Friday, August 10, 2012

PressBooks prepares to launch its eBook publishing service

PressBooks, an eBook editing and self-publishing service based on WordPress, has announced its pricing plans and is nearing a formal launch. The service, which has been in beta for some time, enables writers to collaboratively create eBooks, either online or via file uploads. Existing WordPress users can selectively convert their blogs into eBooks using PressBooks. The service outputs EPUBs for Apple iBooks, Barnes & Noble's Nook and Kobo, converts EPUBs to Amazon's Kindle formats, creates public or private web versions of eBooks and exports to PDF for print-on-demand. PressBooks offers an assortment of templates that are optimized for different eReading platforms. It can directly post eBooks into Apple's, Barnes & Noble's and Kobo's eBookstores, or self-publishers can download the files and manage their own distribution. (Apparently, self-publishers will have to post titles into Amazon's Kindle Store themselves.)

The new pricing plans, which appear to still be under discussion, are as follows:
  • The first five books are free (beta users who've already created eBooks are exempt from monthly pricing on those titles, and will be entitled to five more free titles.)
  • Up to 20 books: $50/month.
  • Up to 200 books: $200/month.
  • Distribution to the Apple, Barnes & Noble and Kindle eBookstores will cost a one-time fee of $100/book + $25/year/book.

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