Happy New Year, and giving books away for free
So, first I’ll introduce myself. Richie asked me to stop by here every once in a while and post a guest blog. I’m his brother, so I’ve probably known him longer than most of you. Currently live in North Carolina with my wife and our two monsters. You can check out my website and blog here: http://www.sheehanmiles.com, and my family website here: http://www.sheehanmiles.net
Today I’m writing about New Years resolutions, and my decision to give away my book for free.
I’ve never been one for New Years resolutions. Quit smoking? Yeah, right. However, a New Years action I can deal with. Here’s the plan: starting today, I’m going to be giving away the ebook version of my novel Republic for free.
more sample chapters, partial books that end in the middle, none of
that. No DRM, encryption, or other hassles to give you a headache. You can download and read the complete book. Share it with your
friends, email it, do anything you want with it except sell it. Hope
you enjoy the book and tell others.
so maybe you are wondering why? After all, I’m hoping that within the
next few years, I’ll be making enough money from book sales that I’ll
be able to write full time. Isn’t giving the book away somewhat
counterproductive to that goal?
I don’t think so. Here’s why: the
biggest challenge most authors face isn’t online piracy. It’s not
people out there diabolically copying their works and distributing them
for free. In fact most authors (including yours truly) suffer from a
different problem entirely — no one has ever heard of them. After all,
literally hundreds of thousands of new titles come out every year, and
only a few hundred writers in the entire United States (if that many)
actually live off their books full time. So, by giving away the book, I hope more people actually read it.
to share it with a friend? Feel free. Email it to them, send them the
link, whatever. If you find that you enjoy the book, I’m hoping you’ll
order a copy, but that isn’t required. You could also post a review
somewhere. Post a link in your blog. Ask your library to order a
copy, so more people can get it for free. Whatever. If you do post a
link somewhere, let me know about it. I’d love to see lots of people reading the book, the more the merrier.
giving it away cut sales and make me a poorer person? I don’t think so.
There’s plenty of evidence out there that giving away the book will
actually boost sales. If you don’t believe me, check out Eric Flink’s
column in Jim Baen’s Universe, which actually runs the numbers and
takes down some of the myths associated with Digital Rights Management,
publishing, encryption, and copyright fanaticism.