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Is the golden age of publishing over


‘You can keep on knocking but you can’t come in -  is no longer true as the market is swamped by self-published books.  Droves of writers are bypassing publishing houses in favour of DIY. No  longer does an author wanting to self publish have to commit a large sum  of money upfront to buy thousands of copies of his title and then have  to sell them himself. One of the most welcome by-products of digital  technology has been the development of on-line publishers that offer  free publishing tools to assist aspiring writers to complete and sell  their work without having to spend a cent.

How does DIY affect publishers


Ironically,  it is the excluders who are finding themselves excluded. Mainstream  publishers that would only consider work submitted by a literary agent,  the famous or, a relative of someone eminent in the literary industry,  are being bypassed by a new breed of  writers who refuse to slink away,  completely demoralized.  It’s true that independent  authors can’t  compete with mainstream publishers when it comes down to selling to book  chains but book shops are on the wane and on-line shopping is in  ascendancy and you don’t need a  sales/marketing /publicity department  or a huge budget to market on the net.

It has always been difficult for  self-published authors to be taken seriously by the literary reviewers,  snobbishness is alive and well in the media. But the media is small  bikkies compared to the world wide web. Savvy writers are writing blogs  or articles, joining book communities, forums and social networking to  market their books on the net and, the general public doesn’t give a  toss. The publisher doesn’t come into the equation when it comes to  buying a book.

What lies ahead


The  future doesn’t look good for publishers with sky rocketing printing  costs, decreasing numbers of retail outlets, escalation in on-line  shopping and acceptance by readers of e-books Competition from hordes of  independent authors who are prepared to take control of their own  destinies is just another nail in the coffin.




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Having a 3D Book Cover for your book  will not only increase your sales  but also give the customer the  feeling that they are actually getting  something for their money. With this in mid I have created simple  and easy to use 3D Book Cover Template that can be easly edited in  PhotoShop and can be simple integrated into your website.

Download The Free 3D Book Cover Template

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Recently, a re-formatted new version of the famous biography “Jane Austen: Her Life and Letters, a Family Record” ( was published through CreateSpace. The and Barnes & Noble sales had been quite modest, but one odd fact jumped out from a publishing report: this book sold more copies in Salt Lake City, Utah than in any other U.S. location…by a ratio of 8 to 1.


Why? Did this biography get selected by a Salt Lake book club, school, or Austen group in that region or were there other factors involved? Unsure why this was so–and more intrigued by the puzzle than having any hopes in making marketing advances–I contacted Aspen Anderson, the Utah Regional Director of JASNA–the Jane Austen Society of North America. Perhaps Ms. Anderson would have some ideas about this phenomenon?


A book club becoming active was a possibility, Ms. Anderson said. But the real reason behind the sales, she thought, was likely to be one of morals.


“Honestly, I think the most reasonable explanation would be that Salt Lake City is 60% Mormon. While society has shifted away from the culture and morals of Jane Austen’s world, Latter Day Saints still believe in abstinence before marriage and complete fidelity afterwards, as well as the idea that women are inherently different from men–although for us, it is EQUAL but different.”


Ms. Anderson went on to point out that, in Utah, particularly the Salt Lake area, “There is also a great focus on early marriage (there has to be, with the doctrine of abstinence), which means that the stalwart men of our church (who are far outnumbered by the amazing women, sadly) tend to marry young, leaving a lot of fantastic women to be single and pressured by their parents to get married. This is a cultural rather than a doctrinal principle, but it tends to leave a lot of women feeling wistful, and they turn to the romance of Jane Austen.”


Many of the women’s mothers, Ms. Anderson said, were also raised on the stories of Jane Austen because of the highly regarded and moral material in the Austen novels.


My own wife points out that these are the same reasons many non-Mormon women likely read Jane Austen: witty, intelligent, romantic titles with no smut. Set in a bygone era that prized gentility and mutual respect between the sexes.


So, hundreds of years after Jane Austen’s death, her stories continue to entrance, encourage, and excite the heartstrings of young–and not so young–women of romantic inclinations who prefer their men intelligent, honorable, and, of course, quite handsome.

–Howard Clarke,, Copyright 2011.  Reproduced here as a matter of interest for CreateSpace authors and marketers.


(This article does not imply any relationship of Howard Clarke's (aka Fatchance) books or web site to, or endorsement by, the JASNA. Ms. Anderson was quoted with permission.)

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I thought I was done with the hard part of publishing my first book.  I wrote it, illustrated it, designed it and even figured out how to turn it into a pdf.  Now I am ready to start developing a web presence to market the book and I have come up against a truly unforeseen problem, there is an English porn star with a strong web presence and my name.  Any web activity I do under my name is berried under 4 pages of porn references on the search engines.   

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Something everyone should do, if you haven't already, is to setup some Google Alerts for your book. This will email you every time Google finds your book mentioned anywhere. I've received quite a few alerts about the books I publish this way, and I received an alert today about a review that had just been posted on a blog for one of my books: Foley Russel and That Poor Girl. The story gets better...


Last year I sent a review copy to an Australian blooger (you can read the review here if you're interested). The blogger wrote the most touching review, and both Foley's author and I were a blubbering mess afterwards. This is a really special book, of which I'm so proud to be the lucky publisher.


Through an unexpected "cultural exchange" between this Aussie blogger and a Canadian blogger, Foley has scored another wonderful, beautiful, amazing review on the Canadian blog too. And it only cost me one review copy, not two.


I'm really chuffed right now.

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