It’s my pleasure to welcome author Libby Sternberg back to Thoughts in Progress. She's not here today to talk about her latest book, but instead her latest venture - Istoria Books, which is now open for submissions.
Thanks for having me here once again. This is a terrific place for authors and readers. In fact, I’ve been here as your guest as an author in the past, trying to promote various books.
But today I’m here to talk about a new ePress I’m starting--Istoria Books.
It’s no secret that sales of eBooks are growing. Just recently the New York Times ran an article about how young adult eBook sales now make up a quarter of those books sold by HarperCollins. Other publishers (and genres) report similar expansion in the eBook market.
Some authors are taking advantage of this market expansion by putting their books for sale on amazon and the like themselves. I salute them. It’s a tough slog to get your book professionally edited and formatted, to secure cover art and to handle ISBN registration, insurance and marketing.
For authors who don’t want to deal with all that work, Istoria Books offers an alternative. We’re a selective publisher, so you won’t be “self publishing” with us. We split royalties rather than pay advances, but we do not ask authors to “earn out” the costs of production. We cover those ourselves.
We want Istoria to be a place where readers can always find “Books you want to read at prices you want to pay.”
What does “books you want to read” mean? I think all readers, myself included, far too regularly encounter books they don’t get into, they don’t want to finish. Or, if they do want to finish the story, they just skip to the end to see how things wrap up.
While we understand that reading tastes are very subjective (and you can’t please everyone all the time), Istoria Books seeks to find stories you don’t want to give up on--good yarns. We want to find stories that you want to hear the author tell--you don’t just flip to the end to see what happens.
We suspect that some of these stories might have a hard time finding print publishers because of the marketing limitations traditional publishers face. They’re under tremendous pressure to find predictable successes. No wonder then that you see book after book with Tudor ladies on the cover (curiously, without faces!) or vampires or …whatever the bestselling trend happens to be.
Istoria Books can afford to take some chances on different kinds of stories. As we say in our submission guidelines, if your romance is told from the hero's POV, we'll still look at it. If your young adult novel features a college-age protagonist, we'll consider it. If your women's fiction book puts romance way on the back burner, we're open to it. If your inspirational involves a sinning protagonist, we'll still take a look.
The two questions we ask when reviewing manuscripts are: do I want to keep reading this story, and do I want to keep hearing this author tell it to me? A good story, well-told.
We hope authors will check out our submission guidelines, at the “About Us” page on our website--www.IstoriaBooks.com. We hope readers will check out our offerings and get on our mailing list by signing up at our website or blog (www.IstoriaBooks.blogspot.com). Freebies and discounts will be available at various time to our subscribers.
In fact, Istoria Books is pleased to announce acquiring digital rights to Gary Alexander’s up-market/literary fiction DRAGON LADY.
Set in 1965 Saigon on the eve of the big troop build-ups in Vietnam, DRAGON LADY is bittersweet, funny, absurd and heartbreaking all at once, telling the story of a young draftee’s obsession with a Vietnamese woman, who could betray him in more ways than one. Gary’s intelligent voice--filled with dry wit--and his own experiences give this story a sharp sense of truth--the “truth within the lie” that all good fiction is. Gary served in Vietnam in ’65. When he arrived, he joined 17,000 GIs. When he left, 75,000 were in country.
Watch for news of the release of DRAGON LADY soon!
Libby, thanks for guest blogging here today and sharing your information on Istoria Books. The ebook world is expanding fast and each day I’m understanding more and more good points about it.
What are your thoughts on ebooks and publishing?