In regards to vanity publishers

2

Comments

  • edited March 2015
    Hi There, new author here, just written a non fiction educational book, I received 20 or so Dear John rejections. AM said they would like to publish & promote, do all the sales & marketing. They want £2300 (payable in instalments) and they pay royalties of 25%. Obviously I would like cash in advance, keep 50% and they do all the hard work but I realise you don't get anything for nothing in this life and it sounds hmmm ok to me, what do people think ? About the deal and AM
    Hi AgentOrange welcome, I personally have found AM very good, I note dora's comment and I can only give you my personal experience. I had said that I was staying away from the forum for a while but I do pop my head in now and then to see how things are. My book has had great press and media I made the National TV news in Portugal & Radio, have given many interviews take a look for yourself
    http://karlbradshaw-white.com/press.html
    I have since had a second contract for a children's book and in the last month AM have contacted publishers and online magazines who I am now writing for. My book is offered for sale in many places, my book on Amazon has had 7 reviews in just over 30 days and should people think they have been left by my friends they have not, 2 are from Vine Voice by some of the top reviewers see link.
    http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1784552593
    If your book sells well then you will soon earn back any fees, as you say you have been offered 25% and as you know your contract will say 25% of the book sale price so if your book is priced at £9.99 then that is nearly £2.50 per book not the 20p Phots Moll quoted. my advice is think carefully as self publishing on Amazon does not get your book proof read or edited, nor does it get you in any other book stores or media coverage. Good Luck with what ever you decide. I have since edited this as it should have said if you get 25% Gross not net.

  • H-A 25% gross of £9.99 is indeed almost £2.50. If you're getting that much for a print book then you've got an excellent deal.

    25% of net is not anything like as much. Usually royalties are calculated on a net basis - that means you get your percentage after things such as printing costs, transportation, discounts to bookshops etc have been taken off. To be offered a percentage of net sales is standadrd practice and not a con - but it is something to take into account when calculating how soon, if at all, you might expect to get back your initial investment.

    Perhaps you could confirm for us whether or not you are recieving 25% gross?
  • < my advice is think carefully as self publishing on Amazon does not get your book proof read or edited, nor does it get you in any other book stores or media coverage.

    Good points.
  • edited March 2015
    H-A 25% gross of £9.99 is indeed almost £2.50. If you're getting that much for a print book then you've got an excellent deal.

    25% of net is not anything like as much. Usually royalties are calculated on a net basis - that means you get your percentage after things such as printing costs, transportation, discounts to bookshops etc have been taken off. To be offered a percentage of net sales is standadrd practice and not a con - but it is something to take into account when calculating how soon, if at all, you might expect to get back your initial investment.

    Perhaps you could confirm for us whether or not you are recieving 25% gross?
    Hi PHots Moll I see you are burning the midnight oil when you posted. I do not mention gross in my post only net, it was confusion on my part SORRY. here is the follow point on net profit and net sales price.
    The difference between Net Profit and Net Sales Price

    Net Sales Price is simply the retail price, minus the discount given to the store that sold the book.

    Net Profit means the retail price minus all direct costs pertaining to that book. This is dangerous because it means that the publisher could subtract a lot of costs before arriving at the profit figure. Some publishers have been known to lower the profit figure used for their calculations by taking out all of the following:

    * Print cost
    * Shipping to warehouses and retailers
    * Storage fees
    * Insurance and even
    * Marketing and Promotional Costs


  • So A-M pay 25% of the net sales price and printing, shipping etc comes out of their cut?
  • So A-M pay 25% of the net sales price and printing, shipping etc comes out of their cut?
    No PM, read the above post a big difference between Net sales price and Net profit.

  • edited March 2015
    Normally when a publisher starts to offer 40 & 50% you can guarantee it will be from the net profit and not the net sales price.
  • edited March 2015
    So they pay 25% of net profit? (As you've said they don't pay 25% of gross and don't pay 25% of net sales that seems to be the only option left)

    Net Profit means the retail price minus all direct costs pertaining to that book. This is dangerous because it means that the publisher could subtract a lot of costs before arriving at the profit figure. Some publishers have been known to lower the profit figure used for their calculations by taking out all of the following:

    * Print cost
    * Shipping to warehouses and retailers
    * Storage fees
    * Insurance and even
    * Marketing and Promotional Costs


  • Hi AO

    I can't contribute around the publishing specifics, but I think that the other posts are really instructive. In any contract, they key is to break down all the words into a simple transaction.

