FastPencil for creating ebooks and print books? From their site they are, “…an all-inclusive process that guides and assists authors from start to finish. You’ll enjoy free built-in writing and collaboration tools, version control, precise formatting, multi-format output, and a market for selling your books.”
Personally, haven’t done it with them as the direct uploads with Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords and CreateSpace have been my e-publishing and print partners of choice, but that’s not a shot against FastPencil, as it looks like a fine service.
Other Indie authors have reported being very happy with them. FastPencil has a 100% free program for DIY (do it yourself) types who can handle basic ebook formatting, cover design (or working with templates) and interior print formatting. The copyright always stays with the author, as it should anywhere, and ebooks are not DRM’ed, which is becoming standard. They also have an extensive Community for networking and help on any e-publishing question.
For authors with deeper wallets who’d like a bit more assistance along the way, FastPencil offers packages with varied degrees of service. There are Bronze, Silver and Gold packages priced from $999 to $1,999, which primarily covers between 1-3 hours of Project Management and 25-50K words of editorial review for text and formatting.
There’s also a Premier level for established authors “…who desire more control, faster publishing times, flexible book and eBook formats, wide distribution channels and higher royalties—paid faster.” Since the requirements for eligibility are different and pricing is not mentioned (a phone number is), it’s a safe assumption this Premier level is based on the individual author’s needs, credentials and potentials.
An interesting feature they have is the ability to turn existing blogs into books. Does CreateSpace offer this with their paid services? Not sure, as my books are the free variety there. “Our blog import tool makes it easy to grab your existing blog posts, whether for use as a compilation or for use in a completely new work. You have three options:
- RSS Feed: Just enter the blog’s url and we will retrieve up to 25 posts.
- Sign in to your blog, retrieve up to 500 posts
- Export your WordPress or Blogger blog, and import the corresponding xml file”
For a list of Frequently Asked Questioned, just visit their FAQ page. Would love to hear any experiences and how it compares with other providers.