I’m now Kindled.
“Seize the Day! A Guide to Wringing More Satisfaction from Your Civil War Reenacting Experience” is now a Kindle e-book. It’s my first venture into electronic publishing, and we’re talking a really niche market with this one.
First, you have to be a reenactor.
Then you have to be a Civil War military reenactor.
Then you have to be a Civil War military reenactor with a motivation to add verisimilitude to your impression, including “going operational” for all or part of a weekend.
Then you have to have a Kindle (or the other variations – I understand there are ways to download Kindle books to Explorer, for instance.
It is, like this blog, a reconnaissance in force into the new world of publishing and promotion and marketing and putting a book’s existence in front of the potential customer group.
Getting the book into Kindle was pretty easy, since it already existed, had an ISBN number, all that publishing stuff I worked out long ago. All I had to do was copy it out of the InDesign format that’s the basis for print copies and convert it into Microsoft rich text. Once I had that done, and reformatted with page breaks and whatnot, it took less than a half hour to put it up online.
I’ll keep on donating proceeds from the PRINTED version, selling for $10, to historic preservation. Kindle proceeds from the $4.99 electronic price will be “for-profit.” Not that I expect to get rich from this venture – as noted, it’s to explore the ground and find out what’s involved.
I’ll have to re-familiarize myself with search engine optimization. It’s a nice alternative to a bookstore – no need to put everything onto a categorized shelf. All the Kindle books are in a big cyber barrel, and a keyword search by a customer interested in what the book is about figuratively drags a trawl through the barrel and comes up with relevant titles.
That shifts the paradigm hugely. Illogical as it seems, the way book stores arrange products determines almost everything about the print writing process, because starting with the agent, every person involved in the process is deciding if your book will go on one of the “good” shelves, or even if it doesn’t fit on any known shelf. That factor, the architecture of book stores as shapers of writing, is out of the picture when a search engine can sort five million books for content in about five seconds.
I like that idea a lot. It’s an inspiration to write more books.
Check it out if you want. The title to this blog is a link to the place where my book lives in cyberspace.