Award Winning Best Selling Florida Author Yvonne Mason

My Books, writing tips and reviews

IT IS ABOUT TO BECOME A REALITY!

Okay everyone; I have some interesting news for you all.  You want to have your books on the shelf in bricks and mortar stores.  Well, Dressing Your Book is working on a way to make that happen for you.  The one thing it would require is that all books be published through Dressing Your Book and printed through Lightening Source.  This is not a big deal in any case.  The more authors and books I can get the cheaper it will be for all of you to avail yourself of this new and creative service Dressing Your Book will be offering by the first of the year.   There will be an annual fee for me to advertise your books through Ingram distributions catalog so that your books will be in bricks and mortar stores. Something totally new for independent authors.  I am trying to take you all to a place you have never been before. Please drop me an e-mail at dressignyourbook@comcastnet to let me know if you are interested in joining this great new adventure.  You can also post a comment on here as well and I will get them all and get you all ready for a great new year.

October 30, 2013 Posted by | Author, Book Stores, Books, Indie Authors, Marketing, new project, yvonne mason | Leave a comment

What Has Happened to Mainstream Publishing?

Even though I am an author my husband and I are both avid readers. Avid as in almost insane readers. However, what we have found here lately is that we are running out of books to read by our favorite “traditional” authors. They are not producing books like they used to. My question is why? This is the time of year that books should be being released like mad ahead of the silly season also known as Christmas.

But they are not out there. It is like they have gone underground. I don’t know what is happening. I do know that more and more indies are blooming and I am loving it.

Traditional houses and all that goes with it including agents, etc for so many years has dictated what we as readers can read and what authors can write and how much of it they can write that the market is flooded with the same story line, the same characters and the same dialogue all under a different title. Are we getting smarter as readers or are we just getting bored. Frankly I am the later. Which is a shame because I at one time looked forward to the latest release by many of my favorite traditional authors. Now not so much. They are in a box and must write what they are told. That is sad. Now they are running out of ideas, characters and plots. They are not allowed to use their natural talent to explode with new ideas. They have to crank out books like they are machines and then they are ripped by the houses to nothing. Greed comes into play here. Not on the author’s part but on the part of the houses – Such a shame. We are losing authors to death every day and we are losing their talent along with it.

I have taken a step back and have stopped reading those authors that I once enjoyed- they have become boring. I would rather spend my time watching paint dry as to read some of their books. I know they are better than what they are putting out there- but alas they are not allowed to step out of the box –

I am turning more and more to those authors who are not so well known- you know those hated indie authors- yea those who make the traditional houses cringe. The reason is simple they don’t have to work inside a box, in fact they don’t know what a box is. They write from the heart not the pocket book.

So if you are as tired as I am of reading the same old thing- of knowing the end before you get through the first chapter- then look up some indie authors you might find that you have discovered diamonds that you didn’t know were out there.

Yes, we do exist and we are not going anywhere except up. We might not get rich and from the looks of it neither are the mainstream authors, but we do know how to pack a punch in our books. We know how to keep the reader turning that page wondering if they have the correct ending in their head and then finding out no they didn’t. So if you like me are sick of the same old thing and want to titillate your mind then check out indie authors. You won’t be sorry.

September 20, 2013 Posted by | Indie Authors | , , , | Leave a comment

If You Believe that Indie Authors Are Not Making a Difference Think Again

The article below was released a few days ago. It appears that Penguin Books has seen the light when it comes to independent authors who are out publishing and out selling traditional authors.  They are seeing that we are not going away and will only grow bigger as more and more writers continue to self publish.

At one time we were maligned and thought to be just a flash in the pan. They didn’t think we would ever make a difference in the industry. They were fooled. We made the internet our friend way before they did. We embraced it as our tool to reach a reading audience. My only concern is once they take over they will eventually change the self published imprint to yet another brand of traditional publishing. This will cause those indie authors who are with that company to look elsewhere for their publishing venues. We will no longer be denied the ability to publish and to be read by the public.

So if this is their plan all I will say is not going to happen – they will find other places to publish their work.

Penguin Buys Self-Publishing Platform Author Solutions for $116 Million

Categories: Industry News | Tags: author solutionspenguinself-publishing
July 19, 2012 |  | 38
 

By Jeremy Greenfield, Editorial Director, Digital Book World, @JDGsaid

In a bid to take a leading position in the growing self-publishing market, Penguin has acquired self-publishing platform Author Solutions from Bertram Capital, a San Mateo, Calif.-based venture-capital and private-equity firm, for $116 million.

The acquisition comes less than a year after Penguin launched its own self-publishing platform, Book Country, and at a time when self-publishing firms are jockeying for favor with authors by offering new features and lower prices. A company statement about the acquisition did not mention Book Country.

