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Barnes & Noble Offers Print on Demand for Nook Titles

Nook Press

Barnes & Noble is a very confusing company. Their website is basically a mess – a terrible commenting system and search often doesn’t work. With stores closing and the world going digital, you’d think they’d put more resources into the web. Now they’re jumping into the print-on-demand business to compete with Amazon and it also falls short. Far from competing with Amazon’s Createspace, it’s a more-or-less unnecessary service that doesn’t provide any distribution.

From the press release:

NOOK Press provides authors with simple tools such as:

• Instant Access: The “Quick Start” option lets writers try out the tools before they commit to becoming a vendor, all they need to sign up is an e-mail address. “Live Chat” offers writers instant support and personalized answers to questions at every stage of the publishing process. The service is available Monday through Friday between 9:00 am and 9:00 pm EST.

• One-stop Service: Authors can write, edit, format, and publish their work in one place with exclusive content tools all at no cost, and sell books to millions of NOOK customers within 2-3 days.

• Easy ePub Creation and Editing: With new content creation tools, authors can easily upload a manuscript just once, then continue to write and edit directly within NOOK Press, quickly and easily turning their work into a professional-quality ePub file.

• Integrated Collaboration: NOOK Press allows authors to safely and quickly invite their network of friends and editors to read and comment on any NOOK Press project in a secure environment.

• Easier-to-Read Sales Reporting: Visually-enhanced sales report allows authors to easily track daily sales and track month-over-month progress.

• Pathways to Passionate Readers: With NOOK Press, authors can publish once and reach millions of customers using NOOK and NOOK Reading Apps™ in the US and UK.

• Unbeatable Merchandising Opportunities: NOOK Press offers authors robust merchandising opportunities in the NOOK Store™ and NOOK ecosystem, including a new NOOK Press NOOK Channel on NOOK® HD and NOOK® HD+ coming soon. Select content will be in social media campaigns, e-mails and newsletters directed to millions of NOOK customers, resulting in broader audience reach, more sales and new independent bestsellers.

On the surface it looks like a nice service. But given that you can get Createspace books on Barnes & Noble (hasn’t always been the case), it makes more sense to publish with Createspace and distribute everywhere than via Nook Press, which doesn’t offer distribution.

Additionally, Nook Press seems designed to direct authors towards expensive design and marketing packages, which may or may not be run by Author Solutions.

In short, not the greatest roll-out for a new service.

Check out Nook Press here.