So you got a Kindle for Christmas?

Or another e-reader such as a Nook, Kobo, Sony ereader or perhaps even an Apple iPad or Android tablet.  Whatever you got, Merry Christmas.

And I have a Christmas present for you too, whether you have an ereader or not. For today only (that’ll be Christmas Day 2013), you can download for free all my work.

Santa

The Deluge of EliasThe Deluge of Elias, a future dystopian short is only available on Kindle, and you can find it here: http://smarturl.it/TheDelugeOfElias

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Hannibal House, a hHannibal Houseorror tale set in West Wales, follows a young American as he searches for his roots, but finds more than he bargained for. You can get this from Smashwords using coupon code: UE59Q to discount it to *FREE* https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/283929

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Lament for the LivingAnd what about Lament for the Living? My first full novel, set three years after the destruction of society, Lament for the Living follows the survivors and their struggles with the past, present, and future. Oh, and it has zombies in. You can get this from Smashwords using coupon code: AZ25E to discount it to *FREE* https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/313539

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All my titles are published by TBFmedia.com and are only available through the associated links. Lament for the Living is available in paperback via Amazon http://smarturl.it/LamentForTheLiving or if you’d like a signed copy then they are available direct from TBFmedia: http://www.tbfmedia.com/lament-for-the-living/signed-copies/

Remember, you can read any of these titles with or without an e-reader by using the Kindle reader App for your PC/MAC, or Adobe’s Digital Editions software.

Merry Christmas everyone

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Traditional Publishers: Surely You Jest?

reallyIn this post I regaled you all with my tale of how I queried Barnes&Noble, the Nooksters, about whether they intend to let UK authors publish using their pubit/nookpress service. That was, by the time I post this, four days ago. Interestingly, every other email I sent them has been answered within 24-48 hours so I imagine that they’re desperately searching their archives for a suitable response but are stuck on the keyword search using “sarcastic”, and “Brit”.

In the meantime I’ve received the THIRD email from Nook welcoming me to their fold. Thanking me for being the proud owner of a Nook. I guess the only reason they keep sending me these emails is because I haven’t bought any books from them yet.

Don’t hold your breath Barnes&Noble. It’s not going to happen.

The image at the top is a screenshot of the actual email I received today, and I’m going to be completely fair here and say that B&N are not alone in offering ebooks at eye wateringly inflated prices. Amazon is the same, and I imagine so is pretty much every other outlet out there. I’ve added a few bits to the image – the red values are by me, and so are the comparison prices below (they’re all from Amazon, while the red is the Nook price) – I’ve also mislabelled the Andy McNab book, that should be £10.90, not £10.99 (£10.90?! What a stupid price to begin with!).

With the exception of The Snow Child, the hard back version (the ‘collectors edition) is roughly the same price as the Nook version, while the paperback is mostly significantly cheaper.  So why should I buy an ebook version that I can then do nothing with, when I can get a nice hard back that can be added to my wonderful looking library?  Why is the ebook version the same, if not more expensive, than the hard back version?

I create and format ebooks. They are a damned sight easier to compile than a printed version (I’ve worked as printer/proofer too) and can be updated immediately without costly recalls, so why are consumers being made to pay a premium for them?  For the traditional publishers they really are the golden goose, but only as long as people pay the inflated price for them.  I can understand a physical copy being more expensive than the ebook version due to all the costs involved, but those costs just aren’t there for the electronic version and I personally feel that the publishers, the distributors, and the authors (yes, even the authors) are doing their readers a disservice by charging these stupid prices for them.

Oh, and another thing Barnes&Noble: when I can get a book for half the price you charge on the Kindle, do you really think I’m going to buy it for the Nook?  The answer is NO, by the way.

So what do you think? What do you think is a reasonable price for an ebook, that once you’ve read your’re stuck with (unless this happens)? 

Don’t forget, ‘Lament for the Living’ is out on May 10th – get a sneak peek at the first chapter for FREE!

