You can read the entire post here: http://www.deanwesleysmith.com/?p=4096
Because of sheer stupidity, writers once again are losing a major fight that they don’t even realize they are in.
In today’s news there was an announcement of yet another agent setting up a publishing company “for their clients.” These agents, of which there are many around the world now, are settling on certain terms for their new publishing business.
The terms from agency to agency are pretty much as stated in this new article today.
Three scary quotes from just today:
“…we are becoming partners with our writers.”
“…will recoup expenses first…”
“…then share net reciepts 50/50.”
In just the last few months many agencies have decided to go this way. Many others have been on this road for a time. One major agency has been doing this for over ten years now. In this new world this path is just about the only way agents can see to stay in business.
Also, more head-shaking, a number of major bloggers have been pushing this for some strange reason as if it’s a good thing for writers.
Okay, let me talk math here. Then ask a few questions.
Do it yourself
You put up your own book and you get around 70%, give or take, of the money.
Price your book at $4.99 and you get $3.50 per sale.
Yes, you might have to learn a few new things, hire someone to help you with a cover, but folks, this is not rocket science.
Make Your Agent Your Publisher
Now, go with agents doing the same thing you could do becauseYOU WANT TO HAVE SOMEONE TAKE CARE OF YOU.
The agent puts your book up for sale for $4.99. How much will you get????
Let’s do the math.
— At first NOTHING. “…will recoup expenses first…”
That’s right. Whatever the agent sees fit to call expenses, those come off the top FIRST.
So more than likely that includes the salary of the person doing the work, the cover art, and so on and so on. You get nothing. And that’s if the agent is actually being fair to you. We are talking about agents here, remember. (For a lesson on agents, see Kristine Kathryn Rusch’s blog last week.)
And remember, that amount for expenses comes out of your share. (See below.)
And wait, do those expenses count the accounting department’s expenses every time a new check comes in? Who pays for the accountant’s salary?
When do the expenses stop????
—- Second, “…then share net receipts 50/50.”
That’s right, you get 50/50 split of net after those unknown “expenses.”
What the hell is “NET?” How is that defined? Does that deduct the assistant’s lunch and everyone’s coffee every day???
So being nice and assuming that “net” means the amount they say they got from Kindle, then you sell the book for $4.99, money comes in at $3.50. You give your agent $1.75 of that and you get $1.75 of that. So from getting $3.50, you get no money for a time to clear expenses and then get $1.75 per sale.
Of course, at $1.75 per sale, it might take you years to just work off the “expenses.” Because that’s how much goes against expenses. Not the agent’s half.
All because you were too lazy to learn a few new things, hire someone for a flat fee to do stuff you didn’t want to do, and take control of your own career.