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Where's the Money?
(How Internet Booksellers Work)
by: Daniel J. Reitz, Sr.
 

Like many small to mid-sized publishers, Mundania Press has an email group so they can send notices to all of their writers at once. As Fiction Factor's editor, I belong to many of these groups because they are an excellent source of information. When I received the following group email from Daniel J. Reitz, Sr., President and Senior Editor of Mundania Press, I knew that many of Fiction Factor's subscribers were published by small and mid-sized publishers and would find this information of use. Mr. Reitz graciously granted permission to share his email with our subscribers. - Tina Morgan

 

Where's My Money?
(quoted from Daniel J. Reitz, Sr.)

This question has come up from time to time.  You see your book for sale "used" on Amazon (in the Marketplace and zShops) or over on half.com, eBay, or any number of other places.

But you look at your royalty report and you don't see any sales to all these people.  Where did they get the copies to sell?  Are they selling review copies?  (No, they aren't.)

The quick answer is that THEY DO NOT HAVE ANY COPIES AT ALL.

You see, that is the beauty of print-on-demand.  When a book is SOLD, it is printed.

All of these people have simply set up bookseller accounts with Ingram's and then went and put up auctions and marketplace ads to sell our books (and a lot of other publishers' books too).  They don't actually, physically have the books--because they haven't bought them yet.  With print-on-demand, the books are always available, and turn-around time for booksellers is about two days. So if you were to go to Amazon and buy one of these "used" copies, the bookseller would place the order with Ingram's and have the book drop shipped to you within a week.

AT THAT TIME it will show up as a sale with Ingram's and we get paid four months later--and that's when it shows up on your royalty report (whatever quarter we actually get the money for that sale).

Why are they marked "used" then if they are new?

Because that is the only way Amazon marks their marketplace.  When you sell a book there you can mark it in "like new" condition, but they (Amazon) expect that it is really used books being sold.

Even Mundania puts in the marketplace ads.  Hey, why not?  It's that many more places to sell--and we make more money from Amazon Marketplace than if it is sold through regular Amazon.  Amazon does take a chunk, but it is less than the normal distributor and bookseller's discounts, which means Mundania makes more money--and we get paid sooner.  So the author gets more royalties and gets it quicker.

So it is a GOOD thing to see your book for sale all over the place. They are NOT pirated copies and when they are sold (printed and shipped) you will be paid the royalties on them.

And now you know the rest of the story....
 

(thank you, Mr. Reitz for sharing this information with our readers)


 



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