“A rose by any other name” could be a tur…nip

In my previous post – Miira, a sneak peek – I proudly displayed the cover I’d created for the first book of the print version of Innerscape. There would be three books in all – a proper trilogy – and the five, original episodes would be split between them:

  • Book 1 = Innerscape, Episodes 1 and 2,
  • Book 2 = Innerscape, Episodes 3 and 4,
  • Book 3 = Innerscape, Episode 5

As Episodes 1 and 2 focused mainly on Miira, I decided to call book one ‘Miira’, with a sub-title along the lines of:

  • book 1 of Innerscape, or
  • episodes 1 and 2 of Innerscape

And because it all seemed perfectly clear to me – how could it not when I’d been thinking about little else for weeks? – I assumed that it would be clear to everyone else as well. Dawn’s comment on the post brought me back to earth with an almighty crash. She asked:

is this going to be a reprint / new imprint / new version of Innerscape….or fresh and new Miira ?!!

That was the moment I realised how ripe for confusion my airy ideas for the print version had become.

A few seconds later, I realised something much, much worse – with brand new covers and a new name for each book, confusion would be the least of my worries. ‘Scam’ and ‘con’ would be more like it. The last thing I want is for anyone to buy Innerscape twice, but if someone who’s read Innerscape and knows me personally – like Dawn – can ask if this was something new, then how could I expect a complete stranger not to ask the same question…and be angry at the answer?

I’ll be honest, I didn’t sleep very well last night. I desperately want to hold a real live book in my hands, and I really like the design concept I came up with for the print version trilogy, but my original decision to publish Innerscape as a serial has finally come back to bite me on the bum. If I upgrade the ebooks to mirror the print version, readers can rightly accuse me of making a greedy grab for more money. Yet, even if I leave the ebooks exactly as they are, having such a different looking print version will still cause confusion.

Then, I had a thought. Amazon allows you to bundle print and ebook versions together! If I did that, maybe it wouldn’t matter…

Ah, but which ebook episode would I bundle? And would Amazon even allow it when the print and ebook versions aren’t exactly the same?

It was around my third cup of coffee this morning that I had a better thought, at least I hope it is. What if I leave the ebook episodes as they are and simply create one, single omnibus edition of the whole story? As an ebook, it won’t matter that Innerscape is huge, and so long as it’s clearly labelled as an ‘omnibus’ edition, there should be no confusion…

Or would an omnibus ebook simply add to the existing confusion?

I seriously don’t know any more. I really, really need some feedback on this one. And please don’t hold back out of kindness. If I get this wrong, complete strangers are going to be much less diplomatic than any of you. 😦

-sigh-

Meeks

 

 

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About acflory

I am the kind of person who always has to know why things are the way they are so my interests range from genetics and biology to politics and what makes people tick. For fun I play online mmorpgs, read, listen to a music, dance when I get the chance and landscape my rather large block. Work is writing. When a story I am working on is going well I'm on cloud nine. On bad days I go out and dig big holes... View all posts by acflory

24 responses to ““A rose by any other name” could be a tur…nip

  • jilldennison

    Ahhhh … and here I thought the writing of the book would be the hard part! I am out of my element on this, so I can offer no useful guidance, but send you good thoughts and hugs all the same! πŸ™‚

    Like

  • D. Wallace Peach

    When I was updating the covers for my books, I did some research and found out that cover updates are actually quite common… not only among indies but by big publishing houses too. It made me feel better that readers wouldn’t be confused.

    But…the titles remained the same (though adding a subtitle was acceptable) and the covers for the ebook and print book matched. In your case, the ebook cover would be changed to match the new print cover. One advantage of having the covers match is that Amazon combines both ebook and print book on one tile so both options are readily available to the reader.

    I agree that different titles and different covers are likely to imply that it’s a different book and confuse readers. Especially since they will show up as completely separate listings.

    Another consideration is that if you keep the same title and simply add a subtitle and new cover (ebook and print book the same), your reviews will carry over from the ebook to the print book. If you go with a new title and different cover they can’t be linked on one tile. I think you will have to start all over with reviews for the print version.

    Hopefully this made sense. Good luck with the decision!

