By Amanda Smyth Connor
January 19th brought a wave of excitement as Apple announced their latest and greatest technology. Not only will they be selling iTextbooks (at $15 a pop) but they will be offering iBooks Author, a new self-publishing app that essentially allows authors to upload PDF’s, edit, complete layout and upload to the iBookstore.
This is clearly not the first self-publishing platform to emerge and it won’t be the last, but as an editor, I find myself a traitor to the cause for selfish reasons and not-so-selfish reasons.
Obvious questions arise that Apple has yet to address. How will they approve these new iBooks? Will they offer editing services? What requirements are there for content, layout, etc? What kind of reimbursement can writers expect from offering their books in this fashion and will Apple offer various packages that would include marketing or promotion?
Furthermore, will this lead to an increase or a decline in the quality of self-published books? I like to think that by enabling authors with better tools and resources, the quality will increase, but you have to wonder – if the increase in the volume of new self-published uploads increases, will quality remain top priority, or will these self-published books look as messy as my Freelance-Zone posts? I shudder to think.
What are your thoughts on this buzz story?
Amanda Smyth Connor is a social media manager for a major publishing company, owns her own wedding planning business and has managed online communities and content development for many start-up and Fortune 500 companies. She has been a professional editor for more years than she can remember.