Friday, October 27, 2006

Prices are coming down.

Maybe not at PublishAmerica or Xlibris, but the retail prices of POD books seem to be dropping. Check out Lulu's new distribution options page for the costs to produce a book. This is dynamite.

I am hearing less and less from folks about how the cost of POD (to purchase a book) is keeping them from buying. The prices for midrange novels (say, 250 pages) has become pretty darn close to commercially published books by some POD companies--within a buck, in many cases, if not the same.

The real headache now is the issue of production. Let's hope the new machines at Lightning Source speed up the process, because in this country people want stuff now. So many people wonder why Amazon hasn't taken over the world (it's certainly on its way). It's because Amazon cannot get you a book tonight. Most people want to browse a book and take it home. The problem with POD, of course, is not only do you have to wait for Amazon to ship it, you have to wait (in most cases) for it to be printed at Lightning Source. You can't be in a hurry when it comes to POD. Heaven help you if you need a book to do research for a school project.

Now, if the fable of POD machines in bookstores comes true someday . . .

In case you didn't see this, it's a must read. Wired magazine has a piece on ultra short stories. Like, six words. Some of them are just great, like:

Gown removed carelessly. Head, less so.
--Joss Whedon

It’s behind you! Hurry before it
--Rockne S. O’Bannon

Epitaph: He shouldn't have fed it.
-- Brian Herbert

Commas, see, add, like, nada, okay?
-- Gregory Maguire