Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Pyrotechnicon for Kindle

Kindle's share...
Well Pyrotechnicon is now available on the Amazon Kindle platform as a DRM-free ebook. I did the uploading last night and to my delight it let me include Adam's illustrations. The construction - which is done by Amazon from an uploaded html file, is not as good as the mobi file I made via Pressbooks. There aren't any section breaks showing in the reading progress bar in the Kindle ereader, but apart from that it's pretty much the same.

The BIG difference of course is that if you buy it via Kindle and you live in Australia or most of the rest of the world, coeur de lion and Adam Browne only receive 35% of the cover price as a royalty. Amazon keep the rest. If you buy it and you live in UK and America and a handful of other places, that royalty jumps to 70%. Of course that doesn't count the loooong wait to get your quaint 20thC cheque from Kindle or the nine week currency conversion wait on top of that (or the associated charges for conversion).

So what I'm really saying is we'd much rather you bought it from the coeur de lion online store. But we may pick up some drive-by sales on Amazon too, which is okay. Tonight I'll figure out the Byzantine Smashwords rules to get a copy up there too.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Conflux 8 program taking shape

Over at Conflux 8, the pre-con organisation is starting to hit fever pitch with panels and panellists getting organised. As well as my GoH and Pyrotechnicon related activities, I'll be chairing an independent press panel with Bill Congreve (Mirrordanse stalwart and independent publisher par excellence), Simon Petrie (whose done a few editing stints for ASIM and elsewhere), Jodi Cleghorn (who runs eMergent Publishing - an indie publishing house run by writers for writers), and fellow GoH Keri Arthur.

The other highlight is sure to be the Zombies v Vampires Great Debate moderated by evil overlord Jack Dann. Go team vampire!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Pyrotechnicon is out in the wild

It's always a very satisfying moment to finish a book production project. Pyrotechnicon went on sale via the coeur de lion website last night and will be slowly filtering its way through other retail outlets over the next couple of months.

Personally I'm very pleased with the result. Adam worked hard on his story and it's pitch perfect. The hardback book is a deeply beautiful thing, with a lovely cover and some great internal illustrations and the layout and the whole package looks very professional (IMHO) and doesn't at all look like a print on demand product. I can't recommend Lightning Source more highly.

The ebook I constructed using the Pressbooks platform also looks and behaves really well and I'm particularly pleased with how the illustrations translated to the epub and mobi formats.

Adam has a list of acknowledgements at the end of the book. I'd like to echo and add to those here. Of course I'd like to thank Adam for producing a great story. But I'd also like to thank Wendy Waring for being the arbiter of all things French, German and Latin, Mark Rossiter for giving the ebook a thorough shakedown and Abigail Nathan at Bothersome Words for the copyedit.

Now go and buy the damn book!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

ebook construction and sales

This past couple of weeks, it's all been about ebooks.

Last Wednesday I was part of a Q and A session at the Australian Society of Authors on my experiences with epublishing. It was an enjoyable event and topped off what I can recommend as a very comprehensive round up of epublishing/ selfpublishing issues for authors. Full details of the course are here. And Digireado blogged about it here. I'm sure they'll be repeating it given the reaction from attendees.

One of the things I did raise at the session was the lack of a cheap, reliable storefront that instantly delivered digital downloads from a website to customers. Last time I looked, round about August last year, I couldn't find one. The lovely thing about the internet is, it doesn't stand still. I was reminded of the issue during my talk  and decided to jump on and find out if there was now a solution. Thanks to a quick visit to my collegiate independent publisher twelfth planet press, I found a cheap, reliable storefront that instantly delivered digital downloads - ejunkie. So over at the coeur de lion online shop, you can now download Anywhere But Earth. The extra good bit of this is that Amazon et al don't take their cut, so it's more profit for the authors (who get 75% of sales). And the file is guaranteed DRM free.

Of course finding that solution will help when it comes to unleashing the Pyrotechnicon ebook on the world. I spent all day Saturday in an intensive ebook layout session on the Pressbooks site. This is probably why I had a dreadful migraine (vomiting, the works) on Sunday. But it was almost worth it. The ebook is in beta test right now but I think we've pushed the Pressbooks tech pretty far, especially as we have a number of Adam's beautiful illustrations embedded in the ebook file, as well as some other tricksy text things. Of course with Kindle Direct Publishing and Smashwords, they insist on Word file uploads, so that means there will be effectively two ebook versions of Pyrotechnicon. A plain text version from Amazon and Smashwords, and a beautifully lush illustrated version from us, and available on the Kobo platform eventually via our membership in the Small Press Underground Networking Collective. I plan to clearly label our own version the Pyrotechnion (illustrated edition) version. Anyway It's going to be out soon, and the proof of the hardback edition should be here today or tomorrow, so print versions should also be available before Conflux 8. Huzzah!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Cyrano rising and off to the printer

Finally, it's done and Cyrano's boldest adventure yet is about to begin. Yes, Pyrotechnicon is off to the printer and there's already lots of good internet buzz about it. I've been working on this thing with Adam for close to a year now and we're really looking forward to the launch at Conflux 8. Now all I have to do is set up the ebook...

In the meantime here's the front cover, spine and front flap. Pyrotechnicon will be a hardback running to some 260+ pages. Handsome!