One of the more important issues that we deal with as we continue to grow EAF is the need for our collection to be curated.
This means that you’ll have direct input into what our collection becomes.
We’ve already had examples where acquisition professionals at libraries have pointed out individual authors they’d love to see added. We immediately contact that author and attempt to quickly add their titles to EAF. So far, we’ve been very successful at accomplishing this.
It can’t be overstated how much time and energy this could save you. It’s no secret that the process of reaching out to each indie author or publisher, beyond being both difficult and tedious, is simply not sustainable; we hope to provide a solution to that problem.
Additionally, having a curated collection of popular indie titles at sustainable pricing models, all of which can be purchased with minimal effort, allows libraries to tap into ebook content that they’ve been unable to access until now. The ebooks offered by EAF are ones that consumers are purchasing every day, in great numbers, and offering them to your patrons is now simple and affordable.
A large amount of the emails and questions we receive are on the topic of curation and vetting. This is to be expected and, in a perfect world, curation wouldn’t be necessary. In fact, both myself and Joe Konrath (as co-founders) believe that curation is completely unnecessary in the consumer space. Putting up walls (like some indies are familiar with) and falsifying “best-seller” lists to limit consumer access to certain titles is simply wrong.
But the important thing that we need to continue to convey is that the consumer marketplace and library marketplace are two different entities. There are many things that would be expected when it comes to Amazon/B&N/Kobo/Apple/etc that just don’t work the same way for libraries. Mostly, this is due to the fact that the consumer reader market is growing, where as library budgets are shrinking – and they’re shrinking while ebook prices are continuing to climb for them. We’re dealing with far more limitations and completely different needs.
So before we can service a huge number of indie authors, we have to supply a set idea of where things will go. That’s what we’re doing right now.
We believe - and libraries have requested - that we need to control both quality and quantity of titles, as well as the number of titles per genre. We can’t go to launch with 80% of our titles being mystery titles, or romance titles; which may lead to someone who passes all of the internal criteria we’ve set being temporarily denied at this point. Being denied access now doesn’t mean you’ll be denied in 2 weeks, or 2 months. Overall, there are various factors that go into the curation process, of which number of reviews, quality of reviews, number of titles, whether your books are in a series, estimated sales figures, cover art, book description, current genre saturation, library interest, and overall availability are just a few.
This is an ongoing concept and one that will most likely change and evolve as we grow. Please feel free to reach out to us directly, and check back for updates as we move forward.