Somewhere around December of 2011, I discovered the eBook site Xin Xii. Not sure where, maybe it was Facebook. I decided what the heck; I’ll post a few of my short stories up there and see what happens. I’d never heard of the site, and frankly, I’m not even sure how to pronounce the name. Maybe like “Zin Zii” or “Hin Hii”- who knows! Anyone want to take a stab at that?
I believe they’re based in Germany. Because of that, if you want to publish with them I highly recommend reading the Xin Xii FAQ page. It will answer questions you might have about a foreign business and their practices.
At any rate, I stuck 5 shorts up there, and here it is nearly 2 years later, and not one sale. From what I read on their site, they are organized like Smashwords in their distribution. Supposedly if you upload to them, they will distribute to over 20 different eBook sites around the world. Maybe I missed something, or maybe they just aren’t well-known here in the U.S.A. I would’ve thought that by now I’d have sold ONE copy of something. Most of my stories have had over 700+ views, but alas, no sales. And I priced them set at .99, so I’m not breaking any banks.
Here are their distribution channels—pretty impressive looking. Most of the sites are German, several are US/UK, some Spanish, and even a Christian eBook store.
If you want to publish on the site for free, select the Plus package. Most of us already have an ISBN for our works, so I can’t see anyone paying $24.99 to just get that.
Three steps to getting published after you have an account:
Once you set up an account, you will have a Management page which looks something like this:
They now have a coupon manager like Smashwords. Once you start uploading, your book management page will look something like:
You can see how many people have viewed the book page, sales rank, sales, and any comments about it. The format I used for upload is a standard PDF, but there are more available.
Because of the monetary conversion rates, your royalties aren’t particularly good. On a story priced at .99 cents, by the time everything is said and done, I make .33 cents. This is only slightly better than Barnes & Noble. A $3.99 book in the U.S. will sell for €1,99. You can select PayPal, or if you live in Europe, a bank transfer.
I decided to experiment and upload a book. From what it appears, you can upload a variety of subjects, and even audio. This is the page you start with:
It took maybe 10 minutes to upload my “Space Junk” novel. It was available for sale before I finished writing this article, and already had 8 views from potential customers. So you can’t say Xin Xii is slow about getting your work up there. Most of the publishing steps are similar with sites like Amazon and Smashwords, and they offer author pages where you can send folks to.
They have a marketing page in order to help you get the word out.
Overall, the site is pretty easy to navigate—especially if you’re a pro at doing the others. I can’t say that Xin Xii has put a single penny in my pocket, but perhaps someday someone will find a tasty morsel of mine and I can consider it a success. However, in the Indie author business, it’s not a matter of how many books you write (although more is better) but how many people can see and purchase your work.
For more information, be sure to check out Birgit Kluger‘s guest post on global marketing strategy.