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The Downsides of Self-Publishing

We have heard how great self-publishing is, it can give you control of your book (your own destiny if you will) and at the same time increase your profits (or increase your losses). But is it really so great? Are there any downsides or disadvantages to going to self-publishing and going it alone as an author? The answer is yes, everything has its pros and cons and you need to know the cons before you proceed so you can make the right decision for you.

Everything is in Your Hands

If you have decided to opt for self-publishing your book, then you should be ready to multitask big time. Compared with traditional book publishers, they have editors, printers, layout artists, cover artists who are available and ready to work for them anytime. But as a self-publishing author you would have to handle all of these tasks yourself and if you cannot do it all, you have the option to get or hire somebody who can. These are services that can cost you big time. But even if you outsourced the work, you will still need to oversee it and make sure that it meets your standards.

Time could be a major problem for some self-published authors. There are some writers who have part-time day jobs and would need to fit a self-publishing schedule to their time. Even marketing and promotion fall into your hands.


In traditional publishing, the writer would get as much as 5 to 10 % of the sales. But in self-publishing, you can increase the profit to as much as 50 %. But the downside is that you would have to subsidize everything beforehand. It is a risk. You can spend about $5,000 for self-publishing a single book, but you cannot guarantee that it everything will be returned to you when you start selling your books – if they sell at all.

Most of the times, you would need to get a distributor since book sellers are not that willing to buy books directly from the author. The author would have to give discounts to the distributor and any stores willing to sell the book, this would be less than your expected 50 % profit. Another problem would be when the book does not sell that much. Aside from less profit, some bookstores would return the book and ask for a refund and in the case of a self published author it would be YOU providing the refunds. Some self-publishers would draft a contract that would not allow returns and refund, but most booksellers would require a lower price or in some cases – no payment at all (usually called “consignment”).

Competition can be tough. Readers would not easily buy your book since their is no large publisher backing you and may not be well known. You will need to give them a reason to buy your book over books with the same topic. Marketing and publicity could be a key. And you would have to spend money on that, too.

The Reputation

Another problem that self-publishers encounter is the reputation and credibility of being self-published. There are some readers who do not regard self-published books highly. Sad to say, some people are extremely biased against self-published authors, thinking that just because major publishing houses have refused the author, it means the book is not good enough or poor in quality.

The Writer

They say that a book is like a writer’s own child. It would be difficult to criticize and disparage your own kid, right? Because authors would have to do everything, editing included, it can be difficult to be objective all the time. They can protect parts that are not really important or aesthetically weak. They can have difficulties letting go of some parts which are totally insignificant. That is why we have editors. But if an author would be his own editor, then there can be biases.

Self-publishing is a risk, you can spend a lot of money but the returns could be low. But come to think of it, everything is a risk. Risk is part of success.

Isabella Media Inc, is a Rhode Island-based, family-owned, mainline publishing organization with a mission to discover unknown authors. We combine unknown authors’ undiscovered potential with Isabella Media Inc’s unique approach to publishing and provide them with the highest quality books and the most inclusive benefits package available. Isabella Media Inc was formed to serve you, the author, as a traditional, mainline royalty publishing company and provide a platform for unknown authors. We listen to your feedback and create a collaborative atmosphere with our authors in the belief that you’ll come back to us with your next book. To get started with your book contact us.

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Crowdfunding Publisher Unbound Makes Four Editors Redundant

Unbound logoAs part of a strategic reorganisation, Crowdfunding publisher Unbound is making four of its editors redundant. The news was first confirmed by commissioning editor Simon Spanton this week via his Twitter account. Spanton tweeted:

So; my dream job is not to be as long a dream as I hoped. Due to cost-cutting I am one of four editors being made redundant at Unbound. I am gutted as I was working with amazing authors on amazing books. I am also in the market for editorial work (DM me).

He was in his editorial role for just over one year and formerly worked for publishers Orion and Gollancz. Spanton departs Unbound along with three other editors. CEO and company co-founder Dan Kieran confirmed the news to The Bookseller this week, stating that the publisher’s editorial team would be cut by a third.

I can confirm we have made four editorial redundancies in our team of twelve (having tripled the size of the team last June) as part of a strategic reorganisation. Redundancies in any business are always hard for everyone involved but Unbound has and will always continue to evolve. We’re growing fast with our trade sales up over 100% on last year, and we’ve broken our own crowdfunding records raising over £200,000 a month for the last three months alone. We are also making investments in AI (artificial intelligence) and machine learning, which will enable the evolution of our platform to continue.

Unbound is a community, platform and a publishing model using crowdfunding to assist authors publish their books.

