For any author who has only recently published a book there’s that awkwardness in the beginning as we wait to see if our family and friends are actually going to buy our book. I mean, it’s out there, we have friends and family, so…..shouldn’t they buy our book? How’s an author to make a living if we can’t expect all our family and friends to support us? So come on, people, we authors want you all to pony up the dough for our books, right?
Realistically, not everyone we know has money in their budget to buy books. Hey, I’ve been there myself, with a mortgage to pay and three kids living at home. It’s not always easy to find the extra cash for such indulgences, let alone go spending it on ourselves instead of the kids. Sometimes a person’s financial situation has them in a headlock and they just can’t squeeze that piggy bank any harder.
But where there’s a will there’s a way. Maybe you don’t have the money to purchase books at this time, but you most surely can put in a request to the library, and sign that book out. Big deal you might be saying! How’s that supposed to help an author in any way?
Don’t forget, not only are you showing your support by reading our work but, authors do make royalties on library sales. It adds up. Putting in a request at a library for a book can prompt them to add it to their shelves. Making sure our books are stocked in as many libraries as possible is a good thing. But there’s more.
Have you heard of the Public Lending Rights? No. I bet many of the authors out there have.
Now I’m not sure if there’s an equivalent to this in the US so I can only speak to what applies here in Canada. If there are any US authors reading this perhaps you know.
Traditionally published authors can register their news titles with the PLR, and each year, I believe it’s eight, libraries are randomly checked for your titles. If it’s found in any of these libraries the author receives a payment. So if it’s found in all eight libraries, then the author receives 8X, seven libraries it’s 7X…and so on. The more libraries a book is in the larger the payment for the author. If it’s in all eight libraries, that adds up to a nice little bundle especially if an author has more than one title. Now, I know it’s not all about the money, but realistically, authors have to make a living too.
As the old saying goes, there’s more than one way to skin a cat, well there’s more than one way to help support an author without actually buying their book.
I can tell you right now, that for any author, we’re tickled pink to have others reading our work. Whether it’s a library rental or a purchase from a book store, we love to share what we’ve written with others.
Have you ever felt guilty about signing a book out from the library instead of purchasing it? Have you ever thought of putting in a request for a friend’s book so the library would get it in?