Dymocks launches publishing arm

Australian book retailer Dymocks has launched its new web-based publishing arm to enable aspiring authors to produce, publish and distribute their work as both physical and electronic books.

Dymocks general manager of eCommerce, Michael Allara, told Computerworld Australia the new service, D Publishing, has been in the works for the past 12 months and will cost authors a fee of $499 for five opportunities to typeset one manuscript.

“What we’re offering for authors is the capacity to upload their manuscript into our system and in one simple process set that up to typeset as both a print book and an e-book in the same process,” Allara said.

“Traditionally we’ve sold books to our customers and we’ve found that over the years a lot of customers would actually like to write and distribute their books as well.”

The cost will be incurred on the production side of the process only, Allara said, which is standalone and beyond which requires no commitment should the author decide not to proceed.

Following production there are various options including the printing of the book, downloading it as a file, or publishing the book which would result in an International Standard Book Number (ISBN), a barcode and then distribution.

“Everything D Publishing publishes will be available for commercial sale via Dymocks.com.au. "The printed books will be printed on demand so if our customers order them, we’ll print them and send them directly to customers,” he said. “This means an author doesn’t have to worry about printing them, fulfilling them, or dealing with customers themselves and the e-books will obviously be filled directly online.”

The entire range of books will be available for Dymocks franchise owners to stock as is the case for any other publisher, Allara said.

Anyone can choose to use the publishing platform with authors not subject to any selection process based on either literary merit or commercial viability

“D Publishing will absolutely not publish anything that is illegal or deemed to be antisocial, our breaches are quite clear and strict in terms of service but beyond that it is up to an author to determine whether their book is right for the market they’d like to write it for.”

According to Allara, Dymocks plans to roll out further services for the platform in the first quarter of 2012, including access for authors to professional editors in order to improve their work.

“We’ll also be introducing some integration with our Booklover Rewards customers which means some of our readers will have the opportunity to have a look at pre-launch versions of books and provide constructive feedback which is an extremely powerful service for any author.” The retailer recently partnered with Google e-books to add the search giant’s digital repository to its online business.

The Cloud-based digital e-book system allows readers to access their personal e-book library on a range of devices including smartphones, e-readers, tablets, notebooks and desktops, from any location using an internet connection, or they can download it to read offline.

Copyright © 2011 IDG Communications, Inc.

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