Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Free Reads - Worth Your While? Or Giving Away Money?

A lot of authors I know personally or professionally post Free Reads on either their blogs or websites. Some even include them as little chap books at book signings. So far I haven't done this, although I've been debating with myself on the issue.

My question is this: Are they worth it? What is the point of a Free Read, anyway? If it's to give readers a "taste" of the author's writing style, wouldn't a nice excerpt (like an entire chapter) from your latest be almost the same thing?

Also, a couple of Free Reads that I've seen are nice-sized short stories. These stories could easily become nice-sized e-books. But by posting them on the web, the author is losing potential royalties.

Maybe I've completely missed the purpose of Free Reads. If I have, please set me straight. :D


Diana Castilleja said...

I do one free read a year, for Valentine's day and it's on two different sites, plus my website. I offer full chapter reads for all my books on my website as a taste. I can't see doing a free read that could potentially be another contracted work.

I know some swear by the free reads, but free reads are usually short, and I don't write short that often. To me, the chapter reads accomplish the same thing.

Angelia Sparrow said...

My freebie is a Halloween bonus story I wrote for my LiveJournal.

I could sell it a a short, yes, but at the length it is, I'd make 25c/copy.

I try to get a sample of everything up, so the reader can know what they're getting into