by R.T. Lawton
Writers always like to hear about potential new markets and therefore I may have one for you. It's a new start-up with big plans for the future. In fact, it's so new they are still working on the web site and when you look at the list of books, you will only find three currently available. But, when you look at the list of authors scheduled to contribute works, there are several and you will probably recognize some of the names. (They've added at least two more names since I originally wrote this piece.) So, here's the information as I received it from the Stark Raving Group CEO, Jeffrey Weber.
Jeff is looking for quick read novellas, or short novels, in the mystery, crime fiction, action-adventure and thriller genres. 25,000 to 35,000 words; about 75 to 100 pages, which will retail for $2.99 as an e-book. The author gets $1.00 per book sale, no advance, and is paid by check. His group wants "pulp renaissance, pulp 2.0 if you will, in taut, terse, plot-driven, witty, sensuous, action-packed adventure fiction of the '60s and '70s." You can write a book a year as either a stand-alone or as a setup for a series.
Background: He has "spent over three decades in the music industry as a producer and label owner (180+ CD's produced, multiple Grammys, multiple Grammy nominations)." It is his plan to utilize these same music industry strategies "to market, promote and sell our books." One new technology, not yet applied to book publishing, is geofencing. "It places a virtual "fence" around a location and when you cross the invisible barrier, a message/promotional offer pops up on your smartphone or eReader. We're making plans to use the technology for airports, bus stations, train stations and so on."
"Through our distribution agreement with Consortium (Perseus Books), our e-books will be available just about everywhere, including Apple, Amazon, Barnes & Noble (Nook), Google Books, Ingram Digital, Kobo, Sony, etc." (It's a long list, so I condensed it and mentioned only some of the big names we all know.) Books will also be able to be purchased "through social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, etc." The group has also created their own sales and distribution platform called Bookxy: www.bookxy.com
For the future, they will be creating multi-cast audio books. And, here's an interesting thought, they will also make their books available by subscription. They expect to have 100,000 subscribers within the next three to five years.
How did I hear about Jeff? A guy, Rob Robinson, who I went to high school with and got reacquainted with a few years ago at a school reunion, happened to mention his friend Jeff''s new venture in one of the e-mails we exchanged. Shortly afterwards, Jeff Weber and I swapped e-mails.
Well, now it's up to you. If you are interested in trying out something new, take a look into the Bookxy web site and go from there. No doubt, some of us have questions on procedural aspects, etc., I just haven't yet asked and received answers to those particular questions yet. Feel free to inquire on your own and then share any further info with the group.