, such as editing and cover art, are services you must pay for.
origjasstorm: I hope you've enjoyed this, and that I've answered some of your questions about ePublishing. Now, I open the floor to questions
origjasstorm: My goodness, that only took 25 minutes???
WriterOfDreamz: lol
MoonCat25: well it was very well organized

MoonCat25: I was wondering what type of promotion the epublishers put into it. I know EC has pages in Romantic Times Reviews, but is there other besides that?
origjasstorm: That depends a lot on the publisher. SOme, like Ellora's Cave, spends a lot on marketing, other smaller houses probably don't have all the resources, but I do know that most will give you as many ARC's you need for reviews, if you know some people you want to review your book.
origjasstorm: at least my publisher is willing to give me as many as i need for promotion

JOYFULWRITER99: Do epublishers require agented submissions, and is there money the writer pays upfront, and..are there legitimate science fiction epublishers?
origjasstorm: Epublishers do not require agented submissions. If you have an agent, you can have your agent submit, but it's not required most accept unsolicited queries.
origjasstorm: As far as upfront money? no, none that the writer must pay to the publisher at all -- they work like a mass market publisher. The only thing I would recommend for an ebook would be a website, but it's not required
origjasstorm: Scifi? You better believe it. Double Dragon is one.. A lot of the publishers out there are into more speculative work. They love scifi...
JOYFULWRITER99: Christian sci fi?
origjasstorm: Did you all get the email I sent out about publishers?
W2PSushi: [a rare subgenre indeed!]
JOYFULWRITER99: I would love it.
origjasstorm: um, I wouldn't see why not...
origjasstorm: I'll email you one after the chat, okay?
JOYFULWRITER99: ok, thank you.

ShayKay1951: I knew a man who self-published his books - he had to go out and promote the books himself. Going from town to town selling them. He would sell them for $13.00 each and because he'd bought them from the press, everything he sold went into his own pocket
origjasstorm: And that's what a lot of people do. How much did he pay to have them printed, shay, do you know?
ShayKay1951: He paid $8 each - the other 5 was his profit
origjasstorm: It can work for people, it really can, but they have to be willing to do the marketing. That's where the sales come from.

PHeeren: I wonder if the three you mentioned have been free agents without any overlook from writers organizations and should I contact Best Business Bureau to check their qualifications and no-nos? is epublishing going to replace book publishing?
origjasstorm: The three companies I mentioned, Ellora's cave, Lulu and IUniverse actually are extremely well respected in the epublishing community, and Ellora's is the largest romantica seller in the world (I do believe), and Lulu and iUniverse
PHeeren: in the next 20 yrs from now? I submitted my Easter story to Dorrance Publishing in Pittsburgh but my mom saved me from doing it because I would pay $$$$ to Dorrance
origjasstorm: are the two most respected self-publishing companies out there.
W2PSushi: (even iUniverse?!!?)!
PHeeren: (will traditional book publishing be gone for good??)
PHeeren: (or not, we hope so??)
origjasstorm: I don't know that traditional publishing will be erased, at least not for a long time. Ebooks are just now starting to take off, and when cheaper ebook readers come out, they'll probably do better.
WriterOfDreamz: I don't think so Ph - there's just some places you can't take an eBook LOL
origjasstorm: I believe Dorrance is a vanity press, I think, though I'm not sure on that one..

Mallie1025: So it would be in one's best interests to sub to an e-pub without an agent to have to pay? yes I got all info and went to your site
W2PSushi: yes it is
Mallie1025: Also how easy is it to move from pubbed e-publishing to mainstream publishing?
origjasstorm: Okay, um, you shouldn't have to pay anything to submit to an epublisher.
origjasstorm: If you're paying money to have your book done, it's a self-publishing or a vanity press. it should not cost anything to submit to an epublisher
origjasstorm: As far as moving from epublishing to mainstream publishing, if, say, you have three ebooks that did decently in sales, you shouldn't have a problem at all.
origjasstorm: They're still book credits.
Mallie1025: thanks so much

ShayKay1951: I have a recent copy of Writer's Digest and Ellora's Cave is mentioned as the one and only epublisher recommended by WD.
W2PSushi: cool
origjasstorm: This is very true. Ellora's cave has won tons of recognition from Romance Writers of America, who also endorse them. :)

MoonCat25: I recently saw in Romance Writers Report that according to International Digital Publishing Forum; ebook sales from 18 companies totaled $11.9 million last year
MoonCat25: did you come across any numbers for self and vanity?
origjasstorm: I heard about those ebook numbers too... impressive, I must say.
origjasstorm: No, actually, I didn't in my research for this.
MoonCat25: btw it was mentioned the market is growing pretty fast
origjasstorm: I've heard that as well.

