I don’t have a lot of time right now, but news just hit this morning about something that could be a major OMG in the world of indie publishing. Draft2Digital announced it is acquiring Smashwords.
I will admit this announcement took me by surprise. Like so many authors, I’ve seen the two as rivals. I’ve also voiced on one more than one occasion my concerns about Smashwords’ “meatgrinder”. As I’ve learned of late, you no longer have to go through the meatgrinder to upload to SW. But more on that in another post.
Here is some of what D2D had to say about the news:
In terms of the service and resources you’ve come to expect from both companies, nothing really changes. At least, not right away. We will continue to offer the best author support there is, to all our combined authors, worldwide. And over time, authors and publishers will gain all of the advantages from both platforms, with a unified author dashboard and user experience.
The good news is that with our combined powers, all of us at Draft2Digital and Smashwords see myriad opportunities to build even more and even better tools and services, to help you build and grow your author career in ways you might never have imagined.
I’ll let you read the announcement for yourself, but a couple of things you should take note of. This change will let D2D authors take advantage of Smashwords’ coupons. Those who have been focusing more on SW than on D2D will now get to take advantage of D2D’s easier tools, print versions of their books and additional payment methods, among other benefits.
D2D also has an FAQ available concerning this new change to the indie publishing scene. You can find it here.
Of interest to those who write erotica (and from the FAQ):
What are the erotic fiction policies of the new company?
Each retailer, subscription service, or library platform has its own content policies. Draft2Digital will adopt the existing Smashwords erotic fiction policies for these platforms.
A few years ago, Smashwords introduced a certification system that allows erotic fiction publishers to self-certify the presence (or lack thereof) of various facets of erotica that are generally recognized as “taboo.” This more granular categorization provides retailers and libraries with the confidence they need to know that the erotic literature they’re selling doesn’t violate their policies.
The Smashwords Erotic Fiction Certification System will be made available to all Draft2Digital authors.
Will the erotica policies change in the Smashwords Store?
Smashwords has a long history of supporting the erotic fiction community. No changes are anticipated to the policies documented at https://www.smashwords.com/about/tos, nor have there been any changes in the last four years.
The policies on permitted, discouraged, and forbidden erotica categories remain in effect. The Smashwords Store has a more permissive approach to taboo erotica than most ebook stores. The store gives customers unprecedented control over the types of erotica, if any, that appear in their search results.
In the short term, everything will be business as usual for the two sites. Eventually, everything will migrate to the D2D site, if I’m reading this right. Here’s crossing my fingers and toes that everything works as smoothly as they plan and this is another step in the right direction for indie authors and our readers.