9 Replies Latest reply on Nov 7, 2010 6:33 AM by Critteranne

    PubIt out of control?

    Hypatia1

      Please can we have a search function that allows us to filter out Pubit books if we wish? I have been using the new releases tab in ebooks to browse and find mystery books I want to buy - but I am finding that I now get floods of Pubit books. Many of these are not even classified sensibly - should "Age of Information" really be showing up in the mystery/thriller category or Jane Austen books in science fiction? I have found the occasional gem like the Jemima Norton mysteries and a Dorothy Sayers I really wanted  but it seems like the Pubit numbers are growing exponentially and much of it is of increasingly dubious value so I'd really like the option...... Help!

        • Re: PubIt out of control?

          I'm unimpressed by the whole pubit influx. Some of these books aren't even worth the .99 that they're charging.

          • Re: PubIt out of control?
            geertm

            Hypatia1 wrote:

            Please can we have a search function that allows us to filter out Pubit books if we wish? I have been using the new releases tab in ebooks to browse and find mystery books I want to buy - but I am finding that I now get floods of Pubit books. Many of these are not even classified sensibly - should "Age of Information" really be showing up in the mystery/thriller category or Jane Austen books in science fiction? I have found the occasional gem like the Jemima Norton mysteries and a Dorothy Sayers I really wanted  but it seems like the Pubit numbers are growing exponentially and much of it is of increasingly dubious value so I'd really like the option...... Help!


             

            I have been thinking the same thing myself. I also check new releases every Tuesday, and all those Pubit books make it difficult to find the regular new books, and make the list of books a lot longer.

             

              • Re: PubIt out of control?

                Agreed completely.

                 

                But (and sorry for this if it comes off as a rant, but it's probably my #1 frustration with B&N and the nook right now, which in every other respect I'm delighted or at least very satisfied with)... it feels very much like the website just isn't set up with browsing in mind. I've given up on that now, and return to the B&N website only to check on authors or books I already know about. In my case, of the ~60 books I've bought for my nook, only about 25 have been from the B&N website, and barely a handful that I didn't go to the website specifically to buy.

                 

                The big upside of an ebook store is that it can have vastly larger inventory than for a physical bookstore. The big downside is that it's a lot harder to scan a large number of titles at once. Both of those factors combine to mean that unless extra effort is made, you're almost guaranteed to swamp visitors with options. Offhand, I can think of several changes which would make me more likely to browse the B&N bookstore.

                 

                Better categorization. While the different categories available are generally good, books are seemingly scattered haphazardly into vaguely related groups of books - I've found books from the same series in three different categories, and it's hardly uncommon for books to be sorted oddly.

                 

                More flexible search. Why not have an advanced search function? Let me specify a price range of my choice (maybe I only want $3 to $8 books), publication date range, more than one genre/subgenre to search at once (or specific sub-genres to exclude - maybe I'm looking for a scifi/fantasy book but don't want a Star Wars novel), works from multiple different authors if I want to add more than one, publisher/publication method (maybe I want to specifically include or exclude Google books, B&N classics, PubIt books, books by Penguin, or whatever), whatever. Unless you have a very odd database it should be possible to return all that with just one SQL query, which means it's not exactly a huge hassle to offer this.

                 

                More/better recommendations. You've got the "customers who bought this also bought" feature; why not expand that? Let it return a larger set of results, sorted by degree of connection. Often the first entries in that group are just sequels and other works by the same authors. Which it's nice to know about, it's not exactly shocking to learn that people who buy book 1 in a series often buy book 2. And I might have already read the few suggestions if it's in an area I particularly like... which means it's an area you could make great suggestions to me if you'd just tell me what the #6, #7, #8, etc. most related books are.

                 

                Better notification. There are certain authors whose books I like to know about - both when they're released, and when they drop to MMPB price. Why not give me an option to add an author to that list; then let me in one click see all the works you offer from authors I'm tracking, and give the option of email notifications related to that list?

