Transcripts

iUniverse: Publishing Alternatives, with Katherine Brandenburg 6/19/03

Event start time:

Thu Jun 19 18:52:54 2003

Event end time:

Thu Jun 19 21:14:14 2003



Legend:
Questions from the Audience are presented in red.
Answers by the Speaker are in black.
The Moderator's comments are in blue.

Mary Rosenblum

iUniverse is an author-focused, independent publishing company that helps individuals publish, market, and sell fiction and non-fiction books. The company, founded in 1999, is the largest independent publisher in the U.S. and publishes more than 5,000 new titles per year.

 

iUniverse's strategic partnerships with industry leading author organizations include the Authors Guild, Harlem Writers Guild, ASJA, and the Mystery Writers of America. For company news and information, visit www.iuniverse.com

 

There are a lot of small press publishers out there and sadly, a lot of 'scam' publishers

 

whose main interest is to make a lot of money from naive new writers.

 

iUniverse, however, is a legitimate company that provides an alternative to the traditional New York publishers.

 

Several regulars on the website have had their books published through this company and have been very pleased with the results.

 

But it isn't the same process as sending your work off to an agent or editor at Random House.

 

Which is why I invited Katherine Brandenburg here tonight to talk about the company. I'm very pleased that she could attend.

 

I'd like to welcome Katherine to our Professional Connection. Katherine, thank you for coming tonight!

Katherine Brandenburg

Thanks for having me, Mary!

Mary Rosenblum

I was delighted! I have to say that as a Long Ridge instructor

 

I've steered quite a number of my students in your direction, when they were writing for a small niche market

 

or were working with family memoirs. Would you like to begin the evening

 

by giving us an idea of what iUniverse offers and how it differs from ,say, Putnam in New York?

Katherine Brandenburg

Thanks for the kind words. iUniverse is establishing itself as a new kind of publisher – the first to combine traditional publishing services with the economic advantages of Internet marketing and POD.

 

iUniverse provides highly-motivated authors with a new way to enter the market and prove the potential of their work.

 

The process starts by providing editorial feedback, assistance in reaching their audience, and graduation to the company’s exclusive Star Program for titles that demonstrate strong potential.

 

But the process does not stop there—the best-of-the-best can land on B&N bookstore shelves or end up in the hands of an acquiring editor at a large traditional publisher. The "farm club" concept makes iUniverse unique—we expect to see our best titles picked up by traditional publishers.

Mary Rosenblum

Actually, I find that to be one of the most promising aspects of the company--

 

that you are not competing directly with NY.

 

What exactly IS Print on Demand publishing?

Katherine Brandenburg

True, our authors have a great deal more control over their books.

 

Historically, POD publishers have really only addressed design, printing and distribution.

 

POD books are printed as they are ordered, one at a time.

 

But unlike typical POD publishers, iUniverse also provides authors all four key services previously obtainable only through "traditional" publishing firms: 1) editorial guidance and filtering, 2) book design and printing, 3) book distribution, and 4) sales and marketing investments.

senicynt

Do your editors select the books that you will publish or is it author driven?

Katherine Brandenburg

It is author driven, we will publish what the author specifies.

 

That said, we do have a Roadmap to help authors achieve their vision of publishing success.

 

One of the steps on the Roadmap is Editorial Review of the book.

 

The highest scoring manuscripts in the Editorial Review evaluation will qualify for the Editor's Choice Program.

 

This prestigious program is reserved for authors that have proven they have what it takes to succeed: superior writing and a commitment to excellence.

rony

Do "mainstream" publishers look down on alternative" publishers?

Katherine Brandenburg

Some mainstream publishers have historically looked down on POD.

 

However, POD authors have the unique opportunity to prove the market demand for their book.

 

And many mainstream publishers now look to POD books to cut through their slush pile.

 

For example, our author Brian Wiprud is in our Star Program for his mystery Pipsqueak,

 

which won the Lefty Award for Most Humourous Mystery published in 2003 and Bantam snapped it right up.

Mary Rosenblum

Coming at this as an author who hangs out at writers conferences and listens to the gossip, my take on this is that as NY houses buy iUniverse books and iUniverse books win awards, respect will increase quickly.

senicynt

Does the writer put money up front, or is the work printed out per order?

Katherine Brandenburg

Sure, and as iUniverse authors prove the market for their book, the same thing happens

 

and we have a formal program in place to present authors to traditional publishers.

mbvoelker

What can an author realistically expect from POD publishing? What unrealistic expectations are they likely to have that can complicate the process?

Katherine Brandenburg

Senicynt, the writer has to pay to publish their book with iUniverse and books are paid for as they are ordered, whether by the author or by the customer.

 

mbvoelker, POD authors have the same unrealistic expectation traditionally published authors have

 

that once their book is published, a miracle will occur and readers will flock to buy their book.

 

However, without marketing and promotion, any author is dead in the water.

Mary Rosenblum

Katherine, I think a clear presentation of iUniverse's charges and how they apply would help here. There are a lot of scam publishers out there.

Katherine Brandenburg

Mary, we have 2 publishing programs. Select is and Premier. Select is 199.00 and Premier is 449.00

Mary Rosenblum

And the writers are presented with the fee up front, right? So there are no surprises?

Katherine Brandenburg

Select does not include distribution or editorial review, which may be purchased separately for and respectively. Distribution is 99.00 and Editorial Review is 199.00.

 

Premier includes distribution and editorial review.

 

Yes, the fees are all up front.

Mary Rosenblum

What is the distribution, Katherine?

Katherine Brandenburg

The only variable fee is copyediting which is priced at 1.2 cents per word.

 

All iUniverse books are available for sale worldwide in the iUniverse bookstore. Our international print network also speeds delivery of your book for orders outside the United States.

 

That means your book is available through Ingram and Baker & Taylor, and therefore in all bookstores using them as distributors

 

as well as Amazon and BN.com, etc.

Mary Rosenblum

And this is for the $199.00 fee, correct? For Select?

Katherine Brandenburg

Yes, or included with Premier

Mary Rosenblum

Got you, thanks!

 

Now, as I understand it

 

the author receives a percentage of each book sold through the distribution network, yes?

Katherine Brandenburg

Yes, the royalty is 20%.

 

The author receives a discount on their purchases. The author does not receive a royalty on author purchases.

Mary Rosenblum

That's an excellent royalty! So you really can make back the cost of the original fee if you sell enough books.

Katherine Brandenburg

Yes, another difference between iUniverse and our competitors is that we make money when the author sells books.

 

Not on upfront fees.

 

So we have a clear motivation to give authors the tools to market and sell as many books as possible.

Katherine Brandenburg

We are the lowest priced publisher using POD technology.

rony

What do you mean by sales and marketing investment?

Katherine Brandenburg

Rony, Through our Star Program, iUniverse invests in books that demonstrate promising initial sales.

 

Assistance available through iUniverse includes securing reviews, book packaging, co-op advertising, direct marketing initiatives, and securing media coverage.

Mary Rosenblum

And these are for the books that pass your editorial

 

selection process and are selling well?

Katherine Brandenburg

Yes, the Star authors have sold 500 books, at least 40% through the retail channel.

chatty lady

WHAT ABOUT THE ART FOR COVER, IS THAT SUPPLIED WITH EITHER PRICE, OR DO WE FURNISH IT AS THE AUTHOR?

Katherine Brandenburg

Chatty lady, Your book will have a custom-designed, four-color cover, created with your input, by our professional book designers. You can submit your own ideas and/or pictures.

 

All cover and design work is included in the price.

Mary Rosenblum

And that is something that you absolutely cannot do with a NY publisher!

 

Not even Stephen King! :-)

senicynt

How are POD books ordered? Do we promote the book or is there some kind of advertising venue?

Katherine Brandenburg

Very true! You cannot control the content either.

 

POD books are ordered just like any other book. In bookstores, through distributors or direct from iUniverse.

 

The author promotes the book until he/she reaches the Star Program and we take over the promotion.

 

We have many programs to help the author promote the book until they reach the Star Program.

Mary Rosenblum

Which is, alas, what happens in traditional publishing these days. Only the top author for the season gets book tours, and signings. If you're not the top author, you promote your own book.

senicynt

Conversely, if we first publish throw POD, will we find it more difficult to be published via mainstream publishers?

Katherine Brandenburg

Senicynt, actually the opposite is true.

 

You will be able to prove that there is a solid audience and niche for your book.

 

Enter it (and hopefully win) in contests and awards

 

and make money while you are striving to reach your goal of being picked up by a traditional publisher...

 

However, many authors would rather not give up control of their book and choose to stay with iUniverse.

