Better Discounts For Authors – Milnes-Smith

Philippa Milnes-Smith is president of the Association of Authors Agents. Today, she spoke to theBookseller.com and expressed the growing frustration authors have with their publishers when it comes an author having a heavy influence on sales and promotion of their own books. Milnes-Smith is quoted as saying;

“If an author can make significant sales on his/her behalf should this not be actively facilitated?”.

An author taking direct responsibility for sales of their books maybe the cornerstone for self publishing authors, but the traditional fraternity of authors – more and more of them are finding that their publishers are reworking their marketing model and how they reach the buying public and it means the author being more of a fundamental part of the marketing strategy. While small poetry presses and partnership publishers have long recognized the strength of having an author directly involved in the promotion and sales of a book, through signings, readings, blogsites and a full ‘face-book on’ viral presence, there remains a reluctance in the traditional publishing world to embrace fully all the available new avenues of social connection to the buying public.

Milnes-Smith suggested that author discounts should be in line with those given to the bookselling industry.

It used to be the case that authors received favourable discount terms on author copies—i.e. terms above standard trade discounts. But while publishers have extended further discounts to trade customers they largely haven’t done so to authors, with the result that many authors now get worse discount terms than most customers.”

While companies offering self publishing services to authors make most of their revenue on initial charges to authors, the increased profit of steady book sales on a listed author cannot be ignored. Discounts on author copies is something the discerning and critical self publishing author has always been clued into.

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