“It’s early days. We haven’t thought in detail about Book Country,” said Penguin CEO John Makinson on a press conference call.

According to the company statement, Author Solutions generated $100 million in revenue in 2011 and has been growing at about 12% per year for the past three years. The company derives its revenues from self-publishing authors paying for publishing, marketing and distribution services — roughly one third of its revenue from each business. Author Solutions has 150,000 authors who have published 190,000 books. By comparison, competitor Smashwords claims to have published approximately 140,000 titles by about 40,000 authors.

Neither company will be laying off employees or executives. “We are looking at up-sizing, not downsizing. There are no plans to alter the strategy, to lay off anyone. This is an opportunity for growth in our view,” Makinson said.

Author Solutions CEO Kevin Weiss will report to Makinson and will have a seat on the Penguin Group board. One reason for this organizational structure is that an early focus of the companies will be developing the Author Solutions international strategy, which Makinson will oversee.

Self-publishing platforms have been in a price and services arms race to attract more authors. Recently, Author Solutions had a promotion where it offered authors 100% royalties on books published and distributed through the site, making its primary service free for many of its customers. The strategy was to sell authors marketing, editorial and other premium services. Weiss, the Author Solutions CEO, told Digital Book World in June before the promotion ended on July 4 that it had seen some success. The company also recently launched BookStub, a service where authors can sell their e-books in person using a credit-card sized voucher with a picture of the book cover on one side and a product code on the other.

A new company called Your Ebook Team just launched and says that it offers authors “360 degree” service, from editorial to distribution. Self-publishing site Lulu.com recently launched an “author advice” tool.

Author Solutions will be integrated into Penguin’s corporate structure but will continue to be run as a separate company. The company has about 1,600 employees, mostly in Bloomington, Ind. and Cebu City, the Philippines.

“As part of Penguin, we will be on the front-end of that change and have the broadest set of offerings of any publisher today. That means more opportunity for authors and more choice for readers,” said Weiss in the statement.

For now, the brands will be kept separate, but that could change in the future as the companies integrate, according to Weiss.

When asked about the possibility that Penguin’s reputation could be damaged, Makinson said that Penguin will take steps to make sure that buyers of Author Solutions books don’t think they are getting Penguin books.

Penguin, however, will take a look at the Author Solutions database of writers and titles to see if any are worthy of acquiring for the traditional publishing process. The company might go one step further and investigate new models for publishing somewhere in between self-publishing and traditional publishing.

“It will be interesting to explore opportunities that lie somewhere between self-publishing and traditional publishing as presently defined by Penguin,” said Makinson.

Author Solutions was founded in April 1996 by Tim Jacobs and David Hilliard as 1stBooks and was initially meant to be an e-book company.  The company was acquired in 2002 by Gazelle Tech Ventures, an Indiana-based venture capital firm. Bertram Capital purchased the company from Gazelle Tech Ventures in 2007.

With this acquisition, self-publishing may have turned a corner, according to Weiss. “When IBM gave its stamp of approval to the PC industry, what happened next was nothing short of remarkable. This feels like what happened with the PC industry back in the early eighties,” he said.

“The industry is changing rapidly and we don’t know where it’s going, but I think we have a much better opportunity working together creating change in the industry rather than having change thrust upon us,” said Weiss.

Write to Jeremy Greenfield

July 20, 2012 Posted by | Indie Authors | , , , , , | Leave a comment

From The Association of Independent Authors

This is straight from Jackie Collins an author who has been published by Traditional Publishers for years. This just goes to show why Traditional Publishers are running scared. As the Prosecutor Said in Court “I rest my case, your Honor”

Jackie Collins: On My Decision to Self-Publish

Posted By AiA Administrator, Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Source: Jackie Collins

If you pay attention to book publishing news and blogs, then you probably already know I’ve decided to try my hand at self-publishing by re-writing and releasing a NEW version of my book The Bitch.

Little did I know when I gave an interview to Galleycat in February that the press would pick up the story so quickly! To date, from that one interview, there have been over 120,000 stories and articles posted online about that one decision.

As you might imagine, the buzz has set off a bit of a firestorm of comments, gossip, conspiracy theories and the like about my publishers and me.

  • “Did she get in a fight with her publishers?”
  • “Did they drop her from their roster?”
  • “Is she dropping them fromherroster?”
  • “Does this mean publishing is dead?”

So I’d like to take a moment to set the record straight.

First, I have fantastic relationships with my two publishers, Simon & Schuster UK and St. Martin’s Press US. No juicy story about a tiff or spat between us—we’re good. I’m currently writing my 29thbook “The Power Trip,” and it will be published by both companies, respectively.

But times are changing, and technology is changing, so I wanted to experiment with this growing trend of self-publishing.

