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Self-publishing News: Airport Bestsellers

Self-publishing News: Airport Bestsellers

Dan Holloway head and shoulders photo

ALLi News Editor Dan Holloway

December is the least mindful of months. For many of us – especially those of us whose job it is to write about such things – half of our time will be spent mulling over the past year, and the remainder considering the year to come. Of course, reflection and planning are essential for any writer. But sometimes it can be easy to let December slip by without noticing it was ever there. So every now and again it's good to remind ourselves that whatever the past or future there are words that need writing now.

New European Sales Tax Rules in Force

Photo by Jaredd Craig on Unsplash

If you have been paying any attention at all to the global news, you will know that in the UK we are reaching the critical moment in deciding our future relationship with the European Union. Brexit, as the UK’s withdrawal from the EU has become known, has been the focus of much attention in the creative world. This week, the Society of Authors issued a position paper outlining what it might mean for writers. There is also a demand for greater consideration by government of creative industries. One can’t help pointing out that ALLi has already made the call for such consideration. And extended it to include indies explicitly.

Let’s stick with the EU. You will know that few things excite me as much as EU tax and copyright law. And you will also have followed along with me as the EU put measures in place to allow governments to scrap sales tax on digital books. That would bring ebooks in line with paper books, where they are already exempt. Well, last week that legislation came into force. Not surprisingly campaigning has already begun for governments to act on their new power.

Airport Bookstores

airplanes are the perfect place to read, making the airport the p[erfect bookstore location

Photo by Gerrie van der Walt on Unsplash

A week or so back, the internet got very excited about airport bookshops. They had discovered the (not new) scheme run by the Lagarder chain which allows readers to return books they have bought for a 50% discount. Perfect for the long haul traveller or holiday reader. Well, it seems that the airport bookstore market is a hot topic. Amazon have just announced they are joining the game. And while we’re on the subject of books at the airport, as I was researching the subject I came across this. Helsinki airport has a 24 hour free book swap.

Distribution  Services

As the last story shows, indies are increasingly waking up to the importance of bookshops in our business models. For us to do this successfully, we rely on distributors. That makes news of the potential takeover of Barker and Taylor’s distribution by Ingram important news. Many booksellers worry at the reduction in number of services. On the other hand, for indies looking for a one stop shop this could be beneficial. Barker & Taylor’s expertise getting books to libraries might be a useful bolt-on to what Ingram already offer. In this context, it is interesting to note that for once the Association of American Publishers figures show that in the year to October it's ebooks and not print that grew.

Kindle and Storytel

I was fascinated by a seemingly inconsequential story on The Digital Reader this week. The Kindle Android app now allows you to store books on an SD card. Though you still need to put the card into a registered device to read the book.

It was also interesting to have it confirmed that Storytel will be launching in Bulgaria. Mark Williams has a fascinating analysis of Storytel’s rapid expansion and future plans.

Top #selfpub news stories for #indieauthors, in one quick read, by #ALLi News Editor Dan Holloway @agnieszkasshoes #digitaleconomy #publishingopenup Click To Tweet

Upcoming Conferences and Events


San Miguel Writers’ Conference, 13-19 Feb [Mexico] San Francisco Writers’ Conference, Feb 14-18 [San Francisco]

MARCH 2019

London Book Fair, 12-14 Mar [London]

APRIL 2019

Self-publishing Conference, 27 Apr [Leicester, UK] Hawkesbury Upton Literature Festival, 27 April [Gloucestershire, UK] Sydney Writers’ Festival, Apr 29 – May 5 [Sydney]

MAY 2019

Book Expo, 29-31 May [New York]

JUNE 2019

Dublin Writers Conference, 21-23 Jun [Dublin] Historical Novel Society, 20-22 June [Maryland]

Author: Dan Holloway

Dan Holloway is a novelist, poet and spoken word artist. He is the MC of the performance arts show The New Libertines, which has appeared at festivals and fringes from Manchester to Stoke Newington. In 2010 he was the winner of the 100th episode of the international spoken prose event Literary Death Match, and earlier this year he competed at the National Poetry Slam final at the Royal Albert Hall. His latest collection, The Transparency of Sutures, is available for Kindle at http://www.amazon.co.uk/Transparency-Sutures-Dan-Holloway-ebook/dp/B01A6YAA40


This Post Has 4 Comments
  1. Part of the “Amazon-only” mindset of some authors is paralleled by the “Amazon-ereaders-only” mindset for readers.

    There’s a whole world of excellent ereaders out there, in particular the Kobo selection. And the sideload practice which keeps you from being dependent on registered devices and retailer ecosystems and cloud-storage access — while still a bit technical — is only growing.

    I’ve sideloaded from all my retailers onto my Kobo devices for six years now, using Calibre. Since I store and backup all the ebooks on my own computers (roughly 1000/year), I never have to worry about losing access to an ebook, I never have to be concerned about ereader storage capacity, I can add personal notes to the books, I can fix the metadata (missing covers, descriptions, series identity, etc.), and I can categorize them by detailed personal shelf topics (which the Kobo ereaders respect and follow).

    It would be good to see a little more diversity in the ereader device retailers discussion, even if a lot of people are adequately served using cellphones as readers.

    1. yes, I agree. I tend not to cover new hardware here unless it’s a really big breakthrough, and focus on what platforms behind those ereaders are doing – Nate does a great job of discussing the new editions of ereaders over at The Digital Reader, and is very broad in his selection

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