Selling Your Cartoons in Books and Ebooks
One way to make additional income with your cartoon inventory, or even new cartoons, is by putting them into self-published books or ebooks, either as collections or illustrations.
In the old days if you wanted to self-publish, it was a big gamble. You'd have to lay out the money to print in volume and if you only sold a few books all you had to show for your money was a garage full of unsold books. In addition if you sold one you had to collect the money, and wrap and ship the book. In today's digital world that has all changed. You can create print-on-demand books without laying out any money at all. And with ebooks there are no printing or shipping costs involved. Here are some of the companies who you can use for this purpose. In future articles I may go into more detail about some of these.
The largest percentage of ebooks are sold by Amazon.com for their Kindle apps. Even if a reader doesn't own a Kindle, he can download a free Kindle app for his computer or mobile device and read the books. Creators get royalties of either 35% or 70% on ebooks they sell. I have uploaded a few of these and find that, even though the payments are small, they go on for years.
Barnes & Noble has something similar to Amazon for their Nook devices, but they also give you the capability to create printed books, which are printed on demand. Although they sell fewer ebooks than Amazon, one exciting aspect of their program is the possibility that a successful printed book could wind up in some of their retail stores.
This is another Amazon company. Here you can upload your book to be printed on demand and you can also create a Kindle ebook version of your book. In addition Create Space gives you capabilities for selling music and video products which you create. You pay nothing up front, and the royalty you make on each sale is determined by the price you put on your book or ebook.
This is another major distributor of ebooks. They offer a free style guide which helps you format your ebook in a way that will make it acceptable to most bookstores and distributors. They do not offer print-on-demand books, just ebooks.
There are other companies offering similar services and most are free of any upfront costs. They collect their fees out of your sales and in most cases you price your books or ebooks yourself, allowing yourself the margin as your profit. In most cases you create your books in a program such as Microsoft Word and upload it as a pdf document. Each company has their own format for publishing but most can convert from a pdf file.
As with any cartooning venture, the key to success probably lies in volume. The more books and ebooks you create, the more chance you have of making decent money.