Monday, March 17, 2014

Nook Press Expands into 7 New Countries


Barnes and Noble is not content to merely open up a new digital bookstore in new markets, but are obsessed with quality. The largest bookseller in the USA has just announced that they are bringing their Nook Press self-publishing platform to the UK, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, the Netherlands and Belgium. All of these books will be available in their host countries primary language.

The Bookseller is reporting that “Authors will receive royalties in local currency, whether sterling or euros, at rates "competitive" with Amazon and Kobo programs. Authors who choose to price books in the sweet spot between £1.50-£7.99 will receive 65% of the list price for sold content. For books priced below or above (as low as 75p, as high as £120.00), the royalty drops to 40%. Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing authors receive 70% royalty if their books are priced between £1.49 and £7.81 but e-books priced outside this range will only yield 35% royalty rate. Kobo pays a 70% royalty on e-books priced between $1.99 and $12.99, and a 45% royalty on e-books below $1.99 or above $12.99.” There will be a 60 day payment cycle for authors who earn money with the platform.

"We understood the priority of getting launched outside the US and recognized the number of wonderful independent voices not being served whom we could offer to the reading customer," Horner said. But the process of getting there was "complicated," requiring a "company-wide" effort. "We had to figure out how to pay in local currency, deal with tax and other financial details, different languages, etc." All told, development took "six to nine months."

Barnes and Noble is going to make publishing on their platform as painless as possible. They are offering a free phone number for authors to call if they have trouble navigating the website or submitting a book.

Nook e-Readers will not be available for sale in any of these new countries, other than the UK. Instead, users will have to use the Nook app to read books. If you use an iPhone or iPad, you won’t be able to buy self-published titles via, Nook. Instead, you will have to use the Safari web-browser to buy the books and then sync them to the app. Android is a bit easier for the average user because you can buy and read books directly in the app.

Nook Press originally launched last year and has been a US based exclusive. This is the first time Nook is opening up their self-publishing system and it will be interesting to see if the company will offer localized titles in their stores that are not self-published. The company has not alluded to this at all, but it makes sense to open up a new market with indie titles and add trade ones later.

Nook Press Expands into 7 New Countries is a post from: Good e-Reader

Are e-Readers or Tablets better for Library eBooks?


Libraries all over North America, Europe, and Australia are heavily invested in eBooks. Overdrive, 3M, Baker and Taylor, Recorded Books and many other companies all help facilitate newspapers, magazines, eBooks, audiobooks and streaming video. If you are thinking of buying a dedicated device to borrow free content from the library, what should you purchase?

A few years ago most libraries just loaned out eBooks in PDF, EPUB and Kindle friendly formats. This made a dedicated e-reader like the Kobo, Kindle, Nook or Sony a viable investment. Sadly, most of these companies have all axed built in speakers or a headphone jack. This results in them no longer being able to play audiobooks, which may be a deal breaker for some.

If you are thinking of doing business with the local library and don’t want to be limited by the type of content you can checkout, I would recommend a tablet. If money is not an issue, or if you can buy one secondhand, the iPad or iPad Mini is the best investment. Almost all libraries have dedicated apps which you can use to browse, checkout and read eBooks, magazines or newspapers you borrow. It is useful to all do this with a singular app, which makes it a simpler process.

The thing I like about an iPad, is that most libraries or companies like Overdrive have their flagship apps on it. Often, these apps have more functionality than their Android counterparts. Not that Android is a bad ecosystem, I just noticed the apps for Apple are a bit more polished. Developers who make iOS apps also update it more frequently, giving you new features sooner.

The problem with dedicated e-readers is that they don’t have apps. If you want to borrow books from the library, it is a complicated process. Often you have to browse the libraries website on your PC and then download the book. Often these books all have DRM, which means you have to procure Adobe Digital Editions. You have to register an account and input lots of billing information. You can then transfer the books to your reader via the USB cable. This is basically too complicated, but for the tech savvy or the voracious reader, gives the best overall reading experience.

