Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Conflicting opinions and statistics – who are we to believe?

Today there was another post from someone or other who thinks that all indie publishers should be herded into a corner and shot. (I'm deliberately not naming this particular person.)
No – that's obviously not true – but he does suggest all titles from indie publishers should be removed from the bookshelves of bookshops and libraries and put in a separate section. This, he states, will be of benefit to everyone as readers can then make an informed choice about their reading.
He goes on to state categorically that the majority of indie published titles have no editing, unprofessional covers, and more often than not, set out to deliberately deceive the reader. They do this by putting a link to the end matter in the book so Amazon will think the reader has finished the book.
Of course there are scammers, I talked about them in my last post, but I don't know of any writers who do this.
He states there are so many bad indie titles available they are swamping the market and this is why the sale of e-books is going down. He also says indie writers are unprofessional because they don't buy ISBNs for their books.
Readers are not stupid and don't buy books they don't like. They search for books in a category and then refine their search by the quality of the cover and the blurb. A lot of them will then use the "look inside" facility on Amazon and only then buy the book.
I don't know any indie writer who doesn't employ an editor, proofreader and professional cover designer. The majority of us buy in the services that would be supplied by a traditional publisher and quite often get a far better job done. The number of typos and formatting mistakes I find in traditionally published books now is horrific.
We price our books to sell – that's why we now have more than 50% of the market. I'm pleased that paperback sales from Amazon are growing again – that's good news for everyone.
The reason the statistics appear to show a decline in e-book sales is because very few indie publishers buy ISBNs. They are unnecessary, costly and not worth the effort. Only books with an ISBN are counted in the Nielsen statistics which is why they are erroneous.
Data Guy uses the correct information and his figures are much more reliable. He looks at the e-books in the 'bestsellers' lists of each category and then uses that information. Sensibly he doesn't care who they are published by when he's doing his overall results. However, he does analyse the publishers as well and puts this in a different group of graphs,
In conclusion I'd like to say to this blogger that, not only are his facts incorrect, but both the tone and the inference of his post are offensive.


This is our summer box set containing five books from best selling and award winning Regency writers. Two of the stories haven't been published before.

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