    You give them £2,300. That is clear.

    What do you get for £2,300? In specific terms? Once you understand that, then you compare against a few other publishers that work the same way, and possibly against a DIY approach using maybe an independent editor?

    Worth exploring a few options so that you feel comfortable that you are doing the right thing for you.

    Exciting times!
    Hi There, new author here, just written a non fiction educational book, I received 20 or so Dear John rejections. AM said they would like to publish & promote, do all the sales & marketing. They want £2300 (payable in instalments) and they pay royalties of 25%. Obviously I would like cash in advance, keep 50% and they do all the hard work but I realise you don't get anything for nothing in this life and it sounds hmmm ok to me, what do people think ? About the deal and AM
  • So they pay 25% of net profit? (As you've said they don't pay 25% of gross and don't pay 25% of net sales that seems to be the only option left)
    PM , NET SALES PRICE the wording is different from NET PROFIT. not going to spell it out again just look at the link it explains clearly
    http://www.bookmidwife.com/authors-need-understand-royalty-calculations/

  • Anyway to go back to AgentOrange post I am happy with AM, happy with all the publicity my book has received on a national level. and pleased with the contract I received.
  • So A-M pay 25% of the net sales price
    No PM, read the above post a big difference between Net sales price and Net profit.
    So they pay 25% of net profit?
    NET SALES PRICE the wording is different from NET PROFIT. not going to spell it out again
    Sorry, but if you want me to understand, you'll have to!

    Do they pay 25% on net sales, net profit or something else? To me this seems a simple question which could easily be answered with a glance at your contract.

  • forget the % as my contract is not for 25%
    1/ net sales can be the amount you receive after all sorts of deductions
    2/ net profit is what the publisher makes after all cost including printing shipping, promoting, etc
    3/ net sale price is a % of the price of the book
  • So, you're not entirely sure on what basis your percentage is calculated?
  • Oh Lordy.

  • So, you're not entirely sure on what basis your percentage is calculated?
    I was not discussing what is in my contract. I know what is in my contract and that will remain private. each contract can be different for many reasons. one reason can be the cost that a book costs to produce. My book has around 260 photo's in so would cost more to produce than a simple paperback. It is priced at £19.99 as I remember reading somewhere a book is normally priced for retail at 7 times the production cost but not sure if this is 100% correct.

  • Considering all the possible variations it would seem reasonable to ask the publisher for an approximate figure per book sold. (I don't just mean A-M but whichever company a person might be considering signing with.)
  • I wouldn't sign/accept anything unless I was 100% certain I understood what I was getting. I would want the maths broken down, in black and white, on paper.

    Surely publishers do this, right?
  • I suspect it's a case that many do, and others will, if you ask.
  • I suspect some who have never had a contract before may well just be pleased to receive one without understanding it. So at least in the post we have raise and highlighted some issues that we can refer back to at a later time, even if it still seems gobbledygook.
  • I suspect some who have never had a contract before may well just be pleased to receive one without understanding it.
    I'm sure you're right.

    People can be very nervous of raising a query and worry they'll lose their chance of being published if they don't just accept whatever they're offered. I've asked for changes and/or clarification several times. I didn't always get the change I wanted (sometimes I did), but I always got an answer to the query and I never lost the chance to be published as a result.



  • Well Done PM, for standing up for your rights.
  • Oh dear.
  • Hello PM & HA , Mrs bear & TiR, thanks for your help I'll need clarity on the AM offer. What do I get for my investment. Well I emailed AM and they have sent me their marketing plan which I will digest, it also includes 10 free books for me as well and the 25% royalty is of the NET Sales Price so if it goes on sale for £8.00 then I receive £2 (no vat of course) so I need to sell about 1200 books to break even...I will let you know what the S&M plan looks like, thanks AO feel free to critique...
  • 1,200 books is a lot of books. Most novels (that have nationwide distribution) sell fewer than 1,000 copies. Even the Booker prize novels, that had been already published before being shortlisted sold fewer than 6,000 copies. Non-fiction title in the USA, a much larger market, on average sell fewer than 250 copies.

