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Weekly Write-Up: 16th January 2019

by Tom Ashford

Welcome to the SPF Weekly Write-Up, where each Wednesday we collect together the self-publishing news of the week so you don’t have to.

This week: U.S. authors earn less than ever, EMS platforms are ranked, and children’s books come to life.

U.S. Authors Earn Less Than Ever…

…if they’re traditionally published, that is. Forbes has reported that a recent survey by the Authors Guild found that U.S. authors are more down on their luck than ever, no matter what genre they write in. Literary fiction authors have seen a drop of 43% since 2013! Back in 2007, the average U.S. author earned $12,850. In 2017, that figure had shrunk to just $6,080.

The exception? Self-published authors. They’re the only ones to see their earnings rise since 2013… though they still come in at 58% lower than those who are traditionally published.

The article goes on to ramifications for this problem as well as potential solutions. You can read it here.

How Well is Your EMS Performing?

As posted in the SPF Community FB page by Kevin Partner, the people at Email Tool Tester have put together a series of great infographics and assessments regarding the performance of the most popular email marketing services. It makes for some interesting reading.

Take deliverability, for example. Mailchimp and ConvertKit come in with around 81-82%, which is okay. But Mailerlite, despite their problems in 2018, deliver a whopping 92.6% of the time, surpassed only by Active Campaign’s insane 97%!

I must say I was a little disappointed with Mailchimp’s results, given how popular it is. Only 63.6% of emails were delivered to readers’ main folders, whilst 18.1% were delivered to ‘Tab’ folders (Promotions in Gmail, etc.) and 17.8% went straight into spam!

You can check out the infographics yourself here.

Books Come to Life

Here’s another piece of news delivered to the FB Community, this time by Jack Probyn.

According to their website, Bookful “transforms your device into a portal to a magical, playful universe” – i.e. makes augmented reality stories for your kids! The app, available on phones and tablet computers, delivers animations and interactive games alongside the stories themselves, which children can either read themselves or have read to them.

At the moment it’s just for children’s books, with a focus on classic Beatrix Potter tales. But just think of the possibilities this medium could open up!

Tom Ashford

Tom Ashford

Tom Ashford is a professional copywriter, author of numerous dark fantasy and sci-fi novels, and the Head of Content at the Self Publishing Formula Blog. His books include the Blackwater trilogy and the Checking Out series.

He lives in London with his wife, in an apartment that doesn’t allow pets. Find out more about Tom here.