Currently it’s .prc (DRM free for Kindle) or .pdf only.
Kindle/.prc – Download Here
PDF – Download Here

Download, read, enjoy. Let me know what you think.

While you’re waiting for ‘Lament for the Living’ to be released the following titles are also available:
Hannibal House by David Nicol   The Deluge of Elias by David Nicol
For more information and purchasing links please visit:
www.tbfmedia.com/bibliography

Nook, You’re Dead to me…

You’d think that all the upheaval in the publishing world and the clamouring for market share, would make companies sit up and bend over backwards for their customers rather than what they usually do, which is bend customers over.

But apparently not. Barnes&Noble/Nook/Nookpress: Wow! Just wow. Now I can’t really complain about the speed at which they have responded to my query, but then again I could answer any query at the speed of light if I just copypasta’d random information that doesn’t address or show any cognition of the question asked.

How so? I hear you ask.

Well, here’s my actual query:

“if/when do you intend to allow UK users to use the pubit/nookpress service?”

The response:

Dear David

Thank you for asking about NOOK Press.
At this time, NOOK Press is available only to publishers with a U.S. Bank Account and a U.S. Tax ID which are both tied to a U.S. address.
Please visit us often at www.nookpress.com for updates.

Sincerely,
Amanda
The NOOK Press Team

nookpress@nook.com

Okay, when I read that response I was pretty incandescent.  Not going to lie, it pissed me off. So I’ve given them one more chance to actually answer my question:

“Hi

Thank you for your completely ridiculous reply. I know that nookpress is currently only available to those residing in the US hence me saying ” as your services are only available for US users”.

I’m then encouraged to visit your site often….. For what reason?  Your services are not available to me.

What you have done is provide incredibly poor customer service. I asked a very basic question and you couldn’t even be bothered to address any part of it.
So here’s a new question to go with the unanswered previous question : Why should I support your platform, over one that already supports me/my geographic region?

Tell you what, I’ll make it multiple choice for you:

a) Because we made an error by selecting a standard response instead of including the following information [this is where you put in the real answer to my question], and we apologise for any misunderstanding or inconvenience caused.

b) Hahahahahaha, you live in the UK. UK sucks, USA #1.

c) [Insert a copy and paste answer that includes information on resetting my Nook]

d) Oh you caught me out, I actually work for Amazon….

e) Definitely Ninjas….. oops wrong chat window.

Yours sincerely

David Nicol”

I’m hoping that they’ll go with Option ‘a’, but I reckon it’ll be Ninjas. It’s always Ninjas.

Until then, treat yourself to one of my books: http://www.tbfmedia.com/bibliography/

Nook – I R Disappoint

My wife has a Kindle. When I wrote my first stories I formatted them for the .mobi scheme used by Kindle. But I was keen to branch out so at Christmas Santa brought me a Nook (from the Barnes&Noble stable) and my mother had a Kobo from …. erm, not sure where they come from but they’re kind of affiliated with WHSmith here in the UK.

Anyhoo, Kindle = .mobi. Kobo, Nook and pretty much everything else is .epub. They’re fairly similar, but the .epub format needs extra tags and things that at the time were too much work for me to get my head around.

Now, on the brink of releasing ‘Lament for the Living’ I had intended to publish it to Kindle, and also to the Nook via pubit/nookpress. That was until I discovered that I can’t.

Why? WHY!? Why can’t I publish to these other services? Because I’m not American, or rather, because I don’t live in the USA.

I contacted Nook UK customer support asking them when/if they would be allowing UK authors to use their service but the speedy (but unhelpful) reply was to contact B&N directly. So I emailed them…. no reply so far.

So it looks like Amazon are cornering the market in more ways than one, and for UK authors they seem to be the only real option (except for publishing through Smashwords and having them propagate through to B&N and others – but why should we?!).

On a side note, so far I have bought zero books for the Nook. Yes, that nada, nil, not a sausage, and while they continue to exploit and ignore the UK market I’ll not be buying any for it either.

Should have bought a Kindle 😦