Monday, March 2, 2009

Taking a breather

I should be writing, but I want to take a moment to talk about something very important. If you haven't heard about epiracy, there's a great deal of passionate conversation about it that may need a bit of simple explanation. I'd like to provide that in a calm, dispassionate manner (if I can.)

Contrary to popular opinion, most authors cannot live on what they make by writing. A few years ago, it was reported that only 5% of all authors fall into that category. Steven King, Norah Roberts and the rest of the top 5% made 95% of the money paid to 100% of the authors. Now, with the event of eauthors joining the ranks, the gap has grown even wider.

Did you know that epublishers pay their authors with royalties only? They get no advance money. In other words, eauthors make NO money unless someone buys their book.

I believe that some folks really don’t realize that the practice of epiracy is illegal and may think this is a great way to read books in our tough economy. If you come across anyone who believes this, you might want to let them know that there are legal avenues to read books cheaply or for free, without getting arrested, fined $250,000 and spending 5 years in jail. Libraries will be happy to order and pay for any book you want to read, then loan it out again to someone else. The big difference is that this is done one at a time. Many used book stores are in existence and are a completely legal business, selling books cheaply, again one at a time.

When a book is borrowed or bought at half price, this is considered by authors to be good promotion. But to download a book from a site giving or selling way below cost to millions of people at once deprives authors and publishers of their hard earned money. And let me tell you, it’s extremely hard to string together 100,000 cohesive words and make it entertainment worthy. It takes several months to craft a book, even if working at it full time. Many, many authors have outside jobs and cannot create more than a book a year.

Consider how you would deal with a thief making off with half of your hard earned paycheck month after month. Okay, here's where the calm, dispassionate part ends. Please help us fight epiracy!!

I posted some suggestions for authors on one of my other blogs today. Please visit www.leagueofamazingwriters.com

Thanks!
Ash