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Old 05-13-2010, 08:07 PM   #61
mrkarl
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if I was able to get a free sample and I liked the story then I would definately buy all the rest of it. Since I've gotten an e reader I haven't bought a paper book, I used to spend a lot on books and laking space to store them I'd have to throw most of them out after reading. One thing I'm finding is that some books aren't available in ebook in canada That I can find anyway wich I think is pure stupidity on the publishers part. so I'm faced with the desion of wether to buy the real book, wich I have no room to keep when I'm finished , or wait until the book is available eletronically, if it's readily available then good, but if not immediately then there's a very good chance that I'll forget that the story even exists......Just so you know, something that bugs me is that it's actually a lot easier and quicker to download a book for free from somewhere than it is to actually buy it from some site. It kind of bugs me because money isn't really an issue for me when a book is involved. But the time and energy spent getting the story into my hands is.
Just curious, as an author why is the media your story is distributed on any concern to you.....that's your publishers job. Your work is a work of the mind, to go to other minds, and your publisher has agreed to get it from your mind to these other minds as quickly and efficiently as possible and to collect payment for your work. If sales are slipping when they were alright before then maybe it's because they aren't doing thier jobs properly.....my job is very closely connected to the printing industry and that bussiness is going dwindling. Who knows, maybe a lot of publishers still owe money on equipment and that's why they're going on about paper book sales. Not my problem or yours, they had a good run for a long time and it's time to move on.

hmmmm, yes the downturn of the printing industry is getting me, but then I've never taken my job for granted
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Old 05-13-2010, 09:46 PM   #62
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I won't buy a paper copy of a freebie but...if I enjoyed the freebie there's a very good chance I will buy additional titles from the same author (either pbook or ebook).
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Old 05-13-2010, 11:11 PM   #63
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No more dead tree books

If I can get a copy of eBook, I will never get a dead tree book. Living in New York City, space is such a premium. After moved several times, I shed a lot of my dead tree tomes. I buy from various eBook vendors, such as Sony eReader store, Fictionwise, Kindle store, etc. Especially for those 800+ page books, eBooks are such a wonderful replacement.
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Old 05-14-2010, 05:17 AM   #64
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I still buy some printed books

Just pre-ordered hard back and de-luxe editions of Towers of Midnight (Wheel of Time) by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson.
I will do the same for A Memory of Light, the last book in Wheel of Time.
I also pre-ordered The Crippled God (Malazan Book of the Fallen) by Steven Erikson. The last in the main saga.
I bought The Hobbit de-luxe edition some months ago

Hopefully, Wheel of Time and Malazan Book of the Fallen are the last contributions on my part for printed books.
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Old 05-14-2010, 06:40 AM   #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmaul1114 View Post
Giving away a whole book doesn't work though since most books only get read once by most people.
It can build a fanbase, that can lead to other opportunities. I know of several people who have got book deals as a result of giving away free ebooks, and one that also got a couple of film deals. I think it will be harder to break through that way now, because there are so many people doing it.

For writers who are already established, they could easily get people to pay a small fee and sell direct. That small fee would probably be more than they would get if they let a publisher sell it instead. And as someone else said, they could always sell it to a normal publisher at a later date.
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Old 05-14-2010, 05:03 PM   #66
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I have a tiny house (785 sq. ft). I don't buy books anymore. I borrow them from the library and return them when I'm done, or I buy them via Amazon's Kindle Store and read on my Kindle 2 or iPad. I literally do not have the storage space. I like holding a book as much as anyone else does, but you have to minimize clutter wherever possible when you have a small house.

So in my case, no chance, but if I like the free e-books, I'll buy the non-free e-books as well. You get paid for those, so why does my choice of "format" even enter into things?
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Old 05-14-2010, 06:19 PM   #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mr ploppy View Post
It can build a fanbase, that can lead to other opportunities. I know of several people who have got book deals as a result of giving away free ebooks, and one that also got a couple of film deals. I think it will be harder to break through that way now, because there are so many people doing it.

For writers who are already established, they could easily get people to pay a small fee and sell direct. That small fee would probably be more than they would get if they let a publisher sell it instead. And as someone else said, they could always sell it to a normal publisher at a later date.
Agree 100%.