Are e-Readers or Tablets better for Library eBooks? is a post from: Good e-Reader

Digital Publishing on the Rise in Canada


Canadian publishing companies are increasingly becoming enamoured with focusing on digital. Close to 90% of publishers currently produce ebooks, and the remainder are either in the process of starting to produce ebooks, or plan to produce them in the future.

Digital books is big business with major publishing companies reporting that 10% of their entire revenue stream derives from eBooks. Boutique and smaller publishers have stated that their sales fluctuate, with 1-10% of their sales, on average, stemming from eBooks.

When it comes to customers buying eBooks, 93% of all publishers have said that they do business with Kobo. While, 83% of publishers also elect to do business with Amazon to have their content available on Kindles. Apple placed a strong third, with 76% of publishers choosing to sell ebooks in
the iBookstore. Google, B&N and Sony had more less than 50% of Canadian publishers distributing to their ecosystems, and data suggests it mainly the larger publishing companies.

What are the barriers for digital adoption in Canada right now? The majority of traditional publishers (53%) do not have a staff member specifically dedicated to digital. While 100% of large publishers and 71% of mid-size publishers have a dedicated digital staff member, only 31% of small publishers do. Another barrier is lack of new titles being digitized. Almost half (49%) of all respondents have more than 50% of their active print titles available as ebooks, and 19% reported that 100% of their active list is available in a digital format.

In order for the publishing industry in Canada to thrive small and medium companies need to devote more resources to their digital infrastructure. Having at least one staff member to facilitate the digital conversion is essential and making sure your entire catalog is available will boost sales. Most major publishers now have between 22% and 30% of their entire revenue stream derived from the sales of electronic books. This is putting smaller companies under the gun to better compete.

You can read the full report from BookNet Canada.

Digital Publishing on the Rise in Canada is a post from: Good e-Reader

Podcast: Nook Press, Bestsellers by Indie Authors, Pew and Booknet Reports


Welcome back to another utterly compelling edition of the Good e-Reader Radio Show! Today editor-in-chief Michael Kozlowski talks to Digital Book World’s Jeremy Greenfield. They talk about Nook Press expanding to the UK, Microsoft putting the kibosh on Nook Windows 8 Development, indie authors making the bestseller list in record numbers, the new Divergent movie and tons more!

Podcast: Nook Press, Bestsellers by Indie Authors, Pew and Booknet Reports is a post from: Good e-Reader

Nook Press Self-Publishing Platform Launches in UK


Barnes and Noble has unveiled their Nook Press platform in the UK and will start accepting submissions very soon. The Nation’s largest bookseller will be attending the Oxford Literary Festival where it will be putting together many publishing events to introduce writers and publishers to Nook Press.

Nook Press launched in 2013 as a direct followup to Barnes and Noble’s original self-publishing platform, Pubit! Teresa Horner is spearheading the Nook Press initiative and under her watch is formally expanding into new markets, instead of solely being based in the US.

US authors have been able to sell their self-published books in the US and UK for quite sometime. Due to logistics, the company has never accepted submissions from writers living in the UK to sell books in both countries.

Barnes and Noble plans on expanding Nook Press to France, Germany, Spain, Italy, the Netherlands and Belgium later this year. Often, the UK is a launching point to the rest of Europe.

Nook Press Self-Publishing Platform Launches in UK is a post from: Good e-Reader

OverDrive adds Pearson eText titles

OverDrive is thrilled to announce that we will now offer more than 100 eText titles from Pearson to our worldwide network of K-12 schools, colleges and public libraries through a distribution agreement. The agreement will allow for many of the most widely used educational materials to be accessed 24/7 through our leading digital library lending platform.

"Providing students, parents and community members digital access to our instructional materials in schools, colleges and public libraries around the world is one more way that Pearson is ensuring that all learners can achieve the results they need to be ready for college or careers," said Larry Singer, Managing Director of Pearson's School group.

The agreement provides access to eText titles from Pearson, including the latest editions of Prentice Hall United States History, Prentice Hall Economics, enVisionMATH Common Core, myWorld Social Studies K-5, Writing Coach, Interactive Science  K-8, AP* French and many others.