              • Re: PubIt out of control?

                THANK YOU!!!!! I've also become increasingly annoyed with this. Don't get me wrong - I'm not against it and have found some Pubit books that look interesting. I would just like the option of filtering them out when I don't feel like going through pages and pages of public domain stuff (much of which is available free elsewhere), and, as you say, material of dubious quality.

                 

                Another pet peeve - when I go to look at new releases, I want to see the newest books in that category. OK, I understand that it defaults to sort by bestselling (though it would be nice if we could set preferences), but then I click on "Publication Date" and it goes to the oldest books that are classified as "new releases," so I have to click three times - once on the category and twice on "Publication Date" - to get the site to sort the new releases with the most recent first. Then I have to go back to the "New Releases" page and go through the same rigamarole for any category I want to check. Grrrrrrrrrrr!!!!!

                • Re: PubIt out of control?

                  This post makes me sad. As a self-published author, PubIt! was an exciting option for me. But as a reader I understand the frustration. I have also been disappointed in the quality of books flooding the market and wish there was a way to control it so that authors who put so much time and care into their stories don't get drowned out.

                   

                  On the flip-side, I have also discovered some hidden gems! I decided to go the self-publishing route because I saw an opportunity to deliver a quality read at a reasonable price (sorry publishing houses, but I don't think it's okay to charge the same amount for an eBook as you do for the hard copies). Neither did I want a mass-market editor to change my creation to fit their vision of the genre (I am an avid reader, but after a while the stories start to become a little predictable without a new voice telling them). I spent money to have my book professionally edited, I hired a graphic artist to design my cover, I had many people read my work and give feedback before I ever uploaded it to any site and listed it in the proper genre.

                   

                  I suppose the only way to stop the influx of rubbish is to have someone reading each submission as it comes through and only approving those that pass a quality control process. One saving grace is that you can sample the book for free (IMO you can tell a lot about the quality of a book by reading the first chapter). Extra work? Sure, but you can also find excellent books at a price publisher's can't compete with. I know I spend a small fortune on my reading addiction and I can't get a good book for $2.99 even at the used bookstore.

                   

                  I suppose the bottom line to my lengthy post is that I don't want to be lumped with the rubbish simply because I am self-published. I write to entertain people, annoying them is the last thing I want to do. If I can be part of the solution, let me know! I love a challenge!

                   

                   

                    • Re: PubIt out of control?
                      Hypatia1

                      @WriterGurl1

                       

                      I don't think anyone wants to get rid of PubIt! We are just asking B&N to give us some better search options so it is possible to tailor searches to needs/wants. The web-site re-design seems to have been a big step backward here.....

                       

                      Rest assured - I do read samples when I find something I think I would like - but I tend to give up looking after several pages with nothing on that is remotely attractive - I am pretty sure if I ever found one of your books I'd try it... I really would like a way to up the possibility!

                    • Re: PubIt out of control?
                      Critteranne

                      I do like it when PubIt users put up public domain titles that other people don't have. It's not as hard as you'd think. I searched for M. P. Shiel on B&N before PubIt, and I found a couple of titles, not counting Google Books titles. (I don't count those as you can't always tell if you're getting Volume 3 instead of Volume 1.) But now, there is at least one PubIt collection available. I would like it if PubIt users knew a little bit about the wide range of public domain literature available so that they realized they could do more than publish yet another copy of Dracula or Pride & Prejudice.

                       

                      I also love the way PubIt lets small specialty presses (for example, Darkside Digital) make their existing e-books available through B&N.

                       

                      I do wish people would keep better control of the categories. Franz Kafka did not write "thrillers." Grrr. I hate searching for thrillers and finding multiple copies of The Metamorphosis, or searching for fantas/sf/horror and finding Kafka, mythology reprints, How the Fox Got His Color, etc.. I guess publishers are entering multiple categories in that hopes that more people will see their books, but it will just backfire if people get annoyed.