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Kiwis keen to log-on Lulu

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Information technology

Kiwis keen to log-on Lulu

Lulu, the site where anyone can put a book, may have ´more authors than readers' as the Manchester Guardian somewhat snidely suggests, but New Zealanders are publishing proportionately two-and-a-half times more books there than the Australians, and some authors are doing very well.

Lulu offers free hosting and a free personal ´shopfront' where authors can dsplay books, calendars, graphics, and audio files. Lulu will print and post a paper copy in various bindings at fixed prices, and their own charge is only 20% of the author's royalty, if any.

When an author waives royalties, as novelist Ann English does on her 'review' edition of a politics-sex-and-religion blockbuster, then Lulu makes no charge for an electronic download. See

Ann also offers a $1.99 e-book download, free of watermarks, and a $10 paperback, and a $20 hardback. ´I'm astounded,' says Ann. ´In the week before Christmas I had nearly a hundred downloads, and eleven of them paid cash. Heaven knows what might happen when people get down to serious holiday reading in the new year.'

What Lulu doesn't offer is any form of editing or editorial control.

´Luckily, I can spell,' says Ann. ´So can the other Kiwis who've set up shopfronts. There's a heap of rubbish out there, and New Zealand books show up very well in contrast.'


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