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Old 04-08-2012, 04:01 AM   #1
Justin Nemo
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How much would you pay?

There is a lot of chatter in the writers section about how much we think our efforts are worth and how much we should charge etc. I would be interested to hear what readers and buyers of ebooks think on the subject. So how much would you be prepared to pay for an ebook written by an independent author that you weren't familiar with?
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Old 04-08-2012, 04:08 AM   #2
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It would depend on the nature of the book. If it is cycling related I will pay $20 no problem. Fiction I go up to $12 on occasion but it seems most of my books come in around $5 to $10.

Non fiction is harder to say. If I feel a book will further my career or advance my knowledge in a field that is important to me I will pay whatever is asked. I will of course first look around for an alternative with very pricy books, say books over $20. Talking strictly ebooks here of course.
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Old 04-08-2012, 04:39 AM   #3
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It would depend on the nature of the book. If it is cycling related I will pay $20 no problem. Fiction I go up to $12 on occasion but it seems most of my books come in around $5 to $10.

Non fiction is harder to say. If I feel a book will further my career or advance my knowledge in a field that is important to me I will pay whatever is asked. I will of course first look around for an alternative with very pricy books, say books over $20. Talking strictly ebooks here of course.
Thanks for that Martin. I guess I was thinking more of fiction titles, but you make a good point regarding the pricing of non fiction books.
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Old 04-08-2012, 04:42 AM   #4
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I'm happy to pay £5 ($8) for a well-written book, but if I pay "pro-publisher" prices, I expect professional standards.
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Old 04-08-2012, 04:54 AM   #5
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I prefer to pay less than paper, as I don't think a publisher can justify the same price with lower costs. That said, life is too short to read a bad book, my time also has a value. I tend to download a sample or a freebie first if I don't know the author's work, not too much time wasted (if I'm not enjoying it I don't finish it) Then I will pay for the complete book or other work by the same author. If I think I will want to read it more than once ten euros is OK, if not then rather less, about seven or eight. I might wait for a special offer if the price is too high, I have plenty already waiting for me. Gutenberg DVD anyone?
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Old 04-08-2012, 05:04 AM   #6
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Honestly, $0.00. My experience with new, independent authors so far has not been good. If the author was recommended by somebody I trust/respect and if the author provided a free book (not sample) and I liked it, I'd be willing to pay "regular" MM paperback prices, $5-10 for more of their work. I would assume, for that price, that it was also proofed and edited in a reasonably professional manner. Its not so much that I'm cheap, though I am, its just that there are already enough, good and well-established authors out there to last me a lifetime. Or ten. Life is too short to waste time reading nine crap novels to find the tenth one that is worth it.
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Old 04-08-2012, 05:24 AM   #7
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generally no more than $3. however i'll go up to $5 if it looks at least semi-pro i.e. a real cover rather than something your kid drew with crayons, properly formatted, etc. i'll tolerate some spelling errors but i absolutely won't stand for improper formatting, it makes it uncomfortable to read and is very sloppy looking. if i love an indie author enough to pay over $5 i'd just go whole hog and buy a print copy of their book (if available). there are a few authors where i've done exactly that.

i love supporting indies and small presses but they need some perspective about their work. i'm sure you think your book is the cat's pajamas but on what planet do you think people will pay $9.99 for your first book when many pros and pubs don't even charge that much?

conversely i think 99 cents is too cheap. i've found some very good indie authors at that price point but part of me thinks authors are selling themselves short when they charge that little. i know its not totally realistic but its hard to get over that 'you get what you pay for' mentality. 99 cents is fine for novellas but it just doesn't sit right with me for novels (unless the author is having a sale).

it pains me to say this but there are many indies out there who should be questioning whether or not their book should even be published in the first place, let alone what to charge for it. i'm starting to find the 'indie trash' that everybody mentions and it honestly makes me embarrassed for the authors. just because you can post a book for sale doesn't mean you should.

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Old 04-08-2012, 05:41 AM   #8
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Nothing, unless I had already read something by them in the past or it was a new hooligan writer with a good sample (then probably up to about £2). Since Amazon conned everyone into having free promotion days there's not a lot of point paying for anything else.
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Old 04-08-2012, 05:50 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by VaporPunk View Post
Honestly, $0.00. My experience with new, independent authors so far has not been good. If the author was recommended by somebody I trust/respect and if the author provided a free book (not sample) and I liked it, I'd be willing to pay "regular" MM paperback prices, $5-10 for more of their work. I would assume, for that price, that it was also proofed and edited in a reasonably professional manner. Its not so much that I'm cheap, though I am, its just that there are already enough, good and well-established authors out there to last me a lifetime. Or ten. Life is too short to waste time reading nine crap novels to find the tenth one that is worth it.
You say your experiences with indie authors has not been good, but how many indie authors have you bought to bring you to this conclusion? I'm sure they can't all be that bad. I've bought books by established authors in the past, which have been crap too, so that's no real guideline. You say you don't thing you should pay anything for new authors and then you say $5 – 10. I think a fair price would probably be somewhere in between.
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Old 04-08-2012, 05:58 AM   #10
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generally no more than $3. however i'll go up to $5 if it looks at least semi-pro i.e. a real cover rather than something your kid drew with crayons, properly formatted, etc. i'll tolerate some spelling errors but i absolutely won't stand for improper formatting, it makes it uncomfortable to read and is very sloppy looking. if i love an indie author enough to pay over $5 i'd just go whole hog and buy a print copy of their book (if available). there are a few authors where i've done exactly that.

