Sci-Fi and Fantasy author Stephen Hunt conducted a poll on his social network pages to find out how his readers consume his books. The results showed 54% buy e-books from the Kindle store, 39% buy e-books directly from the publisher and 25% bought from the author. The report, published on PaidContent.org, also shows that “19% of respondents were reading e-books illegally by downloading them”.
“The Fault in Our Stars” turned John Green a best-seller author before the book was released. The book will actually be released in May 2012. How did he do it? By using social networks to promote his work directly to readers.
Green has built up quite an online following, and has more than 1 million followers on Twitter. His books are published by Dutton Children’s Books (Penguin Group), but he also puts a great deal of focus on web promotion of his work. Besides Twitter, the author launched the title on Tumblr, YourPants.org forum and You Tube.
The truth is most published authors do not get significant promotional support from their publishers and are expected to manage their own book promotion. Authors are investing in connecting with fans and building followers in social networks. Social networks and user-friendly platforms are tools for authors, publishers and readers to engage and share information.
There are hundreds of e-books authors that write, release and manage their own online promotion. Stephen Hunt, John Green and TikaTok are an example of trends in the world of publishing; increasing responsibility for authors with authors having more direct contact and engagement with their readers.
Mobile applications are also giving rise to the self-publishing phenomenon. Barnes & Noble, through TikaTok, launched the “Real Books by Real Kids” program. The program allows kids and teens to create their own books on the Nook Color. The Tikatok Nook App is free to download, and writing, creating, and publishing e-books is free.