Thursday, 18 July 2019

Working with Nielsen’s



Nielsen’s are important administrators of book publishing world wide. Amongst other things they issue ISBNs. A publisher initially buys ten of them and can thereafter buy them in batches of 100. Thus they go from costing a few pounds per title to a few pence. You actually don’t need to assign Kindle books an ISBN as Amazon has its own numbering system. Yet each separate edition of book should have an ISBN and this helps buyers and booksellers to identify exactly which version of the book they require. So we tend to assign one even to Kindle books.   

In theory, a bookshop should be able to order any book that has an ISBN. A few of the big corporates such as Waterstone’s won’t even order the book let alone stock it unless the publisher is approved. Fortunately we have approval for Bridge House form Waterstone’s and we argue in favour of our sister imprints on the back of that. Recently these big players and Waterstone’s in particular have relaxed their rules somewhat. They are allowing branch managers to make their own decisions and are supporting local writers.

When we register a book with Nielsen’s we give the title, author, dimensions, cost, genre, a brief description, and details of where and how it is distributed.    

But Nielesn’s does much more than issue ISBNs. It provides all sorts of statistics about sales to the industry. These can be made accessible to publishers but at a cost way beyond the means of most indie publishers.

We register books for Bridge House ourselves but our distributer does this for our other imprints. Once a book is registered retailers pick it up quite quickly though it doesn’t seem all that quick to the author waiting for their book to appear on Amazon. Just google your book and you may be surprised to see how many people are selling it online.                     

Thursday, 20 June 2019

Making invisible costs visible



When in my last post I discussed how we work out royalties I also showed some of the overhead costs. However there are some costs that are currently not visible.

Because we risk editing, designing, proofing and marketing on you and we currently do this in-house these do not show up on our royalty statements. We just share the profit once the book is in profit.

However, for some imprints we’re starting to employ other commissioning editors, editors, designers, proof-readers and marketeers. We’re going to pay these royalties as well but will give them an advance:
commissioning editors £90
editors £180
designers, £180
proof-readers £90
marketeers £180

It seems only fair then to award writers an advance as well, which will be £180. We shall call this an advance royalty. It will still only be paid once the individual writer accrues £10 or more and will be set against further royalties.
  

So the new sheet may look like this:    
New Book 2019







Set-up
71
19.025

Distribution 2019
8.4
3.251

The British Library
9.51
2.51

ALDL
23.45
2.141

IPG
4.5
1.308569



34.26

selection
90


ediitng
180


design
180


markeitng
180


proof reading
90






authors' advance
180







1016.86
62.49557
954.3644
   
Again, the penultimate column shows profits from books sold.  




The second half of the spread sheet looks like this:
profit
proof reader
marketer
designer
editor
selector
company
RA

=profit /8
= (profit/ 8)*2
=(profit/2)*8
=(profit/2)*8
=profit /8
=profit /8

3.251
0.406375
0.81275
0.81275
0.81275
0.406375
0.406375
3.251
2.51
0.31375
0.6275
0.6275
0.6275
0.31375
0.31375
2.51
2.141
0.267625
0.53525
0.53525
0.53525
0.267625
0.267625
2.141
1.308569
0.163571125
0.327142
0.327142
0.327142
0.16357113
0.16357113
1.308569
   
The profit that goes to the company will cover admin and provide float.  

There will be an impact too on individual royalty sheets. These will look like this in the future.

J Doe

Advances  paid
Royalties earned


Editors fee
180
477





2.302642




180
479.3026
299.3026


This is for a writer who also works as an editor. S/he has received a £180 advance for editing work. S/he has earned £479.30 on books she has written and edited. We take off the advance to give £299.30.

Tuesday, 28 May 2019

How we calculate royalties




Who
When
Number
gross
print
Net
L
Nov-18
7
48
36.78
11.22
B
Nov-18
15
101.3
58.85
42.4
W
Nov-18
6
40.5
29.44
11.06
C
Nov-18
5
33.75
23.55
10.2
R
Nov-18
5
33.75
23.55
10.2
R
Nov-18
4
27
20.02
6.98
Al
Nov-18
1
8.25
6.83
1.42
F
Nov-18
5
33.75
23.55
10.2
G
Nov-18
30
202.5
118.94
83.56
Celebration event
Nov-18
20
120
76
44
LS US
Nov-18
1


2.48
LS UK
Nov-18
1


2.49
Amazon UK
Nov-18
3


3.9
W
06-Dec-18
3
20.25
   7.29
12.96
I
18-Dec-18
1
8.25
6.83
1.42
LSUK
31/12/2108
6


14.94

Who, when and number are probably self-explanatory. Gross is the amount paid by individuals ordering directly with us. Print is the price we pay for printing and shipping. Net is the amount per order we receive after all costs have been paid. Note there are no gross amounts for receipts from Amazon and Lightning Source. We pay nothing out in advance. The downside of the latter is that we don’t receive the payment until 90 days later.  
The second half of the spread sheet looks like this (note this is taken form a different example):  

Net
royalty
profit

RA





11.22
4.7685
4.7685

6.4515
42.4
18.02
18.02

24.38
11.06
4.7005
4.7005

6.3595
10.2
4.335
4.335

5.865
10.2
4.335
4.335

5.865
6.98
2.9665
2.9665

4.0135
1.42
0.6035
0.6035

0.8165
10.2
4.335
4.335

5.865
83.56
35.513
35.513

48.047
44
18.7
18.7

25.3
2.48
1.054
1.054

1.426
2.49
1.05825
1.05825

1.43175
3.9
1.6575
1.6575

2.2425
12.96
5.508
5.508

7.452
1.42
0.6035
0.6035

0.8165
14.94
6.3495
6.3495

8.5905

At the end of the year, 31 December, the royalties are totted up and divided by the number of authors in a book. However, they are not paid until the end of March to allow for the 90 day delay.
The “profit” is used to offset set-up costs. Once those are covered, any profit is shared between the partners. At the moment we pay ourselves no wage for editing, designing and marketing books. However, changes are afoot – watch out for the next post.