Ebooks, self-publishing and the app economy

E-Books and Successful Indie Writers
[Via Daring Fireball]

Speaking of buying lots of Kindle e-books, here’s an interesting story from Eli James:

Amanda Hocking is 26 years old. She has 9 self-published books to her name, and sells 100,000+ copies of those ebooks per month. She has never been traditionally published. This is her blog. And it’s no stretch to say – at $3 per book/70% per sale for the Kindle store – that she makes a lot of money from her monthly book sales. (Perhaps more importantly: a publisher on the private Reading2.0 mailing list has said, to effect: *there is no traditional publisher in the world right now that can offer Amanda Hocking terms that are better than what she’s currently getting, right now on the Kindle store, all on her own.)

Disintermediation, disruption, and independence.

This has to scare major publishers. She sold over 100,000 copies in a month and keeps 70% of the proceeds. She is probably bringing home more money that major authors  from big publishing houses. Why would they continue to stick with these dinosaurs?

There are some similarities between game publishers and book publishers. One os the long lead to for publishing a work. Normally, a new game takes years and a new book can take almost as long, after the writer has submitted the final draft.

But in an app economy, things have month development timelines and get to the end user rapidly. That is what these types of books are becoming a part of – the app economy – with very little time between the act of writing and the act of publishing.

And, people are willing to try something at $0.99 they would never look at for $18.

Yeah. Some publishers have to be quaking. Penguin Books talked a good game last year but has it really been any sort of breakthrough.

I wonder when book reviewers will become like app reviewers, providing a rapid review of a work in a way to encourage reading. Could be interesting to see if they become ebook aggregators, the app equivalent of a publishing house, but with their own identity.