"Enabling student access to digital textbooks continues to be a priority for OverDrive," said Don Fabricant, Chief Sales Officer and General Manager for Education at OverDrive. "Pearson is a leading provider of educational titles, and this partnership represents a significant advancement in eBook materials for educators and students."

The world's leading learning company, Pearson, serves learners of all ages around the globe.

This partnership brings OverDrive's eBook and audiobook catalog for K-12 to approximately 550,000 available titles in 52 languages covering virtually all subjects and grade levels. Pearson joins recently-added Macmillan and many other publishers of educational titles in OverDrive's largest digital catalog available for schools.

Talk to your Collection Development Specialist today for more information!

Picademy – Free CPD for Teachers

I am very pleased to announce the first ever Raspberry Pi Academy for Educators!

The Raspberry Picademy will be a free professional development experience for primary and secondary teachers, initially for those here in the UK. Over the course of two days, (14th – 15th April 2014), 24 applicants will get hands-on experience here at Pi Towers, and discover the many ways in which the Raspberry Pi can be used in the classroom, working with our team of experts.

Raspberry Pi robotics at Kimbolton School

We will be looking to select 24 teachers for this program who meet our criteria and demonstrate a passion for education and for sharing practice, whatever their level of computing experience. In particular we are looking for teachers who:

  • can demonstrate experience of leading inset training sessions or running workshops – we would like our teachers to be able to train others
  • can reach large numbers of educators – through Twitter, teachmeets, blog posts, jams, CAS hubs etc. to spread the love
  • can demonstrate experience in using technology in the classroom – does not have to be Raspberry Pi!
  • are positive role models to young people
  • love challenges and overcoming problems.

We want to build a wider community of pioneering educators through this program, and it would make us all really happy if after the two day event, they go on to:

  • create a scheme of work for the Raspberry Pi Educational Resources section of our new website (coming soon!) that meets the new Computing curriculum programme of study
  • have a positive impact on their community with Raspberry Pi
  • take an active role in the Raspberry Pi Education Forum to help inspire others.

As well as training, educators will have access to a forum to share ideas, get some Raspberry Pi goodies and a special badge.

If you think you might be one of our superteachers, then you can apply by filling out this application form. Please note that although this training is provided free of charge and we will provide your meals, you will have to make your own transport and accommodation plans (we’ll be making information about where you can stay and how to get here available to the people who take part). The deadline for applications is Friday 28th March.

UK Organization Quick Reads Meets a Need for Emerging Readers

One of the saddest things about adult illiteracy and ESL language learners is not the staggering rates of adults who are still classified as functionally illiterate, or the numbers of immigrants who may learn to speak a language with some level of comfort and fluency but never develop basic reading skills; it’s the quality–or lack thereof–of instructional materials for adult learners.

Whether the books are abridged versions of classics with oversimplified explanations and ridiculous line drawings, or worse, barely-adapted children’s books, the quality of these reads might speak to the ability level of the adult student, but does nothing for fostering an interest in becoming a reader. Why would publishers assume that lack of reading ability is actually a correlated measure of intelligence or interest? Struggling readers want to read exciting new books of the same caliber as the authors that mainstream reading society holds in high regard.

An organization based in the UK is now doing amazing work in that regard. Quick Reads commissions well-known and bestselling authors to write shorter books specifically for their program, and releases them for devices.

According to an article for The Observer by Anna Baddeley, “Last month the charity published the results of a survey into how technology is shaping our reading habits: nearly half (48%) of UK adults who use technology to read said it had made them read more; 41% said that being able to look up words they didn’t know has made reading easier while half said that being able to adjust the appearance of the text has helped; 62% said that being able to access free ebooks has meant they have read books they would not otherwise have read.”

Technology has already been lauded for the help it can provide to autistic students, dyslexic readers, and more. Now, with the opportunity to cut some of the costs associated with publication and make Quick Reads titles available to adult learners to read on the go or as time allows, the tech side of reading just became a whole lot more important.

UK Organization Quick Reads Meets a Need for Emerging Readers is a post from: Good e-Reader