May 7, 2016
Stop Stealing Our Books!
Ok, so unless you’ve been living under a rock, you must have seen all the brouhaha about people “stealing” books thanks to Amazon’s returns policy and their own bad manners! It’s a funny thing, but authors tend to have the same experiences and often we feel like we’re alone in it all, but then there will be 1 post that will just explode and suddenly you realise that not only is it not just you, but it’s everyone!
That’s what happened recently when an author shared a message she go t from a fan, complimenting her on an amazing book and saying that she’d just returned it for a full refund. There was more, including that authors should just “give their books away”. *Thud*.
Seriously?? What is this person on? This same person probably buys coffee or takeaway lunch a few times a week, possibly to the tune of $30 or so and they’re going to complain about $1, $3 or $5 for a book? Seriously, a book is non-fat, diet friendly and eternal… your coffee – not so much! Also, while we’re at it… it took us a lot longer to produce that book than you had to wait for your coffee, so you should be grateful that we don’t charge you what we’re worth in hours J
Let’s be honest… authors spend months writing, editing and polishing a book. If we don’t have a publisher willing to shell out for the necessary, we then have to cough up money for editing, layout and cover design… probably some marketing or advertising and then we have to pray that we sell a few copies. Lord knows that we’re unlikely to recover our financial investment, let alone crack a profit, but we keep trying because we love it and you never know! What shoots us in the foot is when retail giants like Amazon say that it’s perfectly ok to return an ebook that you have rad 100% and get 100% refund. Once or twice, maybe, but these thieves – because that is what they are – are doing this daily. Aren’t there any alarms ringing at Amazing HQ?!
Ultimately, between pirate sites and unethical readers, authors are suffering daily. For many, an investment of $1 000 or more per book is normal… so no, I will not give my book away for free. This is not a hobby, something to tinker at… this is my job. You want my book for free? Tell me where you work and let me see how much you’ll do if I take your salary out of the picture… no? Well, fair is fair.
Until next time…