Introduction by Dana Stabenow:
Scott Gere has been my webmaster from my first website. Along the way, we’ve talked a lot about the publishing business, as I watched and mourned my backlist going slowly and inexorably out of print.
Inevitably, e-books showed up in our brainstorming sessions - and last year he said, “Let’s just do it.”
We had no idea if we would make any money. I was petrified that his company would be out-of-pocket on expenses and not only would my e-books go away, but he’d fire me as his website client, too.
Everything of course took a lot longer than we thought it would, but Fire and Ice, my first Liam Campbell novel, went up last year three days before Christmas. Since then, we’ve been averaging about a book a month. When we’re a little farther into this process, I’ll be blogging about it with real numbers, but for now let me just say that the results have exceeded everyone’s expectations, and that no one is out-of-pocket.
Gere Donovan Press (GDP) is scanning, formatting and proofing the books, giving them terrific covers and minding the store (specifically putting the books up on iTunes, Amazon and Barnes & Noble and collecting and dispersing the income). Now they've come up with a nifty way for me to sell books through my website, which is currently active on stabenow.com (http://www.stabenow.com/e-books).
Scott wrote about our project on the GDP website, and SinC reblogs his post here for you today:
You may have recently encountered a wee web application that we’ve been working on. Indeed, the odds are good that its footer provided the link that brought you here.
Who is Bridgit, you ask, and what does she have to do with your eBook purchase?Bridgit is a lightweight eBookstore cart solution, currently under development by Gere Donovan Press. Named in part for St. Brigid of Kildare, patron saint of printing presses (who was herself named for the Celtic goddess of Wisdom), Bridgit will enable small publishing houses, self-published authors and others to easily accept credit card payments in exchange for time-limited, DRM-free eBook downloads. It allows you to cut out the middle man, and bridges the gap (ouch). [Note: DRM, or digital rights management, is referred to by some as digital restrictions management.]
Bridgit assumes that the parent site provides all of the product information. Place an add-to-cart button on the book’s page, targeting your Bridgit instance, and we handle the rest. Bridgit processes the financial details of the transaction, generates download links that are unique to the customer and emails them a receipt. Books are provided in both .mobi and .ePub formats, via links which are valid for 24 hours.
In that no DRM has proven to be proof against piracy, while virtually all DRM has been shown to annoy honest people who just want to move their files from one device to another, Bridgit’s downloads are DRM-free. As devices and file types evolve, Bridgit may expand her horizons a bit… we’ll see what the market wants.
To experience Bridgit for yourself, [take a look at] one of the fine GDP eBooks from Stabenow.com. If you’re interested in discussing how Bridgit could be used to handle your own eBook transactions, or want to tell us what you think Bridgit should do, please drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dana Stabenow is the award-winning author of the 18-book Kate Shugak mystery series, the four-book Liam Campbell mystery series and the three-book Star Svensdotter science fiction series. The most recent title in the Kate Shugak series is Though Not Dead, a mystery set in contemporary Alaska that includes more than a passing mention of Dashiell Hammett's Army days in the Aleutian Islands during World War II.