Guest Post & Giveaway with Nadia Lee

Today we having Nadia Lee here with us on the blog to talk a little bit about eBooks and eReaders. Nadia’s newest release The Last Slayer is coming out December 26th from Carina Press, and she has an early copy to giveaway to one lucky commenter! Take it away Nadia!

My Wishlist for eBook Publishers (Including Agency Six)

I’ve been waffling back and forth between buying a dedicated ereader. I like my iTouch (though it’s ancient now), and I’m not sure about ebooks given agency pricing, poor digital library access, DRM, geo restrictions and so on.

Still, I couldn’t help but cave in when Amazon announced the new Kindle lineup. So I bought the cheapest Kindle (non-touch, no keyboard), based on price, shipping and ease of buying and so on.

After having used it for a month, I’ve created a list of things I wish ebook publishers do for us readers:

  • If we buy directly from you, ensure that we can re-download the titles later. I know you worry about the growing power of Amazon, BN, etc. but if you offer no real benefit to buying directly from you, I’m going to patronize whichever vendor makes it easiest for me to buy and enjoy my ebooks.
  • Don’t treat us like criminals. DRM hurts honest readers and buyers, not the pirates.
  • Can you please proof after conversion so we don’t get books without paragraph breaks, weird symbols like &24’#5; instead of a punctuation mark, foreign word, and so on? This is especially true for anything published by Agency Six because the reason why you insist that ebooks should cost as much as a print book or more is because you add value. How about adding some frickin’ value by putting out well-formatted ebooks!
  • Can you please stop with the enhanced ebooks? Nothing makes me go colder than a publisher talking about creating “enhanced” ebooks to jack up the price. You can worry about enhanced ebooks after you master the basic text formatting.
  • And speaking of formatting — can we get covers with our ebooks? If ebooks are going to cost as much as or more than print books, they should at least come with covers, don’t you agree?

How about you? Is there anything you want publishers to do better, whether it’s with ebooks or print?

Comment for a chance to win an e-copy of any book from my backlist plus an early e-copy of The Last Slayer. I’ll send you the latter as soon as I get my author e-copy from the publisher. Contest ends November 4th and is open international. 🙂

18 thoughts on “Guest Post & Giveaway with Nadia Lee”

  1. I agree with your list. I generally won’t buy new releases for my ereader if the cost is the same or a couple of dollars lower, I’ll wait. I don’t understand why I have to pay the same for the ebook that I do for a print copy – I can’t share it like I can my print book.

  2. I completely agree with your list as well. I pretty much buy my ebooks only from Amazon because I hate not being able to re-download my books from the eseller if I switch ereaders or computer. Also, while the cover doesn’t automatically appear on my 2nd generation Kindle, I really like having them available.

    And Karen C is right – I really hate having to pay list price for an ebook, when I can buy the mass market paperback at Barnes & Noble or Target for less money. That doesn’t make any kind of sense to the consumer!

  3. I totally agree with your list, too and with the two commenters above me. I especially hate paying the same price for the ebook that I have to pay for the print. There is no logic behind that. And I wish they would have all one format. Because of all these many formats I was in the beginning really confused about ebooks and it took me a bit to get the hang of it.

  4. I am currently in the market for an ereader and have been for the past year. The Kindle announcement sounds pretty appealing and it’s looking like a Kindle is in the future for me. I haven’t bought one yet because I’m still attached to my print books and my TBR still exist. However, I have been buying some ebooks, some because the book is only available in eformat, others because the price was significantly lower -usually a short term sale and I download them onto my PC. I do notice some formatting problems and agree with the point about the ” ‘ ” becoming #4281 or one without a cover or an ill-fiting one. I like seeing the pretty covers in print and it’s no different with digital!

  5. Great post! I agree with all of these and would add – can you please add the back blurb to the front of the e-book?? I often read books months after I’ve bought them and can’t remember what they are about! Makes for very interesting – if sometimes unexpected – reading 🙂

    smaccall AT

  6. I pretty much agree with your comments. But I will pay paperback price for an ebook. I’ve discovered that disposal of the books is a serious problem when you have more than 2,000, especially when you move every couple of years like we do. Ebooks weigh a lot less!

    My problem is organization. With an iPad, I have stuff in the Kindle app, stuff in the Nook app, stuff in Bluefire, and now I need an app to organize all the books in my apps!

  7. Yup, I agree with all of those, especially the enhanced content comment. I can’t believe they think we are going to pay even more for books we don’t actually own (since we can’t give them away or trade them) when they can’t even master basic formatting and proofing. Would you believe it actually used to be worse? I was a Kindle early adopter and you wouldn’t believe how bad it was initially on some of those books.

    And don’t even get me started on pricing. I’ve gotten to the point where I just don’t buy from the Agency publishers because of their utterly insane pricing policies. I’ve got a few “auto-buy” authors, but aside from that, they’ve pretty much lost my business. I much prefer to buy from Harlequin, Carina and Samhain – I’ve found lots of great authors and the books are priced much more realistically.

