1. SapereAude

    SapereAude Member

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    ISBN Question

    Discussion in 'Electronic Publishing' started by SapereAude, Jan 23, 2021.

    I know that a different ISBN is needed for the same title in hardcover, paperback, and e-book. However, I am confused about e-books. Amazon's web site says you don't need an ISBN to publish a book to Kindle through them. Is this because you don't need an ISBN, or is it because Amazon will obtain an ISBN and assign it to your title?

    Suppose you publish an e-book through Kindle (which I have done), and used an ISBN you obtained from Bowker. If I now want to issue the same book as a Nook title through Barnes & Noble, does it use the same ISBN that was used on Amazon, or do Kindle and Nook versions of the same title (and same edition) share the same ISBN number?
     
  2. Laurin Kelly

    Laurin Kelly Contributor Contributor

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    When you publish an ebook through Kindle, Amazon will provide an ASIN. If I understand correctly , ISBNs are only for physical books.

    @big soft moose and others could likely speak to publishing physical and ebooks at the same time, I only have personal experience in self publishing with ebook only.
     
  3. big soft moose

    big soft moose An Admoostrator Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

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    Yep - although you can put an iSBN to an ebook there is no need to do so

    If you are publishing print books only through KDP print you can use the free KDP Isbn but that will make them the publisher of record and make it impossible to sell your books into bookshops.

    If you use ingram spark or lulu you need your own isbns (at which point you might as well use them on KDP print too)

    a few other points about ISBNs beware of resellers only buy through your countries approved outlet.. Neilsen in the UK, Bowker in the US (In canada, new zealand and potentially other countries they'll be free anyway)

    Don't pay extra for barcodes - you can generate them for free

    And if you can afford it the unit price is a lot less if you buy 10 or 100 at the same time
     
  4. More

    More Active Member

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    It is not compulsory to use ISBN numbers on any book. It has become the industry standard for publishers to assign ISBN numbers to books for the benefit of retailers, wholesalers, libraries and whoever. It is to ensure that the book ordered is the book received. It is possible to self publish a paper book without an ISBN number and if you are acting as the only supplier, some books shops are happy with that. Ebooks don't need an identifier, the buyer is downloading the book directly. Having said that, you can add one if you like. If you have an Ebook on publishing platform and you have given it a number and you add the book to a different platform. It is back to squire one. It would be up to you to use it if the book is the same, or very nearly the same. If you make changes the number should not be used.
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2021
  5. SapereAude

    SapereAude Member

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    Where can you generate high-res ISBN barcodes for free? The sites I have found either can't do ISBNs, or the free versions are low resolution and not suitable for use on a book cover.
     
  6. big soft moose

    big soft moose An Admoostrator Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

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    this is one of many places https://www.creativindiecovers.com/free-online-isbn-barcode-generator/
     
  7. SapereAude

    SapereAude Member

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    Thanks very much.
     
  8. SapereAude

    SapereAude Member

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    New (but related) question:

    Let's say that a sober analysis of a possible new project indicates that it's going to be a LOT of pages -- several hundred, in fact. Enough pages that "the work" will almost certainly have to be broken down into at least two volumes, and quite possibly three volumes.

    But it's not a "series" -- it's a single work that's in three volumes due to magnitude. Does the whole thing get published (for print) under one ISBN, or does each volume get a separate ISBN even though it's all one book and one title?
     
  9. big soft moose

    big soft moose An Admoostrator Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

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    given that on amazon and ingram spark POD you can't publish a multi volume single book as one item the choice is made for you.. its multiple books and multiple isbns... or a single very fat book and a single isbn
     
  10. SapereAude

    SapereAude Member

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    Bummer. That's a disappointment because, irrespective of the ISBNs, it's really going to be a set. It would make no sense to sell -- or to buy -- one book out of the set. It would be like buying just Volume 6 of the Encyclopedia Britannica.

    Back to the drawing board [mumble, grumble].
     
  11. big soft moose

    big soft moose An Admoostrator Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

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    you can publish a very fat book as an omnibus via print on demand
     
  12. SapereAude

    SapereAude Member

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    Methinks I need to rough out what the total page count is likely to be, and then reassess.

    Thanks
     

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