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Old 03-22-2011, 12:20 AM   #1
L.J. Sellers
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Eisler Passes on a Half-Million Deal to Self-Publish

http://www.idealog.com/blog/eislers-...-is-were-going

Embedded in the blog is a link to a PDF of a conversation between Barry Eisler and Joe Konrath about the future of publishing. Worth reading.

This may be the first bestselling fiction author to pass on a lucrative deal and go indie. What it means for e-book readers is getting Barry Eisler's books much sooner and cheaper than they otherwise would have. What it means for authors is that they should rethink their legacy contracts. What it means for publishers is that they should be increasing the percentages they offer their authors.

L.J.
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Old 03-22-2011, 09:36 AM   #2
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No one really knows what it ultimately means. It was a 2-book deal, so if Eisler doesn't make the $250,000 he would have gotten in a year, will he raise the price? And no matter how you cut it, today's book market is still 80% print sales, not 80% ebooks. By going the Konrath route (and remember that Konrath was a midlist author without any giant successes in the print world and now an evagelist for people to join his path), Eisler will be cutting out that 80% of the market.

Eisler may well be happy about the move and may do better or worse. But it is a gamble.
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Old 03-22-2011, 01:46 PM   #3
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Mr Eisler sells his latest short story for $2.99. It's about 6600 words (28 pages).

How much will he sell his latest self published novel? I'm guessing a lot more to make up for his lost paper book sales.

Also, his novels won't be available to public libraries.
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Old 03-22-2011, 04:21 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rhadin View Post
No one really knows what it ultimately means. It was a 2-book deal, so if Eisler doesn't make the $250,000 he would have gotten in a year, will he raise the price? And no matter how you cut it, today's book market is still 80% print sales, not 80% ebooks. By going the Konrath route (and remember that Konrath was a midlist author without any giant successes in the print world and now an evagelist for people to join his path), Eisler will be cutting out that 80% of the market.

Eisler may well be happy about the move and may do better or worse. But it is a gamble.
So now self-publishing means eBook only? He can sell his book in print through Creat Space, Lightning Source etc. Of course he'll be giving up any special promo a big pub might do to get him end cap space or a POS display and such.
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Old 03-22-2011, 05:16 PM   #5
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Thanks for the link. I think the discussion was insightful even if I disagree with his concern about Amazon-centric behavior or planning. Number vary but if Amazon is mid-50's % of the e-book market (and, perhaps correct, with Apple coming on strong) Eisler would be darn smart to focus his efforts there. But I like his thought about a special print edition that any other publisher could negotiate.

I'm a big Eisler fan so wherever his words go I'm likely to follow.
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Old 03-23-2011, 01:58 PM   #6
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I don't think we should assume that Eisler will lose all his print sales. I'm sure he's savvy enough to publish a print version of his books too. That print version may not have the same reach as when he was with a publisher, but loyal fans will buy the books online. I think he's making a smart move.
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Old 03-23-2011, 02:45 PM   #7
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It appears to me that this would be a pretty good move if he has a loyal and vocal following. There are ways (as others have stated) to publish a print edition without one of the big publishing houses.

For the selfish me, I hope other authors start following his lead. Every little bit helps in the campaign to get an increasing number of books out quicker to the eBook market at decent prices.
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Old 03-23-2011, 07:19 PM   #8
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It's a shame his book wasn't ready to buy right now. This story has had so much press. Of course there'll be a big splash when his book does come out.
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Old 03-24-2011, 11:49 AM   #9
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For another take on this from Kristine Kathryn Rusch, very knowledgeable about the publishing industry, having been an editor, publisher and is a very successful writer, see:

Pushing The Envelope
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Old 03-24-2011, 03:16 PM   #10
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For another take on this from Kristine Kathryn Rusch, very knowledgeable about the publishing industry, having been an editor, publisher and is a very successful writer, see:

Pushing The Envelope
This was a very interesting read. I'm excited about the possibilities of more and more authors going this route. It can make financial sense. I must admit, though, it's pretty hard to turn away from the amount of some of these advances that are out there.
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Old 03-25-2011, 04:02 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by L.J. Sellers View Post
I don't think we should assume that Eisler will lose all his print sales. I'm sure he's savvy enough to publish a print version of his books too. That print version may not have the same reach as when he was with a publisher, but loyal fans will buy the books online. I think he's making a smart move.
L.J.
The question is how many non-hardcore fans end up not buying the book because they do not run into it in a store, or how many do not find it in a library. I assume he thought things through, but time will tell.
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Old 03-25-2011, 04:24 PM   #12
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I think the question is how many dollars land in his pocket (a bigger slice of a smaller pie). And perhaps another issue is more creative control (no editor he must satisfy).
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