Care and Feeding of the Debut Author #-16

110 days to go.

This post really is about the feeding part. As in MONEY.

I said Monday that I like to get paid. That’s why I’m going the route that I chose. But yesterday, the first ‘pirate’ download for my book appeared. (It cropped up on my IceRocket. That’s how I know.)

OK, first, I think pirating books is uncool. And I know that a lot of people don’t.

Also, the guy who’s going to let you download my book free 4 months before it’s released? I really don’t trust him. If you click on that link, not only will I not get paid a penny (which is important to me), but you’re opening yourself up to malware (which would suck for you.)

My friend Adrian Simmons, (editor of HFQ Magazine) stopped by my house yesterday to pick something up and we ended up chatting about the industry. Among other things, we talked about how scary it was to look at what had happened to the music industry over the last decade…and wonder whether the same was going to happen in the book world.

In the music industry, if you’re not a Big Name, you’re not making much money. Sources like YouTube, Pandora, and Spotify are replacing the traditional vectors for music to reach listeners, vectors that had an established way to pay the musicians and songwriters. Unfortunately, the creators of music now see very little money from those new vectors. So people in the mid-list can no longer get by. They’re not big enough to make it on their own.

This very topic was being discussed On Point this morning as I drove through my errands. Yep, it sent a chill down my spine to hear callers say that creators are just like union people–we should stop whining. Except we’re not paid 30$ per hour and don’t have pensions. That’s the whole point. We’re often not getting paid anything for what we do.

This blog post recently got a lot of press.. Yes, for over a million plays, the songwriter got less than 20$. Those aren’t union wages. Do you expect the guy or gal building your car to do it for less than 20$? Good luck with that car when you get it.

The truth is that free access to stuff hasn’t gone well for a lot of artists.

For some it has.

I want to be paid. I want my editors to be paid and the artists who made my gorgeous cover to be paid. I want to do well enough that the publisher will want to buy another of my books, that they’ll think I was a decent investment after all…but I can’t count on becoming a blockbuster or going viral.

So all I can do is ask people nicely to -buy- my book. Please.

In return, I’ll do my best to be a responsible book consumer. I’ll pay for the books I read.

Thanks….rant over!

2 thoughts on “Care and Feeding of the Debut Author #-16

  1. Whoah, $20 for a million plays? That was crazy. Yeah, re: piracy, for so long it looked like books were safe, since even though scanned copies were available, who’d want to read them on a computer reader? But now, with ebook readers, piracy is absurdly simple. Not sure what the endgame is, exactly.

    1. I was once offered a file by a friend that had about 900 books in it. It didn’t even occur to him that there was anything wrong with it. Someone had given it to him, and he was being cool and offering to share…

      But that’s a lot of the problem the music industry is undergoing right now…figuring out an endgame that will preserve profits….

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