Mallie1025: I think it is on your website, but do these three take all genres?
origjasstorm: Lulu and IUniverse will take anything, Ellora's Cave is for all aspects of romance, from sensual to... erotica
Mallie1025: thanks
origjasstorm: Um, on the email I sent out, I believe from what I saw at the sites, those sites take a broad scope of work.

W2PSushi: Being digital, how much is piracy impacting ebooks? (Or POD for that matter -- there could be 'bootleg' machines.)
origjasstorm: To be honest, I haven't heard a lot, I don't know what security measures are being taken to protect the ebooks or even the POD systems. However, I know that the POD printers do use some form of "contract rights" to the printing of the books, something in the contract about it, but I can't remember the wording. There's also usually a "lease" or term that the POD printer has the files, but that varies on the book printer.
W2PSushi: an old classmate of mine invented and manufactures a line of POD machines
ShayKay1951: I think I can answer that, Paul. I have a cousin who bought some ebooks. She could download them to me to be read, but I could not print them off so I could - like - read them in bed or something.
W2PSushi: I can ask him, at the school reunion, this August
origjasstorm: well, I suppose it could happen in theory but I don't' know how.
origjasstorm: Didn't know that Shay.

JOYFULWRITER99: Jas, what do you know about Atlantic Bridge?
JOYFULWRITER99: I just found them, and they sound wonderful as an epublisher
origjasstorm: Well, not much actually, but I do know this, Predators and Editors doesn't have a warning against them....
origjasstorm: So that's always a good sign ;)

PHeeren: should we avoid vanity publishers just to save our sanity? or do we have to follow our conscience?
W2PSushi: are you wealthy, Tom?
PHeeren: no. I am on SSID
origjasstorm: I would most certainly avoid Vanity Presses because when you publish with them, not only are you having to pay for your book being made, THEY keep the rights to your book, and if there's a sale to a mass market publisher, then THEY get the money, not you.
PHeeren: good advice, jas and I will heed this to my deathbed
origjasstorm: Good idea. :)
PHeeren: ;-)

origjasstorm: okay, now, I want to know, who in here did NOT get the email I sent out with the list of ebook publishers earlier tonight?
ShayKay1951: *raises my hand*
PHeeren: not me
PHeeren: lol
ShayKay1951: send it to Mystical mom too
origjasstorm: okay.
origjasstorm: Shay, you should have, I have your email...
ShayKay1951: Jas, I probably did, but I was deleting a bunch of stuff and I think I might have deleted it
origjasstorm: Okay... No problem... Will send.

origjasstorm: Okay, then, well, I think I've done all the damage I can do around this popsicle stand...
origjasstorm: Does anyone have any last questions for me?
JOYFULWRITER99: Jas, thank you soooo much! Just a comment.
origjasstorm: You're welcome, I was glad to do it
MoonCat25: <<<<<clap>>>>>>
Mallie1025: Nice presentation--Candice--very helpful
JOYFULWRITER99: Atlantic Bridge DOES print some of their books.
W2PSushi: thanks! :-D
JOYFULWRITER99: *applaud*
origjasstorm: Oh, shameless plug for me -- my scifi romance Unified SOuls is coming out in September of this year, featuring the now infamous Jasmine Storm
Soulofawriter18: applause applause..great job!
PHeeren: <><><><>
origjasstorm: Joyful, that's cool.
origjasstorm: Bet they use POD printing. :)
JOYFULWRITER99: bet so too! ;-)
origjasstorm: Glad everyone enjoyed it. :)
JOYFULWRITER99: and...they pay 45%
PHeeren: good lecture, ga
Mallie1025: wonderful!! can you give us heads up when it is out?
origjasstorm: Certainly I will. :)
W2PSushi: and BUY a copy
Rose1533: <><><><><> Thanks, Jas
Rose1533: Night all. Bedtime, here.
origjasstorm: If anyone has any other questions, feel free to email me -- jasminestorm@cox.net
origjasstorm: nighters all

6/26/06 8:03:36 PM Closing "Chat Log 6/26/06"

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