OF COURSE THE INDUSTRY IS CHANGING – IT ALWAYS IS

I’ve been a published author for many years, and I’ve had the good fortune to work with several great publishers, and I’ve seen MANY changes in the publishing industry.

From new printing techniques, to new advertising mediums, to direct-to-fan digital publishing, the industry hasalwaysbeen evolving. And it will continue to do so.

At the end of the day, it’s about finding the best way to get your content (Hollywood and relationship fiction in my case) into the hands of your fans who are clamoring for it.

MY THOUGHTS ON EBOOKS

Let me say up front that I will personally always love physical books. I love how a new bookfeelsin your hands. I love turning the pages one-by-one as you curl up in a chair and engross yourself in the story.

But I also know that to stay successful, you’ve always got to be thinking two steps ahead of the game. And by all counts, the book industry is going the way of the CD industry. Almost nobody buys CDs anymore; we get our music fix on iTunes.

And more and more people are opting for eBooks over paper. For example, with Goddess of Vengeance, I think we sold an equal amount of hard covers and eBooks.

And in England, they just bought the digital rights to all my books and Lethal Seduction immediately jumped to #2 on the bestseller’s list. That’s a book that’s 10-years-old! I was quite impressed with that.

ALWAYS ASK QUESTIONS ABOUT THE NUMBERS

I’ve always been involved in the business side of my career. Even in the very beginning, I realized I had to double-check the things my publishers were doing. (After all, no one cares more about your career than you do.)

When it came to advertising, I remember hounding them about what they were going to do for me once the book finally came out. What promotions are they buying? How long is the ad campaign? Is there a co-ops and author tour involved?

Most first-time writers when they finally get their book published, throw a big party, and then scratch their head in bewilderment when they can’t find their book in the bookstore.

So they go to the clerk and say, “Oh, my book’s on the back shelf? Can you get it on the front table?”

They don’t realize that their publisher hasn’t paid for the front table display.

So, there’s a lot to learn, and I’ve learned much of it over the years, but I’mstilllearning. There arestillthings that I don’t know that I find out with each new book.

BE PREPARED TO FIGHT FOR WHAT YOU WANT

Publishers are in the publishing business to make money (and that’s a good thing). But remember that their goal is NOT to make your dreams of being an author come true. Their goal is to make money through the careful and thoughtful exploitation of your book.

So, you have to fight for what you want. (Even I do.)

If you want a full-page ad in People magazine, you have to get it in your contract; otherwise it’s not going to happen, and you’ll hear things like, “it costs too much.”

IF I WERE STARTING AGAIN…

If I were starting out in the business today, I don’t think I would change anything. But, I was extremely lucky because my first book, “The World is Full of Married Men,” was accepted by the first publisher I sent it to, and became an instant bestseller.

Today, if a publisher isn’t interested, you have options. You can sign up with Amazon KDP or Barnes & Noble Pubit or Lulu or SmashWords or CreateSpace or a host of other helpful sites. Google it.

THERE’S NO SUBSTITUTE FOR HUSTLE

I was thrown out of school for poor grades and playing truant, although I always came in top in writing class. Everybody told me I couldn’t be a writer unless I studied more and went to college.

I said, “No way, I’m following my dream. Writing is my passion.”

Turns out, people don’t buy books because you went to college. They buy books for the characters and thestory. (And dammit, I can tell a great story!)

Looking back, being stubborn and tenacious and constantly asking questions has worked out OK for me.

If you believe your stuff is great, then don’t let anyone tell you that you’re not good enough. Pick yourself up and make some more calls. Network with as many people as you can in the industry. And sweat. Sweat a lot. And keep writing!

Also remember, when it’s time to publish, you’ve got options.

Follow your dream. I always say, “Girls can do anything.” (And so can boys, for that matter.) Put your mind to it; follow your dream, and keep learning and growing. Don’t stagnate. And most of all – love what you do! Writing is a joy – enjoy it!

May 12, 2012 Posted by | Indie Authors | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

I Just Have One Word – Seriously?!

Yesterday I read an article written by someone from Fortune- The Article was Titled

Amazon’s Knock-Off Problem (35 Shades of Grey, Anyone?)

Be careful when you select a bestseller to purchase on Amazon, where knock-offs are prevalent — copycats that come with Amazon’s stamp of approval

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/amazon-s-knock-off-problem–35-shades-of-grey–anyone–.html

The basis of the article was this- A couple of indie authors had written books with similar titles to books which had been written and published by “traditional houses.” One of the authors had used their initials and they were similar to another author who had been published by a traditional house.

The whining was caused because these two indie authors who had been published through Amazon’s create a space  were making money off their books  and the “traditional houses” were complaining that the titles and authors names were to close to their people and it was hurting their sales.

