Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Early Adopters: Books Are Available From Lulu.com
Since the beginning of 2008 I've been using Lulu.com as a printer. Over that time I've noticed that so many people dislike them strongly enough even to avoid the free editions of PDF books (First Light Chronicles: Freeground so far). To be honest, Lulu.com isn't the best distributor out there, they can't sell a book to save their lives and I normally just use them to get hard copies that I send out to reviewers (SomaCow is a great example), and to fans who have donated or specifically requested hard copies. Thanks to the enthusiasm of the readers I have a lot of trouble keeping copies around. There are a few people locally that have been waiting for months for copies because they sell out before I actually have a chance to meet with them. Reserving copies (according to several local people), just isn't an option.
Something that people don't really know is that you'll get the same books from Lulu.com as you will from Amazon when they're available in the new year through that outlet. If you're in the US it's a good option, so I've made sure that the selection of my books at Lulu.com is up to date and ready for anyone who wants a copy of something. I wish I had an outlet for the UK, and they'll ship there, but it'll cost you, the same goes for Canada.
The good news is, real hard copies should be available shortly through Amazon in the UK and Canada, so you won't have to pay a ton of money for shipping if you just want a hard copy. The bad news is that I have no interest whatsoever in locating my books in book stores. That end of the industry is very backwards in its thinking, the production delay would be at least four months and it would take a great quantity of cash to get the books out. Not to mention the long courtship I'd have to go through for the release of each book. Just imagine waiting an extra four months for each Spinward Fringe book just because book stores don't want digital copies made available before they have printed ones in store? I know I'm not that patient...
I'd rather set up with Lulu.com and Amazon.com and offer my friendly fans editions that I've proofed personally. That way they can just hop online and use plastic or paypal to grab a copy and that's that, after a couple days the book is in their mailbox.
So you see? If you're an early adopter of my work (and I thank you for that!), and you want a hard copy shipped to you in the US, I can actually recommend Lulu.com. They've treated everyone on that side of the border quite well.
Hang in there for more info and release info on the next Spinward Fringe Broadcast!