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Friday, May 14, 2010

The Glam Life? HA!

A few authors touched on the subject of writing as a career lately. Most importantly, is it worth it? I have to admit I ask myself this question monthly when the royalty checks come rolling in. Some aren’t bad, but I certainly can’t quit my day job. My husband and children would starve.
Anny Cook stated she made somewhere in the ball park of 6k last year, writing FULL-TIME! Yikes. This woman is talented. Her stories are phenomenal. If this was part-time I’d say not too bad. Me, with eight books out by December 2009 I made around $1,100. Here’s the catch - $400 of that was for 2 Chicken Soup for the Soul stories. So really I only made $700.
I can tell you one thing. I get Google alerts on Release Day. Those alerts? Pirate sites requesting my book. The next day – YUP you guessed it. My book was uploaded and stolen many times over. I have no doubt Anny is feeling the pain of piracy too.
Most readers think of authors of living the glam life. I’m here to tell you that’s not so for most of us.
My glam life? Working 50hrs a week at the very stressful day job to feed my three children and keep a roof over our heads. Health issues that can be frightening at times. I won’t even get into losing my son at six days old. Well, wait there’s the stress of wanting a baby and not being able to carry another one to term. Can’t afford surrogacy or adoption. Every day my heart breaks for my husband who wants a child of his own.
I write to escape this glam life I’m living. I’m not looking for sympathy. I’m thick-skinned and will survive. Otherwise I wouldn’t be in this business. I’m just trying to show people that US authors are REAL people with REAL issues. So next time you want to steal a book from us, realize this is what you’re taking away from us by not paying for the book.

16 comments:

Brita Addams said...

Good morning Amber. Want to stop by and say hi. I was thinking of my glam life earlier this morning as I was folding the laundry. Don't we have people for this.

Great post. Take Care
Tina Ordone (aka Brita Addams)

Amber Skyze said...

LOL Wouldn't it be nice, Tina? Thanks for stopping by. :)

Katalina Leon said...

Thank you Amber for being so honest and telling it like it is! Of all the obstacles e-authors face, e-pirates are the most frustrating and unfair. They ruin release day. Release Day becomes watch out for pirates day... not fun.
XXOO Kat

Rebecca Rose said...

My glamorous life today consists of me taking care of my sick 6 yr old. No nanny here! OH, and the pile of dishes in the sink. :)
Pirates suck and I hope sometime soon we discover a way to stop them. I totally understand the monthly statement thing. If it wasn't for the love of this profession, I think I was crazy.

Becc

Helen Hardt said...

Well said, Amber! Very few of us get rich doing this. I hope the pirates eventually get a conscience, but I'm not holding my breath.

April Ash said...

I think we all feel the same way. Unless you're one of the "top" authors making 5 figures or more a year, our lives are anything but glamorous. There's no real money to live on, and most will still have day jobs.
Piracy plays such a key role in stealing from our profits...and livelihood. But, we write because we love it, and will each decide when "enough is enough".
Marianne/April

Maria said...

Hey Amber- great post. I feel for authors and the piracy issue, especially when I am cruising the net and type in a favorite author's name and see the sites line up. I don't know what the solution is because piracy has existed for a long time and even with print books.

Moonsanity said...

Thank you for being blunt, because that is whay it takes. The sites that are pirating don't care about the author's life BUT most readers do care. As long as they are out there grabbing those pirated copies it will keep going. What makes me angry are the sites like ebay that are allowing people to sell pirated ebooks. I once found several of my articles being sold as an ebook. I let ebay know, and they did nothing. Ugh.

Authors are regular people trying to make a living. I'm not sure why that is so hard for some to believe.

Paris said...

My passion for storytelling is what keeps me going in my so called glamorous life, LOL! As for the pirates, there will always be people who believe they are entitled to something for nothing. I refuse to let them ruin my release days or the joy I find when someone buys my stories.

I'm in charge of that, at least;-)

Molly Daniels said...

AMEN sister! In 2007, I invested $800 in my 2nd book ($700 to self-pubb it and $100 for promo items) and busted my butt during signings and online promo. Earned myself a tidy little sum of...wait for it...$17 after the cost of expenses.

Last year, the first contract arrived, and while I've earned more than $17 the last year, it's nowhere near paying any bills, but it puts gas in my car...

Last year, after my 1st e-release, I'd posted on FB I was cleaning my kitchen cabinets. One of my friends asked me where the maid was, now I was a 'famous author' making the 'big bucks'! I had a good laugh:)

Tessie Bradford said...

I laugh every time my co-workers ask when I'm going to quit so I can write full-time! My answer is always the same, "When you pay my bills"!!

jean hart stewart said...

Way to go... You told it as it is. I promo all I can, but wonder how effective it is. Still, I couldn't stop writing if I tried.

CJ Parker said...

Thank you for this blog. I'm just getting started in publishing and it hurts to the core to see how many copies of my books are stolen from these sites. I wonder, would they walk into B&N and walk out without paying for a book? No. They could be arrested if caught. But no one does a thing about them stealing our books online. If I had the royalties for every one of my books that have been downloaded for free, I could actually afford to to the Nationals this year.

Fran Lee said...

QAh, yes. The "glam" life. I always wanted to live that life. Unfortunately, I am a writer. LOL! I am constantly pulling books off the pirate sites, but a day later, they are right back up. I can feel the spittle from the raspberries the pirates blow at meas they re-up the books time after time.

Karma is a bugger. They will end up having their wallet lifted or their car stolen. Can't wait to hear them scream for the cops.

Amber Skyze said...

Thanks everyone! I know I was ranting today, but I hate to see talented writers considering quitting because of these #$%^^&&^% e-pirates.

Carol63Storm said...

You said a lot today, Amber. It is not a glam life and sometimes it's downright frustrating! But as a fellow Noble author I am constantly inspired by the resilience and enthusiasm of the talented people I work with! Hope you keep on writing, keep giving us superb stories, and please come over and visit my blog, THE STORM REPORT!

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