  8. I agree with everything you said. I also have an issue regarding e-books. Like Amazon, you can only download a limit of time. What happens if your laptop or computer goes dead? Seriously, dead. You buy another computer and try to download the e-books you bought. Only you can’t download it again to your new computer. Where’s the incentive in buying printed vs e-books? Especially if you don’t have access to reading the books, you bought on a new system. Is it my fault that my computerized system die?

  9. @KarenC – Sharing is a big problem for ebooks. I know Amazon allows for a one-time lending for 14 days to another Kindle user, but that seems rather … poor compared to print. OTOH — you’ll never have a friend or somebody just borrow your book and run away with your book…er…forget to give it back. I lost several paper copies that way.

    @RebeLovesBooks – I agree AMZ’s service is nice because you can redownload your books. I was a little surprised that the cover doesn’t appear on Kindle. As a matter of fact, unless you actively look for one, you’ll never see it on Kindle.

    Yeah…the refusal to allow ebook discount drives me nuts!

    @ClaudiaGC – I think epub is going to be the winning format, though AMZ is hanging onto its proprietary format with all its might. BTW — for technical help on ebook reading, etc. I found Dear Author to be very good.

    @Na S — Kindle is actually pretty good. The cheapest version w/o the keyboard works well, esp. if you don’t need to take notes while reading.

    @roro — I hope so, but I doubt we’ll have a color e-ink model any time soon…

    @SarahM — You know, I never noticed that about ebooks until you mentioned it!

    @Marlene — I don’t move as much as you (thank god & I’m so sorry you have to move so much), but our apt is sooooo small that we can’t afford to “waste” space on physical copies anymore. As for organization, you may eventually have to pick one vendor or device and stick w/ it. Else it’s not only hard to organize you may end up buying multiple copies of the same book!

    @JenM — No way! I can’t believe it was worse than now. I still see formatting errors from ebooks from big publishers. Harlequin, Carina, Samhain, etc. do not engage in agency pricing, hence AMZ and BN, etc. discount their titles. 🙂

    @Kai W — You can redownload Kindle books from your account page (go to Manage Kindle). But in most cases, you’re totally SOL. 🙁

  10. Oh my gosh! You just stated every single complaint I have with ebooks! My biggest pet peeve is not being able to call up the books by the covers. Before I got my actual Kindle I had Kindle for PC on my computer and I could go to the library and it listed every book by their cover, so I just don’t get why they can’t design a Kindle to do the same thing! Thanks for voicing something a lot of people are thinking 🙂

  11. I agree that we should be able to re-download the titles later. Covers is also a must… some of my fav’s are from ebooks and if I buy the book at a store I should get the cover as well, so it makes sense to be able to buy an ebook with a cover too.

  12. I hate to pay the same price for ebooks as print books because i can share print books or give them away on my blog. Or I can take them to a UBS or donate them to a library. So I get more bang for my buck so to speak. Only time I’ve bought a ebook vs print is when they come out in hardback then I will buy then in ebook if they are not one of my must have every book author lol.

  13. I don’t think an ebook should cost as much as a paper book. I shouldn’t have to jump through hoops to read books I have bought. I want to have my book covers. I can’t stand when the book has strange symbols or nonsense translation. I think all ereaders should be able to read aloud. Thanks for the giveaway. jepebATverizonDOTnet

  14. I buy few ebooks for all the reasons you mentioned. Another annoying thing I run into is that I’ll run into a page that has two or three different size print on it for no conceivable reason. I mostly use my Kindle to read ARCs of books that aren’t officially released. As long as the ecopy is as or almost as expensive as the print copy, I’m not shucking out my cash for something that I can’t share with a friend.
    Awesome giveaway!

  15. I live in Asia & can’t seem to find any Kindle books worth reading that is available to readers from where I am. It’s so frustrating!

  16. @Julie — I know! It’s so irritating. It’s a bit strange though because if you use Kindle app you can pull books by cover, but on the actual Kindle device itself you can’t do that. Grr.

    @Victoria — Thanks for stopping by!

    @Yadira — Yup. So true.

    @Pamk — I agree that there’s a huge difference how you can treat a print book and ebook once you’re done reading it. I too wish I could give my ebooks away, esp. the ones that are DNFs or I didn’t like so that maybe somebody else can enjoy them instead. (Many books I’ve DNF’d aren’t bad, just not my cuppa.)

    @Jen B — I think the ability to read aloud is very critical for readers with poor eyesight or who just want to listen to the text-to-speech for a while. But I’m not sure if publishers are going to allow that any time soon because they believe it’ll erode their share of audio book market.

    @Lisa Richards — Grr. How annoying about the font size.

    As for sharing with friends, you can lend your Kindle book ONE TIME ONLY to another Kindle user for 14 days. After 14 days, the book just comes back to you. In that sense it’s better if you have friends who forget to return books. 🙂

    @Linda — Grr. Don’t get me started on the geo limitations…! You know what I hate the most? Companies that want world rights but won’t sell worldwide.

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