start here

Weekly Write-Up: May 1st 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: a bookstore installs a Print-It-Yourself machine, and a UK newspaper runs a publishing competition.

Instantly Print Your Book in Bookstores

There might be a new way of getting your indie books into bookstores: “Espresso Book Machines.”

They’re named as such because that’s how long it takes for the machine to print a book, and apparently the cost is the same as if the customer took a regular book up to the cashier. This novel approach to stocking shelves is being deployed by a New York bookstore called Shakespeare & Co., and major publishers such as HarperCollins and Penguin are lining up to get their books included.

That said, about 60% of the books printed are for self-published authors – it sounds like a great way to get people to go into a store and buy your book, particularly when not everyone looks forward to ordering paperbacks online.

You can read more about the Espresso Book Machine here.

Daily Mail Book Competition

I know that at SPF we’re all about self-publishing, but for any of you still contemplating going down the traditional route (or maybe being a hybrid author), you might be interested in a competition being run by UK newspaper, The Daily Mail.

The winner gets £20,000, a top literary agent and guaranteed publication by Penguin Random House UK. Not bad! You don’t need to submit your whole novel, either – the first 3,000 words will do, plus a 600-word synopsis.

There is a catch, however. You can’t have already published a novel (either traditionally or as a self-published author), which takes most of us out of the running. And your book has to be written in one of a select few genres – fantasy and science fiction are a no-no.

If you’re yet to publish a book, you can give the competition a go here.

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.