Honestly, I had no idea being an author was such a difficult thing. You write your stories when you have a publishing company and you’re gold, right? Right? Apparently not. It seems that writing the book is the easy part and the struggle starts after that.
Let me first list my assumptions as a non-writer. You writers can IM amongst yourselves and snicker over my naivety. It’s okay, because I’m still going to buy your books. I like your characters too much…darn you. Then, I will let you know what the authors have told me we can do as readers to help them out. Ready? Get your IM windows ready authors.
Assumption One: All Authors Go on Book Tours
Nope. The publishing companies only spend the big touring bucks on their big names. A lot of the smaller names have to do what they can to spread their name. This involves a lot of “footwork” of their own in stores, online via blogs and holding contests and such to get the word out that they are about to have a release. Who knew!
Assumption Two: Authors Get Paid Often
Most authors only get paid twice a year. What? I thought getting paid once a month was hard to deal with but only getting paid twice a year could for sure be hard to deal with. Can you imagine making a budget and then not knowing what the income was going to be? Between paychecks, you’re working the book to get your name and the title out and hoping it works.
Assumption Three: You Can Get Any Book At the Library or Bookstore
I went looking for my favorite authors at the library and could only find two of the eight that I absolutely adore. They hadn’t ordered anything since 2011 from these ladies either. How frustrating it must be. I live in a pretty small town and I know that the people in my town would adore these books. I could tell by the amount of times the books were checked out. So, you cannot find everything at the library.
Also, not all the bookstores stock the latest from the authors. Luckily our bookstore did but many other states did not. The bad thing is, these authors have no clue who is stocking what where. They rely on word of mouth from their avid readers online to let them know. There should be a system to this to make it easier for them to know.
Assumption Four: Authors Own All Rights to Their Books
Authors own the copy right, but not the publishing rights. So if the publishers let the books go out of print they sometimes they won’t give over the printing rights of the books to the authors even if they (the printing company) never have plans to print the book again. Crazy, huh? Then, if they do decide to let the author buy the rights it becomes a long process and they make it complicated.
So, that’s the assumptions that I will go over for today on World Book Day. I have learned so much about authors and am astounded at what they have to go through to birth their creation. There truly are labor pains involved. The question now is, what can the readership do to help to aid the writing artists? On release week of a new book, buy it. This helps “vote” for the book and helps gauge the sales. Yes, money talks and if you want to help your favorite authors buying theirs books is the way to go. If you can’t afford their books then go to your library and request that the library order the book when it comes out. You know they are releasing the book because you follow them on Facebook, Twitter, Good Reads and such. Go visit and see if you can get that nice librarian to order a few copies or even the entire series.
The last piece of advice I will mention is to leave a review on the major sites like Barnes and Noble and Amazon. These are where people are ordering the books and a reader’s review is honey to the author if it’s a good one. And of course, you being a fan will leave a good review…right? Thought so.
Happy World Book Day. Now, go buy that book!