Writing and Money, or Never the Twain Shall Meet

Got a first quarter statement today from one of the publishers. Yes, it was very late. There were excuses, as always.

Anyone who thinks we write for the money is full of shit, because there is very little money in it. The discounts this time killed me, cutting my royalties to a number that was almost laughable. I might as well have given away the ebooks.

And no explanation about those discounts: why they were allowed or agreed to or whatever the hell happened to cut our profit down. I think a publisher owes us clarification on something that sliced tons of dollars off what we finally received.

Someone has asked. I’m waiting for the answer. 

And how does one sell books in the negative? There is a line item on this statement that said I sold $-15.00. How do you sell something in the negative? I’ve asked. I’m waiting for the answer.

In the meantime, I am shaking it off and looking ahead to when I self-publish. And I’m continuing to write, because I love writing, even when I don’t get paid for it. I’d probably be a basketcase if I didn’t write.

I recently read an article online, written by Stephen King. You know the guy. Wrote some books, sold about a zillion of them. Every year, he and his wife give four million bucks to charities. Four million!

This implies he’s got so much money, he doesn’t know what to do with it. Me, on the other hand…money and I have a passing acquaintance and that’s about it. I don’t see it much, and when it does drop by, it stays a very short time before moving on.

‘Scuse me now, I have to get back to my WIP. Some interesting things are happening, and jeez, my imaginary world is so much more inviting than the real one, I can’t wait to get back there.



About Fenraven

Fenraven happily lives in south Florida, where it is really hot most of the year. Find him on Twitter, Google +, and Facebook by searching on 'fenraven'.
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8 Responses to Writing and Money, or Never the Twain Shall Meet

  1. Chris says:

    😦 The negative is crazy. THAT should be explained at the very least.

    Discounts – well, that particular publisher IS on Fictionwise and FW has deep discounts. They have a discount code that changes weekly and the percentage changes, too. I think the biggest percent off I’ve seen since the beginning of the year is 60 or 65%. That’s applied to all ebooks in the order, unless the ebooks are from an agency publisher or Samhain.

    • As of the time I’m typing this, I still haven’t received any explanation for the negative amounts. And it seems that every third party seller has discounts listed. All of ’em.

      I’m really starting to question their bookkeeping.

  2. You have the right to demand an explanation! I don’t know the laws in your country related to publishing but you should try to get some legal advice about how you can confirm exactly how much are your royalties and if all the discounts they are applying are legal. 😦

    • I’ve emailed the publisher twice for an explanation. So far, I have been ignored.

      I’m going to assume at this point that they are buried in work, because email was sent out yesterday saying yup, we screwed up, we made mistakes, and we’re going to re-send all the statements after the corrections, but if I don’t get a response by the end of the week, I’m going to be quite perturbed.

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