Singapore Expats Forum

E-book selling, business issues surrounding

Discuss your views about Singapore business & economy, current policies & issues, starting a business in Singapore.
uniquely_me
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 1
Joined: Sun, 30 Jul 2006
Contact:

E-book selling, business issues surrounding

Postby uniquely_me » Fri, 02 Feb 2007 3:26 pm

I'll start off with a bit of background. I'm American and am here studying at the moment. My two main interests are engineering management and writing. Between high school and University, I paid the bills as a tech. writer working with small companies near my home. Currently, I'm an Aeronautical Engineering major, with a business minor.

Long story short... I wrote a book ages ago, and work I did on a recent project has inspired me to convert it into an e-book and publish it online. I had a literary agent with whom I wasn't happy, so simply to make the book available to the public, I feel publishing online is a good way to go. Being that a product is being sold, I'm sure that brings in issues of needing to set myself up as a business in order to accept payment (assuming I don't go the paypal route, I suppose). Am I correct in thinking a legitimate entity need be established, as well as an infrastructure of some sort in order to do this?

I went reading through what others have had to say about doing business in Singapore as a foreigner, and knowing that this venture won't 1) employ Singaporeans, 2) add to industry growth/know-how in any way, or 3) benefit the country in the form of TREMENDOUS capital coming in, I am a bit concerned about how to proceed :?.

Originally, I didn't foresee a need to write out a business plan for this e-book side goal. But as the days have gone by, I've begun to wonder about that and now could really do with a bit of outside perspective. Am I looking at everything all wrong? I could very well be getting ahead of myself even, but I would like to walk the straight-and-narrow and set everything up correctly from the start if there are specific protocol that need be followed. I'd love to hear opinions on this from people who have a bit more insight on how Singapore would view my venture.

Thanks for your thoughts everyone :).

David91
Member
Member
Posts: 46
Joined: Thu, 11 Jan 2007
Location: Singapore

Postby David91 » Sat, 03 Feb 2007 4:19 pm

"I feel publishing online is a good way to go. Being that a product is being sold, I'm sure that brings in issues of needing to set myself up as a business in order to accept payment (assuming I don't go the paypal route, I suppose). Am I correct in thinking a legitimate entity need be established, as well as an infrastructure of some sort in order to do this?"

As the author of an original work, you own the copyright and can sell the book online without having to do anything else. The only reason for setting up a company to own the rights is to get tax efficiencies. Since the company is a separate entity from yourself, it pays corporation tax on the revenue derived from any sales. If you do not set up a company, the revenue from the book will be consolidated with your other earned and unearned income for income tax purposes.

It is only fair to warn you that self-publishing is a notoriously difficult sell to a public already surrounded by works from established authors (including the very cheap second-hand copies). Marking yourself out as at least as good if not better than authors marketed by the publishing houses requires a lot of skill and determination. I'm afraid you're going to find it very difficult to make it a paying proposition.
Writing is fun

User avatar
jpatokal
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 3014
Joined: Tue, 09 Dec 2003
Location: Terra Australis Incognita

Postby jpatokal » Sat, 03 Feb 2007 10:14 pm

One address: http://www.lulu.com
Vaguely heretical thoughts on travel technology at Gyrovague

David91
Member
Member
Posts: 46
Joined: Thu, 11 Jan 2007
Location: Singapore

Postby David91 » Sun, 04 Feb 2007 2:32 am

The problem with lulu and the other vanity press sites is that they do not generate any real sales. Yes, because it is POD, lulu is "free" but, as with most other things in life, you get what you pay for. In this case, they take your file and hold it on the off chance that someone might want to buy it.

Sorry to be downbeat about self-publishing. Frankly, I advise against it. You build up hope with very little chance of seeing it rewarded.

Taking one step back: the fact that you had an agent was significantly better than usual. Most aspirant authors never get that far. Not having an agent now is a major loss. Publishers do listen to the recommendations of reputable agents.
Writing is fun

User avatar
AdamC
Regular
Regular
Posts: 110
Joined: Mon, 20 Nov 2006

Postby AdamC » Sun, 04 Feb 2007 5:08 am

regarding epayment

Paypal is a proven record itself already. If its mass audience & security center. Why not go tru them, the process fee of 1.9-2.3% doesnt make much different unless u r dealing with thousands?

If u plan to set it up in Singapore targeting Singaporeans, u might want to try e-nets. Or eclick is also one of them(paid site). But I think the goal to marketing online is to make such it create convienency to others isnt it? so in this case, paypal is a good choose, somemore with its link to most major credit cards. By the way, u can hv multiple payment prosessors for ur webby.

instead of creating e-book, why not sell to online distributors & let them market it? its easier & they themselves already hv their proven set of marketing plans already - a very brief one.

User avatar
jpatokal
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 3014
Joined: Tue, 09 Dec 2003
Location: Terra Australis Incognita

Postby jpatokal » Sun, 04 Feb 2007 11:23 pm

David91 wrote:The problem with lulu and the other vanity press sites is that they do not generate any real sales. Yes, because it is POD, lulu is "free" but, as with most other things in life, you get what you pay for. In this case, they take your file and hold it on the off chance that someone might want to buy it.

Well, the goal of the original poster was, and I quote, "simply to make the book available to the public". Lulu does the availability part and ships anywhere in the world, the rest is up to you...
Vaguely heretical thoughts on travel technology at Gyrovague


  • Similar Topics
    Replies
    Views
    Last post

Return to “Business in Singapore”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests