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Messages - RicardoFayet

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I think it would be useful and more accurate to put in 63% for going Googleplay direct. (That being the optimum from what I understand) although you can get higher.

I didn't include anything for going direct to Google Play because it's not yet open to indie authors. Or rather, it used to be, then closed access, and is now (apparently) slowly reopening it:

Even if GP reopened its "direct" doors, I'd still use an aggregator like Streetlib or PublishDrive to reach it, as both have a system to avoid GP's random discounting (and the price-matching that follows by Amazon):
  • Streetlib leverages an old contract they had with GP which prevents them from discounting (exactly like Pronoun did using Macmillan's contract)
  • PublishDrive doesn't have such a contract but instead adjusts your retail price on GP so that when they discount it, it doesn't go below your retail price on Amazon and other stores (effectively avoiding price-matching)

Writers' Cafe / Re: GoFundMe for Elizabeth Ann West Legal Fund
« on: December 01, 2017, 03:49:12 AM »
Donated. Stay strong.

Glad you like it! I don't think you should expect many sales on these small local retailers, but you never know… Plus then you can brag that you've sold several ebooks in Hungary  ;D

Since Pronoun announced they were shutting down, I've been getting a lot of questions about ebook distribution and which aggregators to use. So I took a deep dive into famous ones like D2D (my favorite) or Smashwords and more recent ones like PublishDrive and Streetlib and devised a distribution setup that would reach over 60 retailers without creating any duplicates.

It basically involves:
  • Using D2D for all their retailers, library distributors, and other distribution outlets
  • Using PublishDrive to reach Google Play and all outlets not covered by D2D
  • Using Smashwords and Streetlib to reach other niche stores
To avoid duplicates, you need to know which distributors reaches which outlet, and I compiled all that info into a spreadsheet.

It means any changes/updates to your books need to be made on all the aggregators, which can be a pain, and you obviously shouldn't expect many sales on the niche international stores. But if you're going to be wide, you might as well be on as many places as possible!

Any feedback or corrections on the spreadsheet are more than welcome :)

Writers' Cafe / Re: Other Online Writing Programs, Like Reedsy ?
« on: October 08, 2017, 01:57:23 PM »
Can't answer your question as to alternatives, but as a founder of Reedsy you have my blessing to use our writing tool and all our other free resources even if you don't use any of our paid services :)

Writers' Cafe / Re: Cost of Self-Publishing Data Summary
« on: October 08, 2017, 10:06:48 AM »
Ricardo from Reedsy here, just want to clear a few things up regarding this data. I'm discussing it all the time and I know it's controversial, so I'm always happy to get questions/comments about it. We're not trying to say "this is how much you should pay to self-publish a book," we're just open sourcing our data to bring a bit more transparency to the freelance editing/design services industry.

First, all professionals on Reedsy are on the higher end of the market. Almost all our freelancers come from traditional publishing, and we have an acceptance rate of 3% of people applying to be listed with us. So you will be able to find cheaper out there, and depending on your budget and your ability to research and judge a freelancer's experience, that might very well be a better option for you.

Then, we're not saying everyone should spend $2k+ on every book. If you're a novelist working on the 10th book in a series, you probably won't need a developmental editor. And you'll probably already have some sort of template/branding for the cover design.

And finally, as some members mentioned, these are average prices. You will find pros on Reedsy who quote higher, others who quote lower. Quotes for editing also vary tremendously by genre, which is why we recently added a little "genre & word count" calculator to the post:

Now, to address some other specific comments:

There's a big range in reasonable cover prices. I can't imagine many romance authors paying more than $300 for design (not including custom photos which can be a lot), whereas $300 is a steak in certain fantasy type niches where you need an illustration.

Yep, we haven't released a calculator by genre for cover design, however I can confirm that most quotes for romance covers are <$300, whereas SFF covers involving digital painting will typically be $600+.

$830 for book interior design? What does that even mean?  :-\

Quoting from the blog post itself:
"Please note that all quotes over $500 here were not for simple "ebook formatting." Ebook and print formatting generally costs <$100, or can be done for free (in most genres) via the Reedsy Book Editor [or Vellum, or Draft2Digital]. However, if you want to self-publish a cookbook or a coffee table book, you don't need just "formatting." You need interior design and typesetting. That is expensive because it requires design skills, knowledge of the genre, and a lot of page-by-page work." Almost all the "book interior design" collaborations on Reedsy were for these type of complex formats.

