This week, the YA Indie Carnival sponsors talk about Barnes & Noble and the opportunities they offer indie authors and their books. At the bottom, you will find links to the other sponsors' sites where you can read about our very different experiences. Don't forget to leave comments. We love hearing from you.
Barnes & Noble's self-publishing portal is called PubIt!. It's just as simple to use as Amazon's KDP. Utilizing this portal, indie authors can upload their books and make them available for sale through Barnes & Noble eBookstore. The time from upload until availability is twenty-four to forty-eight hours.
I've talked to lots of indie authors who've had great success selling their books through Barnes & Noble. I'm not one of them. Don't get me wrong. I sell books on that site, but it's a small fraction of the number I sell on Amazon's site. I'm sure that has to do with there being something I'm not doing because I don't know I'm supposed to be doing it, but that in and of itself is problematic for me. The whole book publishing process has been filled with secrets and controlled by traditional publishers' gate keeping long enough. I don't want to have to 'figure out' what I need to do in order to become a best selling author on a site. I want that site and its experts to lead me... guide me... partner with me... market for me. I get all of that (plus some) with Amazon.
I should say that no one is more disappointed with my Barnes & Noble sales than me. When I uploaded my book to PubIt!, I just knew Barnes & Noble, being the best-of-the-best, would be where I sold the majority of my books. The next thing, I knew my Amazon sales soared, and my Barnes & Noble sales slowly trickled in. Without a doubt, I'm going to keep uploading books there and hoping for the best, and if all the stars align, I'll find the same success I've encountered with Amazon. All I can say is that I expected more.
While Amazon has options for paper books and audio books, PubIt! has four programs that allow indie authors to make their books available next to traditionally published books (per PubIt! Support and Resources Page):
Read In Store:
Read In Store allows customers in Barnes & Noble bookstores to browse the complete contents of eBooks available in our NOOK Bookstore at no cost for up to one hour on any given day and browse through as many eBooks that have the Read In Store option as they wish. This innovative program will provide further exposure for your eBooks, offering customers the chance to sample the entire contents of the book for up to an hour.
Sharing eBooks with LendMe Technology:
Only Barnes & Noble offers customers the ability to share eBooks with friends through its breakthrough LendMe? technology. Customers can share LendMe-eligible eBooks once, for up to 14 days. Customers can send a lend offer and a personal message about the eBook they are offering to any friend's email address. The lend offer is available for 7 days and can be accepted or declined on a NOOK or online.
The recipient can easily download the book to their NOOK eBook Reader or on a computing or mobile device enabled with free NOOK eReading software. While the eBook is with the recipient, the customer who shared the title will not have access to it. All eBooks offered via PubIt! will be eligible for sharing through the LendMe program and noted with the LendMe icon.
Barnes & Noble customers have the option to try before they buy. For all PubIt! eBooks, interested customers will be able to download up to 5% of the eBook to their NOOK or to their computing or mobile device enabled with free NOOK eReading software. From the sample, it is easy for customers to buy the full eBook and download it in seconds.
Giving a digital gift is quick and easy - we call it eGifting! NOOK Books and NOOK Apps can be eGifted to anyone with a valid email address (currently not available on NOOK.co.uk). You do not need a NOOK to purchase a digital gift, and your eGift recipient does not need one to receive your eGift either. For more around the eGifting experience as it pertains to the customer, visit our eGifting FAQ's. Reference the eGifting section below for more information as it applies to publisher royalties and reporting.