22 November 2013
The Mythomaniacs: a New Treat from an Iconic Creator
We couldn’t be more excited to announce the release of Jules Bass’ new book, The Mythomaniacs. When Jules submitted his manuscript to us, I felt like I was receiving a missing piece from my childhood. After all, this is the father of the animated holiday special — Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Frosty the Snowman, and pretty much every other holiday special I waited and watched for every year. I was practically reared on his cartoons — ThunderCats and Silver Hawks being my favorites. And looking at his animated movies on IMDB is like tracing a timeline through the imaginary worlds of my childhood. Add to all this that he produced an animated series about Oz, pretty much makes him an Eltanin dream-author.
We were humbled when Jules came to us and explained he had a commitment to creating lasting art, and believed that Eltanin’s approach to ebooks aligned with what he envisioned as a sustainable publishing model for his work. The Mythomaniacs is a signature Jules Bass story that transcends time and instantly feels like a classic. And having Lawrence Christmas provide his dynamic, action-packed illustrations brings the whole tale to life with vivid detail. Whether you want to return to childhood, or experience Jules Bass’ magic for the first time, check out The Mythomaniacs. I promise you’re in for a real treat.
08 October 2013
The Lost Princess of Oz is Now Available!
We are pleased to announce that The Lost Princess of Oz, Baum's 11th book in the Oz series, is now available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Kobo.
When L. Frank Baum began drafting The Lost Princess of Oz, he was driven by inspiration that took his writings about Oz in a new direction. Baum credits one of his young readers with the germ that grew into Lost Princess: "I s'pose if Ozma ever got lost, or stolen, ev'rybody in Oz would be dreadful sorry."
With this notion, Baum began to imagine the resulting upheaval and collective search for the fairyland’s beloved ruler. On the surface, this may seem like a straightforward story premise, but at its root this tale would be categorically different. What Baum was embarking on in this Oz book was a mystery.
Whether Baum’s innovative vision can be credited or not, his ambling approach to this mystery was more in line with our sensibilities today. The fantastic and unknown was what propelled this mystery, not the deductive unraveling of a typical, linear riddle. In recent contemporary mysteries, especially those set in fantasy, audiences seem more willing to appreciate the ride and not demand maps and milestones. And if the reader approaches Lost Princess in this spirit, they are in for a treat. Indeed, the plot for Lost Princess was so unique and engaging, Ruth Plumly Thompson borrowed and adapted it for her 1937 Handy Mandy in Oz.
02 October 2013
The "All New" Kindle Paperwhite
Have you checked out the "All New" Kindle Paperwhite yet? It's not much different than the original Paperwhite, but there are a few very nice additions. The light is more even (less splotchy), which makes reading in low light much more enjoyable. I also really like the Page Flip feature which lets you jump forward or backwards by page or by chapter, in a pop-up window, without losing your place. The Vocabulary Builder is nice - it keeps track of words you've looked up in the dictionary. But it records every word you highlight, even if you were just highlighting a word to search for it or place a note. Luckily you can delete these errant words from within Vocabulary Builder. Overall, there are some nice upgrades, but it's not a huge change from the original Paperwhite, so you'll have to decide if it's worth the money. The fact that you can use the same cover as the original Paperwhite is a welcome change from Amazon's standard M.O.
07 March 2012
The Mystic Travelogues is today's featured book on "The Cheap Kindle Daily"
J.C. Nusbaum's The Mystic Travelogues is being featured today on "The Cheap Kindle Daily" website: cheapkindledaily.wordpress.com. This looks like a great site for discovering new authors at reasonable price points.
13 May 2011
Marvelous Land of Oz Featured on Amazon
For reasons we don't fully understand (but aren't questioning) our ebook edition of The Marvelous Land of Oz has been selected by Amazon as a featured ebook. This includes it being listed on sale temporarily for $0.99
Get it while the gettin's good!
15 April 2011
Free Forgotten Fairytale
We are pleased to announce that we have made available the first book in our Forgotten Fairytales series - Chronicles of the Three Sisters. Check out the "Our Books" page to read a portion of Joe's preface, and to download the book in mobi or ePub format. The book is also available at Amazon for $0.99, for those of you who would prefer it to be in your kindle archive. Regardless of where you get the book, we hope that you will leave a review on the book's Amazon page.
