First: I want to let you know that my YA thriller, Season of Lies, is FREE to download today and tomorrow (Dec. 20 & 21). It’s actually #1 (last I checked) in the Teen Mystery & Thriller Kindle store. Yipee!
Now! On to my post.
I recently bought Guy Kawasaki’s APE (Author Publisher Entrepreneur), and so far, it’s worth every penny of the $9.99 I paid for it because the book supports something I’ve been mulling over awhile: the idea of artisanal publishing.
Think about it.
- It happened with music: indie bands are the darlings of the music scene and provide a thriving sub-culture in many cities
- It happened with art: local jewelry makers and knitters and painters set up their own stores on websites like Etsy
- It happened with food: craft beer, small-batch bakery items, hand-made cheese. Need I say more?
- It happened with restaurants: you don’t need hundreds of thousands of dollars to open a restaurant, you just need a food truck and a parking permit
And soon, it will happen with indie books (if it’s not happening already).
Yes, yes, we’re in the middle of an indie publishing revolution. But I’m not talking about that. I’m talking about what’s next. I’m talking about creating quality books that reflect the author’s personality and offering them up in a stylish and entertaining way with real niche-appeal. Some writers are doing this now – the good ones, the savvy ones – but they’re in the minority. So many self-published books still look self-published (though they’re getting better), and they’re supported by only a flimsy Twitter account.
“Ha!” you scoff, “all I have to do is write a good book.” (you did scoff, didn’t you?)
Here’s the problem. Everyone else wrote a good book, too. I just flipped over to Amazon and did a search on “ebooks.” Amazon returned 5,547,840 results. Ouch. And I know someone out there will maintain that they don’t do it for the sales. That’s cool. Keep on keepin’ on. But even if it’s not about the money, it’s still about getting read, right?
Any-hoo. To boost myself over that impenetrable wall, I’ve created a new website, Jumping Jackalope Press, that’s going to house all of my different self-published genres as well as offer (in the future) entertaining content that reflects my sensibilities. It will also provide a more professional face to the reader and has an “artisanal” feel to it. Will it be successful? Only time will tell.
Here’s what I do know: after navigating the self-publishing waters these last few weeks, most of the info that I gathered last year on the “must do’s” is terribly out of date and completely overdone. I’m finding more and more that I need to strike out on the path less taken.
Anyone else pick up Guy Kawasaki’s book? What are your thoughts on “artisanal publishing”? Is this just marketing spin? Or is it a sound business strategy? Know of any authors who meet this model?