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100I – The Expanding World of Kobo: An Interview with Christine Munroe

Today marks the 100th episode of WRITE NOW! Workshop Podcast! Woohoo!!! πŸ˜€ Very exciting day for me!

To celebrate, I asked Christine Munroe, Director of Kobo Writing Life, if she would be our guest today. πŸ˜€ She graciously agreed, and we had a wonderful time talking about all the many things Kobo is doing with and for writers.

The newest announcement is that Kobo has partnered with Walmart in the United States so that Walmart customers can buy ebooks and audiobooks in the Walmart stores! How cool is that? If you're a Walmart customer and not already buying books on Kobo.com or using the Kobo app, you can download and use the “Walmart Ebooks by Rakuten Kobo” app to read the books you buy or to buy more in between visits to the store. Walmart is also selling Kobo readers in stores.

Thinking about gift ideas yet? Yup, you can not only buy someone a Kobo ereader at Walmart, you can buy them a gift card for ebooks AND a gift card for audiobooks! Kobo launched their audiobook program last fall, and it's competitively priced at $9.99USD per month after a 30-day free trial. Thinking of friends and family who prefer large print books? Any ebook is automatically a large print edition, Chrissy reminds us, because ereaders and reading apps allow you to change the font size.

If you're like me, you like to wrap physical items to give as gifts, not just have an email automatically sent on someone's birthday saying – “Kitty just bought you this ebook and it's been automatically added to your device.” That's great for some things, but at Christmas I want wrapping paper! LOL! Now you can go to Walmart and buy a physical gift to wrap (even though the ebooks and audiobooks are digital items).

Chrissy also explains about the Kobo Plus ebook subscription program in the Netherlands and Belgium. Additionally, she talks about how writers can get their audiobooks onto Kobo (and also Walmart now, remember!), or start a new audiobook using companies like Findaway Voices or ListenUp, among others. There is so much going on at Kobo!

Speaking of audiobooks, on the Kobo blog (news.kobo.com) there is a post from September 2017, “The Best Audiobook Narrators of All Time (So Far).” Check it out if you are interested in trying an audiobook for the first time – or if you already know you love them.

Chrissy shares a ton of great information in our interview, but there is so much more you can learn if you're interested in selling your books on Kobo or want to know how to sell more. Check out the blog (kobowritinglife.com), which also links to the podcast episodes (search for Kobo Writing Life in your podcast app). If you're new to Kobo, see how easy it is to create an account at Kobo.com/writinglife.

If you'd like to get to know Chrissy a little better, read her blog post about her trip to Australia. Her “random fact #1” will be of interest to romance writers.

I'll have Chrissy back again soon to talk about exactly how to use Kobo Writing Life to upload and sell your books. πŸ™‚


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