13 April 2011
Self-promotion, a necessary evil?
It seems conventional wisdom in the world of ebooks requires an author to tirelessly promote their own work to get even a toehold amidst the flood of otherwise anonymous ebook writers. Amanda Hocking cited this as a major reason for leaving the world of indie publishing and signing on with St. Martin's Press. Quite simply, the hours she was spending promoting her work were hours not spent writing.
It seems to me this amounts to more evidence that we need a new model. If authors have to choose between independent publishing, where they must spend a great proportion of their time on self-promotion, or signing-on with a traditional publisher to focus more of their time on writing, who could blame them for choosing the latter? I don't want to see indie authors trumped by the lesser of two evils, though I'll be the first to admit I would have gladly signed with a traditional, established publishing house, had I been so fortunate while I was submitting my manuscripts. But does becoming an indie author mean a writer must take on a new part-time job in promotion?
I think there is another option, one that we have yet to see take shape.
Promotion will never make a great writer out of an amateur. At best, it can only get readers to take a chance on the writer. The writer must take it from there.
If a publisher can make use of the new networking opportunities to promote smarter, they should be able to get that critical mass of chance-takers and elevate an author to the next level. But this is what publishers have always tried to do, right? Not really. A key distinction that must be made is the ability of recent technology to help birth and foster new interest communities. As far as I can see, even the most "innovative" publishers dabbling in ebooks continue to try and tap into existing communities, largely through online forums, targeted advertising, and identified past-buyers. But we now have untold opportunities to find kindred readers and build communities of interest. If an author truly has something original to say, and says it well, readers will want to hear it.
This need for a new model isn't limited to a new publishing model. It must be a new promotional model, as well. One that leapfrogs over existing networks to build new connections to readers from a place of shared interests. And one that might even make promotion a pleasure for both the publisher and the author.
11 April 2011
Life in the fast lane
Things are happening fast for us here, and we're actually looking to move our official launch date up a month. We've got enough books nearing completion, we're hoping to publish them next month instead of waiting for June. And, of course, you can already get our free sample book, Chronicles of the Three Sisters later this week from the "Our Books" section here on the Website.
9 April 2011
Our evolving business model
We recently posted a thread on Kindleboards asking the users there if they thought it was time for a new publishing model, what would that look like, and what would be in the best interest of authors and readers. What we thought would be a fairly innocuous discussion brought the hackles up of many a user. Indeed, we had our hat handed to us.
In a positive light, it was heartening to see Kindleboard users rise to the defense of writers, suspecting we might be a vanity press in sheep’s clothing looking to take money from authors and offer few, if any, of the services a traditional publisher would provide.
Of course, we have no track record yet, so we can only offer that Eltanin is being launched by a couple of writers and editors who are fatigued with the traditional model and truly want to create something new that puts authors’ interests before the publisher’s. We believe it is only a matter of time before ebook publishers stake their claim, and we hope that we can establish an author-centric model to set a new standard in the industry.
While we got very few user responses to our actual question (what a new model might look like), we got plenty of invaluable insight into what people DO NOT want it to look like: No vanity presses masquerading as traditional publishers. No fees for services if you are, in fact, a publisher. Basically, nothing that resembles the countless scam-artists already out there.
We’re listening. Since our intent was never to sell services—our passion is to discover and promote new, quality writing—we have eliminated any fees for what are traditional publishing services. Our bandwidth will, understandably, now be more limited in publishing writers. But we hope our model for publishing and promoting primarily ebooks will allow us to effectively offer traditional publishing services and absorb our own costs if we can help make the book successful. This was always our goal, and has been the model with the authors we’ve already signed.
I’m sure there will be more changes as we keep evolving and fine-tuning our approach. Through it all, we are committed to changing for the betterment of authors’ and readers’ standards. That’s why we started doing this in the first place.
8 April 2011
ABC News reports on ebooks
ABC News covers the emerging world of ebooks and how they are changing traditional publishing.
"... book sales across all platforms grew just 3.8 percent between 2009 and 2010, ebook sales grew a whopping 164.4 percent year-over-year."
8 April 2011
Great ebook resource: Top Suspense Group
Here's a group with a similar mission to ours in presenting readers with well-written and well-formatted ebooks. Their focus is on suspense fiction. A great launching pad if you're interested in discovering new quality writing in this genre: topsuspensegroup.com