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logos1234567
08-16-2005, 07:06 PM
I am thinking of making my printed book into an ebook version but I am not sure of its implications. Any advice is warmly welcomed.....

I notice on amazon etc that ebooks sell bucketloads and are their topsellers.

What I am wondering is:

1. What is the real risk of my material being pirated as I notice many ebook sites (ie booklocker) do not have any security/copy protection on them. (I read a previous thread on here on this but am still interested in other people's experiences. For instance Project Gutenberg's stuff (which is admittedly online and not pdf) is regularly pirated by several big companies. I will not name names but it is very obvious.)

2. Are the people who buy ebooks and printed books one and the same crowd and am I taking sales away from my printed book, or am I widening my horizons and reaching a totally new audience... or is it a bit of both?

3. What is a fair price for an ebook by a relatively unknown author? In my opinion they are not worth much at all but then I am old fashioned! I notice Lance Armstrong's ebook is around 66% of the printed price as are all the ebooks by his publisher. I can not personally understand why anyone would pay such high prices for ebooks. I do not want to underprice myself but I do not wish to be greedy either....

Richard
08-16-2005, 07:59 PM
1. What is the real risk of my material being pirated as I notice many ebook sites (ie booklocker) do not have any security/copy protection on them. (I read a previous thread on here on this but am still interested in other people's experiences. For instance Project Gutenberg's stuff (which is admittedly online and not pdf) is regularly pirated by several big companies. I will not name names but it is very obvious.)

No piracy involved. Project Gutenberg's books are all in the public domain. You can do whatever you want with its books, from package them up and selling them, to sending a free copy to everyone in the world.

Copy protection won't stop anyone who really wants at your content, and unless you're Pratchett or Rowling or someone like that, really, nobody cares. All it will do is annoy the hell out of anyone who justs wants to quote a bit of text, or read it on another device that they own, or otherwise do things that won't harm you. It's not worth it. Worst case scenario, they throw the file up on a P2P site or similar, and get no downloads because nobody's looking for your book. They'd do that even if you DRMed it up to the nines, if the market was there to make it worth the time. Really, don't worry about it. Worry about making the experience as good as possible for the people who pay, not rolling around in terror that a couple of kids might stare at the holy words for free.

2. Are the people who buy ebooks and printed books one and the same crowd and am I taking sales away from my printed book, or am I widening my horizons and reaching a totally new audience... or is it a bit of both?

Do you have the right to make an ebook, or did you sign that right away to your publisher? If so, it depends on the subject. Erotica is a big seller, sci-fi and fantasy have a chance of doing okay, but period drama or something isn't really going to target folks looking for digital downloads. Don't forget, you'll still have to advertise its presence if you want people to bite - just having an ebook available doesn't mean anyone will ever find it online.

3. What is a fair price for an ebook by a relatively unknown author? In my opinion they are not worth much at all but then I am old fashioned! I notice Lance Armstrong's ebook is around 66% of the printed price as are all the ebooks by his publisher. I can not personally understand why anyone would pay such high prices for ebooks. I do not want to underprice myself but I do not wish to be greedy either....

Check sites like Fictionwise to see what the industry considers a fair price, but remember, they may not actually be selling that many copies. A few dollars at most though. I'd probably give $5 or so as my sweet spot price for trying something out, making a donation or similar.

logos1234567
08-17-2005, 12:49 AM
Thanks for your advice re ebooks.

No piracy involved. Project Gutenberg's books are all in the public domain. You can do whatever you want with its books, from package them up and selling them, to sending a free copy to everyone in the world.


To clarify, I am well aware that Project Gutenberg's stuff is all public domain...I just see it as suspicious that as soon as Gutenberg brings something out, several companies follow with digital downloads within weeks..they are obviosuly not scanning the original old book for themselves but using Gutenberg's version!!!

You cannot do anything you like with Project Gutenberg's version of the books... ProjectGutenberg do restrict its commercial use as any other publisher would protect their version of a public domain printing. When push comes to shove though Project Gutenberg would have a hard time proving where the 'pirateers' source material came from... which is what the pirateers rely on but it still sucks in my opinion. And the fact that VERY large companies do it (naming no names) is just one source of concern for me regarding ebooks.

veinglory
08-25-2005, 08:24 PM
Most good epublishers put some limitations on the file the sell to make it harder to copy.

What sort of book are we talking here? The only really big sellers in ebooks are erotica and self help.

My feeling is that the overlap in customer bases is small--but to sell much at all you should so with a reputable genre specific epublisher with an established readership. Such a publisher will go after anyone who pirates on your behalf.

