Wednesday, December 02, 2009

The publishing industry can still surprise me.

The publishing industry can still surprise me. After all this time, I can still read an item (in Publishers Weekly or elsewhere) that floors me.

Here's a very odd development that I just found in BookSurge and CreateSpace are merging. (Remember that old joke, or maybe it's just a New England joke, about how Stop & Shop and the A & P are merging? Well, never mind.)

Anyway, I'm actually a CreateSpace author. My book is How To Market, Sell, Distribute, And Promote Your Book: Critical, Hard-To-Find Information For Authors And Publishers , and it represents my first foray into self publishing. I chose to use CreateSpace because the price was right, although the distribution was limited to my site (or selling back-of-the-room copies) and Amazon. I chose to avoid BookSurge because, although it offered better distribution than CreateSpace (was my impression, although I didn't look into it too closely, at the time), that distribution came with a cost. Besides which, I didn't need the publishing services that BookSurge offered because I was able to handle page design, editing, book cover design, and so forth in house.

So here's what amazes me. BookSurge and CreateSpace are merging, but instead of creating the obvious merger (a new BookSurge that has CreateSpace folded into it), the far more unlikely choice has been made (there will be a new-and-improved CreateSpace that now will have BookSurge folded into it).

So what does that mean? CreateSpace will no longer be free? Or BookSurge will be free (or it will lower its fees for its various offerings)? The article doesn't say, so I guess the only way to find out is to wait and see.

In the meantime, I'm puzzled. I have conducted a couple of book promotion campaigns for BookSurge projects and, unless you count the very limited book promotion campaign (limited because, again, the distribution was so limited) I conducted for my book, I've never engaged in a book publicity campaign for a CreateSpace book. I suppose that will change now ... maybe. We'll just have to see whether the new-and-improved CreateSpace offers new distribution channels for book. (As a book publicist who wants her clients to get their money's worth, I do need to see that a book enjoys some distribution beyond Amazon before I take on a book promotion project.)

So, yes, I'm surprised ... yet again ... by a choice that some publishing industry leaders have made. Surprised, but not exactly chagrined. Let's just say I'm curious to see what happens next.

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