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What to do When Your Child Does Not Like to Read

It is something that everyone learns to do. It’s the first of the three R’s; Reading. When we first experience the excitement of having a book read to us, we longed for the day where we could pick up a book and read it for ourselves. Some children pick it up quickly, and every time you see them, they have their nose in a book. While others, it’s like cleaning their room or eating lima beans; they will not do it. It can be discouraging for a parent. You don’t want your child to get behind. So, what can you do to get your picky toddler to pick up a book and voluntarily read?

Discover the Why

It is important not to blame your child. Getting upset will only exasperate the situation. Forcing a child to read or making reading a chore will also snuff out their desire to read, making things worse than what they already are. You need to discover the reason why they are not enjoying the adventure of reading. It can be several reasons.

Vision. -A young child does not understand the need for glasses. If their world is a blur, they don’t know it; they think their lack of sight is normal. It isn’t until a teacher notices your child squinting at the board or book that anyone is made aware of a problem. When a child cannot see the words in front of them, they can have less of a desire to read.

Fear. -Trying something new can be frightening. While it’s not like skydiving, or getting on your first roller coaster, to your child the fear can be a real and difficult to understand for you. When a child has a fear that learning will be difficult, they can have less of a desire to read.

Interest. -As adults, we do not take pleasure in reading expense reports, training manuals, or instruction manuals. We would rather read our favorite novelist or magazine. Your child has those same feelings. They want to read things they are interested in. When a child is given a book that they have no interest in, they can have less of a desire to read.

Stubbornness. -Some children have the ability to read, but they just don’t want to. One of my children has gone through this stage. In today’s age of smartphones and gaming systems, it is no wonder children would rather play games than to read. When a child resigns themselves to only media forms of entertainment, then they can have less of a desire to read.

Medical Condition. -There is always a chance of a deeper issue. Conditions like Attention Deficit Disorder, Autism, Asperger’s Syndrome, and other neurological disorders can slow the progress a child has with reading. When a child struggles with staying focused, they can have less of a desire to read.

Discover the How

After you learn the reason your child doesn’t like to read, then you can begin to do things to help your child overcome their lack of desire. This can be as simple as making changes to their routine. Once you find the things that grab your child’s attention, then you both can get back on track to their learning success.

Choices. -The more of a selection a child is offered, the more chances they will have at finding something they like. You may have your heart set on the classics you grew up with, but your child may not have any interest in reading them. Allow your child to make the selection. When they get to choose, they have a sense of ownership of the book they have picked. This will encourage them to read.

Interests. -Learn about your child. Take notice of the things they like. Then take those interests, and find books on those subjects. You may also find that they don’t like fiction. That is okay. They may prefer non-fiction. Made up stories may not feel real to some children but give that same child a book on horses or astronomy and their eyes light up.

Patience. –When a child does not like to read, forcing the issue is not the answer. Give your child some latitude if they struggle. The above two solutions could be a cure to the problem. However, if it doesn’t, don’t give up on them. Keep in mind that some children just don’t like to read. In time, they may outgrow it.

Doctor’s Visit. -If you notice a child squinting or holding a book too close to their face, they could be having vision problems. Have them visit an optometrist to see if they need glasses. A doctor can also help with learning disabilities. Each child is different, so only a doctor can diagnose and treat such conditions. There are also many ways that schools work with kids who have these disabilities.

Final Thoughts

If you give your child choices on the subjects they do like and still do not want to read, then you may need to get creative. If they are in school, begin by talking with their teacher and see if they have noticed the same things you are. They could also give you an idea of what they have done that has worked. You could also share with them the things that have worked for you.

It will always begin with reading to your child. Then listening to them read to you. The birth of the love for reading starts young. But if you have not established that passion in your child, you can begin today. Talk with your child about the adventures reading has brought to your life.

Finally, be an example. If your child sees you reading, this could encourage them to read. Show them that reading is fun and can be relaxing. It is always beneficial to start these habits early in their development, but it’s never too late to start.  

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The Best Bedtime Stories to Help Your Kids Wind Down

It’s bedtime at your house and the kids are wiggly. According to Mattress Advisor’s sleep guide for parents, having a bedtime routine is key to helping kids wind down. One of the most popular ways to make bedtime more fun is to read a book or two with your child. And according to The Children’s Bureau, children whose parents read to them are more likely to develop a lifelong love of reading. Which story will you choose to help them wind down for the night? Here are a few tried-and-true favorites to get you started.

Picture Books for the Youngest Readers

It’s important to build reading habits before your children can even read by themselves. Reading to them at bedtime can help strengthen the bond you have with your children, and can help them wind down and create a bedtime ritual.

Goodnight Moon is one of the most well-known bedtime stories, and for good reason. Margaret Wise Brown’s rhyming lines help children say goodnight to everything imaginable (stars, air, noises everywhere), and Clement Hurd’s illustrations feature bold colors and a hidden mouse in every picture of the Great Green Room. By the end, the little rabbit who wishes the moon goodnight is sound asleep — and your kids just might be too.

