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Weekly Write-Up: October 3rd 2018

by Tom Ashford
Welcome to the SPF Weekly Write-Up, where each Wednesday we’ll be collecting together the self-publishing news of the week so you don’t have to.

This week: Instafreebie officially becomes Prolific Works (and the CEO explains what that name change might actually mean), the Alliance of Independent Authors declares that the time of Self-Publishing 3.0 is upon us, and a group of UT students create a platform designed to help Juniors and Seniors self-publish their work.

Prolific Works…

…appears to be exactly the same as Instafreebie. I feel a little bit like an intern at The Daily Planet, wondering why nobody else can see that Clark Kent is Superman.

But in all seriousness, the CEO of Prolific Works, Jason Freeman, did a webinar last week to address people’s questions and concerns. The focus seemed to be on the cost of being an indie-author, and how Prolific Works’ expanded vision includes reducing the time and money spent on publishing good books. That includes automated marketing through the platform itself – including promoting new, paid books – and increasing the success rate of projects launched on Kickstarter.

It’s all quite interesting stuff, and it certainly seems as if they’re taking their ‘bigger vision’ mantra seriously. You can check it out for yourself on YouTube.

Self-Publishing 3.0 has arrived!

But what does that mean?

The Alliance of Independent Authors has released a white paper on how authors can now grow their independence and build sustainable author businesses (more so, I assume, than they already could).

Apparently, Self-Publishing 1.0 was desktop publishing and print-on-demand, whilst 2.0 was selling eBooks for eReaders and other mobile devices.

The big push in Self-Publishing 3.0 appears to be diversifying revenue streams through one’s own website, from direct sales to subscription models to Kickstarter campaigns (there it is again!). It also mentions online teaching – looks like Mark’s been ahead of the game! It involves distributing in as many formats as possible, and shifting your mindset so that you control all aspects of your business and intellectual property, rather than a traditional publisher or a self-publishing service such as Amazon.

Orna Ross, founder of the Alliance, will apparently go into more detail at Digital Book World 2018.

Prolitfic – the Online Peer-Review Community

Students at UT (University of Texas) have founded Prolitfic, an online peer-review community that gives all students (the ones who write, at least) the opportunity to publish their work.

According to Nicole Sun, one of the founders, “writers are able to view analytics of interests to help them improve, like where readers drop off reading or where they get confused. We’re all aspiring writers and readers, so we wanted a site that would basically combine the accessibility of self-publishing with the quality of traditional publishing.”

It appears the analytics and peer-review elements are what encourage students to use Prolitfic rather than simply self-publishing the regular way. They’ve got over 150 users since starting in January – still small, but it’s a start.

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.