FREE books...take 'em or leave 'em? -  L.A. Tripp
 
As a writer, I know why we offer free books.

However, I want to know, as a reader, how do you feel about them?

Do you like, or maybe even love, free ebooks? Do you HATE them? Why?

Some argue that free ebooks make ebooks that cost money, worth less. Some argue that free ebooks make ebooks that cost money, worth more.

I know, as authors, we obviously don't make any money on a book that we give away 10,000 copies of. Not on that particular book, we don't, anyway. However, if it helps to promote our name, our brand, our work, then it's "cheap" advertising.

But again, what about you, the reader? How do you feel about an author that gives away some of their work? How do you feel about the particular book that they give away?

Do you value that work or that author? Or do you view it as a disposable resource?

And, if you don't like free ebooks...how do you feel about sites like Pixel of Ink and Ereader News Today (ENT) which help an author reach a new audience via free ebooks?
5/8/2012 12:11:39

I think when people pay something for an item, they value it more. Even if it is only 99 cents.I learned that through studies in a college social psychology class.
I haven't published a book yet...but it's coming soon...so I don't know how well the free promotions work.Sounds like great, free advertising, but I wonder if it hurts sales in the long run.
I'd like to see what other writers think about it.

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LB Clark
5/8/2012 12:41:19

I am both a reader and a writer. In fact, I was a reader long before I became a published or serious writer. Free ebooks are a Godsend when you're poor. I try to 'give back' to the authors of the ones that I enjoy by posting positive feedback and recommending the books. I do not get more enjoyment from or place a higher value on books that I pay for anymore than I would place a higher value on or purchased books as opposed to ones I checked out of the library. The authors whose books I enjoy now - for free, while I'm broke - are the ones whose books I will buy later when I can afford to (or when I can talk someone into buying them for me :D).

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5/8/2012 17:52:36

I love free books as a way to find new authors. I've purchased several ebooks from authors that I discovered because they offered a free book. I've also found many (way too many) authors whose books I will (probably) never buy because I now know they don't bother to have their books edited before publishing. If had paid for those books, I would have been ticked, but I only lost a little bit of my time and learned something.
I don't assume free books are bad books. But then, I'm a book blogger and I hang out on Twitter and Facebook with indie authors so I know that most books are only free for a day or two for promotion purposes.

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