Bolding is mine. They are using quotes, not actual charges. Just how many of those quotes were NOT accepted?

That's a good point. Here's our reasoning for using quotes rather than accepted quotes: We've found that when authors receive several quotes through Reedsy, they accept on average over the median quote. This means that if we used only "accepted quotes" we'd get similar or slightly higher numbers (again, this will vary a lot from one genre to another). So with this in mind, we preferred using a wider data set (all quotes).

It says that "In fact, the data was extracted from the last 10,000 quotes sent on Reedsy by our professional editors and designers."

So this doesn't in fact represent the cost of self-publishing, but the cost of self-publishing for the group of people who hire editors and designers through Reedsy. I don't know exactly how Reedsy work, but they presumably take a fee which makes this more expensive than going direct.

The numbers certainly seem higher than most people here budget for publishing a book.

Reedsy does take a fee, but we didn't factor it in in our calculations for this blog post.

I also want to apply for copyright via the US Copyright site.
They ask to select if you want copyright on the text, the artwork or the photographs and/or all 3 options.
What would I be selecting.

When I obtain the copyright does this mean I just protect my  content because in theory someone else has copyright over the original images.

Sorry I only answer this now! I've been doing quite a bit of research in the past few months about copyright, and had bookmarked this to make sure I'd get to it.

You can only register the copyright for material you own the rights to. So if someone else has copyright over the images, you can't include those in your copyright registration. You can learn more about copyright registration here. Note that you should register your work within three months of the work’s publication date, or before any copyright infringement begins. This secures you some crucial benefits, including the ability to recover attorney’s fees and statutory damages up to $150,000.

Importing from an existing file.  As far as I can tell, this feature is still not available.  I'd love to give it a try, but not when it means copy/pasting 30+ chapters one by one.  :-/

Ah yes, that makes sense — edited my previous message to add it to the list. We're definitely working on it :)

I thought I'd jump in, as there has been quite a bit of discussion about Reedsy in this thread. Just want to offer an update and clarification on what has been discussed, and be fully transparent:
  • We still vet, and will always vet, every professional listed on our marketplace. Since starting the company, we have received over 20,000 applications from freelance professionals and "wannabe" professionals who wanted to be listed on Reedsy. We have accepted 600. That's 3%.
  • We charge the author a 10% fee. So if you accept a quote for $1,000, you'll also pay a $100 Reedsy fee. In exchange, we offer a project protection so that the type of situation described in this thread never happens. We also offer tons of tools and resources for free. See this thread.
  • We charge the professional a 10% fee. So if they quoted $1,000, they'll receive $900. This is to cover both the project protection, the customer service, and all the project management tools we make available to them (automated payment, invoicing, etc.).
  • We do ask that all written communication between the author and the professional stays on Reedsy. This is because, otherwise, there is no way for us to "mediate" in case of dispute. So, if you want to take the conversation off Reedsy, you can. But you won't benefit from our project protection.
Hope all this helps. I realize Reedsy is not for everyone (our editors/designers are seasoned professionals and their prices are on the higher end), but I just wanted to explain what we do, why we charge a fee and what we offer in exchange.

Hey everyone! Sorry I haven't been more attentive to this thread. We've been working *a lot* on the Reedsy Book Editor this past year, mostly based on your feedback.
So here's what's new:
  • Drop caps are now available (and small caps will be soon)
  • You can hide chapter numbers if you want to
  • We added a romance template for both ebook and POD
The tool is still, and will remain, 100% free. It will remain browser based so you have nothing to download, and you can access it from any device. It exports to both EPUB and print-ready PDF. We don't export to .mobi, however we constantly check that our EPUBs look spotless when converted by KDP upon upload.

So here's my question: what would you like us to build next? We'll choose the next features based on how many of you let us know what they want here :)
  • Export to .mobi
  • Import from .doc
  • More available templates
  • More available trim sizes
  • Real-time collaboration with comments & track changes
  • Other stuff?

Writers' Cafe / Re: Reedsy Editer & Formatting Tool -
« on: August 01, 2016, 11:00:34 AM »
We've now had over 1,500 books typeset/formatted using our Reedsy Book Editor. I'll admit it had a few bugs and lacked a few features at launch, but it's now really solid. Again, if you want to give it a try, I'd love to get your feedback as that is how we've been building it so far — through feedback :)

If you're curious as to how it works and how to use it, here's a good "how-to" post we recently published, also comparing it to other book formatting tools:

I've also never paid more than $150 for interior formatting for a print book. I can't even imagine what's going on there. Even CreateSpace only charges in the neighborhood of $150.

