02-21-2011 02:07 AM
I was wondering if anyone on here had heard a reason for this discrepancy and if it was changing anytime soon? Jacqueline Carey's first two books, Kushiel's Dart and Kushiel's Chosen, are both available for Kindle but not nook, whereas all her more recent books are available for both. What's odd is that Tor published the entire first trilogy, including Dart, Chosen and Avatar, but Avatar IS available for both formats. So I'm confused. I know converting and re editing a backlist title takes time and money, but that's already done for the Kindle ebook, so what's the hold up? And if it's some contract weirdness between Tor and B&N, then why is Kushiel's Avatar on the nook? Like most authors Carey has no idea what the publisher is doing. I clicked on the "let publisher know..." links, but I'm pessimistic.
02-21-2011 09:52 AM - edited 02-21-2011 09:53 AM
If the author doesn't know, we sure wouldn't know. But here's one possibility.
Amazon uses different formats for e-books than everybody else. Everyone else uses EPUB, while Amazon uses AZW and Topaz.
Kushiel's Dart is in Topaz format, which bears little resemblance to other e-book formats. Kushiel's Chosen is in AZW format, which at least is somewhat similar to EPUB (both are descendants of the Open eBook format).
Conversion takes time and money. Author Charles Stross posted about the complications of getting The Merchants of War, one of the middle books of one of his series, available as e-book. He wrote:
Tor would obviously like to bring their entire back list online as ebooks, but there are significant practical obstacles. ... My back-of-the-envelope estimate is that for Tor to put their backlist online would take on the order of 2000 employee-months of labour. Which is a tall order for a company with 50 full-time staff, to serve a channel that accounts for at best 6% of sales.
02-21-2011 03:27 PM - edited 02-21-2011 03:35 PM
Thanks, Doug. I didn't realize different vendors using the different ebook formats would cause the same delay multiple times, but it makes sense.
It's obvious why they would decide to go with the Kindle version first, given its bigger customer base. What still doesn't make sense to me is why they would decide to format the third book in the trilogy first.
02-21-2011 03:32 PM
If it makes you feel better, you're not the only one waiting on those books. I check every few weeks to see if they're available yet...
02-21-2011 03:41 PM
Come on, Tor! Open up those purse strings! Time to beef up that staff. I'm sure there's plenty of unemployed English majors around to do some data entry and proofreading, and you've got hungry fans over here.