1929’s Newbery Honor book Millions of Cats is another classic. Wanda Gág’s rustic illustrations and rhythmic writing tell the story of an elderly couple who want a cat, but end up with far more than they bargained for. Your children will be able to repeat the recurring phrase as you read together: “Hundreds of cats, thousands of cats, millions and billions and trillions of cats!” And who knows, maybe counting cats will be just as effective as counting sheep!

Reading to 5- to 7-year-olds

With children just reaching school age, you are working to create a love of literature in them that will last a lifetime. These stories can help children understand the world around them, especially relationships between people.

Love You Forever by Robert Munsch tells the story of a boy whose mother constantly reminds him of how she will love him forever, no matter how old he gets or how rebellious he becomes. The book has a reassuring tone and gentle, detailed illustrations by Sheila McGraw. While you read about the child in the story, you can remind your own kids that “as long as I’m living, my baby you’ll be.”

Bedtime for Frances follows adorable little badger Frances on her journey to bed. Frances is a master of stalling. She asks for an extra glass of milk, she asks for special stuffed animals to sleep with, and she even swears she sees a monster in the corner of her room. Russell Hoban’s repetitive writing style makes Frances’ bedtime ordeal funny and relatable for both kids and parents, and Garth Williams’ illustrations are worth looking at again and again.

Reading to Older Kids

Reading aloud to children at this age is just as important as it was before they could read. You are able to read books to them that are more advanced than what they can read on their own, keeping them learning with each new story.

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Introducing a Child to the World of Reading

It began as a bedtime story to help your child fall asleep. You pulled out an old hardcover from your past and graced your toddler with the stories you treasured growing up. You remember your mom reading this book to you when you were that age. Now it is time for you to perpetuate that memory with the next generation.

Between now and the time that your child begins to read on their own, you develop high hopes that they will continue with the classics you grew up with. Yes, they will always start with the stories that you read to them when they are little, but a day will come when they bring home books from the school library. Titles with which you may be unfamiliar. Then they ask to go to the local library, or bookstore, to find more books for themselves.

As your child begins this literary journey, remain open to their selections. However, it’s still a parent’s job to give some direction to their child. Before you do, here are some pointers that will help when selecting their next book.

Consider Your Child’s Age

When you are introducing your child to reading, the first thing to consider is finding an age-appropriate book. If your child cannot read or understand the words that are in a book, then they will not have a very good time reading. The lack of understanding will destroy their confidence, and they could give up on the whole idea of reading. On the other hand, when you select the right story, and they are not asking you what every other word is, they will develop a genuine love of reading. Make the choice challenging, but not overwhelming.

Think about it. When you read as an adult, do you like when a story is complicated and is filled with unfamiliar words? If you are anything like me, you tend to lose your place because you are trying to figure out the definition of the unknown word. Thus, the writer loses you. Don’t let your child get lost by giving them an overcomplicated book.

Consider Your Child’s Interests

You will find out quickly that your child, whom you want to emulate you, has their own idea of what is good reading and what is boring. It could begin at a young age, or they can slowly wean off Dr. Seuss and move into an entirely different world. When this happens, refrain from trying to force a story on them just because you enjoyed it as a child. If your child doesn’t like Judy Blume’s Tale of a Fourth Grade Nothing that is okay. Maybe they will enjoy Nancy Krulik’s Katie Kazoo or Jeff Kinney’s Diary of a Wimpy Kid.

Let your child grow. Allow them be different than you. Encourage their interests; even if it is contrary to what you feel they should be interested in. ESPECIALLY if it is contrary to what you feel they should be interested in.

Consider Your Child’s Capacity

Every child will read at a different pace. Some are avid readers, and they pick up on it fast and will be reading on their own before you know it. Others take a bit longer to catch on. They may find it difficult to read. Several factors could play into delayed reading. One of the most frequent issues is they need glasses. If a child cannot see correctly, reading will be difficult to impossible. Squinting and holding a book close to the face are cues that you may need to have your child’s vision checked.

Another factor that could hinder your child’s reading is learning disabilities. Attention Deficit Disorder, Autism, and other disorders can be disheartening but can be dealt with and overcome with the right help. I have a condition called Neurofibromatosis. One of the effects of this disorder deals with attention. My whole life I have dealt with maintaining focus. I must force myself to pay attention to the task I am working on. But with tips and self-discipline, I have overcome the obstacle of my mind.

A final theory is that your child just doesn’t like to read. That can happen. However, your job then becomes teaching them the discipline of doing what must be done. Perhaps from your teaching, they can learn to appreciate reading. It begins when they are young. If you don’t care about reading, then your child won’t care about reading. The importance you stress on reading is reflected in the amount that they will read.