Seriously?! You people are becoming so paranoid that we as indie’s are breaking your precious glass ceiling that you have to stoop to something this silly. You are so pissed off at Amazon because of their kindle prices and the fact that you feel that your bottom line is being hurt that you are now resorting to attacking indie authors just because their titles and names are similar.

Right now there is another author out there who has the same name as I do. She writes poetry. People get us confused. How I have no idea, I write true crime, and crime fiction, but that being said, I am a big enough person not to attack her. Please people grow up!

For years indie’s have had to sit back and accept your rejection letters because your people didn’t like what we wrote, It was just not your thing- you dictated the trends and what people read. There were no choices. Well, guess what, those days are gone. We have come together and we are taking this ride. We determine what we want to publish how we want to publish it and what we want to charge. We are not dependent on you to do this for us. We don’t have to worry about making .08 a book after you have taken the rest.

Yes, we understand about overhead, that being – editors, designers, layout people, distributors, shipping cost, fat bonuses, huge buildings in New York with big rents, we get it. We also get the fact that, agents only pick those books they like to read, houses only print those books they like to read. Plus to add insult to injury they take that author’s book and rip it apart, their editors rewrite it to suit their taste (because they are to lazy to write a book themselves) and you design the cover. They author is out of the loop and then they get pennies on the dollar  in royalties. Not to mention they are charged back when books are returned from box stores.

Yes, Amazon has given indie’s an avenue of creating their work, the reason is simple you people wouldn’t. Welcome to the digital age.  What your article didn’t say is that  one can return  that book if  it was not the right one. Second one might become a reader of that author and it would really piss you off.

To add insult to injury this article called the books knock offs Really? that is the best you can come up with? Are you that small minded that you would make that kind of judgement without reading the book. One of them is a children’s book hardly the adult book that you said was copied.

No Simon and Schuster, Random House or any of the other “Traditional Houses out there we are not going away, we are only going to get bigger. We have a very large following and we are here to stay. You can either deal with it or not. We don’t care. Once that genie is out of the box it will not go back in. Treat your folks better and you won’t have a problem.

All I can say is get over yourself. Your reign of holding the door shut against us is over.

 

April 18, 2012 Posted by | Indie Authors | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Indiea Authors are on the Rise

For those of you who still think Indie Authors are just a puff of smoke that will die with the next cool day think again. We are making an impact on the literary world. A huge impact and we are not going away. We are growing in numbers every day while those who have been with traditional houses are dying off. We have lost writers like Parker, Connell, and others who wrote some great books. But people we are out there. We control our destiny. We are great writers and we have a reader base. Today I received a note from a fellow author who received a hand written letter from a traditional publisher who he has published with several times, this is what it says:

“Recieved a rejection email from a traditional publishing house that has published me in the past. It was a personal note and not a form type of letter, which I appreciate. I was told that even though it is a good story, and I am a great author to work with as far as marketing and things go, they just can’t accept any ms because with all the indie and small presses there is more work than profit these days. They were only going to go with two titles this year and they already have them. The way I look at it, it’s all about Karma. If they would’ve been more open minded and willing to look at new authors back in the day, these same authors would be selling books for them now. But no, they had to lock onto certain Authors and shoved the rest of us away. Well, hope you like Karma, because she is kicking you in the scrotum! Cheers to the small presses and indie authors! Way to show the never say die spirit!!” The author is Thom Futrell and he writes horror.

This letter only serves to reiterate what I posted in a blog a couple a days ago when I received hate mail from someone who said I was not a best selling author and why didn’t I go through a traditiona publisher. They have rejected us so much because they felt they were to good to take us on that we have carved our own niche in the writing world. We have made it without them. We don’t need them. We don’t have to use the distribution houses like Baker and Tayolor or Lightening Source. We don’t have to accept .08 per book because the rest of the royality is split between the publishers, the stores, the distributor, agents and any other person they choose to pay. We don’t have to accept their dictation of who or where we can hold an event. We need no ones approval for anything. Not the content of our books because their editor is a frustrated writer, not the cover because their art person is a frustrated artist. It is all ours.
This is what is hurting the traditional publishing industry. They have abused and used authors for their own purposes for so many years, just like it was done to the actors and musicians for so many years. They wanted their name out there so bad they would accept working for pennies on the dollar just to get a gig.
We as indies don’t have to suffer that indignation, that humilty of being at the mercy of someone else. We don’t have to look at royality checks that say .08 per book. We don’t have to beg to go to a mom and pop event as a favor – we just do it.
Support indie authors read our books. You won’t be disappointed. In fact you will be surprised at the quality of work out there. We are not going anwywhere. We are here to stay. To use a well overused phrase, We have not only cracked that glass ceiling we have totaly blown it out.

January 31, 2012 Posted by | Indie Authors | , , , , , | 1 Comment

   

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