Today is the first day of "Read an E-book Week". There are various promotional activities going on both on and off the Internet, and a website dedicated to the cause of spreading the electronic word. One of the best promos is by BeWrite Books, which is offering a selection of free e-books on their website, with a new subject every day.
Today's genre is mystery. I downloaded Capable of Murder by Brian Kavanagh, an English village cosy. Tomorrow they offer a selection of three poetry books.
Looking through BeWrite's website I noticed three things that set them apart.
1. In the submission guidelines, they tell you right up front that sales will be low and that you should try to get a mainstream publisher first. I have never seen an epublisher do this. Bravo for the honesty and good advice!
2. They do not accept erotica or romance, the bread and butter of most epublishers. They aim for more "literary" works. Interesting. Probably not the best move from a business standpoint, but it shows guts.
3. The cover art is well done, being similar in style to many academic literary presses. A lot of ebook art is simply dreadful, looking like the creation of semitalented teenagers or the stereotypical "hot hunk and swooning babe" photo job. Some electronic authors such as Minnette Meador have beautiful covers on their books, but she's lucky enough to have a son who is a talented artist. Connections are everything in this business. Minnette decided to grow her own.
I'll be interested to read BeWrite's freebies and see how well they live up to their goals. The proof, as they say, is in the pudding.