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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Self-publish with Support
If you don't already know Draft2Digital, we're a digital publishing and distribution service that:
  • Offers easy distribution to some of the most important digital stores (even for international users)
  • Creates beautiful ebooks with our free conversion software
  • Accepts and distributes user-provided epubs
  • Provides industry-leading customer service (including free phone support)
  • Consolidates the sales reporting, accounting, and payments from multiple stores
  • Protects your privacy through robust support for pen names and publisher imprints
  • Helps with catalog management (thanks to tools like our New Release Notifications, and store-specific links in our optional Automated End-matter pages)
As a writer, you want to write. When it comes to the publishing part, maybe you could use a little support. We make it easy.

Visit our site now to try out easy self-publishing, or keep reading to learn more.

Our Background
Draft2Digital is a KBoards success story. We first launched in December of 2012 with a closed beta and a single post--this post--on the KBoards Writer's Cafe. It quickly became one of the most-viewed threads of all time in the Writer's Cafe, and single-handedly drove the early adoption and growth of our company.

That's been three years ago, now. To celebrate the anniversary, I decided to update the old thread and share some interesting statistics.

First, let me share a little bit of info about me.

Author on Board
I'm a self-published author. I started back in 2010 with a sci-fi mystery called Surveillance, and then hit the big time in the summer of 2011 with a fantasy novel called Taming Fire. I later signed a three-book deal with Amazon's imprint 47North, so they published my newest fantasy series, The Godlanders War. Across all three series, I've sold a quarter of a million books.

When I first started considering self-publishing, I kept hearing about the author community at KBoards. I became a regular lurker here, and did my best to assimilate the flood of great industry wisdom that this board has to offer. One conclusion stood out to me above all the rest:

If I do all of this, if I do it right, then I'll never have time to write another word!
- Me
Lucky for me, I have some programmer friends who are way too generous. I discussed the problem with them, and before too long we were working on a program to convert my documents into ePubs for me.

Programming the Publishing Process
The document conversion software worked like a charm, but then I found new problems. I needed to keep track of all the different sales reports from all the different stores, and consolidate them into a consistent format so I could compare and track my books' performance. I needed to learn all the quirks and nuances of each of the different stores. I needed to buy a Mac, apparently....

For two years, we worked on this suite of custom software tools as hobby projects to support my publishing career. Every time I used those tools, I felt greedy for keeping them all to myself. Every time I used those tools, I ended up suggesting to my friends that we turn this whole thing into a service other writers could use.

In December 2012, we did just that. We built a website around the conversion and sales reporting tools and launched the beta of our service at Draft2Digital.com.

The Announcement
I sent out an email invitation to a handful of friends and family, and I posted a thread about it at KBoards. That was the full extent of our advertising and promotion efforts, but it worked. The authors here at KBoards loved Draft2Digital right out of the gate (you can read their reactions below), and within a month our catalog increased from ten authors and 30 titles to 332 authors and more than a thousand titles. Combined, those books generated almost $6,000 in royalties for our authors that first month.

Three years later, we now have 70,000 titles from 16,000 authors. Combined, those books now generate nearly a million dollars in royalties for our authors every month. And we're only growing!

Our Success Is Your Success
As I said, Draft2Digital is a KBoards success story. In so many different ways, it all started right here.

Thank you for providing a rich, informative community for all authors looking to understand a complicated industry. Thank you for taking a chance on another indie experiment and providing the feedback--both the compliments and the criticism--that we needed to turn Draft2Digital into the company you needed. And thank you for spreading the word.

Another Invitation
If you weren't one of those early adopters, there's still time to get in on this at the ground level. We've barely gotten started! (Just wait until you see what we have coming in 2016.)

In the meantime, you can see what got us this far. Sign-up is free, it only takes a few minutes, and there's no commitment. Go to the registration page, provide your email address, and you're in. Easy as that.

Keep writing. Keep your rights. We'll help with the rest.
- Draft2Digital
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I can't wait for that one.

I keep thinking about trying to implement it myself (with a little inside information), but I know those guys will do a much better job, and probably get it done faster even after I wait for them to finish getting the core functionality online.
 

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I have a beta-account, and I can unequivocally say that uploading is a pleasant experience.
The site is rock-stable and very easy to manage. And fast.
The book I tested it with was published to B&N in about a day.
There were some kinks in the payment form but they've been ironed out.

Response from Kris was fast, and I really got the feeling they're author-centered and prepared to learn and adjust.

I'm going with them for Apple and B&N.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the endorsement, Andrew! Can we have permission to use it elsewhere?

I'm glad we got some mention here at Kindleboards so the developers could see how strong the demand for international support was. I was shocked how quickly they got it implemented. That's largely thanks to the detailed feedback you provided. So thanks again!
 

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Aaron Pogue said:
Thanks for the endorsement, Andrew! Can we have permission to use it elsewhere?