 

This makes sense especially if you promote the book at speaking engagements or through special sales.

 

Remember, only 32% of all books sold are sold through bookstores...

 

There are lots of opportunities for motivated authors to be successful without a traditional publisher.

senicynt

Let's see if I have this straight now. I submit a novel to IUniverse and make the initial payment, either select or premiere, then the title is placed at places like Amazon. Then, when someone orders the book, I pay the printing cost or does it come out of the sale of the book?

Katherine Brandenburg

The person ordering the book pays for the book.

Mary Rosenblum

In other words, senicynt, that 80 percent of the cover price that you don't receive

 

pays iUniverse for the printing. You get 20 percent. And that is

 

actually generous. A mass market paperback usually nets you 8 percent royalties or less.

Katherine Brandenburg

Actually, part of it goes to the retailer and distributor too.

jcm

Who holds the rights to the book, you or the author?

Katherine Brandenburg

Thanks for pointing out the traditional royalty, Mary.

 

The author holds all rights to the book.

 

Our contracts are nonexclusive.

Mary Rosenblum

Interesting, Katherine. That was my big question for the night!

 

You get a gold star from rights conscious me!

redneckgirl-7

Do you ever reject manuscripts?

Mary Rosenblum

I'm going to add to redneck's question here... do you ever reject a book for offensive content?

Katherine Brandenburg

Thanks! We encourage authors to sell the rights to their books if that is their goal.

 

Redneck and Mary, no, we do not reject manuscripts unless they contain hate related or pornographic content. We do publish erotica.

Mary Rosenblum

Actually, it was hate and porn that I wondered about. Good.

dolly

Why did iUniverse make distribution an option?

Katherine Brandenburg

Dolly, authors publishing books such as memoirs for friends and family are not interested in distribution.

 

They do not sell many books and their friends and family are happy to order on our website.

Mary Rosenblum

I see, so a family might order a specific number of copies of a personal memoir, but don't want the public to have access?

Katherine Brandenburg

Yep!

g.j.

DOES THE AUTHOR HAVE THE FINAL SAY ON THE COVER FOR THE BOOK?

Katherine Brandenburg

GJ, yes, the author is the boss.

rony

Does I-U set up book signings, and do publicity, etc?

Katherine Brandenburg

Rony, not until the author reaches the Star Program.

 

We publish 400 titles per month and only have time and money to invest in the serious authors who prove themselves.

 

That's why the Star Program authors must have sold 500 books (40% through retail channel) to qualify.

 

We do have tools and programs to help authors do the booksignings and publicity themselves.

 

We also exhibit our authors books through coop programs at conferences such as Western Writers of America.

chatty lady

Wow, this sounds too good to be true...you at iUniverse are a dream come true for new writers.

Katherine Brandenburg

Bouchercon, Malice Domestic, Worldcon, World Fantasy, NY is Book Country, etc.

 

Chatty lady, thanks, that is the plan!

marcus

What is the discount authors receive on their own purchases

Katherine Brandenburg

Marcus, sorry for the delay while I cut and paste:

 

20% when you order 1-14 copies

 

25% when you order 15-29 copies

 

30% when you order 30-74 copies

 

35% when you order 75-149 copies, etc

 

Here is the link to this page for the rest: www.iuniverse.com/bookstore/article_display.asp?id=28499

Mary Rosenblum

Those are good discounts.

redneckgirl-7

Do the upfront fees cover printing cover and etc?

Katherine Brandenburg

We also have a booksigning discount: The booksigning (or event) discount is separate from the other discounts. There are two options for the store to order your book-the store can order the books from iUniverse at a 40% discount based on our special book signing discount, or the author may order the books and bring them into the store before the signing (on consignment). In the latter case, the author can order the books from iUniverse, based on our special booksigning promotion, at a 45% discount. Orders placed for author events must be shipped to the event site to receive the special discount.

 

Yes, cover design, text layout, everything is included, Redneckgirl.

Mary Rosenblum

To go back to the bookstore signing option --

 

that addresses an issue that some independent bookstore owners have raised with me

 

about having the books available for signing.

mbvoelker

Who should consider POD and who shouldn't consider POD?

Katherine Brandenburg

POD is for all authors. If you want to publish your memoirs or a charity cookbook we can do that.

 

If you are a serious author, the Roadmap is a step-by-step process that helps authors achieve their goals – whether that means selling more books, becoming a candidate for placement at Barnes & Noble, or being signed by a traditional publisher.

rony

How many books have to be sold to show a mainstream publisher he/she is worth publishing?

