Smashwords embodies the ‘real’ independent author. It’s simple, quick, allows you to retain a lot of immediate control over your work, including easy opportunities to make your books free as you wish with no strings attached or hoop-jumping required.
Smashwords has no ridiculous charges or further hoop-jumping based on the author’s or the buyer’s country of residence. Seriously, Amazon, if documents are transferred electronically, what is it with the RIDICULOUS surcharge for ‘delivery’. I call that straight profiteering.
Smashwords treats all authors and buyers as equal as they can.
Smashwords does not keep subdividing the world into ever-diminishing markets and retaining a reserve of sales money for each of them.
Smashwords distributes to a whole host of other online sellers where it’s hard to get your book listed otherwise.
Best of all, Smashwords uses paypal. For anyone who whinges about paypal fees, I have this to say: go to your bank and ask to become an independent credit card merchant. Ask how much they charge. OK, done that? Point made.
However, recently, I’ve pulled my three oldest fiction titles off Smashwords to enrol them in the Amazon KDP Select program. Why? Simple: because they didn’t sell on Smashwords, or B&N, or Sony, or the iBooks store. The KDP Select program allows me to set days the book will be free for promotional purposes, and strangely, giving books away helps sales. It helps in getting reviews and getting the work read.
But I’m no great fan of Amazon, their chaotic site and their monopoly. Many other people aren’t fans either. There’s only one thing to do, right? Buy books on sites that aren’t Amazon.
In that vein, I have Fire & Ice on special for 99c this weekend. Don’t make me put the trilogy on KDP Select as well.