Well my book finally got reviewed by Apple, just over six weeks after I submitted it. On the plus side, no major edits were demanded nor did I get insubstantial, unhelpful comments like some other authors claim to have received. On the downside I was pulled up on two things, both references to it being an ‘iBook’ when Apple doesn’t allow the use of the term other than in the plural, ‘iBooks’.
This is patently stupid. A book created using iBooks Author is, logically to all content creators but not Apple, an iBook. It has specific-to-iPad functionality and, moreover, using ‘iBook’ makes commercial sense as a differentiator. How can there be a plural—more than one—if there’s no such thing as an individual item? However, the Great Apple Branding Gods have spoken and they shall ne’er be moved—and so I made the edits, removing any ‘i’ references rather than rewrite to use the plural, which would have made no sense at all in context. They don’t in any way alter the book significantly.
It took me only four minutes to do the edits. I then had to upload the book again, which took half an hour. Having done that, I knew enough by now of Apple’s nonsense to check my iTunes Connect account. Funnily enough, there was a message there—but no email sent to me—asking me to contact Apple to notify them when I’d uploaded the revision. Had I not checked iTunes Connect, I wouldn’t have known that the system didn’t automatically notify and would have just kept on waiting. As is, I sent them the required email. It seems authors are expected to check their iTunes Connect accounts all the crudding time, when an email notification system would be helpful, less wasteful of time and considerably less frustrating.
I do not know if this means my book is now at the back of the queue again, with another wait of six weeks or longer, or if it means it’s in a different queue now, one composed of books already reviewed but awaiting the checking of amendments. The latter would make sense, so I am inclined to think it’s probably the former which is the actual truth. Not that any of us will get to know. I love Apple products but this is really eating into the shine.
It is so demoralising and I am sick of it. I only hope when I finally get my book onto the iBookstore it actually sells enough copies to make my investment of time and energy in producing a quality publication worthwhile. I also hope Apple gets to grips with its approval system and fixes the many faults causing a groundswell of discontent among authors and publishers. I’m actually surprised the company has allowed its forums to become filled with author and publisher comments ranging from the angry to the despairing to the confused. It has been known to remove criticisms in the past.
I’m hopeful my book will be available in its iBooks for iPad Edition (as I now refer to it, thanks to the ‘iBook’ word ban) within days or a week rather than one and a half more months. I’m hopeful because I’d rather not allow my frustration to build beyond the current level it’s at. And in the meantime, the Kindle and Smashwords editions of Chickens As Pets have been on sale for around six weeks already, despite being finished after the iBooks for iPad edition, with the Kindle edition selling particularly well after being featured in this month’s Home Farmer magazine.
If you have an iPad and are patiently waiting for the very special edition of Chickens As Pets to appear in the iBookstore, as I know many of you are judging from the emails, tweets and Facebook comments I’ve received, I can only apologise for the delay. It’s well worth the wait, though—it’s a truly beautiful and useful book and the first-ever interactive, touchscreen chicken book in the whole world.
For more info on Chickens As Pets, check out the website for the book in all editions: http://chickensaspets.uk.com. Thank you. x