THE Group for Authors! discussion

136 views
Publishing and Promoting > how best to get distribution to libraries

Comments Showing 1-36 of 36 (36 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Jeanne (new)

Jeanne Gehret | 16 comments I am desperate for answers. Please help! I have a few questions about Lightning Source, so I'm going to number them for ease of discussion. Because I used my own ISBN when publishing paperbacks through Create Space (CS), I cannot have CS do distribution to libraries. Now I find that libraries are a good place to market my books. 1.) Is Lightning Source (LS) a good way to do paperbacks and get them into Baker&Taylor? 2) Can I keep the same ISBN for CreateSpace and LightningSource both? 3) When I tried to sign up for LightningSource, I got a reply message that said they would take a couple days to decide whether to accept me or not. Has that happened to anyone else? 4.) Some bloggers warn that LS is harder to use than CS. Now that I have already used CreateSpace, will that prepare me for some of the hard things about LightningSource?


message 2: by Gerry (new)

Gerry (gerrydowndoggmailcom) | 60 comments Your mind seems to be working like mine, I have been going over the same questions regarding Lightning Source vs Createspace. I have also heard of people having trouble with the Lightning Source publishing process, So far I have been using Createspace's ISBN instead of my own just for the reason of getting into libraries. It has been suggested I check out Lightning Source. As far as I know, Ingram (Lightning Source) and Baker & Taylor are each separate wholesalers to the trade. Createspace uses Baker & Taylor.


message 3: by Marie Silk (last edited Feb 12, 2017 05:04PM) (new)

Marie Silk | 223 comments You can use your same ISBN for a LS paperback as a Createspace paperback if you bought your own. I remember it taking a few days to get approved for an account and it takes additional days to get each title approved.

I found publishing to LS was about as easy/difficult as publishing to CS. There are probably just a few additional fields to fill in like wholesale discount. Also I had to calculate the retail price for each international market with their currency calculator. I chose the maximum royalties and still found my books listed with Barnes and Noble and the other major online retailers, even though they make it sound like the retailers won't feature you if your discount is too low.

Ingram makes the books available to libraries but it does not mean that libraries will necessarily make an order. I think that takes some doing on our part :D.

I use Createspace for Amazon only and LS for all the other retailers. If you want to use LS, make sure your paperback is not already signed up for extended distribution on Createspace.


message 4: by Gerry (new)

Gerry (gerrydowndoggmailcom) | 60 comments Thank you for your advise. Does LS also use a pdf to publish? All my children's books have my ISBN so that's no problem, but do I have to
get another ISBN for LS or can I use one from CS for the others? Barnes & Noble already has them as ebooks but would be nice to have the picture books in paperback for them. If I have CS send them over it means going to another distribution level and the price of the book goes way too high.


message 5: by Marie Silk (new)

Marie Silk | 223 comments Yes, you just upload your print-ready pdf as the interior file and the print-ready pdf of your book cover (exterior file).

If you purchase and manage your own ISBNs, then you can use the same one for your CS paperback as your LS paperback. You would need to buy a new ISBN if you wanted to publish in a different edition or format, like hardback. You would also need a different ISBN for each ebook format.

Yeah Createspace raises the cost for expanded distribution by quite a bit. If I went expanded with CS, I would get $1-ish royalty for each book. With LS, I get $3-ish. After I published to LS, my books were available to purchase from BN.com within a couple weeks.

Just a tip, look for a coupon code before you submit your files. I was using INDIEFRINGE16 last year which waived the $49 setup fee. There might be a new coupon code or you could try this one. Good luck :)


message 6: by Jeanne (new)

Jeanne Gehret | 16 comments Hi, Gerry. Welcome to the discussion! Thanks, Marie, for your most welcome advice. A few more questions...
1)Where might I find a coupon like the one you mention?
2) Will LS deal directly with Baker & Taylor for me? I used to deal with them directly and they were a nightmare.
3) Marie, when you say you chose "maximum royalties," can you give me a %?
4) And do you accept returns? That was the other nightmare about B&T and bookstores that I hope never to repeat.


message 7: by Marie Silk (new)

Marie Silk | 223 comments It was a coupon code that another goodreads user shared. It might not hurt to try and see if the code still works. They extended the expiration date of the coupon code a few times.