As I said above, it can lead to good things in the future.

It just kills any chance of sell that book to that person once they've read it. But they may buy future books by that author, so it can be a good strategy.

It's just different from music where artists can stream whole albums on their website and get people to buy them as music as replay value that books don't for most people. Hear an album once and love it, you want to keep listening to it over and over. Read a book and love it, most will never read it again, and if they do it will be a long time down the road.

But it can be a worthwhile tactic to give away a book to get publicity and improve a future career--as long as the person wasn't a one hit/book wonder of course.

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Old 05-14-2010, 06:21 PM   #68
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I have just gotten around to reading this thread, although I have meant to for a while.

I am in a different camp from some, I actively read using two different devices, an enTourage eDGe and a Sony PRS-300. The eDGe fits a niche that I have long wanted filled, it is great for tech books, reference material, notes, etc. The PRS is great for casual reading like novels, etc while I ride the exercise bike, watch TV, etc.

I have been pulling ebooks for a some time as I waited to get my reader (eDGe was first, Sony just recently), so my TBR pile is pretty big. Having seen some of your posts, your first three books from this series are on the pile.

I will probably only ever buy a paper book again if it is a reference book, programming book, etc, and then will expect to get a digitial edition with it (like o'reilly does). For novels, etc I will not be buying paper again. From my co-workers who have gotten e-readers, only one has started reading paper again, and the only reason he is doing it is he is borrowing from family members. So I doubt that free ebooks will impact your paper sales, I just don't see many people go back to paper after getting into ebooks.

I will probably not ever buy an e-book without a sample available (ala Smashwords), unless I really know the author (previous works act as samples).

Now, you know you can't get me as a paper customer, how do you get my money from me. Say I read your first book and love it. I want to read more (for you, right now I can, since your next two are free also, but say I have read those too, and clammoring for more). I want to read your 4th book, All I see it available in is DRM encumbered sites (SONY, Barnes&Noble, Kindle, Kobo), many who want you on their reader or none. Being who I am though, since this is the only option for your ebooks, I will probably never get the first three books off of my TBR pile (the pdf is tempting, but a poor format for e-reading). Because, is it worth my time (no other cost so far), to read three books of a series to be frustrated not being able to read the fourth?

Now, say I'm tempted by your writing, and decide to muddle through the fourth book in PDF, so I do read this series and enjoy it. Say I decide to donate directly to you, and when I go to your website, the donation link is paypal. Nope, not going to happen. No matter how much I enjoy your work as an author, I will not use paypal.

This is another point I think Authors need to be fighting with their publishers. If I read your book and enjoyed it, I would be likely to buy the new one, and probably by the back catalog, however, more and more, I see being locked out unless I am willing to cave to the blessed device, service, etc.

I just finished a book I got off of smashwords for free (Haven). Eagerly awaiting more from this author, and will have no problem spending a reasonable amount to get future books. I have also recommended this to many others I know that read and would enjoy it. There were a few issues with the book, but not many (no more than I have seen in a lot of paperbacks), but the story was good, would like to see more from that world.

I also just got some games for my system. It was a bundle, pay what you want type thing, you could weight your donation to any of the games, or allow it to be split equally to all parties (developers and 2 charities), so I could have paid $0, or $100, and could have given $100 and all to the EFF, developers get none. I gave a decent amount (what I felt it was worth), and others did too. Each of the developers and the charities got something around $125,000+ in the 7 days I think (more than $1million US to the 7 orgs). No DRM, not encumbered in other ways, and every person could have given nothing and gotten the games (btw they showed up on pirated sites, even though you could get them for free officially). http://www.wolfire.com/humble This shows people are willing to pay for what they see has value.

Anyway, back to your question:
I don't buy paperbacks anymore, so I am not able to support you that way.
I will not use paypal, so I am unable to donate to you directly.
I will not buy DRM encumbered books, so I can't buy your ebooks either new or back catalog.

So, although I am probably close to your perfect target audience (I have always read sci-fi), I have been locked out of supporting you as an author. As it is, your first three books will probably stay on my TBR pile until I can see an easy way for #4 to moved on, since it is frustrating to read 3 books and know the 4th is there, but not for you.