Katherine Brandenburg

For the author to present it to a publisher or agent, there is no particular number, Rony.

 

For iUniverse to do it, the author must be in our Star Program so 500 books.

Mary Rosenblum

Remember that when you present your ms to an editor or agent, you have one copy!

 

If the publisher thinks the book will sell, they'll pick it up.

mbvoelker

Is there a level where these books make it into the major book clubs?

Katherine Brandenburg

It depends on the book and the book club...

 

We have a number of titles in the Venus book club right now...

 

Another author we exhibited at Bouchercon last year was brand new and was picked up by a Waldenbooks national book club - it just depends on the book.

Mary Rosenblum

That's a good track record.

senicynt

What is the general turn around time for a purchased book to be produced and mailed to the customer? Do you print out one at a time, or do you wait for a minimum order?

Katherine Brandenburg

Also, fyi - when book clubs pick up a book, they order a large printing of the book that is usually printed offset and sold at an even deeper discount.

 

Senicynt, books ship within 7-10 business days, often 2-3 days, but 7-10 is the official party line.

Mary Rosenblum

I ordered one through Amazon.com to check time and quality and

 

it added about three days to the ordinary Amazon turnaround. Quality was excellent!

gskearney

What is the quality of the book itself? Is it acid free paper? Are there cover options...hard bound , perfect bound, etc.?

Katherine Brandenburg

GSKearney, yes, the book can be trade paper, hardcover or ebook.

 

Sorry, I'm looking for the acid free paper answer.

Mary Rosenblum

I couldn't tell when I looked at Christine's book, but the quality of the paper was quite good.

redneckgirl-7

For our initial fee how many books do we get?

Katherine Brandenburg

Redneckgirl, 1 book with Select, 5 with Premier.

Mary Rosenblum

And you get your author's discount when you order more, of course.

chatty lady

Would we newbee's be assigned to one specific editor or would everyone sort of help us along...?

Katherine Brandenburg

Yes, every author has a Publishing Services Associate (PSA) that is with them from start to finish.

jcm

If I take 10 percent commission will my books be avail to more stores?

Katherine Brandenburg

GSKearney, I am having a hard time finding out if the paper is acid free. This is what I found so far: iUniverse publishes trade-paperback books in a perfect-bound format (i.e. the format typical of most professional books found in stores).

 

JCM, the book is available in the same number of stores regardless of the royalty.

 

We have a brand new royalty rate authors may choose if they so wish, sorry I didn't mention it earlier, it just launched last week.

 

If you choose the 10% royalty rate under the iUniverse Bookseller Discount Program, you will trade off a lower royalty for an increase in the discounts to booksellers of up to a total of 50% off the retail book price.

Mary Rosenblum

That would certainly make the book more attractive to independents!

 

Since they expect a discount.

Katherine Brandenburg

Yes. Why is this important? The two leading book wholesalers in the U.S. (Ingram and Baker & Taylor) are involved in roughly half of the trade book sales in the United States. The new deeper wholesale discount means that Ingram and Baker & Taylor will resell your book to thousands of retailers at a discount of 35% off this list price.

 

The deeper discount gives book retailers more incentive to sell your title. The discount and margin book stores receive is similar to traditionally published titles.

 

For example, if a retail bookstore sells your title for , it makes a margin of on every book sold.

 

If you choose our standard 20% royalty rate option, we will sell your books to leading book wholesalers at a 36% discount. This level of discount means that Ingram and Baker & Taylor will resell your book to thousands of retailers at a discount from 15% to 20% off the list price. What this means—in dollars and cents—is that if a retail bookstore sells your title for it makes a margin of to on every book sold. This margin is sufficient if you are generating demand for your title, but not as advantageous to book stores as the deeper discount.

Mary Rosenblum

It is indeed, Katherine! But the books cannot be returned, right? Even with the lower royalty rate for the author?

 

Or will Ingrams take them back?

Katherine Brandenburg

No, we do not warehouse POD books and Ingram will not take them back.

Mary Rosenblum

Still, it's a MUCH better deal for the independent store! More reason to take a risk on a new author!

charleygal

I got a look at the iUniverse's web site - congrats on its award from PC Mag. for its excellence - since you deal with Amazon.com, what, if any, discount I could get from iUniverse for submission fees if I advertise Amazon on my web site, if its possible?

