Simon & Schuster introduced its Author Portal, an online source of information and support for authors and illustrators throughout the publishing process. The Author Portal features the My Sales service, which gives authors and agents up-to-date sales information for all active print, audio, and electronic editions of their books across different retail channels. The Author Portal also features tips and tutorials for using digital promotional tools, links to bestseller lists and publishing industry updates, and copyright and piracy information.
Two other publishers, Random House and Hachette Book Group, also announced this week that they planned to launch similar services for authors. Hachette reportedly said its company’s author portal would debut in 2012, while Random House has not set a date yet.
These services are a response to author frustration regarding the ease of obtaining sales data from publishers. Last year, Amazon gave its authors access to Nielsen BookScan, which tracks 75% of book sales.