Is Writing Being Devalued by Giveaways and Cheap Ebooks?

This is something I have been thinking about a lot lately. I LOVE to read. And while I don’t have as much reading time as I wish, I do read fast and manage to do my part. I still can’t get through my to-be-read pile. Because of one of my day jobs I am constantly being exposed to a lot of titles. Some I end up deleting after a chapter or even a paragraph because there are so many good stories out there, why waste time on stories that are not going to thrill me. But having this large amount of decent content means I never get to authors I love and would have to pay more for their titles. On the flip side, I am currently reading a series that I got the first story for free in one of those anthologies and the story was so good, I had to buy the whole series right there because I was going to die if I didn’t know what happened next! What are your thoughts?

Is Writing Being Devalued by Giveaways and Cheap Ebooks?

by Jane Friedman

Increasingly, at writing conferences and in the mainstream media, I observe growing unrest surrounding the proliferation of free and cheap literature, particularly ebooks. The reasons for sharp discounts and giveaways are legion (and some reasons are better than others), but regardless of the reason, I see greater peer pressure on and shaming of those who are seen to “devalue” literature in our culture.

Whole books have been written on this topic, as it’s an anxiety affecting creators in diverse fields. Some describe the phenomenon from a neutral and even historical perspective (“how have we ended up here?”), some are more activist in their approach (“fight and resist”), and still others are pragmatic (“here’s how to play with the hand you’ve been dealt”).

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What Is The Best Price For An Ebook?

BooksGoSocial has a great post about pricing for self publishing authors. Please note that this a business blog. I have no affiliation with them and am not endorsing their services since I have no experience with them, but agree with ‘s take on optimal pricing. It is a really good read and matches my experience. If you have ever done business with BooksGoSocial please let us know how you liked their services in the comments below.

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What Is The Best Price For An Ebook?

Price targetAt BooksGoSocial we have promoted over three thousand books in the past three years.

2016 is likely to be a year of real growth for indie authors and for trad published authors who gain some control over their pricing. Ebook sales for indies (what used to be known as self published authors) are up, and traditional publishers are pricing their ebooks high to stop Amazon becoming their number one channel and then eating them for lunch.

By pricing ebooks high (above $10) traditional publishers are leaving a gap in the market for indies to fill.

Here’s our recommendation on how you should price your Kindle/ebook to take advantage of this gap:


Only if you have a closely linked series and book number one can be priced at free to get readers started on your series.


If you are a new author and you want make it easy for people to buy your book, and you want to increase your total earnings. This price can be used for a short period to get your book onto a best seller list and then you can move the price up. When deciding a price do not consider the effort put in to write and produce it, consider what total earnings you want. By pricing at .99c, and then increasing the price you can achieve higher earnings. I have seen this working.

Read the full post on BooksGoSocial

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