Katherine Brandenburg

The author may order the books and bring them into the store on consignment if returnability is a big issue for that store.

 

Charley, thanks for the kind words re: PC Magazine!

 

Amazon has their own affiliate program...

 

As does iUniverse.

 

In our program, you get revenue when visitors from your site publish with us or purchase books on our site.

gerald

Do the books purchased for a signing count toward the 40% retail sales requirement for the Star program?

Katherine Brandenburg

Here is the link that tells all about the affiliate program: http://www.iuniverse.com/jahia/Jahia/pid/7

 

Gerald, if they are purchased by the store they do count. Author purchases do not count toward the Star Program.

 

The reason author purchases do not count toward Star is because we do not want authors to try to buy their way in.

Mary Rosenblum

Author purchases don't count toward your sales figures in NY publishing either. Some of us...ahem..get our bookstore owner

 

friends to buy for us. :-)

mystery2me

What about cookbooks memoirs and such? Do you publish them?

Katherine Brandenburg

Yes, developing relationships with bookstores are very important.

 

Mystery2me, iUniverse does publish cookbooks that meet our minimum length requirements. Counting prefatory and end material, such as a table of contents, dedication, foreword, index, and the other optional elements that you may want to have in your book, and assuming one recipe per page and no recipe longer than one page, you would need approximately 20 recipes, depending on their length, to get a book long enough for us to publish.

gskearney

How is the cover price determined?

Katherine Brandenburg

GSKearney, cover price is determined by page length.

Folk, the dollar amounts did not appear on the transcript! You’ll have to go to iUniverse’s website to find out the exact amount.

Mary Rosenblum, web editor

Katherine Brandenburg

20,000 (or less) word count = 75 (or less) page count = -
$8.95 - $10.95

Katherine Brandenburg

40,000 = 120 = -
$10.95 - $13.95

Katherine Brandenburg

60,000 = 180 = -
$13.95 - $16.95

Katherine Brandenburg

80,000 = 240 = -
$15.95 - $19.95

Katherine Brandenburg

etcetera!

Mary Rosenblum

That's pretty consistent with what I see from the NY houses.

dolly

How do they do the cover design? Is it by computer?

Katherine Brandenburg

No, we have in house designers to that create a unique cover for each book. We do not use templates.

silverdove

If photos are needed in the book do you handle this?

Katherine Brandenburg

Silverdove, iUniverse allows authors to include up to 50 black and white graphic images in the book block of their manuscript, for an additional fee. Graphics include images such as graphs, screen shots, charts, line drawings, or photographs. Authors must have permission or the legal right to use the graphics that are submitted. iUniverse reserves the right to refuse to process graphic images that seem to come from copyrighted sources unless written permission from the copyright holder is included.

Katherine Brandenburg


1-25 Graphics = $100
26-50 Graphics = $200

Mary Rosenblum

What about illustrated children’s books? Do you publish those?

Katherine Brandenburg

Our standard format is a 6"x9" paperback which is not usually the preferred format for children's books and we cannot process any illustrations in color in the book. Our designers can provide a full-color cover for your book at no additional charge, but we do not provide illustrations for use within the book.

chatty lady

Would we submit a MS to you as we would do with another publisher, cover letter etc.?

Katherine Brandenburg

No, you just submit online on the website and upload your manuscript there. We do accept mail in submissions, but there is an additional fee.

senicynt

I guess your company doesn't use the old linotype machines. E-printing?

Katherine Brandenburg

Senicynt, I don't even know what those are!

Mary Rosenblum

Archaic technology!

rony

How many authors have gone through the program and are now being published mainstream?

Katherine Brandenburg

We just launched the first 37 at BookExpo America May 30. Of those, Pipsqueak has been sold to a mainstream publisher.

chatty lady

Once established with your organization does the price stay the same per book, to publish it I mean?

Katherine Brandenburg

I just sat through a 10 hour meeting to pick the next 45. We are launching them in phases, as we have to do marketing for all of them.

Mary Rosenblum

I suspect, too, that as the NY houses

Mary Rosenblum

discover the Star program, they'll look more closely at your launches.

Katherine Brandenburg

Chatty lady, No, there is no price lock on our submission fees. I cannot guarantee that the submission fee will not go up for a manuscript published in the future.

Mary Rosenblum

What price doesn't go up...she says grinding her teeth over her health insurance bill!

