Wednesday, July 12, 2006

An education in print-on-demand publishing

I was looking up this book online - Chaste Goddess - because it's written by a coworker of a friend. What I find so interesting is that the book is self-published through a download/print-on-demand (POD) publisher called Book Locker.

Poking around Book Locker's site was enlightening, especially its Reasons not to Work with Us page. The page seemed to be straightforward about the pros and cons of the business. Such as:
If the primary way you want to sell your print book is through book stores, we're not the right company for you. No POD company is.


If you don't like to market your book, we are definitely the wrong company for you. Our entire business is built around helping authors cost-effectively find their market. Epublishing (POD and ebooks) combined with the Internet offers the best way for new authors to do this without dishing out thousands of dollars.
What was unexpected was that even though this company is techinically a self-publisher, it says it is highly selective. From the company's Submitting Your Book for Consideration page:

Your book must be accepted for publication by BookLocker prior to being listed on Once you receive a letter of acceptance, you will be provided with very detailed submission instructions. We reject more than 90% of incoming proposals, so please make sure your proposal is perfect. Books rejected by BookLocker are not eligible for future consideration. Here are the major reasons we reject books:

1.) Spelling and grammatical errors.
2.) Poor writing.
3.) Low sales potential.
4.) Too religious in nature, contains poetry, sexual content that is too strong, or other content that we feel is inappropriate.
5.) Books that may contain libel, hate material, or anything that makes us uncomfortable and that may disturb or harm readers.

A writer I know has explored going a similar direction with his book. This isn't a route that interests me at the moment, preferring the traditional roads to publishing, but it's always a good thing to be educated about the industry as a whole. There are a lot of writers who do go this route, and a few are quite successful.

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