When we said back in January that digital libraries an subscription services were the new black and we should all be climbing on board, the suggestion fell on largely deaf ears.
Hey, don’t worry. We’re used to it!
And while the news that US and Canadian libraries had seen 100 million digital downloads through OverDrive was met with surprise, most indies didn’t see it as relevant to their lives, because most indies were not in OverDrive.
That changed this year when Smashwords fixed a deal to get indie titles into OverDrive’s library catalogue. True, there were more than few problems along the way not least when OverDrive appeared to shunt all Smashwords titles into a ghetto zone only viewable by librarians – there are today over 150,000 indie titles showing in the OverDrive public catalogue through Smashwords.
Along with a good many through forward-thinking aggregators like Ebook Partnership, who have been supplying OverDrive much longer.
New Zealand, a small country with a small population (less than 5m) saw 800,000 ebooks loaned from its digital libraries in 2013, through OverDrive and the local library distributor Wheelers. (LINK)
That was before Smashwords got indie books in, but even before that many indies had been seeing increased library traffic year on year from digital libraries, including those Australia and New Zealand, for several years.
Safe to say the 2014 figures for digital libraries in New Zealand and everywhere else will be significantly higher. And for 2015…
As we said back in January, digital libraries and subscription services are the new black. (LINK)
KU aside, that remains true.
But just like in any other outlet, while being there is half the battle, getting discovered is in large part down to you.
Find your links in OverDrive (LINK) and let people know. Tweet and FB to readers in Australia, New Zealand, etc, etc, that they can borrow your books from their local library.
We are the luckiest generation of authors ever to have lived. We have opportunities to reach global audiences quite unimaginable ten… even five… years ago.
A report just out values the global ebook market at $14.5 billion. (LINK)
OverDrive is one such portal to the world. Thanks to Smashwords it’s easier than ever to be there, and at no up-front cost.
Make no mistake, digital libraries ARE the new black, and OverDrive is the single biggest supplier of global digital content.
And there are plenty of other ways for indies to access the that $14.5bn global ebook market.
Not there? Your loss, because the readers are.