i love supporting indies and small presses but they need some perspective about their work. i'm sure you think your book is the cat's pajamas but on what planet do you think people will pay $9.99 for your first book when many pros and pubs don't even charge that much?

conversely i think 99 cents is too cheap. i've found some very good indie authors at that price point but part of me thinks authors are selling themselves short when they charge that little. i know its not totally realistic but its hard to get over that 'you get what you pay for' mentality. 99 cents is fine for novellas but it just doesn't sit right with me for novels (unless the author is having a sale).

it pains me to say this but there are many indies out there who should be questioning whether or not their book should even be published in the first place, let alone what to charge for it. i'm starting to find the 'indie trash' that everybody mentions and it honestly makes me embarrassed for the authors. just because you can post a book for sale doesn't mean you should.
Of course there is going to be a lot of crap published now that the internet has made it easier to do so. I include in that statement bloggers and twitterers too. I can't see any reason why anyone would buy something without reading the first chapter, or whatever first. You should be able to get a good idea of the content and writing style before you commit to buy. Bad writing has been around since Moses misspelled Commitments!
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Old 04-08-2012, 06:04 AM   #11
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You say your experiences with indie authors has not been good, but how many indie authors have you bought to bring you to this conclusion? I'm sure they can't all be that bad.
None. Zero. Zip. I've tried over a dozen free books and most of them have been little better than fan fiction. I can think of two that I've tried that I might consider reading all the way through.

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I've bought books by established authors in the past, which have been crap too, so that's no real guideline.
Agreed. But its just the nature of the beast that established authors get more reads and therefore I get more recommendations concerning them from people I trust.

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You say you don't thing you should pay anything for new authors and then you say $5 – 10. I think a fair price would probably be somewhere in between.
The first book should be free. Or at least make a few chapters available for free. Then, if I like it, I would be willing to pay up to $10 bucks for an e-book by the same author. Its really rare that I buy any HC books these days, the author has to be one of my absolute favs.
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Old 04-08-2012, 06:10 AM   #12
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There is a lot of chatter in the writers section about how much we think our efforts are worth and how much we should charge etc. I would be interested to hear what readers and buyers of ebooks think on the subject. So how much would you be prepared to pay for an ebook written by an independent author that you weren't familiar with?
$0. There are a lot of free ebooks by authors I am not familiar with and many more by familiar authors. For me to choose to pay for a book, I would have to be interested based on reviews, recommendations, affection for the series, or affection for the author.
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Old 04-08-2012, 07:26 AM   #13
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The most I have paid is a little over £2 (for A Dance of Cloaks by David Dalglish, and Wool by Hugh Howie). In both cases after reading the free sample, and in the case of Wool, that was for an omnibus. Oddly, I haven't actually read beyond the sample in either, yet.

Getting me to read something is a much greater problem than getting me to pay for something, I think.

I'm not likely to pay for anything I haven't sampled, but how can you persuade me to read a sample? I came to Wool through recommendations in here.

I will happily download freebies at random, but when will I ever look at them?
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Old 04-08-2012, 07:40 AM   #14
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The most I have paid is a little over £2 (for A Dance of Cloaks by David Dalglish, and Wool by Hugh Howie). In both cases after reading the free sample, and in the case of Wool, that was for an omnibus. Oddly, I haven't actually read beyond the sample in either, yet.

Getting me to read something is a much greater problem than getting me to pay for something, I think.

I'm not likely to pay for anything I haven't sampled, but how can you persuade me to read a sample? I came to Wool through recommendations in here.

I will happily download freebies at random, but when will I ever look at them?
That would infer that authors who don't charge, may get a download, but their book may not get read. That seems pretty pointless from an authors point of view.
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Old 04-08-2012, 07:57 AM   #15
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In terms of what I'll pay, indie or establishment makes no difference to me. I do have a healthy scepticism as far as indies are concerned though, so unless the book in question has garnered a number of recommendations here or from people whose tastes I know and trust, it really has to have a free sample of decent length so that I can make my mind up. If it has and everything seems hunky dory (both well written and nicely formatted - one out of two won't do), then a tenner is fine by me.

If it costs $2 then that's certainly fine too, but if it costs $2 and I think it's only worth $2 I won't buy it, if you catch my drift. As stated above, there are more good books out there than I can read in ten lifetimes, so I don't buy books I think I'll only enjoy so-so.

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