Katherine Brandenburg

Mary, Yes, we have a formal program with Kensington now. Watch for 2 more to be announced in the next couple of months.

g.j.

Does that PSA stay with the author for the one book or will he/she stay with the author for additional books?

Katherine Brandenburg

GJ, yes, authors often request the same PSA. PSAs also specialize in particular genres

Katherine Brandenburg

and with special programs we have with author associations like MWA, ASJA, Authors Guild, etc.

dolly

My PSA is Mike Altman and he is wonderful to work with.

mbvoelker

Do you have minimum and maximum word counts?

Katherine Brandenburg

iUniverse can publish books of nearly any length. Fiction and Non-fiction manuscripts should be at least 10,000 words while poetry books should contain a minimum of 20 poems. Extremely large books may be published in two volumes.

redneckgirl-7

Would we show a mainstream publisher our book from you or the manuscript?

Katherine Brandenburg

Redneckgirl, whatever you prefer.

Mary Rosenblum

As an author with a lot of NY publisher friends, I would suggest you send the book to the publisher rather than the manuscript.

 

Never underestimate

 

the effect of an attractive cover and package. It makes your book look more professional.

rony

Sounds like we have to become marketers with I-U. It's an investment in ourselves, actually. No risk no reward.

Katherine Brandenburg

Rony, you are right on!

Mary Rosenblum

And rony, you really have to market your own work if you're published by NY.

caroline

Do you work with international clients or only USA clients?

Katherine Brandenburg

Both, but we only publish books in English.

 

Maybe we will publish in other languages as we grow!

gerald

If a book gets picked up by a mainstream publisher, doesn't that violate the "all ms through agents" dictum?

Katherine Brandenburg

Gerald, and you don't have to pay an agent commission either!

Mary Rosenblum

Although you'll still have to deal with a NY publishing contract, Gerald, so you'll still need one!

Katherine Brandenburg

Or a publishing attorney.

senicynt

If one is successful enough to make it to the star program for a certain book, will they automatically be a star program author for succeeding books or do they need to make the cut each time?

Katherine Brandenburg

The rules are that they need to make the cut each time right now, in order to be fair to all of our authors.

 

However, after having the marketing guidance of the Star Program, it should be very easy for authors to repeat their success..

 

Two authors have two books in the Star Program right now, Mark Kendrick and Ronald Donaghe.

ccollier

I’ve published three books with I Universe since Oct. 2002. They have been completely honest in every way.

Katherine Brandenburg

I sure hope so!!!

Mary Rosenblum

What is the turnaround time, Katherine, between submission and store?

Katherine Brandenburg

6-8 weeks

Katherine Brandenburg

You can expect the cover and book block proofs within 2 weeks from the time your book enters production.

Katherine Brandenburg

You are given 14 days to submit any changes or corrections. The faster you return your proof form, the faster your book will be completed.

Katherine Brandenburg

Our designers will create the graphics that will appear in our online bookstore once the revisions have been completed. This part of the process takes roughly 10 days. Your book will be available in the iUniverse bookstore when this step is complete and you will receive your author copy or copies at this time. You can order additional copies with your author discount from iUniverse.

Mary Rosenblum

I'm impressed. Now is this with no editorial input?

Katherine Brandenburg

Editorial Review adds 1-2 weeks.

janp

Are any provisions made for those who live in rural areas where there just aren't that many bookstores within reasonable traveling distance?

Katherine Brandenburg

Even with Editorial Review, your manuscript can be completed in 6-8 weeks - it depends on how fast you turn around your proofs and changes.

 

Janp, your book is available online through Amazon, BN.com, etc. "Wherever fine books are sold" as they say.

jcm

Don't you have to sell enough to qualify for the star program to make your money back?

Katherine Brandenburg

No, let me give you an example.

 

Say you publish in Premier and it costs you 449.00, Your book is selling for so your royalty is per book. You would have to sell about 161 books to pay yourself back your fee. (numbers got eaten here!)

Mary Rosenblum

I'm laughing, Katherine. I sure wish I could pay out an advance with 161 books!

 

I have a question about reviews.

 

How successful have your authors been at getting their work reviewed by larger reviewers...say Publishers Weekly or Kirkus or the Denver Post?

Katherine Brandenburg

Just imagine how much it would cost if you did the production, design and distribution yourself as a true self published author, and then paid for offset printing. :(

Mary Rosenblum

I'm not that wealthy!