Richard
08-25-2005, 08:37 PM
You cannot do anything you like with Project Gutenberg's version of the books... ProjectGutenberg do restrict its commercial use as any other publisher would protect their version of a public domain printing.

As far as I'm aware, that's not true. You can't use their trademark without paying, but the text is open-season:

A Project Gutenberg ebook is made out of two parts: the public domain book and the non public domain Project Gutenberg trademark and license. If you strip the Project Gutenberg license and all references to Project Gutenberg from the ebook, you are left with a public domain ebook. You can do anything you want with that.

No piracy going on at all.

Epicman
09-10-2005, 10:44 AM
Logos I won't e-book mine - just personal I guess but if sales are doing good why mess with it? I heard somewhere that B&N or some big outfit quit ebooks entirely. Demand isn't good because reading a book on a computer screen just hurts the eyes, you can't sit on the john with it, and it's not portable, among other reasons I can think of...

Just my 2 cents...

Epicman
Glenn S. Hamilton
http://cometogetherbooks.com

PeeDee
09-19-2005, 10:22 AM
e-books are a cool concept, but until they make me an ebook reader that's easy to use, works well, and is stable...why bother? I have never had a single problem turning on a hardcover book. And unless the cat jumps on it, it never crashes.

A company like Apple or IBM or microsoft needs to step forward and actively make an e-book reader that is sleek, smooth, and cool. I mean, it's like going from a cassette player to an iPod (say what you will about them, you get my comparison).

But they won't do it because the market's not really there yet. The market's not really there yet because there's no easy way to read and use them, because a company has not made a sexy ebook reader. They have not done this because the market's not there yet....etc....

The concept of piracy puzzles me. I mean, the ebooks are usually encoded well enough that you can't just copy and paste the text out. Otherwise, sure they can still steal it. But remember, if I want I can take a paper book and set it on my lap and type it into the computer.

99% of people do not want to do this, just so they can have thejoy of staring at it on their computer screen. The other 1% are likely determined enough that there are few security measures that will stop all of 'em.

Vanessa
09-19-2005, 06:17 PM
I heard somewhere that B&N or some big outfit quit ebooks entirely. Demand isn't good because reading a book on a computer screen just hurts the eyes, you can't sit on the john with it, and it's not portable, among other reasons I can think of...

That's a pretty good point, however, I don't spend much time reading an ebook online or in my folder. I may occassionally browse through it. But for the most part I print it for future references and easy access. I punch holes in the printed version and place it in a three ring binder.
That works for me! My e-book library is very limited, but has a wealth of information. I definitely wouldn't buy a novel in the form of an e-book.

PeeDee
09-19-2005, 07:36 PM
That's what was so devilishly successful about Jim Baen's free disk that he included with a bunch of books, on whcih was include the full of text of a great many Baen books. You can read it on the computer, no problem...except for the pain in your back, the redness in your eyes, and the fact that you're only in chapter 2 of 55 and your eyes are about to roll out. It worked for me. I wanted to reallyread one of the John Ringo books on there, so I wound up going out and buying it.

Very smart... :)

I don't think it garnered a ton of similar sales, though. I never saw another one and I haven't seen another publisher attempt it. So, I don't know.

Duncan J Macdonald
09-20-2005, 02:39 AM
That's what was so devilishly successful about Jim Baen's free disk that he included with a bunch of books, on whcih was include the full of text of a great many Baen books. You can read it on the computer, no problem...except for the pain in your back, the redness in your eyes, and the fact that you're only in chapter 2 of 55 and your eyes are about to roll out. It worked for me. I wanted to reallyread one of the John Ringo books on there, so I wound up going out and buying it.

Very smart... :)

I don't think it garnered a ton of similar sales, though. I never saw another one and I haven't seen another publisher attempt it. So, I don't know.PeeDee, there are seven Baen CDs out there -- each released with a different hardcover book. All the CDs are free to copy and distribute - just keep all the files on the disk and don't modify them. Baen considers the discs to be advertising, and the cost per CD is miniscule.

PeeDee
09-20-2005, 06:03 AM
In this case, I'm delighted to be wrong. I knew that they were use as advertising (a cunning ploy, I think) but I didn't know there were seven.

I must go a-huntin'. :D

Duncan J Macdonald
09-20-2005, 07:23 AM
In this case, I'm delighted to be wrong. I knew that they were use as advertising (a cunning ploy, I think) but I didn't know there were seven.

I must go a-huntin'. :DSorry, make that nine CDs. Download 'em here http://baencd.thefifthimperium.com/.