Barnes & Noble just took the wraps off Nook Press, a brand-new service for budding authors. The updated self-publishing platform builds on the company's previous PubIt! platform, which is the Nook's original answer to Amazon's Kindle Direct Publishing service. According to Barnes & Noble, Nook Press offers "authors a fast, easy and free way to write, edit, collaborate and publish the highest quality e-books."
New features of Nook Press includes a Quick Start option where writers can try out tools before signing off with the bookseller. Authors can also edit a piece after it's been uploaded to the system, and invite friends and editors to read and comment on a work in progress.
Authors using Nook Press are encouraged to set a price for their titles between $0.99 and $199.99, but most Nook Books are anticipated to cost between $2.99 and $9.99. For books in the later range, authors will receive 65 percent of the list price. For e-books priced at $2.98 or less, or $10.00 or more, authors will get 40 percent of the list price. Amazon has a similar royalty program, but their range is bigger: 70 percent for select price points and 35 for the rest. Amazon also ads file size limits to its royalty program, which Barnes & Noble does not.
We're unsure as to whether this points to a boon for underappreciated writers or the death of great literature. But it's certain that it has never been easier to become a published author, and it seems the public likes this trend. Barnes & Noble reports that 30 percent of Nook customers purchase self-published content each month, which represents 25 percent of all Nook book sales per month.