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I'm currently waiting for Smashwords to get some more free ISBNs as well. I figure they will eventually, and then my latest book can get on the Apple Store et al.

I'm not keen on paying for one either.
 

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It's only ten bucks (and you don't actually pay for it out of hand, they debit your account so it shows negative for a bit)... I bought it figuring I'd be happy to break even, but both of them have paid out and then some. Personally, I want my book available to as many readers as possible, but that's just my opinion :). I say go for it.
 

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WriterGurl1 said:
It's only ten bucks (and you don't actually pay for it out of hand, they debit your account so it shows negative for a bit)... I bought it figuring I'd be happy to break even, but both of them have paid out and then some. Personally, I want my book available to as many readers as possible, but that's just my opinion :). I say go for it.
I second that opinion. ;)
 

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Not living in the US, I don't even have the option, so for me the choice is easy... I sit and wait... twiddling thumbs.

Having said that, my sales don't justify the expense so I wouldn't buy anyway.  It's not going to be months. Will a few weeks of extra sales really pay for the ISBN?
 

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I just think that there's no way I could really "own" that ISBN. It's got to be on record with Bowker as being purchased by Smashwords. What happens if I take the book off Smashwords? Do I get to keep that ISBN?

Apple and Sony combined rarely make me $10 per quarter. Smashwords will get the free ones back. I will wait. Until then, it's not it's not on sale everywhere except the places that want ISBNs.
 

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valeriec80 said:
I just think that there's no way I could really "own" that ISBN. It's got to be on record with Bowker as being purchased by Smashwords. What happens if I take the book off Smashwords? Do I get to keep that ISBN?

Apple and Sony combined rarely make me $10 per quarter. Smashwords will get the free ones back. I will wait. Until then, it's not it's not on sale everywhere except the places that want ISBNs.
Or you could buy your own ISBNs from Bowker.
 

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From Mark Coker's update on July 8th:

ISBN update. We're awaiting final sign-off on our new contract with Bowker. Early next week is the new target for the new FREE ISBNs to be available. I don't recommend the "Premium" ISBNs, they're not worth it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Excellent, SWolf. Thanks! And thanks, everyone. I've spent so much money on ads, I seriously don't want to spend any more money on this book right now. PJ
 

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I'm just going to wait until they get the free ones. He's changed the date to expect them by a few times but I figure they'll get them eventually. I just know if I pay for one the free ones will show up the very next day ;)
 

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Short answer: Yes.

Not-so-short answer: Hell yes.

Here's why: Legitimacy.

They (whomever 'they' are) say that indie authors should care less about legitimacy and more about getting their work out there and getting known. Personally, I think that's crap. Legitimacy is just another word for professionalism, to my mind. Sure, you're an indie author who may or may not have an agent and may or may not have a goal of seeing your books on the shelves in the bookstore. Maybe you want to be the next Amanda Hocking, or maybe you'd rather just earn a little coin on the side.

Why do it the lazy, unprofessional way?

Do it the right way from the get-go. Spring for the $25 (skip Starbucks for a couple days and you'll be surprised how fast it appears) [ED: Yeah, I screwed up, these are $125] for a solo ISBN from Bowker, or buy a block of 10 if you're going to be selling more than one or two books. That ISBN is yours. You can take it wherever you go, to whatever publisher or source, without restrictions of any kind.

Ask CreateSpace, Lightning Source or Smashwords if you can do that with theirs.

In the end, this is YOUR book. It's representing you out there, just like every book by every other author does. Some are good representations, with good covers, good quality editing, and good formatting (including an ISBN and copyright page). Others... well, they look like what people used to think of when they heard the term 'ebook' - and some still do. Someone wrote something on Word at home and threw it up (visual intended) on the web, hoping to make a buck.

Is that you? Do you want that impression from your book?

Do it the right way. Even if it costs a little bit more.
 

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Smashwords should be getting them in sometime this week. I emailed Mark about it and that was his reply.

The Lazy unprofessional way? Lazy? How is getting a free ISBN number assigned to your book lazy as opposed to paying for an ISBN number online? Either way we are not jumping in our cars and running to a store to buy an ISBN number. So, no difference in energy expended. Whether you are getting one free or buying it both is done online.

I will continue to use the free ones. Maybe when money starts dropping out my behind I will be able to afford to pay for them. But even then if I am selling using the free ones, why?

Legit? Sorry, but my mind works just as hard coming up with ebooks to entertain people as popular "legit" authors do. My ebooks are just as real as their ebooks. At least that is what all the people in my head tell me. :)

 

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SAMulraney said:
Ummm...was I missing something? It looked like $125 for a single ISBN! :eek:
Wow. I blame a distinct lack of caffeinated beverages for that error. That makes the block of 10 even more worth it, then.

Still, I stand by my original argument, even if it will take a few more Starbucks to get there (and believe me, I know how much of a sacrifice that really is).
 

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I bought ten ISBNs from Bowker for $250. Why? My general policy is to do things today in a manner that gives me the greatest flexibility in the future.
 

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That is kind of my point. I really do not see people running and checking up on who represents the ISBN on an ebook before purchasing.
On my ebooks on the start yes, it says Published at Smashwords and if they look hard enough then yes the ISBN is Smashwords.
BUT!!! That "Published at Smashwords" is preceded by:
Published by Robert M. Yelverton at Smashwords

So it is still YOUR ebook. :)

But Thank You for saying what the person meant to say, but in a nicer way. :)

Edward M. Grant said:
I think the point they were making is that a Smashwords ISBN will list Smashwords as the book's publisher, while your own ISBN will list you. Of course I doubt many people outside the publishing industry are likely to know or care.
 
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