I've been trying to find a good distributor and conversion service for the ePub format. In doing so I may have found the ultimate distributor.
Mobipocket has been very kind to me, but since Amazon decided that their iPhone reader (said to have been completed in August 2008), would not be released people have been less and less interested. [EDIT: Amazon stopping Mobipocket from releasing their iPhone reader has not been confirmed by Mobipocket or Amazon, they're silent on the subject.]
Smashwords has provided a free conversion and distribution solution that's above and beyond what I could have expected.
That doesn't mean I'm abandoning the format, in fact, Mobipocket readers will always have access to my work at Mobipocket.com or from Smashword's site. There are differences between the two sources. Mobipocket's files come DRM protected and have an index. Smashwords books are not DRM protected but don't have an index. Smashwords is working on a good indexing system, and considering how quickly things are developing over there I'm sure it's coming soon. This is NOT me announcing a switch to Smashwords. All my work will continue to be available from Mobipocket, Amazon.com (printed and Kindle), and Lulu.com. I'm not dropping any distribution avenue, just adding a very good one.
I'll write more about Smashwords and what I'm doing there over the coming week.
For now, the free eBook that stands as the beginning of the First Light Chronicles and Spinward Fringe Series is available at Smashwords for free. You can access the book using your Stanza reader on your iPhone / iPod Touch, just head over to the Smashwords store and get your free copy.
Here's the synopsis:
Large enough to support an entire civilization, one of the last free ports all alone in the dark, Freeground Station is about to come under siege. Able to fight off periodical assaults and attempted takeovers in the past, they are losing ground technologically and with no nearby allies they find themselves resorting to unorthodox methods to improve their situation.
Jonas Valent, once a former engineer with the Freeground Fleet has been reduced to a trade and supply agent, a glorified port traffic director. In his spare time he and his friends engage in anonymous combat with anyone who opposes them in station wide simulations. Their success rate and original thinking have earned them a great deal of attention.
Smashwords is offering the First Light Chronicles: Freeground in:
Online HTML reader
Online Java reader
Kindle (mobi format)
Epub (Stanza, other)
Smashwords is a distributor made for indie writers and so far they've treated me extremely well while barely lifting a finger. I hope this makes for a good place for everyone to pick up my books and I'll announce the arrival of each one as they're adapted. Now is a great time to spread the word about the First Light Chronicles and the Spinward Fringe Series. I have to give everyone who reads my work credit, they've been very supportive and adept at making my work more well known.
More to come...
[Meanwhie, work on Spinward Fringe Rogue Element continues!]