Final Thoughts

When your little one finally goes to school, they will encounter benchmarks that show a student’s required reading level. Your child’s teacher will encourage you to assist them with getting your child to the level they should be, as determined by the grade they are in. This will involve reading with them at home and tracking what they read and how long they read.

Until then, get you and your child ahead of the game. Make it a routine to read with your child often. If you have already developed this habit, then school reading will come easy for you and your child. If you wait until they are in school, reading may become a chore and difficult to overcome the rejection of it.

Parents, school is not the place where your child learns to read. It’s in the home. With mom and dad, grandpa and grandma, aunts and uncles, and brothers and sisters. Each can take part in introducing the reading world to the fresh sponge in the mind of a youngster. The more people involved, the more stories your child becomes acquainted with. They won’t like everything, and that is a good thing. Because when a child is subjected to many influences, it will help them create their own identity.

Remember, your child will do what they see. If they catch you reading, and enjoying it, then they will have a greater desire to read for themselves.

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Chris Ferrell’s Endeavor Business Media Recruits Another SouthComm Exec

endeavorEndeavor Business Media, the company formed late last year by former SouthComm CEO Chris Ferrell, announced today that it’s added another former SouthComm exec to join the company’s ranks alongside Ferrell and COO Patrick Rains.

Scott Bieda—who spent six years as an executive VP at SouthComm before departing last November amid a strategic shift at the company that also saw the end of Ferrell’s ten-year term there—has joined Endeavor Business Media as executive VP, in which capacity he’ll be responsible for “top-line revenue growth as well as the contribution margin of the operating units,” according to an announcement.

In an email exchange with Folio:, Ferrell says Bieda is joining the company as it prepares for its next round of acquisitions. Endeavor first made its existence public with the acquisition of Grand View Media’s Process Flow Network—a trio of publications and two trade shows serving the industrial processing industry—in January.

Scott Bieda headshot

Scott Bieda

It remains anyone’s guess whether or not the fact that Bieda had led SouthComm’s law enforcement and public safety portfolio provides an indication of the types of brands Endeavor endeavors to acquire; Ferrell declined to share details, but did add, “We are expecting to close on some additional publications and events in the next few weeks.”

Prior to SouthComm, Bieda spent 20 years at Penton Media, rising to group publisher and eventually leading the company’s custom solutions business. He then spent an intervening stint at Cygnus Business Media before arriving at SouthComm through the latter’s acquisition of several former Cygnus titles in 2014.

“At SouthComm, Scott ran our most profitable business unit and proved to be a creative and dependable leader,” added Ferrell in a statement. “I look forward to seeing what he can do with the assets we are assembling under the Endeavor brand.”

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Apple Plans to Integrate Texture with Apple News, According to Report

Apple-acquires-Texture-03122018Apple Inc. reportedly plans to incorporate its recently acquired magazine subscription app Texture into Apple News, creating a new premium subscription service, according to a report from Bloomberg. The integration of Texture falls within the company’s larger goal of generating more revenue from digital content and subscription services.

After the acquisition of the subscription service last month, a source reported to Bloomberg that Apple made initial cuts of roughly 20 Texture staffers. In order to achieve Apple’s new premium service, rest of the Texture technology employees will be integrated into the Apple News team.

Apple’s upgraded news service is expected to launch later this year, and will still reportedly share part of the subscription revenue with publishers who are part of the program, though no details of the service cost has been released. Currently, the magazine subscription service allows customers access to over 200 magazines for $9.99 per month for monthly magazines, or $14.99 for premium access to weekly publications.

Apple’s former attempt at an all-in-one digital magazine and newspaper destination, Newsstand, which was a built-in iOS app, was discontinued in 2015 after a six-year attempt in the industry. Launched in 2010 as a collaboration between Condé Nast, Hearst, Meredith, News Corp., Rogers Communications and Time Inc., Texture has seen more success with reaching and maintaining a subscription base.

While the terms of the deal have not been explicitly stated yet, evaluations of Texture include $90 million in investments as of 2016, $50 million of which from investment company KKR. Additionally, in 2015 former Texture CEO, John Loughlin, said that Texture paid out over $15 million in revenue to publishers.Texture Logo

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The Delightful Clare Fournier

When you’ve owned a bookstore for what Dr. Phibes would have termed “some considerable time,” you have the mixed blessing of hiring many new booksellers along the way. I say mixed because it is often as Legolas described. “For such is the way of it: to find and lose, as it seems to those whose boat is on the running stream.” You see Farmington is a college town, being home to a small branch of the University of Maine, and I have had many great students work here for a time and then move on. Recently I had the pleasure of hiring someone who is a book person to her core, the delightful Clare Fournier! No need to take my word on that; here she is to answer a few questions for us.