Friday, 1 June 2012

Don't give up the day job - get stroppy

Nobody explains the numbers as well and clearly as my friend, Stroppy Author, and here is her brilliantly clear explanation of how the money works out for writers.

I would add only that the discounts nowadays are on average painfully high. And most books are not as much as £10 even before the discount. But I appreciate very much that Stroppy was being kind to my poor mathematically-challenged brain by using round numbers as examples.

Thank goodness for Stroppy and Crabbit!


catdownunder said...

A good paperback here is usually well over the equivalent of £10 - $28 to $40-45 is not unusual. Authors of course do not see any extra. Is it any wonder we find it hard to support our local indie bookshops?

Jan said...

Can I add an even more depressing fact? I'm a co-author (what used to be called a ghostwriter) so of course I only get half of the stated royalty rate. But on the last couple of contracts (with a reputable publisher)I've noticed that the author has agreed to purchase a huge proportion of the first print run at a massive discount. Good for the author who sells books at a lot of events and can sell them at the cover price; reassurance for the publisher who guarantees that they'll cover their costs. Bad news for me because those books aren't producing significant income. And how, exactly, does that differ from vanity publishing?

Stroppy Author said...

Thank you, Crabbit!
Jan, I have not come across that particularly iniquitous practice. How awful! Why did the writer agree to it? If they are famous (usual reason for needing a ghost/co-author) do they *really* want to spend their time selling books?