I once read somewhere (probably written by Cory Doctorow or Neil Gaiman) that piracy isn’t the worst thing for a creator. What’s worse is obscurity.
I’ll admit that I don’t always buy the books I read. Considering how much and how wide my consumption is, my book budget just doesn’t allow it.
And a free ebook is how I discovered the Veredian Chronicles series by Regine Abel, an author previously unknown to me.
After reading the first four books in the series, I had to see how the story ended and eventually signed up for a Kindle Unlimited subscription (something I’ve been wanting to do but have been putting off).
If the writing were better, I would have probably read her other books as well. After further browsing through the selection available on Unlimited, I ended up adding more of Regine Abel’s work to my library.
While some writers might think that putting up their books (or other writing) for free might take away from their income, the truth is, it’s a great marketing strategy.
As creators, I think we have to be humble enough to realize that value doesn’t just come in the form of money. Time and attention are of value as well.
And we have to trust that the people who love our work will want to support what we do.