The Author Solutions front company (link) self-pub service Lulu is going to be showing off a new service later this week at the uPublishU conference on Saturday.
It’s called Helix, and it’s designed to give authors an objective analysis of how their book matches up against similar titles.
Helix, which has been in beta since March 2013, gives authors the opportunity to compare their manuscripts against a database of over 100,000 books compiled by The Book Genome Project (aka BookLamp). This is basically an analytics report for authors, and it deconstructs a book down to its DNA (hence the name).
A Helix Review can tell an author how the themes present in the book compare to similar titles in the genre. For example, it will offer insight into how an author’s writing style or language density compares to leading titles in the genre, or how the length of a book compares to the more successful titles in a genre.
This is sort of an objective “place in the world” review of an author’s manuscript, only without the subjective bias of a human reviewer. A human reviewer would be biased by what they read last and their personal preferences, two issues that Helix will not share.
Of course, no review should be taken as the final word on the correct way to write a book, and a Helix Review can’t answer the most pressing question on an author’s mind: Is my book any good? But Lulu and BookLamp believe that Helix will give authors a chance to see their work in a new way.
A Helix Review costs $49, and there is also a Lite option which costs $29 and offers a more basic analysis. It’s currently only available through Lulu, but The Book Genome Project plans to make it available soon through other self-pub services.
Helix Review FAQ
Helix Review (Lulu)