I Am Not A Thrift Store Owner


Caution: Contains reader shaming and possibly some serious swearing.

I was contacted this weekend by a reader regarding my books.  The reader claimed to have read all The Dysfunctional Chronicles, Dark Cotillion, and the first five Dreams & Reality novels.  The contact was to see when I would be putting Dark Illumination, Dark Resurrections, Dark Legacies, and the other 6 Dreams & Reality novels on sale.  The reader raved about how wonderful each book was and how unique my writing style was and how much they enjoyed reading my work… Even claimed I was their new favorite author.

But refused to pay full price for the other books.  I asked my usual questions about hardships and medical issues and distressing family situations.  None of which applied to the reader.

As a matter of fact, they informed me that the only reason they refused to pay full price was because I was an indie and therefore, not a real writer, so why should they have to pay $3.99 a book?  The most the reader was willing to spend on any indie was $0.99, which is why they had read all the other stuff I had written…

What the fuck!?!  So, after claiming I’m your new favorite writer, you insult me by telling me that I’m not a real writer and as such, you should not be forced to pay the outrageous price of $3.99 for my books… And I’m supposed to be okay with that?

Here’s the thing: I’m a writer, not a thrift store owner.  Occasionally, I do put books on sale.  This is to make it easier for me to attract new readers, readers who want to pay me for my books so I can sit in my pajamas and write more books.  If a reader paid full price for every book I currently have available,  it costs them a total of $53.82.  I make a total of $34.98 (using Amazon’s royalty rates and including the pre-orders for Fortified Dreams).  If I sold every book I wrote for $0.99, I’d make a grand total of $6.30 when someone bought every book I had published.  I would definitely need a day job.

In the end, the reader got huffy with me and I got bitchy back.  Frankly, I’m not all that concerned if they never read another fucking book I put out.  I am concerned with the misconception they seemed to have about me not being a real writer because I’m an indie.  That would be like me telling a chef they were really just a fry cook because they didn’t have their own cooking show or had never beaten Bobby Flay.

And what about all the other great indies that are being ignored because people still feel like this moron about indies?  The best part of indie publishing is that we are, as readers, are no longer limited to what the publishing houses think they can sell.  I have found dozens of talented authors who are self-published because despite they fact that they have excellent books, they just can’t get a publisher to take a risk on them.  Not to mention just attempting to get published is a little bit like shoving yourself through a sausage grinder – there’s agents, query letters, samples, more agents, changes, revisions, more query letters, more samples, and then if you are really really really lucky, someone will say “Hey, I’ll offer you $15,000 in an advance for 3 books to be written in 4 years, you’ll make an 8% royalty rate, that you will only be paid after we have covered the advance, all the release promos, and you’ve sold X amount of books.  Of course, if it flops, we’ll cancel your contract, you can keep the $15,000, but you’ll probably never see another dime because we’ll pull the books off the shelf at some point.”

Did you know the average author makes about $1,000 a year?  This includes indies, hybrids, and traditionally published authors.  Of those reporting themselves as full time authors to the Bureau of Labor, the average is a much more respectable $55,000 a year.  That’s a long way off from what people think we make and why we all consider each book sale important.  Maybe instead of complaining about giving us $3.99 for the five or six hours of entertainment we are providing; stop and think about how long it takes us to actually write, edit, and revise a book, how much it costs to publish it, and consider it a steal?  You’d probably spend five times that to go to a movie and it isn’t going to last nearly as long.  And you’d have to shell out another $19.99 or so to own it on Blu-Ray at a later date.

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4 Comments

  1. TV

     /  April 25, 2016

    As you know I am a fan, I did buy the books, I wrote the reviews because I was a fan. You know my medical conditions and how badly they are getting worse and I have never ever asked you for a single thing for free because begging is not what a normal person does until their is no hope or other means to get what is NEEDED not just wanted for entertainment. Put that person behind you as a Looser and User and not worth the stress of having to think twice about them. I often give unwanted advice, and you have yet to call ‘Off with her Head’.. for which I am grateful.. People are becoming more and more an ‘I am OWED !’ mentality, and they are owed no more then the next person.. what you want to give is between you and your wallet. No one expects you to just give your work away free unless you are trying to promote it and you and your team decide that not some random joker on the street. if she tries badmouthing you shut her down, or better yet sic some of your real fans on em, we can get pretty protective of our fixes from writers and intolerant of idiots that are being petty and vindictive for no reason.. social media works two ways.. you make friends and sometimes all your friends find out just what kind of person you really are.. To me you are solid, hard working, have a mind that I would love to be small enough to crawl in and just watch what is flying around in there.. and close my eyes and been me up Scotty when other things spark in that amazing brain.. Stand Tall, say there are crazies out there and you just got targeted by one.. and forget em.. they aren’t worth it..
    WE SUPPORT YOU !!! 100% and letting your inner bitch out occasionally is good for the soul..

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
  2. Danielle

     /  April 25, 2016

    If you love a series of books or even a particular author why on earth would you be worried about paying such a small amount for a book!? In fact I’m surprised at how cheap your books are and would happily pay more for them.
    And for anyone who says your not a real writer, I would challenge them to write a successful book let alone a series!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
  3. Don’t let the bastards wear you down.

    Keep on cranking out entertaining books and we, your fans, will keep buying them and reading them.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
  4. Patricia Lupien

     /  April 26, 2016

    Good for you! I have read all of the
    Dreams & Reality series and am patiently waiting for the next one to be released. I have love each and every one of them. You are a great writer. I am on disability and have always paid full price.I just sacrifice something else. Your job is not easy. So I’m glad you told that woman off.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

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