I was recently interviewed by Lara Lauth of the Courier Mail about my recent experience with Dymock’s new D-Publishing system.
Lara’s article in full is below:
ONLINE publishers are enabling would-be writers to turn their dreams into reality by by-passing traditional publishing channels.
For Gold Coast author Andy Semple, who has had two books published by traditional publishing houses, using an online service to reprint his first book, and an upcoming novel was a good option.
It proved to be cheaper, gave him more autonomy over its distribution, delivered ebook and print formats and allowed for print-on-demand orders.
He used Dymocks D Publishing, launched last December, for the third reprint of his title, Witch Doctor's Vengeance.
"D publishing is great, because it's $600 to get it online and in the right format," Semple says.
So far he's sold about 2500 copies of Witch Doctor's Vengeance compared with 2000 copies of Eden Prime, the second book in his series.
Semple will use D Publishing's print-on-demand service for his new book, Australia Day, too..
"The on-demand stuff is very good...You can order just one (copy) if you want," he says.
"It comes across as a proper little paperback, the jacket's in vivid colour...It's on really nice gloss printed paper.'
James Rose, based on the Sunshine Coast, went with D publishing for his first novel when four years of attempts to publish with traditional publishers were unsuccessful.
"I've got some lovely rejection letters," he says.
Rose says about 10 publishers liked his book but said they just couldn't find a place for his cross-genre book on their pre-defined publishing lists.
Rose's novel, Virus, weaves together many African life, public relations, politics and more, and doesn't easily fit into a particular category.
Rose has sold about 100 copies of his book so far, online and in print, through his website, with minimal marketing.
"There's plenty of interest, but not a lot of resources," Rose says.
Both authors agree marketing self-published books is the difficult part. Without a big budget for advertising, it is difficult to let the reading public know their books are available, what they're about, and where to buy them.
Semple also says it's essential to understand any contract completely before signing on the dotted line.
The D publishing contract has been revised several times since its launch late last year, in response to a raft of criticism from authors associations and online reviews.
Clauses of particular relevance to authors include a 10-year contract period with automatic renewal terms of a further 10-years, unless the author opts-out within 30 days prior to renewal.
If the author chooses distribution through D publishing channels only, they hand over sole and exclusive license to print, publish and sell their books, to D publishing.
Semple's tips for self-publishing:
- Buy an ISPN number - it costs about $40.
- Use as much free or low-cost online marketing as possible - Twitter and Facebook are great.
- Sell ebooks online, but keep the price low.
- Understand all contracts completely before signing.
- Look at all self-publishing options - Semple recommends checking out D publishing, Brisbane-based BookPal, Smashwords, and Amazon's Createspace.