The Journal, Saturday, 3/18

Hey Folks,

My youngest son came in last night about 6 p.m. to stay for a few days. Writing takes a back seat. I’ll get to it when I do.

* * *

Well, I’m putting off the Dean’s Lectures topic for one more day. I’ll post it here tomorrow.

For today, a continuation of yesterday’s topic, in which I did a comparison of the three major distributors of ebooks. In that one, mostly I was just saying the easier route to distribute to the major booksellers was the route I was taking (D2D).

I also said getting my books to the several smaller booksellers in Smashwords’ distribution wasn’t as important to me as avoiding Smashwords’ annoying, clunky interface.

Today I’ll explain the terms “distributor” and “vendor” and give you some additional (and maybe surprising) information.

Topic: Distributors vs. Vendors (Booksellers) and Royalty Rates

First this morning, a correction. (Thanks, Mary Ann.) ALL distributors, including D2D, charge a fee for distributing your book. If you read the sentence on their site that says they take 10%, keep reading into the next sentence. It’s actually 15% where it matters.

Also some additional information on yesterday’s topic.

How much each vendor pays in royalties varies not only from vendor to vendor but from country to country.

For just one example, if you receive a 70% royalty from Amazon for sales in the US and Canada, you will receive 41% of your book’s list price if it’s sold by Amazon in the UK, Ireland, Australia, or New Zealand. And so on with the other vendors.

I strongly recommend you visit for information. Even if you don’t use Pronoun for distribution. (I don’t.)

While I’m on the topic of URLs, I also recommend you visit your Smashwords dashboard, then click the Channel Manager and read the text there regarding royalties.

ALSO don’t get too confused over this stuff.

A Distributor and a Vendor (bookseller or store) are two different things. So you can’t compare Pronoun or D2D (both distributors) with Amazon or Apple (both vendors).

Smashwords is unique in that it is both a distributor and a vendor.

So you can compare Smashwords as a distributor with D2D and Pronoun (what % it takes for distributing your book to other vendors). You can also compare it as a store with Amazon, Apple, B&N et al (what % it takes for selling your book directly to the reader).

Every time you sell a book, the vendor (store) takes a cut. Then the distributor takes a cut.

If you distribute direct to Amazon yourself, obviously there is no distributor cut and you get the full net royalty. Just as is the case if you distribute your book directly to any other vendor.

This is also true with print books. The primary distributor of print books is Ingram.

CreateSpace is essentially a printer, but they’re also a distributor (even to Ingram, who further distributes) and a direct-sales vendor, meaning they have their own on-line store from which readers may purchase your books directly.

One more note on CreateSpace: If you aren’t checking the box for Extended Distribution (and pricing your book so you earn at least $2 on each sale — I know, low, isn’t it? Something slightly north of 10%) your print book will be distributed in a LOT fewer places.

FYI, the hyper-low royalty rate on print books is the main reason I’ve gone back to distributing my books as ebooks only. I only create print books so readers can compare the exorbitant price of a print book with the much more attractive ebook price. Same exact content for a lot less money.

But for me personally, the learning curve to format interiors and covers for my books for print distribution isn’t worth earning around $2 per book. I’d rather push readers to buy ebooks.

Distributors exist in part because we (writers) don’t want the additional hassle of distributing our own books to all the different vendors. In part they also exist because some vendors won’t accept books directly from the writer.

Okay, now I’m done. (grin) You guys can visit those sites that are applicable to you and check the FAQs and other resources there yourselves. I just wanted to get you started.

Today, and (Not) Writing

Rolled out at 3:30, coffee, email, etc. and writing all of the above. If I get time today I’ll write.

Well, visited away the morning with my son, and I have to pick up my granson soon from work, so probably won’t get any writing done today.

It’s weird. I’m jonesing to just sit down and write, yet it’s also all right (within myself) that I’m taking the time and not writing.

Another lesson, I suppose.

When I do get back to the novel, I’ll read over the opening and the little more I wrote, then see what happens. It’ll either run or it won’t.

As for the challenge, there’s always next month. (grin)

Back tomorrow.

Of Interest

Not a lot at Dean’s place today, but you can find “Information Overload” with several small topics beneath it at

Fiction Words: XXXX
Nonfiction Words: 860 (Journal)
So total words for the day: 860

Writing of Novel Two

Day 1…… 978 words. Total words to date…… 978
Day 2…… XXXX words. Total words to date…… XXXXX

Total fiction words for the month……… 33439
Total fiction words for the year………… 185305
Total nonfiction words for the month… 10680
Total nonfiction words for the year…… 47270

Total words for the year (fiction and nonfiction)…… 232575