If you’re a self-published author, you understand the struggle of trying to get your book out into the world. Not only do indie authors pour countless hours of hard work into their writing, but they also face a boatload of marketing challenges, especially when it comes to finding a place to sell their creations.
Many authors turn to the Internet, using websites like Amazon and Blurb to garner sales. What’s more difficult, however, is getting their book featured in the window, or even on the shelves, of a brick-and-mortar bookstore. Big box stores carry hundreds of titles, many of which come from big name publishers and are written by extremely popular authors. With so much competition, traditional bookstores are a battlefield for self publishers.
But with self-publishing on the rise, a new style of bookstore is popping up, two of which are located in Florida. Indie authors Patti Brassard Jefferson and Timothy Jacobs opened Gulf Coast Bookstore, dedicated entirely to local, self published works, reports Publisher’s Weekly. The store currently features 53 authors, all of whom pay to rent shelf space in the space. At $60 for three months, authors can display up to ten books on their shelves and receive 100% of each sale.
The business model has worked so well that Jefferson has branched out to launch another, similar store, called P.J. Boox. This new venue will host ten times as many authors as Gulf Coast, and will open its doors in October 2015. Jefferson explained to Publisher’s Weekly that she has received over 200 requests from non-local authors looking for representation in a bookstore such as Gulf Coast, thus prompting the impending opening. She’s even planning to branch into online sales, of which authors will receive 80 percent of the revenue.
This new bookstore model could completely change the marketing strategies used by self published authors, allowing them a much more visible and mainstream spot in book sales. It’s early success in Florida is a good sign for authors, suggesting that consumers are very interested in indie books. Indie authors just need a better way to get to them!