I'm glad we got some mention here at Kindleboards so the developers could see how strong the demand for international support was. I was shocked how quickly they got it implemented. That's largely thanks to the detailed feedback you provided. So thanks again!
Of course you can. :)

I've had some further email interchanges with Kris and a few other very minor adjustments are going to be made, but for me the site is ready for prime time as is.
 

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I just uploaded my three books and it went fairly smoothly. Through this service, I'll now also be in iPad, which just about completes my listings with the major vendors. Only Sony remains. . .
 

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I also uploaded to D2D, right now for B&N only, since I already published myself to Amazon, Kobo, and iTunes, but I enjoyed the simple process of uploading and publishing my work, and my emails with Kris to tweak the requirements and demands for non-US self-publishers. I hope other distributors like Sony and Diesel will be added soon, as these are distributors that are posing major difficulties for non-US authors.

Another experiment is publishing Locked Room and Microchip Murder for free on BN - they are free on Kobo and iTunes, and it took some major wrangling to get Amazon to price-match. I uploaded them to D2D with a 0.00 pricetag and I hope BN accepts them. If they do accept them, that might be a boon to self-publishers seeking to upload loss leaders to the retailers.
 

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After reading what Andrew said about Draft2Digital uploading to B&N in about a day, I thought it would definitely be worth my while to try D2D out as I've been waiting for SW to upload my 2nd book in the Evolution series for about 2 months. I even had an erotica description on my first (YA) book that took almost a week to fix up & I'm guessing it would have been fixed a lot quicker with D2D.

thanks so much for giving us all another option!
 

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If I make an account with my real, legal name, then decide to write a book under a super secret pen name that I want to keep completely separate from my real name, can I upload the book to that account and not have my real name associated with that book at the retailers? Or would I have to open a new account under the pen name?

Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Lanette Curington said:
If I make an account with my real, legal name, then decide to write a book under a super secret pen name that I want to keep completely separate from my real name, can I upload the book to that account and not have my real name associated with that book at the retailers? Or would I have to open a new account under the pen name?

Thanks!
Lanette, it's really easy to publish a book under a pen name. You'll have to give D2D your real name if you want them to pay you, but you can use a pen name for your primary author name, and every time you set up a new book project, you choose which "Contributors" are associated with that book. The form makes it easy to add new contributors, including (another) pen name to put in the author role. So you can easily publish the book with that pen name, but keep it associated with your main account.

"Publisher" works the same way. You can choose which Publisher name you want associated with each book.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Patty Jansen said:
As international author I have one major question:

What about the US tax [crap]?
Kris (the CEO) has spent the last week figuring out the answer to that. D2D is required to withhold 30% income tax for all international publishers and pay that to the IRS. They'll do that by default, with no extra effort on your part.

If your country has a tax treaty with the US, you can request a US tax ID and submit an IRS form to D2D stating that you're exempt from US taxes, and then D2D will pay you the full royalties. There'll probably be a step-by-step guide for that process up on the site shortly. It's not exactly easy breezy, but D2D has to follow local laws. Not really any way around that.
 

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Aaron Pogue said:
Kris (the CEO) has spent the last week figuring out the answer to that. D2D is required to withhold 30% income tax for all international publishers and pay that to the IRS. They'll do that by default, with no extra effort on your part.

If your country has a tax treaty with the US, you can request a US tax ID and submit an IRS form to D2D stating that you're exempt from US taxes, and then D2D will pay you the full royalties. There'll probably be a step-by-step guide for that process up on the site shortly. It's not exactly easy breezy, but D2D has to follow local laws. Not really any way around that.
Yep - this was my gripe as well. I suggested they apply the same rules as Amazon.
 

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Aaron Pogue said:
If your country has a tax treaty with the US, you can request a US tax ID and submit an IRS form to D2D stating that you're exempt from US taxes, and then D2D will pay you the full royalties. There'll probably be a step-by-step guide for that process up on the site shortly. It's not exactly easy breezy, but D2D has to follow local laws. Not really any way around that.
If you need to know how to get an EIN, go to http://catherineryanhoward.com/2012/02/24/non-us-self-publisher-tax-issues-dont-need-to-be-taxing/ and follow the instructions.
 

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Aaron Pogue said:
Kris (the CEO) has spent the last week figuring out the answer to that. D2D is required to withhold 30% income tax for all international publishers and pay that to the IRS. They'll do that by default, with no extra effort on your part.

If your country has a tax treaty with the US, you can request a US tax ID and submit an IRS form to D2D stating that you're exempt from US taxes, and then D2D will pay you the full royalties. There'll probably be a step-by-step guide for that process up on the site shortly. It's not exactly easy breezy, but D2D has to follow local laws. Not really any way around that.
I was wondering the same thing. I already have my EIN so I'll just wait for D2D to upload their process for submitting it.
 

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Hugh Howey said:
Wow. I wonder if Mark Coker would like to update his "2013 Outlook Blog?" 8)
Yeah, really!

D2D lets you upload a doc formatted however you like it, and they let you use their ePUB version however you want, too.
 
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