Zibby Owens interviewed nearly 1,000 authors in about 3.5 years for his popular podcast, âMoms Don’t Have Time to Read Booksâ (don’t be fooled by the title: They’ve Got Time to Read books, they just need an organized list of recommendations to help them get through the overwhelming number of titles). Over the course of such conversations and countless other opportunities to take a close look at the publishing industry, an idea began to take shape: why not start your own publishing house and do things a little differently?
Last week, the New York native announced the launch of Zibby Books, which she will be launching as part of Zibby Owens Media with publishing veteran Leigh Newman. Beginning in January 2023, Zibby Books will publish 12 books per year, a mix of memoir and fiction by early and established authors.
âI figured that if we published more than one book a month, I would be competing with myself for readers’ time,â says Owens. âAlso, I want readers to read not only our books, but all types of books from all types of publishers in different genres. Some of the books we’ve already acquired are from people I’ve said, âYou should write a book! ”
It is notoriously difficult for authors to draw attention to their books; Over the past few years, Book Twitter has become a place where authors frequently encourage each other’s titles while promoting their own. Zibby Books aims to incorporate this type of friendly collaboration into its business plan. âAuthors have come together informally on social media and other ways to deal with the seemingly insurmountable risks of an individual book,â says Owens. âAuthors also know great writing when they see it. Why shouldn’t they be the referees of talent? Our network of author-influencers will show that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
There will also be a profit sharing bonus program, in which 75 percent of all net profits for each calendar year will be divided equally among Zibby Books employees and authors. In addition to copyright advances and royalties, authors will receive the profit bonus for their year of publication and their first year on the backlist, as well as any years in which their book has disproportionate sales results.