    I know, by knowing a fiction novelist published in the UK, that one of her books, with being in most Waterstones', and with a marketing budget, sold 800 copies.

  • edited March 2015
    AO2015, don't forget you are also getting it proof read edited, the cover design and it is put in more places for sale than just Amazon. They have been great for me as the publicity and other work shows. I even made the National news for 1pm, 6pm, 9pm plus a breakfast news here is my press page.http://karlbradshaw-white.com/press.html
    AM have even done a short video for youtube about my book =D>
    As Liz points out on average few sell fewer than 250 copies, but it is all about having belief in your work; as what if it turns out to be the next best seller? That is something nobody can predict other wise we would all be best selling authors. go with your gut feeling or just keep sending it off to others and see their response, best of luck whatever you decide.
  • Thanks Liz & HA, I dont have the resources time and wherewith all to self publish and self promote. I dont have an offer on the table offering me an advance so I am looking around from the publishers. AM is the only offer on the table. I just spoke with the The Writers Midwife and said What is my marketing platform, followers, speaking engagements and network of sales channels before they would talk so it is NOT trivial. I'll have to treat this as a punt....I cannot NOT do this now that my manuscript is finished, my target markets is parents of kids 8-13....I shall look at your link HA too...
  • I just added to my last post AO, your welcome to check out the link as you will see it is all genuine news footage, and press coverage you only have to google my name and loads comes up.
  • Thats great PR Karl, good images from the Algarve too..
    Thanks for all your help, made me double check the AM offer in more detail and lookover the marketing plan...Who can you think of as a good non fiction (education) type publisher ?
  • Routledge. Wilson and Hughes. Hodder Education. Bloomsbury Education. Oxford University Press.

    It is an extremely specialised area and schools would never buy anything from a self-publisher or a publisher that did not have a background in educational publications.

    It is a HUGE and lucrative market if you write anything good enough to get into it.
  • Perhaps I should mention that i have many friends who write for education.
  • Thanks Liz, my book is called Keep Calm & Help with the Maths Homework and it takes the parent thru a step by step guide how to tackle the Maths homework that kids get (age 6 - 13) as the methods they teach kids now are now SO different from what the parents are used to. Its education but for parents....Bloomsbury were not interested, I'll check the others out, thanks ...
  • Yes, it sounds like it would be useful.
  • On this page (The Educational Publishers Council) you will find a list of their members, and those members are likely to be Educational Publishers.

    http://www.publishers.org.uk/index.php?option=com_jw_sme_directory&task=showMemberList&Itemid=1408
  • Thanks Liz, will plough through the list and send off a synopsis and sample chapters...
  • There are other publishers who will publish & promote, do all the sales & marketing for far less than £2,300. Check out the ones mentioned in Writing Magazine. Find out exactly what you will be getting for your money.
  • Thanks Casey will check WM out for others, not signed as yet with AM...
  • I've always been of the belief that you are to turn down any non traditional book deals without question. If they ask you for money, you 'em to sod off; go find another publisher who is willing to commit/ believe in your work.
  • Sounds an ideal candidate for going direct to Kindle or ereader to me - parents would love it. Free to publish and all profit yours. Please don't pay a vanity publisher. They exist to make money out of you, not out of your writing.

    Who is the TBer who publishes their own eng lit study aids? They are doing very well. Could they offer some advice?
  • Paying someone thousands to publish a book you get 25% of sales on reminds me of the saying that the easiest way to become a millionaire is to start a new airline with a billion pounds.
  • Was it Aeschuleuss or somebody similar Lou?
  • Yes! Wow, this is an old fred.
  • Wow, this is an old fred.
    ...and a ranty one!
  • Br looks like you have been on a mission to comment on every thread today
  • It was that or do work :P
  • I ended up doing both! Productive robot. Even got enough time to book to Monday already...wooo
  • Yep sure is and old thread, just to update, I made the finals of 'The People's Book Prize' and went to the black tie event which included a sit down meal. Got to meet and speak to Frederick Forsyth and the event was film by sky news. Meeting so many other writers was a real experience and got some great advice and tips.
  • Sounds like you had a brilliant time happy_author. Well done. :)
  • Well done, h-a!
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