Just want to clear a few things regarding the book interior design costs again. These are not for standard novel ebook or print formatting. I mean ones in the <$500 ballpark are, but not the ones above. Most authors on Reedsy use the Reedsy Book Editor ( to do the formatting and typesetting of the book themselves, for free; or they hire a freelance formatter for <$100.

Now, for a complex print format with drop caps, fancy scene breaks, and more custom features; or for a cookbook or heavily illustrated coffee table book, typesetting costs a lot more – and that is what these quotes reflect. We've found that most authors coming to us for interior design were looking for that (not for simple formatting), which skews the prices to the higher end. I have added a couple sentences to the post to mention that.

Regarding editing, I think all the comments are fair. The idea behind Reedsy is that we curate our marketplace, so all our editors are of a certain level of experience. All of them have worded, or still work for traditional publishers as well. So these prices are not "crazy", they're the standard for a certain level of freelancers.

Now, it is true you can find someone with less experience who'll be just as good and will charge you 2x less – that's usually because they're starting out or are not educated about what their peers charge. You should hold on to them (and not show them this infographic!).
It is also true that you can find cheaper people who'll do lees good of a job, especially in developmental editing. You don't know how valuable a highly skilled dev editor can be unless you've worked with one. Now, whether that's "worth it" in terms of ROI in the long term is a question that's pretty much impossible to answer. But what I can tell you is that all the really successful selfpub authors I know out there use editors/designers of that level. That's also because they can afford it, of course.

Anyhow, this is not to say I recommend all authors to spend that much on editing/design. It's just open-sourcing our data so people know what professional editors with years of experience charge. After that it's a choice you need to make  :)

The lesson here? There's a sucker born every day.

By the way, if you're paying someone upwards of $1000 to format your books, you deserve to get fleeced.

There's a big difference between "formatting" and "book interior design". Formatting is often free (if you go through D2D, or if you use the Reedsy Book Editor) or, via a freelancer, should cost less than $100.
Now, if you want to self-publish a cookbook or a coffee table book, you don't need just "formatting", you need interior design and typesetting. And yeah, that's expensive because it requires every single page to be typeset, plus a good knowledge of the genre you're writing in.

As some of you know, we've been running Reedsy for 15 months now. This has given us a good insight into the average market price for services like editing, proofreading, cover and interior design. So we thought we'd make that data public, and put it into a nice infographic.
You can take a look at it here.

Is that in line with what you've seen out there?

Writers' Cafe / Re: Easy Print Book Formatting
« on: April 22, 2016, 09:00:17 AM »
I would love that. Sadly, it doesn't work on a Mac.

Hi Ricardo, that looks great but the print option is very basic. Are there any other options, like maybe drop caps? Can you change the font? Is it possible to adjust kerning? (Or is there some other way to control widows and orphans?)

Hi Rickie, we automatically take care of widows and orphans during the typesetting stage (export to PDF). That's why it takes a few seconds to get that PDF, it's really not straightforward to prepare and there's strong typesetting technology behind it.

For drop caps, we want to add an option at a later stage yes. And we'll add more templates in the future so you have a wider choice of fonts. But we won't let every author set their own font, no.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Easy Print Book Formatting
« on: April 21, 2016, 03:54:22 AM »
Try Reedsy:, I think it's really what you're looking for. It's DIY, online, free, and really requires no tech knowledge.

We released it a month ago, so as mentioned earlier in this thread, it wasn't quite "there" yet. Now it's much more advanced, though the customization possibilities are obviously not endless. Anyhow, we've had a good 500 books successfully created that way since launching it, so seems to be getting there. :D

Writers' Cafe / Re: Reedsy Editer & Formatting Tool -
« on: April 08, 2016, 12:27:07 PM »
Hi all, thanks again for your feedback on our tool — it's really much appreciated. And just to show you how much we take that stuff into account, I'm pleased to tell you that all 8 points raised by vaughanwsmith have been solved.  ;)

More information about our update to the Reedsy Book Editor in our newsletter here.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Reedsy Editer & Formatting Tool -
« on: March 14, 2016, 08:27:44 AM »
Hi I gave the new tool a go, and thought I would provide some comments*. I think it's a really cool idea, but cannot use it in its current state. I would really like it to work, as I want to use IngramSpark for expanded distribution and I'm worried about their stricter requirements and inflexibility over CreateSpace.