Katherine Brandenburg

Mary, I get about 450 print clips a month. Our authors are very successful with large reviewers.

 

Here is a clip from a book reviewed May 21 in PW: Malinda M. Hall "serves up a filling dish" in Nowhere is Somewhere according to the recent review in Publishers Weekly. This is Hall’s "whimsical second mystery" and features, among other things, "confusion and conflict over mineral rights, an officious sheriff who seems to be a law unto himself…an axe murder, rattlesnakes, thunderstorms and a near lynching."

 

It's all about finding the right reporter, dj, producer, etc for your book.

Mary Rosenblum

Excellent! That alone is going to go a long way toward raising industry respect for iUniverse.

Katherine Brandenburg

If you have a self-help book, pitch the health editor. If you have a book about dating, pitch the women’s editor. Can you tell I was a publicist for a loooonggg time?

Mary Rosenblum

I guess! Good advice!

jcm

If I want to make changes, can I hold the book for a while?

Katherine Brandenburg

JCM, sure. Or if you have a book that is non-fiction and requires information updates to keep it current, you can do a redo whenever you want

 

after it is published.

Mary Rosenblum

That's an angle I hadn't considered...the update potential. Nice.

 

I would be helpful if your SF is based on current computer technology. :-)

caroline

Would you publish Spanish curriculum for English speakers K-12?

Katherine Brandenburg

Caroline, is the text in English? If so, yes.

redneckgirl-7

Does the author have the choice of hard or soft cover?

Katherine Brandenburg

Redneckgirl, all books are published in softcover. Hardcover is an option that costs. However, our June promotion is

 

publish by June 30 and get your book in hardcover for free.

Mary Rosenblum

Nice. I have heard that you run frequent promotions on your site?

Katherine Brandenburg

Yes, we run a different promotion every month.

 

Watch Barnes & Noble stores, Writers Digest, Poets & Writers for off price coupons.

chatty lady

Am I correct in thinking that you don't publish short stories of say 5000 words?

Katherine Brandenburg

Redneckgirl, the books are trade paper not to be confused with mass market paperback.

Mary Rosenblum

You probably should define these terms, Katherine.

Katherine Brandenburg

Chatty, Because of the iUniverse perfect binding system, books must be at least 10,000 words.

Mary Rosenblum

Two short stories, Chatty!

 

Or a collection, like Christine's!

Katherine Brandenburg

Trade paper books are usually about 6x9 and have thicker paper. Mass market are smaller about 4x7.

Mary Rosenblum

I know we could go on asking questions for another two hours, but I think Katherine's fingers would fall off!

 

I want to add one other aspect of this service.

Katherine Brandenburg

I'm hungry, just call for pizza and I'll be fine!

Mary Rosenblum

I can publish my out of print books that way, which allows me to keep them available for fans.

 

It's an excellent opportunity I mean to make use of.

 

Katherine this was incredibly informative and I think our audience has asked every question imaginable.

 

Thank you SO much for being willing to do this!

Katherine Brandenburg

Yes, if you are a member of MWA, ASJA or Authors Guild you can publish your out of print book for free.

 

Otherwise it is $299.00.

 

Thank you for having me! It was really fun!

Mary Rosenblum

I've been hearing a lot of enthusiasm privately from our audience.

 

I hope you'll be willing to come back, perhaps in the fall?

Katherine Brandenburg

If you would like to meet us in person, watch our website for book fairs and conferences we are attending.

Mary Rosenblum

I'll do that! Hopefully our paths wll cross!

 

I think iUniverse is an excellent publishing option for Long Ridge students, and I thank you for taking the time to talk to us.

chatty lady

Thank you so much this has been one of the most interesting chats yet!

Katherine Brandenburg

Have a great night!

janp

My enthusiasm too. Thanks so much for letting us pepper you with Qs

Katherine Brandenburg

No problem, please call or email us with any more questions, especially about acid free paper!

caroline

It was great, thanks!

dolly

Thanks Katherine

Mary Rosenblum

You were a hit, Katherine!

 

We’ll let you go, and I look forward to doing this again!

Katherine Brandenburg

It was a pleasure to speak with dedicated writers. I look forward to working with you.

Mary Rosenblum

I'm sure you'll have the opportunity soon!

 

Good night, and I'll be in touch about a future date!

Katherine Brandenburg

Night!

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