I'm sorry but I'm not sure how B&T works with LS. You might still have to contact them for listing and contract information.

I don't remember the exact numbers, but there is a field on LS that you need to fill out about a wholesale discount. It explains that some retailers will only list a book with a certain discount. This is the part where you enter a percentage and it will show you how much royalties you would receive from each sale. I think I entered the lowest percentage they would allow me to and it automatically calculated royalties from the discount.

I don't remember checking a box about returns. I think the default was no returns but it's been a while since I set up a title so I could be forgetting.


message 8: by Jeanne (new)

Jeanne Gehret | 16 comments Okay. Thanks again.


message 9: by Jan (new)

Jan Notzon | 220 comments Great info! Thanks, all.


message 10: by Matt (new)

Matt Jr. | 48 comments Just curious, How are you guys going about creating your PCIP Blocks, so that purchasing librarians can "fast track" your books into the library's collection system?


message 11: by Ken (last edited Feb 14, 2017 11:29AM) (new)

Ken (kendoyle) | 347 comments Just a dose of reality (unfortunately): If your only reason for deciding between CS or Ingram Spark is library distribution, you should probably reconsider.

Having the book available in the Ingram catalog (or Baker & Taylor) doesn't necessarily mean that tons of libraries will be ordering it. From the librarians I've spoken to, they will purchase a book only if either one of the following applies:

1) It's listed or reviewed in Library Journal.
2) A sufficient number of patrons request it.

I just donate copies of mine, and even those don't always end up on the shelves :)


message 12: by Matt (new)

Matt Jr. | 48 comments There is more to Library distribution than just getting in the Ingram-Sparks * Baker Taylor Catalogs. You need to get in touch with Amy Collins. She is the foremost authority on this topic.

1) http://www.newshelves.com/amy-collins...

2) https://youtu.be/_cLaOEGvJwE

3) http://www.newshelves.com/2017/01/21/...


message 13: by Becky (new)

Becky Benishek (becky_benishek) | 4 comments Ken wrote: "I just donate copies of mine, and even those don't always end up on the shelves :)"

I had been thinking of doing exactly this, and wondering what happens after. :)


Roughseasinthemed | 7 comments Becky wrote: "Ken wrote: "I just donate copies of mine, and even those don't always end up on the shelves :)"

I had been thinking of doing exactly this, and wondering what happens after. :)"


A local author (poetry and very shorts) donated a couple of books to our library. When I went to get the book, it was out on loan, so the librarian lent me the reference copy (!). So, that's at least two readers, which may not sound great, but it's better than nothing. The library has a specific (reference) shelf for local authors – maybe suggest that if yours doesn't? I'm guessing most of the ref copies will have a loan one too.


message 15: by Matt (new)

Matt Jr. | 48 comments This may or may not be of interest to you, but I picked up some information that I was not aware of in regards to libraries and how best to approach them to give my books the greatest chance of getting on their shelves.

Free Webinar: http://realfastlibrarymarketing.com/


message 16: by Sheila (new)

Sheila Cronin | 115 comments Matt, thank you for doing the foot work and for taking the time to post the link to this free webinar. Fabulous information. You've paid it forward--big time!


message 17: by Ken (new)

Ken (kendoyle) | 347 comments Becky wrote: "I had been thinking of doing exactly this, and wondering what happens after. :)"

Once the first library accepts and catalogs the book, it's easier for others, because it's now indexed and has a WorldCat entry.

As to what happens to the books that don't get accepted, I suspect they end up in the trash or at the next library book sale :)


message 18: by Matt (new)

Matt Jr. | 48 comments Sheila wrote: "Matt, thank you for doing the foot work and for taking the time to post the link to this free webinar. Fabulous information. You've paid it forward--big time!"

