There was a time not too many years ago when Indie authors were treated almost like our conventional conterparts in mainstream publishing. No more! There is a school of thought that Amazon’s publishing arm was created with the blessing of mainstream publishing to bury any book we Indies come up with. The same goes for Smashwords and Draft2Digital, to name but two of the many small time publishers created to cater for the hundreds of thousands of independent authors, every one of them making money that the Indie author will never see. Read
Now Read This for yet more insight into who actually financially benefits from all your hard work!
The truth of the matter is that if you are an Indie writer, while your publisher makes money exploiting your book, if your lucky you might just recieve a few cents/pence for the number of pages read. As for royalties – forget it! Why? Because chances are your book is being offered free in an all you can read for x amount per month deal by your Indie publisher, which means that the said publisher is not required to pay what you are due in royalties, whether its 35 or 70%! What can we do about it? As it stands at the time of writing – nothing! Face it folks, we are being shamelessly shafted, and there is damn all we can do about it!
What is the best way to deal with an unwanted book by the major publishing houses, steer its author towards Jeff Bezos et al. Once your book is with them it will soon disappear from the public’s view. In Bezos’ case his minions created an algorithm that buries books within a few days of publication. Like most items for sale, once a book falls out of sight, by and large the general public who want it for free, will not bother to look for it, let alone pay the purchase price!
If you think that you will be paid royalties for your effort – dream on. Won’t happen as long as your book(s) are being offered for free by your publisher. Some writers are out of pocket to the tune of several hundreds of dollars/pounds in royalties. One or two, myself included, are owed thousands!
Do you still want to be an Indie writer? After twenty-five + years in the industry, I’m contemplating whether or not I continue to bash my head against the wall any longer..