That’s right, my short story Something To Eat is now available via instant wireless download via the Kindle Bookstore for your Kindle or other device, or the iBookstore for your iPad! The Kindle and iBooks versions aren’t free, like the downloadable version from my blog, but for 99¢ it shouldn’t break the bank. I did this for two reasons:
1) I got a few requests for a Kindle version, and most Kindle users would rather download things from the Kindle store than deal with trying to load in a 3rd party book hosted elsewhere.
2) This was an experiment in electronic self-publishing. Not a monetary experiment—I’m still giving away the story for free. But in the process of submitting material to the “big three” (Amazon, Apple, Barnes & Noble) and seeing how it went.
For the most part, it was a seamless process. Amazon and Apple tell you exactly what to submit and what to expect from them in their documentation, and in both cases they were right. Apple takes longer to review your submissions, but you can check on the status of your submission and everything went smoothly.
Barnes & Noble, however, is another story. Their online instructions echo Amazon’s—upload your ePub file, give them 72 hours, and it will be up unless they email you with issues. However, unlike Apple and Amazon, this in fact did not happen—my book is caught in a generic “processing” limbo, with no further information available. Apple and Amazon give you both support emails and phone numbers. Barnes & Noble’s PubIt support didn’t actually read the email I sent to them—I was sent an automatic boiler plate response that didn’t address my issue, directed me to the FAQ, and offered no phone number or other way to get in touch with them if I had further issues. Clearly, if Barnes & Noble wishes to attract the independent author the way that Amazon (with excellent service) and Apple are doing, they’re going to have to get their ducks in a row.
So there you have it—Kindle and iBooks versions of my story are now out, and I’ve learned a valuable lesson in electronic book submissions. Enjoy!