No problem Sheila, I hope the information you learn will help to accelerate the process of getting your books into libraries.


message 19: by Gerry (new)

Gerry (gerrydowndoggmailcom) | 60 comments Becky wrote: "Ken wrote: "I just donate copies of mine, and even those don't always end up on the shelves :)"

I had been thinking of doing exactly this, and wondering what happens after. :)"


I have run into this also. I think it has something to do with putting


message 20: by Gerry (new)

Gerry (gerrydowndoggmailcom) | 60 comments oops something happened here! As I was saying, I think it is something about having to put them into the catalog system. In my case, most of the time the books just got thrown into their bookstore. However, I have found some libraries where they do actually go on the shelves. Usually these are small local libraries rather than large city or county ones. Good luck.


message 21: by Becky (new)

Becky Benishek (becky_benishek) | 4 comments This is all so helpful!

I have a related question: My kidlit books are CreateSpace paperbacks, and are so thin that they don't have anything on the spine. It'd be nice to envision my books out on a display, but...will libraries even want something that they can't shelve?


message 22: by Matt (new)

Matt Jr. | 48 comments Gerry wrote: "oops something happened here! As I was saying, I think it is something about having to put them into the catalog system. In my case, most of the time the books just got thrown into their bookstore...."

In order to be placed on the shelves of libraries (other than a small or hometown one which are usually receptive to indies) the front of your book must have a PCIP. If you don't have this information in the front of your book above the copyright notice, you have a very slim chance of getting onto the shelves. This is something you shouldn't attempt to do yourself. Hire a professional cataloger.

https://www.dgiinc.com/pcip/


message 23: by Matt (new)

Matt Jr. | 48 comments To give you an idea of what a PCIP entails, here is the data block for my most recent book, Complicity In Heels .

Publisher’s Cataloging-In-Publication Data Block below.

Names: Leatherwood, Matt.
Title: Complicity in heels : a money launderers' tale / Matt Leatherwood Jr.
Description: 1st ed. | Augusta, Georgia : Epic Spin Publishing, [2016] | Series: [The Nikki Frank collection] ; [1]
Identifiers: ISBN 978-0-9883986-1-0 | ISBN 978-0-9883986-0-3 (ebook)
Subjects: LCSH: Women ex-convicts--United States--Fiction. | Money laundering--United States--Fiction. | United States--Officials and employees--Fiction. | United States--Economic conditions--Fiction. | Brothers and sisters--Fiction. | LCGFT: Thrillers (Fiction)
Classification: LCC PS3612.E2397 C66 2016 (print) | LCC PS3612.E2397 (ebook) | DDC 813/.6--dc23


message 24: by Matt (new)

Matt Jr. | 48 comments Amy Collins has teamed up with Reedsy to offer a FREE course on the subject matter.

She is the President of New Shelves Books, one of the best-known book sales and marketing agencies in the US.

The course is entitled: “How To Get Your Books into Libraries” http://bit.ly/2m8wkRq (via @ReedsyHQ)

** I am in no way affiliated with Amy Collins, nor do I receive any compensation for recommending her courses. **


message 25: by Becky (new)

Becky Benishek (becky_benishek) | 4 comments Matt wrote: "To give you an idea of what a PCIP entails, here is the data block for my most recent book, Complicity In Heels ."

Invaluable information!


message 26: by Jeanne (new)

Jeanne Gehret | 16 comments Thanks, Matt. When I checked on CIP, it said the publisher has to have published at least 3 books by different authors. We have published two authors. From the link you sent, however, I wondered about getting PCIP instead. This is very confusing.


message 27: by Matt (new)

Matt Jr. | 48 comments The answer you were given was a "standard answer" they give to discourage independents from pursuing the issue. Bottom line is they don't want to be overwhelmed by a flood of new authors pushing this, so they throw up a "3 book rule". You can work around it. Keep pushing.

