I'm not kidding. B&N's new and amazing online editing and collaboration tool isn't designed to let you edit or collaborate on an ebook after it has been put up for sale in the Nook ebookstore. B&N even spells this out in the FAQ (here):
Can I edit my Project after I put it On Sale?NOOK Book Details can be changed after you put your Project On Sale as a NOOK Book, but at this time, the NOOK Book itself cannot be updated or replaced. To update or replace a NOOK Book that is currently On Sale, you would need to take the Project Off Sale, download the ePub from the Project page, create a new Project, upload the downloaded ePub or create a new Manuscript in that Project, and then put that new Project On Sale as a NOOK Book.
Just to add insult to injury, you can't even edit the title of an ebook without losing all the reviews, ratings, and other reader contributions.
I suppose some might say that this doesn't matter because an ebook should be finished before it is published, but what about typos? We've all encountered typos in an ebook, and it's now the norm for publishers to fix them and push out a new copy of the ebook.
Or, what about ebooks on topics that go out of date quickly? Jason Matthews, the reader who first found this flaw, writes how to guides for self-publishing an ebook. His ebooks need to be refreshed every few months with the latest info on the publishing industry.
On a related note, B&N proclaimed in the press release that Nook Press was "designed with input from PubIt authors". Gee, I wonder how many asked that B&N block them from editing a title that has already been put up for sale?
I would bet that answer is some where between zilch, nada, and zero.
P.S. I have asked B&N when they expect to add this basic ability; if and when they reply I will update this post.
image by roberlan