    Like

    • acflory

      Thank you so much! You’ve confirmed what I feared but also given me some options I didn’t know I had. Unfortunately, I still have to work out how to get the simple arithmetic to work – five episodes into 3 books is the problem. I can’t realistically make the print and ebook versions match unless I pull the current ebook episodes and start from scratch…with no reviews for either. 😦
      I wish I’d known all this before I went down a semi-serial path. The one good thing is that Innerscape isn’t exactly a bestseller so I may get lucky and regain the reviews I’ve already got.
      You’ve given me a lot to think about, but at least I know exactly what my options are now. Thanks again. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      • D. Wallace Peach

        Oh, I forgot about that bit – that you’re combining.
        One thing that I read while researching this is that some authors will put into their Amazon description a clarifying note. So for the print book, you could put in the Amazon description a statement that it includes both episode 1 and 2 of the original serial (title). Simple as that. Readers won’t be confused. The only thing is that the ebooks and print book will be treated as separate entities.
        Good luck and I’m glad I was able to help clarify a bit.

        Like

  • Esme upon the Cloud

    Omnibus, yes, or ‘Second Edition’ I’d have thought would be fine. There are thousands of books holding the same story out there that have new cover designs and slightly changed wording of the title. And the blurb at the front, the preface says that ’tis so too. Fear not, all is and will be well – *smiles*.

    – Esme upon the Cloud

    Liked by 1 person

  • anne54

    I think an omnibus edition would be the way to go, but remember, I know little more than nothing about all of this. Like Dawn, I wonder if this will affect your reviews. Since you posted about reviews I am more aware of the value of them.

    I love real books, and would love to have one of yours in my hand. Have you plans for “Vokhtah” in hard copy, or has all of this put you off for ever?!

    Sending you hugs xxx

    Like

    • acflory

      Yeah, reviews are another issue I hadn’t thought about it. And massive hugs for being so nice! I will put out a print version of Vokhtah as well, eventually, but I want to redo the cover to make it look more ‘sci-fi’ and I’m kind of stuck on that so…it’s in the too hard basket for now.
      So, another vote of confidence for the omnibus…hmm.

      Liked by 1 person

  • DawnGillDesigns

    ps. Put me down for a signed set, as long as you post it all by land, my aussie pal isn’t coming over for ages! There. you have at least one guaranteed sale.

    Like

  • DawnGillDesigns

    Andrea – I have bought a number of print copies of books after buying them as ebooks. because I want something less ephemeral and I love ‘real’ books more. When I’ve done that, I’ve also had the bonus of getting them signed by the author. It makes me very happy.
    As long as you have it covered in the blurb for the e book (eg print version available titled ‘We all adore Miira’ ) and vice versa it’ll be fine. I think you are worrying unnecessarily, and I feel a bit bad for making you do so. In solidarity however I’m worried now too (!) that if you bundle your episodes, you’ll
    a) lose all your hard earned reviews – except mine because I’m MrsParanoid and I kept a copy on my pc for this very eventuality! and
    b) people might be put off if they have to pay more than 99p, or whatever ridiculously low value you have put on these excellent works.
    OOH. I sound very stern there, I didn’t mean to. I just think that when people are happy to pay Β£20 for a cinema ticket, but not Β£5 for a book that is going to last more than 3 hours the world’s gone mad. Sorry. I verged into ranting then. Is it feasible to have the omnibus and the mini versions? I have no idea how this works for books, I only understand (and barely at that!) Etsy listings. Giant hugs, and extra cake from me. I’d be baking you something now if we were in the same place. xxx

    Like

    • acflory

      -grin- Having seen your baked goods I’d love a slice right now! As for the suggestion about ‘the ebook is available as…’, that’s genius. In fact, maybe I can have my cake and eat it by just adding versions so however people like to read – in print, in episodes, all at once, they can. Feeling much better now. Thank you, Mum. πŸ˜€
      xxx

      Liked by 1 person

      • DawnGillDesigns

        Oh, you are so right to do that. I often buy the first, then the compilation. That’s even more relevant with ebooks, coz they’re not so user friendly (for meπŸ˜‰)
        🌼 😍 😘

        Like

        • acflory

          When I bought my first Kindle I thought I’d buy the print version of the books I loved the most, but it didn’t happen as I find print very hard to read now. I guess that’s part of the reason I didn’t see the necessity of providing different versions, until now. -hugs-

          Liked by 1 person

  • Scottie

    I wish I could help you Meeka, but I simply have no idea what you should do or what would be received better. I wish you the best. Hugs

    Like

  • Candy Korman

    I think you’ve created a viable solution with the omnibus edition.

    Like

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