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  1.  (4781.1)
    Anyone here who does work Print-On-Demand? Show yourselves, and tell me what you publish through POD.

    -- W
    • CommentTimeJan 19th 2009
    It's not done yet, but I'm going to be releasing my book through createspace this summer. I'm also very interested to see what other people's experience has been with POD and if it's a viable distribution model.
    • CommentTimeJan 19th 2009
    This probably isn't what you're after, but my wife released a small family memoir through iUniverse, which then also gets listed on Amazon. We did this just for the convenience of having family and friends order it.

    If she were actually interested in marketing it, it does seem to have a pretty healthy margin for creators.
    • CommentAuthorPooka
    • CommentTimeJan 19th 2009 edited

    that's the address for a friend of mine who told me that's how he's publishing his book.
    For the life of me though I couldn't find his publishing company...
    • CommentTimeJan 19th 2009 edited
    I just checked with my wife and have more specific data:

    * iUniverse is rather expensive for pictures for whatever reason, so it may not be a great venue for creative visual artists
    * You do get to work with a human on corrections; included in the price of the initial self-publishing run is a certain # of correction they will accept before the print version is finalized
    * Unlike traditional self-publishers, they are entirely print on demand, so you don't have 400 copies moldering in your attic
    * Automatic listing on
    * Margin was 10%
    * The price for generating a ~200 page book with a handful of b/w photographs was around $500
    * Print quality was decent but not amazing, about on par with your average small print run university textbook
    * Overall price per copy was a bit high at $17 - $18 for a ~220 page paperback, and this is set by iUniverse
    • CommentTimeJan 19th 2009 edited
    I printed some press copies for a webcomic I make using Lulu, but I'm still not sure about opening the purchase to the public. (Is it really worth? If anybody has some experience there, insight would be appreciated).

    48 pages + full color + the standard comic-book size + staples + shipping + no gain= prize per unit around 12€ / $15.7 / £10.8
    The printing was good, the soft cover paper is really good and the interior paper could be better but It's still Ok.
    One of the books arrived without staples. (GROARRR!!)
    Also, It seems like It's impossible to print on the inside cover.

    Overall, 12€ for an unknown book that you can't read right now because the shipping takes 10-15 days. Things may differ for an established creator, but I can't compete with what's in the regular market right now. Maybe in a few years, If Diamond keeps turning the screw. Who knows?
  2.  (4781.7)
    I do small poetry/sketch books and other Little Things via Lulu for my family and some friends.
    • CommentAuthorchris g
    • CommentTimeJan 19th 2009
    • CommentTimeJan 19th 2009
    did up a test photo book thru, came out pretty well.
  3.  (4781.10)
    Sounds prohibitively expensive and that most people are wary of actually releasing product through it. I was curious about this, too, after following links from the Boy Meets Catgirl webcomic thread on here... Interesting, but perhaps not cheap enough, yet.
    • CommentTimeJan 19th 2009
    I dunno about being expensive.

    From what I've looked at with createspace (their site right now is down, so this isn't accurate), they don't charge anything to get started. They make all of their money from selling the finished product. I think they take something like $1.50 per book sold, then take 40% of whatever else is left. You choose the price of the book.

    So, if you put your book up for $11.50, you'd get $6 off of every book sold.

    I'm surprised though, we're 11 hours into the life of this thread, and no one has yet really used POD on a large scale. No real success stories here, or even fail stories.
    • CommentAuthorTom Akel
    • CommentTimeJan 19th 2009
    i've used comixpress in the past to self-publish 2 books, the quality was solid and the price was decent, but i never marketed them as POD, i'd do a run for cons and get them into local stores myself. i'm using them again for a book for NYCC for which i have a publisher, but we can't get copies in time so we're doing 100 24pp full-color issues @ 2.87 per. if you're creating your own work i think its a great model to get started and you have nothing to lose.
  4.  (4781.13)
    I publish floppies - Kid humor, superheroes, and mysteries.
    Cop Comics and Bop! Comics through my company, FLOP Productions
    I haven't quite got to my goal skillset, but I'm not too bad. Mostly I sell through the Stumptown convention or Prism comics.
    I liked Comicxpress all right. There were some minor difficulties, so I tried Ka-Blam. That was a terrible idea. Not good. They blew my deadline twice, and sent me the wrong files three or four times. Never again.
    • CommentAuthorwhatever
    • CommentTimeJan 19th 2009
    I do prose POD.

