May 17, 2022

California’s Califa Consortium Expanding eBook Project, Content and Publishing Tools from Smashwords in the Works

From an Article by Library Journal Exec. Editor (News and Features, Michael Kelley):

The San Mateo-based Califa Group, which is the largest library network in California, has made major strides in its project to create an ebook ownership model along the same lines as the Douglas County Libraries in Colorado.

Califa has substantially increased its funding for the project from an initial $30,000 to $325,000, and Contra Costa County Library is going to be the pilot library for the project;

The consortium, which represents 220 multi-type library systems, is on the verge of striking a deal with Smashwords for outright ownership of its top-selling titles, which will also include a self-publishing option for patrons;

It has partnered with the Kansas State Library, which has joined the consortium and is going to provide funding for the project, and discussions are ongoing with other state library agencies; and Boopsie will provide mobile apps for the platform.


My head is spinning a bit and I’m getting an appreciation of the complexity this involves, but everyone is very excited about it,” said Heather Teysko, Califa’s director of innovation and development.


“Smashwords is so great and so forward thinking,” Teysko said. “They can move nimbly and we want to have something we can test and move forward with.” To that end, Contra Costa County Library has agreed to be a pilot library in the fall.

Much More in the Complete Article Including Details About the Self-Publishing Angle

See Also: Smashwords Bestsellers List and Smashwords 100 (Most Downloaded)

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.