Hope this helps, anyway, that is my opinion.
--Carl
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Old 05-14-2010, 07:40 PM   #69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pricecw View Post
I will not buy DRM encumbered books, so I can't buy your ebooks either new or back catalog.
His backlist doesn't have DRM. It's true book 4 of the series being discussed does (and probably the Battlestar Galactica book he wrote), but that's it AFAIK. Unfortunately I'm sure he was give no choice in the matter of Sunborn having DRM.

http://www.webscription.net/s-171-jeffrey-a-carver.aspx
http://store.fictionwise.com/ebooks/...-Carver/?si=37
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Old 05-14-2010, 08:50 PM   #70
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Honestly, before last month when I finally transitioned into electronic books, I was spending way too much money each month on books. Since I have been a reading addict for as long as I could remember, I often treated book stores as libraries by sitting in there and read read read. And even then, I'd buy books that I really liked.

You know how loved ones of smokers sometimes show the smokers how much they spent each month on cigarettes? Well, something like that happened to me, except it was about books.

In short, I don't spend any more money on books nowadays. I will look for free electronic books whereever I can. I think I have fed enough authors with all the money I spent on books over the years.

PS - My basement is full of books.

Last edited by jblitereader; 05-14-2010 at 08:54 PM.
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Old 05-14-2010, 09:46 PM   #71
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Originally Posted by starrigger View Post
....

So I put it to you folks: If you download a free ebook, and assuming you actually read it and like it, what are the chances that you'll pick up a paper copy of it, either for your own library, or to give as a gift to someone else? Do you talk it up and recommend it to friends? Are there less obvious ways in which you support the authors of books you like?
...
If I already have a free copy and have read it, odds are I will not purchase a paper copy. There are rare occasions if it is a book I love, love love, but for the typical novel. No.

Sorry you sales were disappointing.
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Old 05-14-2010, 10:41 PM   #72
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Mr. Carver,

Something occurred to me today. I understand the logistics behind why MMPB reprints weren't feasible. But I know that when Tor picked up Kage Baker's new books a couple of years ago, they reissued her backlist in nice trade paperback editions, with covers in the style of her new titles.

Would trade reprints have been possible, or were those also out of the question?
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Old 05-14-2010, 11:15 PM   #73
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As many others in this thread, I never buy pbooks. So a free ebook can lure me to buy other ebooks by that author, but it will never lure me to buy a pbook.

If my understanding of the original post was correct, I don't understand how anyone expected it to work. The first 3 books of a series were offered for free. Then the new book in the series was also offered for free for a year. What was there for the people who got these books for free to buy? I could understand offering the older books in the series for free in hopes that people who liked them would then buy the newest book, but hoping that people who read a new ebook for free will then go and buy the pbook of that same story? I think that's a real misunderstanding of ebook readers.

I do still read pbooks, but only from the library when they are unavailable for my Kindle or IMO overpriced. It's sure my impression that the vast majority of ebook enthusiasts only turn to paper when they have to and the subset who want to have a book in both digital and paper format is very small.
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Old 05-15-2010, 12:06 AM   #74
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Once I've read a book, I have no reason to buy it in a different version unless as a gift for someone. I don't collect paper books. I read them and put them back into the world for someone else to read. And I'm reading fewer and fewer in print format. I still buy some to support author friends but that will change in time.
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Old 05-15-2010, 01:58 PM   #75
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnemicOak View Post
His backlist doesn't have DRM. It's true book 4 of the series being discussed does (and probably the Battlestar Galactica book he wrote), but that's it AFAIK. Unfortunately I'm sure he was give no choice in the matter of Sunborn having DRM.

http://www.webscription.net/s-171-jeffrey-a-carver.aspx
http://store.fictionwise.com/ebooks/...-Carver/?si=37
It is true, I looked at the distribution channel of the 4th book, not the backlist (I did see the backlist on those distributors). But again, without the 4th book in a 4 book series, I probably will not choose to invest the time in the first three, since I will then be frustrated not being able to get the 4th.

He actually had the choice at one time, because without his permission, no one can distribute his work. He may have chose to sell that right away, but he is the one that choose to do that. If he has made that choice (appearances say he has), I then have to incorporate that into my value proposition on my investment of time, knowing future books are likely to also be so encumbered.

--Carl
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