Quick Link | Smashwords: Smashwords Publishes 15,000th Indie Ebook

I’ve had a soft spot for Smashwords since it launched. This is quite the milestone!

Traditional publishers have always been challenged to predict which books will become commercial successes. They acquire books they think they can sell. In my view, the Achilles heel of traditional publishers is their myopic fixation on commercial potential. Sure, they have businesses to run, and Manhattan sky rise rents to pay. And yes, they employ brilliant and generous people who are passionate about books. Yet because they’re running businesses limited by decades-old business models and cost structures, they’re not able to take risks on every author. Nor do they want to.

I created Smashwords so I could take a risk on every author, including the author who writes for an audience of one. Because our platform is self-serve and extremely automated, we enjoy a low cost structure that enables this risk-taking, and also allows us to return up to 85% of all net sales back to the author or publisher.

via Smashwords: Smashwords Publishes 15,000th Indie Ebook.

Go Read This: Are Agents Doomed? | Publishing In the 21st Century

You know, people should read more Saffo, he opens up as many questions when he writes about disinetermediation as he does close down hopes. That said, Curtis’ post today is a sobering read:

The inescapable fact is that agents are intermediaries in a disintermediating world, and digital technology is remorseless in its dissolution of those who stand between buyer and seller. The chasm between writers and publishers, for so long occupied by literary agents, has narrowed as authors realize that they are but one touch of their Send key away from their readers.

via Are Agents Doomed? | Publishing In the 21st Century.