which the author can set. In other words,
authors can charge an arm and a leg and hope
the book sells, they can give it away at cost or
they can charge a modest markup and earn a
few dollars per book.
Getting your book noticed
Working with a POD company is no
guarantee of sales. It takes work—marketing
work—to get your book titles noticed, as
three Costco members have discovered.
Joy Collins turned to iUniverse to publish
a novel, Second Chance. “There was some
interest from publishers, but they wanted
more sex or cowboys or vampires,” she says
with a laugh.
The Fountain Hills, Arizona, author is
now working with a micro-publisher to market the book and broaden the distribution
channels. She also uses her Web site (
collins.com) to sell the book, sells it on consignment in local bookstores, does book
signings and has issued media releases about
it. “While my goal was to be published by a
bigger publishing house, I realized I can do
just as well with my own endeavors,” she says.
Michael N. Marcus has self-published
two books—a memoir and a how-to book—
using LSI. The Milford, Connecticut, author
used to write for Rolling Stone magazine and
felt POD would give him “complete control”
over the publishing process, with the potential to earn more money by cutting out the
publisher. He promotes his books in his blog,
through reviews in other blogs and in e-mail
to friends and associates,
Dave Morris used LSI to set up his own
publishing imprint, New Year Publishing LLC
www.newyearpublishing.com). With a $300
to $400 investment, the Danville, California,
publisher can make a book available online.
His company now offers nine books, with
seven more titles in the works. If he used traditional publishing methods, printing costs
and returns—unsold books sent back by
retailers—would make it impossible for his
publishing company to exist. “POD is ideal
for niche titles, for great books that otherwise
might not have found a home,” he says.
Morris considers himself semi-retired,
even though he is running a small but successful publishing company. “The technology used
to run the company lets me stay home with my
kids,” he notes. Among the books he’s published are I’m Having Twins and My Twins Are
Coming Home—both written by his 10-year-
old daughter, Paris. His daughter has sold more
than 200 copies of each book, “and earned a
royalty on each sale,” says Morris. C
Paul Lima (
www.paullima.com) is a freelance
writer and the author of seven books.
W AREHOUSE/ COSTCO.COM