Last night I was at my local chapter meeting of the California Writer’s Club. I made an announcement about a great workshop we have coming up about writing, publishing and promoting ebooks. It features founder and CEO of Smashwords.com Mark Coker speaking for four hours–for the first time ever!–about the ebook revolution and how to get in on this publishing trend.
As I looked around the room I noticed people talking to their neighbors or looking at me with blank stares. “Amazing,” I thought. “A room full of writers, aspiring authors and authors who have little or no interest in the biggest thing to hit the publishing industry since the printing press.”
It doesn’t matter who you are, your age, what genre in which you write, or whether you prefer to have your book appear in print or in an ebook published by under your imprint or that of a traditional publisher, if your book doesn’t show up as an ebook, you’re missing the boat.
That’s what I told that room full or writers. “There’s one reason you should consider publishing an ebook. If you don’t you’re missing the boat that’s leaving the current publishing world’s dock. If you don’t want to miss it, you better learn how to write, publish and distribute ebooks. Otherwise, you will surely be left behind.”
Not convinced of the trend? I read at least three articles in the last two weeks about how ebook sales have surpassed print book sales in brick-and-mortar stores and in on-line stores. (By the way, my son–a notoriously slow and unwilling reader–zoomed through a boring book for school on his Iphone, for whatever that’s worth.) Here’s a graph from the International Digital Publishing Forum that shows clearly the ebook trend as it has been exploding:
In the third quarter of 2010 alone $119.7 million in ebooks were sold by trade wholesellers. Compare Q1 – Q3 2010 ($304.6 million) vs. 2002 – 2009 in annual trade wholesale sales. Convinced? Wanna get in on the sales?
The International Digital Publishing Forum collects quarterly US trade retail eBook sales in conjunction with the Association of American Publishers (AAP).
I’m no expert on selling ebooks. I admit it. I’ve got two up on Smashwords.com. I’ve got them up on Kindle, too. They aren’t selling too well. I’ve not marketed them hardly at all; I’ve not had time. I’m about to upload three short books to Create Space and convert them to ebooks, too. So…it’s time to get on the ship.
I’ll be at the Mark Coker workshop for sure. Will you be there, too? If not, find some other way to get on the ship, and then set sail! Let me know what you learn and whether you reach your destination. I’ll keep you posted on how my trip goes, too.