Online subscription platform Substack is starting to sign up authors to write books that will be released in a weekly serialized format.
Ex-Forbes media and entertainment writer Zack O’Malley Greenburg has been paid an advance to write a book for Substack with the title, We Are All Musicians Now. Greenburg has written books about music and musicians, including books about Jay-Z, and Michael Jackson.
The author will be charging $5 a month or $50 a year for readers of the new book, which sets out how the music industry was forced to change after being disrupted by the digital upheaval.
Greenburg is also offering a free newsletter on music, media and money at zogblog.substack.com.
Substack launched in 2017 and has gained considerable traction among journalists and writers keen to monetize their content with subscription newsletters. Writers can distribute their newsletters for free as they build up followers and can charge a subscription, with Substack taking a 10% share of the subscription charge.
Other writers are publishing serialized fiction on Substack, including Sasha Chapin, with The Very Modern Vampire; K B Bailey with ‘solarpunk thriller’ Something Deep, which has a vision of a brighter future; and The Weirdy Wordy, the newspaper of Oddball Town, by Mike V.
It all adds up to a promising emerging channel for indie authors, particularly those who have a sizeable social media following and/or a good-size email list.