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  1. Lew

    Lew Contributor Contributor

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    Amazon Exended Distribution: Lesson learned!

    Discussion in 'Self-Publishing' started by Lew, Jun 19, 2017.

    When I started posting "The Eagle and the Dragon" for publication via Createspace, I elected to purchase a Gowker ISBN @ $100. I chose not to launch with extended distribution, as I wanted to keep the price down.

    Last week, with Kindle selling well, I decided to elect extended distribution, to get it into B&N and Ingram. The three choices for extended distro are Bookstores, createspace direct, and libraries and instiutions. The first two were selectable, the thrid greyed out as inelgible due to non-CS ISBN. No matter, I went ahead and also raised the price accordingly. After a few days, only my short story "Come, Follow Me" showed up on B&N.

    A call to CS told me that the CS ISBN is required for all three, just not the last one that was rejected. My option are to give up B&N, Ingram and the route to Nook and overdrive, or to republish under a CS ISBN.

    I am holding off on making the change, and backing the price back down. I would like to get recommendations on this: in particular, if I retire the current paid-for ISBN, can I retain it for future use. It is, I understand, now permanently linked to my name and title. Comments please!

    CS does not make this clear at ISBN selection, or I don't recall they did. Everyone should be aware of this before purchasing an ISBN for CS publications.
     
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  2. krishin316

    krishin316 New Member

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    Just a question, as far as I understand , you can get an ISBN for free if you contact the ISBN agency in your region .. why did you buy the ISBN from a separate entity? .. Or am I missing something?
     
  3. BayView

    BayView Contributor Contributor

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    It depends on the jurisdiction. Americans have to pay for theirs. Other countries have different systems, so you'd need to investigate locally.
     
  4. M Phillip

    M Phillip Banned

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    The ISBN identifies the book and a number of other details such as author, publisher, size, format (print or digital, etc) and other details. As a side note, Amazon uses an ASIN, their own system, for eBooks they publish.

    Bowker is the only agency authorized to dispense new ISBN's in the US, Current price for one is $125.00, but buying in bulk reduces the cost of each ISBN. CS and other indie platforms buy them in bulk and then report the information to Bowker and then on to the international agency.

    As to holding an ISBN for later use - each ISBN issued is for one specific book. It can be used later on but for only the book for which it was issued. An eBook and printed book each need their own ISBN. Even the same book published in different sizes need their own number.

    The ISBN also identifies the publisher. CS is a publisher and prefers to use their own ISBN's for books they distribute - it's basically free advertising for them. So, it's not surprising CS won't distribute the same title with a non CS ISBN even though they will distribute the other two volumes. Automation, the reason for ISBN's, is probably a reason, too. Wikipedia has an informative article on ISBN

    Maybe consider republishing the orphan volume with the free CS number to get the maximum distribution for all three?
     
  5. Edward M. Grant

    Edward M. Grant Senior Member

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    I use my own ISBNs for my books, and most of them were on B&N's website last time I looked. That said, it's about eighteen months since I last published a book through Createspace, so maybe things have changed.
     

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