My eBook Sent to the Publishers

My eBook Strategically Sourcing Electricity in Deregulated Markets has been sent to the publishers and I am waiting for the review process to be completed. The eBook should be available at both Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble. These publishers use two different eBook formats which shows that standardization has not quite arrived in the eBook world. Of the two formats the Barnes and Noble choice of the epub format seems to have the most wide array of readers. The review process is supposed to take 24 to 48 hours. Once this is completed the hard work begins: marketing the book.

eBook Progresses

The trials and tribulations of ebook publishing are moving along thanks to the web and Google. I searched for some help and found a program Calibre that solved my problem with creating the correct format. Now I am on to the next stage: publishing the book at Amazon.com. There may be issues there yet unknown but I will learn more as I proceed. Thanks to those authors and programers that have went before me.

Compressed National Gas, Maybe at a USPS Near You?

Last night I watched a TV show on RFD-TV about compressed natural gas. Two people talked about installing compressed natural gas filling stations at the USPS offices around the country. This was in answer to the logistics of where to get CNG for a new move to fuel cars and trucks with CNG. They have produced a video to explain their plan.

The reason I am interested in this is because the movement to electric vehicles will overpower our generation capacity. No one wants to allow new generation plants to be built in their “backyard” this will clash with the EV movement someday.

Stranded Costs Bubble Onto CenterPoint Energy Bills in Texas

Stranded costs have bubbled to the surface again in the Texas market. Last week CenterPoint energy was granted permission to add a charge to customers for the portion of their called stranded costs that were denied by the Texas PUC. Loren Steffy at the Houston Chronicle wrote and article at Fuelfix covering the background on this Texas Supreme Court ruling.

The Texas legislature was concerned about the regulated utilities not swallowing the costs of their generation plants build under the regulated umbrella. The big dark questions:

  • What was the marketplace value of the plants?
  • What was the best way to determine this value?
  • Should there be a way to protect the consumers from mistakes?

Now that the dust has settled it appears that the stranded cost issue was probably not a real issue. The regulated utilities had no incentive to control costs when they built generation plants so the costs were not under any market forces to be efficient. Now that almost every Texas generation plant that existed when deregulation took place has been “flipped” at least once or twice we know the utilities must have sold them too cheap. But why should they worry with the consumers covering their back so to speak.

The dollars to be collected over 20 years is not chump change either: $1.7 billion.

Writing a Book Is Only the Beginning, Publishing Is Another Matter

Over the past several months I have been working a booklet about my experiences and process for strategically sourcing electricity at my former employer. This was a slow march as I had some interruptions (a month long vacation in September being the biggest). The writing has finally been completed and now I have moved into the publisher role. Amazon.com has a service at createspace.com where authors, or other people, can print their book and then sell it through Amazon.com.

I thought the writing was a challenge until I started wading through the publishing process. So far I have made seven format variations trying to meet the requirements for the printed version to look like a real book. At the same time I wanted to offer an ebook version on Amazon.com. The formatting and requirements are very different for the Kindle world. Color and page layout can be maddening as I switch back and forth between the print and ebook. Going forward I am going to conquer the print version and the move to the ebook.

Eventually I will overcome these issues but in the meantime it can be frustrating. This might shed some light on why a publisher takes so long to print a book.

The next frontier will be marketing.