Authorgraph Advice to Authors

Keeping Books up to Date

April 9, 2013 - Seattle

One of the many fascinating things I've learned since starting Authorgraph is how a book evolves after release. As a reader, I had assumed that releasing a book meant that that book was "done" and that nothing about that book would change. However, working with books and authors on a daily basis has revealed some interesting insights into how a book can transform after its initial publication. Note that I'm mostly referring to works of fiction and non-fiction releases that aren't new editions.

Here are the attributes of a book that I've seen change most frequently:

  1. cover image
  2. title
  3. authors
  4. publisher
  5. description

Some of these changes (e.g. publisher) are substantial enough to warrant an entirely new ISBN and/or ASIN. Other updates (e.g. description) seem innocuous since they only change metadata but are in fact significant since they can affect a book's discoverability via search.

Ultimately, the really interesting thing about these changes are how they affect a book's sales. I'm in the process of collecting lots of data about this and I hope to be able to write about my findings at some point in the future.