The Donohue Group will do it for $80.00. I only have one book, and they did mine. You can find them at the link below.

https://www.dgiinc.com/pcip/

You can contact directly:

E-mail: info@dgiinc.com
Telephone: 860-683-1647
https://www.dgiinc.com/about-us/contact/


message 28: by Jeanne (new)

Jeanne Gehret | 16 comments Thank you! I will try that. It really bothered me that I was able to get CIP for previous books and not for this one.


message 29: by Lily (new)

Lily MacKenzie (lilyionamackenzie) | 63 comments Matt wrote: "To give you an idea of what a PCIP entails, here is the data block for my most recent book, Complicity In Heels .

Publisher’s Cataloging-In-Publication Data Block below.

Names: Leatherwood, Matt...."


Hi Matt,

I'm trying to figure out if my novel, published by a credible small press, has the needed PCIP info. Is what you have displayed here physically on the page in your novel that has the copyright info?

Thanks!


message 30: by Matt (last edited Mar 09, 2017 10:43AM) (new)

Matt Jr. | 48 comments Yes, what I have displayed is physically in the book. If you desire to have your book in libraries beyond the one in your city/town, you need the Cataloging-in-publication data block.

The point of having the data block is to make it easy for the librarian to enter your book into their vast cataloging system. Imagine two books show up in front of a librarian to be considered for addition to their shelves. One has a data block and the other one doesn't. Human nature dictates that the one with the data block makes it to the shelves, all other things being equal.

Librarians, like other professions, have their own language so don't try to do your own data block. It screams "amateur" from the ceiling. Hire a professional cataloger to do it for you. You don't have to go through the Library of Congress, have at least three books to your name, a pending Hollywood deal etc.... All those lines are given to keep from "overwhelming the system", controls.
It takes a lot of work to write out a data block on a book correctly.

Again, the purpose of this whole exercise is to make it efficient for the librarian to add your work to their catalog with the least amount of work. She/he opens your book, finds the copyright page, scans up or down, Boom all the information she/he needs to put into the system. One less hurdle for you to get placed in the library of your choice.

See my earlier posts for who I recommend to do data blocks.

P.S.
Check out Amy Collins FREE course over at Reedsy.com on this. She can really go deeper on the subject for you.

The course is entitled: “How To Get Your Books into Libraries” http://bit.ly/2m8wkRq (via @ReedsyHQ)


message 31: by Lily (new)

Lily MacKenzie (lilyionamackenzie) | 63 comments Thanks for all of this info, Matt, but it sounds as if this is something publishers need to do before a book is published, as mine was in 2015.


message 32: by Matt (new)

Matt Jr. | 48 comments It's not necessary, you walk the road you feel most comfortable with. Best of luck.


message 33: by Marie Silk (new)

Marie Silk | 223 comments Here is a coupon code to get your Ingram setup fees waived through the end of March:

INDIEFRINGE17


message 34: by Jeanne (new)

Jeanne Gehret | 16 comments Thanks, Marie. I published my book on CreateSpace and now find that I really do want libraries, which are not possible through CS if you use your own barcode like I did. (I'm the one who started this post) I almost went with LightningSource instead (AKA Ingram, I guess) and then I took another look at my former distributor, Independent Publishers Group. I discovered that they have a new arm called Small Press United that acts a lot like IPG but is a little more tailored to really small presses and works easily with POD. When I did the math I realized that I would receive MORE money from the distributor AND would receive more services. Still studying on this and will report again after I learn whether they will accept me or not.


message 35: by Jeanne (new)

Jeanne Gehret | 16 comments Hi, Matt, I have been following Amy's library lessons this week on getting into libraries and they're good. Not a lot of new stuff, but she also includes some good links to articles in ALA, etc. Thanks for the recommendation.


message 36: by Matt (new)

Matt Jr. | 48 comments No problem, glad you found it to be of some use.


back to top