In my last entry but two, I mentioned Uncovered Books. This is a new publishing venture that launches within the next two weeks. Unlike all the other self-publishing outlets that I know of, Uncovered actually markets our books for us. This is the traditional achilles' heel of self-publishing. The others all make our work available on their own websites and through online agencies, like Amazon - some even put us in bookshops. So far, so good, but actually persuading potential customers to select our work for purchase is left very largely to the writers, and therein lies the rub. It tends to boil down to how good we are at selling things. I have my strengths and my weaknesses. Being a successful salesman is definitely one of the latter.
This is where Uncovered comes in. They take an entirely new approach to publishing that is very promising. For the first time, we will no longer have to find our customers for ourselves because their system will actually bring them to us and we can sell our work on the basis of what we do best - writing. If their plans prove to be successful - and of course nothing is proven yet - this could spark the biggest revolution that the world of publishing has seen in decades - nay, centuries.
In my view, Amazon's KDP subsidiary (Kindle Direct Publishing), erred in allowing anybody and everybody to publish their work on Kindle free of charge. There were no quality controls, and this resulted in a mass of poorly-written, error-strewn books flooding the market and giving all independent writers a bad name. They are now taking steps to address the situation by including a spelling checker and playing around with their algorithms, but it is too little, too late in my opinion. Uncovered have taken a different approach from the outset. It takes, on average, six weeks to achieve acceptance into Uncovered's library, which means that they check every submission. Any that do not achieve high technical standard are rejected. Consequently, all Uncovered books will be written by authors who work to professional manner. This can only give the platform a reputation for quality.
Uncovered launches before the end of the month, initially on iBooks (for the iPhone and iPad - an estimated market in excess of 100,000,000 and rising - so plenty to aim at) and will spread to the other electronic outlets later in the year. I am happy to report that all eight of my published works so far were approved by Uncovered yesterday, so they should be available at the launch.
Waiting with bated breath. This could be very exciting.
Writer of Fantasy, thrillers, comedy - and anything else that takes my fancy.