    I use Lightning Source, which is owned by Ingram, the book distributor. They're available on most online bookstores. Brick and mortar bookstores can order them. The first one was adopted as a college text at the Savannah College of Art & Design. The concept works, but it works better if you're doing it with an ISBN number and available through traditional book channels. CreateSpace will get you on Amazon, which is 3/4 of the battle.

    You pay a little more upfront and you have to buy the ISBN #'s, but you get "real" distribution from websites people recognize and you can also put your own publishing imprint on it to avoid the old "self-published" stigma in the book world.
    • CommentTimeJan 19th 2009
    I have a considerable body of work that I've made available through POD at The store is located at for anyone who's interested. I published a collection of short stories and three novels, all of which are available for download or print orders. I've been considering putting out another collection.

    I also have a comic book in the works at the moment, fully scripted and being worked on by the artist. It'll be POD if it is not picked up by a publisher.

    Thanks Warren for this opportunity to talk about my work and I do apologize if this sounds too much like an impersonal advertisement. You reach a point where you just expel the details in consolidated nodules (not unlike bile) so as to spare everyone those pretenses that make advertising very nearly a genre of modern horror. Here's the stuff, free for download and please, let me know if you like what you see. You can find it on scribd as well, albeit in electronic form only.
  5.  (4781.16)
    I'm publishing a book through lulu at the end of the month. It's a middle grade fiction book. It's 473 pages and because I took the distribution package, I'm making approximately $1.23 off each $24.99 book. However, that's IF it is sold through a distributor (like It has to be marked up significantly so that amazon and other distributors can give discounts. I can order copies from lulu myself at a much lower cost (basically, the price of the book), and if the book is sold directly through lulu at the cover price, I make a significant amount of money.

    Something like this works well for someone like Ellis, who has a following that would probably march right along with him to lulu and pay for a book (as opposed to finding it on amazon). He would make plenty of cash just from the people on the badsignal list.

    For me, it's a different story. I'm marketing to middle school students, so I'm blogging and visiting library conferences (I'm attending one in Shanghai in a couple of weeks).

    As for POD success stories, there really aren't any. I'm banking on the 1000 true fans theory and hoping to cultivate that. I'm releasing my book as a free pdf download, a kindle download, and I'm submitting my iphone app today (I've got some friends in Beijing doing it for me). However, my book has 100 pages of "bonus" short story material in the print copy that you won't be able to find in the electronic versions.

    Either way, look for my book in a couple of weeks! Boyd McCloyd! (You can download it to the Kindle right now!).
    • CommentAuthorfunklord
    • CommentTimeJan 19th 2009
    I'm an editor with a science publishing house that's part of a research institution. We've been using POD to keep books in print where we want the material to remain available, but there's not a huge demand for the book. By using POD, we can do very small print runs, 25 or 50 copies, as often as we need. Previously we would have let those books go out of print, as we would have had to print at least 500 copies to make it economically feasible (more copies than we would ever sell). We've brought a few out of print books back into print using POD. We're also considering using it for new books in fast moving fields, printing a few hundred copies at a time, letting the authors continuously revise things, keeping the book fresh and up to date, rather than being stuck with 2000 copies of out of date material in our warehouse.
    • CommentAuthorPerilous
    • CommentTimeJan 19th 2009
    I've got two books in the pipe at CreateSpace, working on a third. The one problem I've had is editing I have to pay for a copy each time (which is of course, where they make their money, since more often than not, no one is ordering your book). Other than that it's actually a great opportunity to get on Amazon when you're not the type of author who's likely to get published or, for that matter, noticed.
    • CommentTimeJan 19th 2009
    I published a photo book through I made about $14 profit on every book I sold, and I sold well over 100. So, that is without an ISBN, which kinda sucks, but I think it did pretty well. I don't know if having had it on a site like Amazon, would have increased sales at all - the subject matter was naked me, after all, and I think that may appeal to only a certain audience?
    I would certainly do another one. It is easy, and rewarding. Though I would like to have an ISBN as places asked to sell my book, but couldn't if it didn't have an ISBN. But those puppies are hard to come by, in Canada, and then it becomes a whole tax issue and such. But just to sell some good quality books, POD is lovely. I recommend it!
    • CommentAuthorBritMandelo
    • CommentTimeJan 19th 2009 edited
    I did by accident once. A collection from a flash fiction online zine I was featured in was published through Lulu a year or two ago. It was reviewed by all of two people on the internet, but both of them mentioned my little story, so I was pretty pleased. HeavyGlow: Two Years Burning Brightly.

    All my other stuff is through regular publishers, though.