First: I’ve just been informed by my editor that Cast in Fury and Cast in Silence are going to appear as audio books/files at Audible.com in September, which is also when they first appear in mass market editions. But where, you ask, are the first three? We’re working on that now. (When I say we, what I mean is my agent, when I say working, I mean negotiating; I’m reasonably optimistic that the first three will also be produced at around the same time). These will be my very first appearance in audio, so I’m pretty excited about it.
Second: Echoes has finally been approved by Smashwords for is premium catalogue. This means that it will now propagate from the aggregator (which is what services like Smashwords are commonly called) to the other ebook retail sites: Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Diesel and Sony. The estimated time from Smashword shipment to consumers is: approximately two weeks.
It’s been two weeks (15 days) since Echoes was uploaded to Smashwords for review to be approved for retail channel distribution.
What this is means is there’s a month-long window from the time I upload a book to Smashwords to the time it appears in any of their retailer venues. The exception to this is Diesel, for which no time-frame is given; this might mean the books go to Diesel and are offered immediately.
I don’t actually know how long it will take for the iBooks version to be available, yet; I’m watching to see when it goes live. The first book, Echoes, was uploaded on the 6th of July; it’s currently the 14th of July, and it is still in the review queue (quality assurance review, not critical review).
Amazon.com is pretty much twenty-four to thirty-six hours (it was less for Huntbrother, longer for Echoes). So Amazon.com has the clear lead-time of availability. (Amazon also has tens of thousands of spam ebooks – books for 0.99 which contain links to web-site garbage, rather than content. Smashwords doesn’t. Smashwords has a review team composed of people; Amazon doesn’t. These are the tradeoffs.)
If you’re comfortable with side-loading, the book is available on Smashwords from the moment I upload it to the Premium Catalogue distribution review queue, in most formats – and it’s the same epub that will, one month later, be available at Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and Sony, at the same price. I believe the mobi format offered there also works on the Kindle. I believe that Smashwords also allows you to download any of the formats available, if you switch ereaders. Or if, for some reason, you have two.
This does not mean I love the kindle or prefer it to the Kobo, Nook or iPad; I don’t. I have an iPad, after all, which I adore like a crazy person, even if I don’t read very much on it.