Sunday, 9 December 2012
Writer's Choice - Traditional or Indie?
Pete writes children's literature and his illustrated books are delightful. I bought a couple for my cousin's little girls - aged three and five. They loved them. So far, he's sold over four thousand copies worldwide. Unfortunately, that doesn't translate into a viable profit, as his royalties amount to less than 5%! On a $24.95 hardcover book, Peter earns 0.9 cents!
Wow! Isn't that an inducement to becoming a professional writer! Obviously we do it for love, not for the profit. But still, it would be nice to earn enough to pay the electricity bill, at least for the amount of energy it took to power up the laptop!
Why are publishers so stingy? You'd think the individual who spent a year of his life writing a book, then another getting it edited and professionally polished, should be entitled to a larger share of the profits? After all, without us authors, they would be NO publishing industry.
Apart from the insulting royalties, this publisher has done absolutely nothing for him. There was no press release, no report in the local papers and as Peter doesn't have a social media presence, they didn't help him try create one - no website, no blog, no Facebook page and no twitter! And yet, they take ninety-six percent of the profit! For what???
When I went looking for Peter's book in Dymocks - the largest book seller in the country - the sales assistant and I had to go on a major hunt to find where they'd been stacked. But perseverance payed off. They were well hidden on the bottom shelf of a bookcase near the service entrance!
If ever there was a reason to go indie, that's it!
So, what do people think? I'd love to know.
Posted by Tima Maria at 16:55