StoryBundle is just one of a few new “pay-what-you-want” book deals blossoming from the ashes of traditional publishing like ferns after a forest fire. This service, run by former Gizmodo pop star Jason Chen, is one of the cooler offerings out there right now and they started out with the Big Bang package featuring up to seven sci-fi books for your perusal and purchase.
You can donate as much (or as little) as you want and a portion of your cash can go to a charity. You can also stiff StoryBundle itself, giving all the cash to the author. Your choice.
“My dream is two-fold,” wrote Chen in a blog post. “As an avid reader, I wanted to make a place where independent authors can get exposure and readers can get quality ebooks without having to sift through list after list of titles. With StoryBundle, voracious readers will always have great reads easily within their reach.”
Services like this closely mirror similar services in the gaming and media space including the Humble Bundle aimed at raising awareness of indie games and music. The Humble Gaming Bundle, for example, regularly hits over $5 million in sales. Arguably, books require “imagination” and “literacy” and are therefore lesser cultural artifacts than games, but good on Chen for trying.
We covered competitor Snug Nugget last week but I think StoryBundle is definitely a bit prettier on the surface and the book offerings seem a bit more polished. As a fan of books, however, I’d recommend checking out both over the next few bundle iterations because it’s of paramount importance to support these nascent services.