Thanks for the feedback, that's much appreciated! I agree with you, we pushed a first version of the editor that works really well for a good number of authors, but definitely requires more sophistication and customization in order to work for (almost) everyone.
All the stuff you mentioned are things we're currently working on and they will be changed/implemented within the next month. We will also progressively be adding more templates. The only thing that's going to take a bit more time is the blank lines within chapters – we still need to figure out how best to allow that. But everything else is really almost ready to be changed (images can already be added via "drag and drop", and the upload button will soon be functional as well).

Thanks again, and everyone please let me know if you have any comments/feedback, we're taking quite a bit of time/resources to build this free tool for authors so we want to get it right  :)

Writers' Cafe / Re: Reedsy Editer & Formatting Tool -
« on: February 22, 2016, 09:34:17 AM »
Sounds good, I'll have a chat with our dev team about having an export that's not ePub or PDF. In any case, there will be a way to share it with beta-readers or co-authors, we're currently working on that  :)

Btw, we're holding an "As us anything" on Reddit right now, with the two creators of the Reedsy Book Editor answering any questions live. It's here if you want to join.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Reedsy Editer & Formatting Tool -
« on: February 19, 2016, 09:03:47 AM »
Hey all, Ricardo from Reedsy here, thought I'd jump on the thread quickly to answer the questions. But first, we've launched this week, so if you want to test out the Reedsy Book Editor, head here:
This is kind of an early release and all the features are not there yet, but we'll be adding them in the next few weeks/months.

Export is to both ePub and print-ready, IngramSpark/Createspace-compliant PDF. We might add customizable .mobi in the future but we're starting with that. We've checked the ePubs we output and they all convert perfectly into mobis using Amazon's converter.

Did they happen to mention downloads for any other formats, like RTF / DOCX?

That's not in our plans, no. Why would you like an export to those? (Smashwords accepts our ePubs)

Does anyone know if it's possible to import a docx or other format into Reedsy so I'm not copying and pasting my chapters one by one into their interface?

That's our next feature, and it'll be available in a month or so. If your word doc is formatted into sections, those will automatically be imported as chapters :) In the meantime, the copy-pasting takes a bit of time, but then you can save hours on the formatting work.

Writers' Cafe / Re: The Reedsy Book Editor: a new *free* formatting tool
« on: February 17, 2016, 04:24:58 PM »
Thanks for the feedback! Yeah, I know about the chapter numbers – we'll soon add an option to not display them. We'll also add scene breaks which could serve your purpose. And the import is coming in a month or two :)

As co-founder of Reedsy, I wanted to introduce you all to our brand new Reedsy Book Editor, and seek your feedback on it (I know, risky…).

In a nutshell, it's an online, browser-based writing tool that allows authors to:
  • write, copy-paste, or import a document into the editor (import is coming in a month or two)
  • add images, scene breaks and end notes; move chapters around; set the front and back matter
  • export a clean ePub that can be turned into a flawless .mobi on Amazon afterwards
  • export a professionally typeset print-ready PDF file – choice between 2 templates, many more coming.We've worked with the Ingram Spark team to make sure all our PDF files are perfectly compliant with their requirements.

More about all this on the book editor's landing page. Please note that we need to update some of the images on the landing page, which don't reflect what our books look like. I'd love to have your thoughts, both on the idea, and on the actual tool if you get to test it.

Good to see you here, David! Yes, historical thrillers count. Basically, any cross-genre thriller counts as long as the "thriller" element is predominant. So 'cozy' mysteries or crime are out, but historical thrillers or techno-thrillers are in.

If there are alien mind control robots, I'd say that the main theme of the novel wouldn't be "thriller", rather sci-fi. Basically ask yourself: if/when I put this book up on Amazon, would I put it in the "thriller" category (or a thriller sub-category)? If not, then it's not for this competition.

That said, if you have a doubt, feel free to submit, it's free after all  :)

Writers' Cafe / Re: Reedsy: reviews + promo code for new users
« on: February 03, 2016, 04:01:15 AM »
Riccardo, could you perhaps explain the vetting process and requirements for being accepted to Reedsy as an editor?
This was one part of the signing up process that was not clear at the beginning.  Thanks.

Sure! I actually wrote a blog post about that not long ago, since we get the question quite often:

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