At What Expense Is Being A Bestselling Author Worth?

I’m a bestselling author, you’re a bestselling author, wouldn’t you like to be a bestselling author too? If you fancy yourself any sort of an author, who wouldn’t want to be known as an elite author (well, when actually being a best selling author meant something instead of manipulating Amazon stats)? But at what length would you go to have bestselling author before your name?

I really want you to think about that before you answer, although I can already hear the words yes, hell yeah, and you damn skippy before I finish typing my question. And as an author myself I totally get that and I too want to be a bestselling author, but…

At what cost?

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Would you be willing to sacrifice your voice, your vision, and a chance to extend your brand and be an influencer of your own to be a best selling author? Now if your scratching your head and wondering just how being a bestselling author could cost you something so dear to an author’s heart that should be the cornerstones to their legacy, stop scratching and keep reading.

Maybe I’m late to the ‘be a bestselling author party’, but an emerging trend has surfaced in the publishing industry where you can actually be featured in a prominent author’s book (for a sizable fee of course) and they in turn will guarantee you being a bestselling author. Sounds like a win-win situation, but all wins aren’t equal if you can gain the instant gratification of being a bestselling author now and haven’t leveraged the unearned title for later use. Sounds like ‘EASY’ to me, and if you follow my blog you already know I’m not a fan of easy.

As I get more pointed with this issue and as you may label me hating at how one does business; let’s delve a little deeper in hopes that ALL PARTIES involved benefit EQUALLY.

As of this blog Nikki Woods, Brian Tracy, Jai Stone and countless other high profile authors, gurus, and influencers offer this service in some degree or another. Let me be very clear, I am not saying what is being offered  by them is wrong. It’s actually great business, but is it great business for the authors who are blinded by the glaring lights of becoming a bestselling author? That’s the heavy footed elephant in the room that needs to be addressed.

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Nikki Woods offers her Page One To Done author program where you’ll get:

  • Monthly 90 minutes call training & updates Nikki Woods personally
  • Weekly action steps you can take to ensure progressing
  • Live interaction with Nikki in the private Facebook group
  • Access to some of Nikki’s GUEST EXPERTS
  • Daily accountability check ins

Clearly there is a redeemable value in Nikki Wood’s Page One To Done program with many actionable takeaways that would enhance any author’s knowledge, but let’s fast forward and see how all of your hard work cultivates into the finished product.

I actually own a copy of Shift and thought the stories were inspiring and showed great depth in making the connection with the reader. But something gnawed at me like an unfocused  picture that asks you to find what’s wrong with it. What was bothering me was my curiousity as to how each contributing author could leverage being a bestselling author when ONLY Nikki Woods name appears on the cover? Going a bit further, if you head over to Amazon to purchase the book Shift and look where it says ‘author by’, it says (drumroll please) Nikki Woods.

Ok I’m far from the smartest apple in the bunch or the sharpest knife in the drawer, but if the book Shift did reach Amazon’s best seller status and Nikki Woods name is the only name who is the credited author, then who really is acknowledged as best selling author?

If you’re asking why is it important to have your name on the cover and to be credited properly when you’re a co-author; it’s simple, MARKETABILITY. It’s easy to leverage being a bestselling author into speaking engagements and book signings when your name appears on the cover and a person can search you out as being a best selling author instead of just appearing in an anthology.

Looking at James Patterson who thought high enough of authors Howard Roughan and Michael Ledwidge to work with them, speaks immeasurable volumes about their credibility. Now who and the hell are Howard Roughan and Michael Ledwidge?  Never mind; their book covers says it all.

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 Jai Stone, The Emotional Nudist, (love that title by  the way) book collaboration project is called Her Chronicles; Stories of Faith, Fear and Fortitude. And like Nikki Woods she offers a host of great services to authors who’d like to grow their brand and extend their reach.

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Let’s take a few things that YOU will get once you sign up for Her Chronicles

25 copies of your book to gift to friends & family OR sell them (at $20 ea. you could make $500!)

100 Bookmarks included

Customized electronic promo cards that you can use to pre-sell your book at events before your book release date

And so much more…

Now let’s take a look at the cost of being a part of the Her Chronicles book collaboration project, but before I do let me quote Jai Stone on operating out of a place of INTEGRITY…

“I pride myself on operating from a place of integrity and standards. The costs represented here are the first and final costs represented to the best of my knowledge.  I promise to always be transparent with you about any additional costs and always try to leverage relationships that will create a win-win for everyone! One of the BEST benefits about a project like this is that we are splitting the costs. If you produced a project like this alone it would cost you roughly $8500. If you don’t believe me, see the cost break down below.”

 

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But fret not, because total cost for this book collaboration project is only…$2295. That’s over $6000 in savings. Hmmmmmm…

Like I said earlier I’m NOT the brightest apple hanging in the Garden of Eden, but on an investment of almost $2300 I can make a whopping return of $500 because I get 25 books that I can sell for $25 a piece. Get the (fill in your bad curse word) outta here!

Bringing just one thing to your attention from Jai’s project costs chart, she said an ISBN and a barcode costs $250, when in fact if purchased from Bowker the total cost for an ISBN and a barcode is just $150; that’s a $100 mark up. Makes you wonder what else has been inflated to reach total fees of $8550?

I know this blog will strike a nerve in quite a few folk and that’s ok. Hopefully I strike enough nerves in authors considering participating in these kinds of collaborations to ask the right, TOUGH questions. People will read this blog and think I’m taking shots at how Jai Stone, Nikki Woods, and Brian Tracy conduct business. I’m not. What I AM doing is helping authors not be blinded by the allure of being a best selling author only to end up a voice of many in an HIGH PRICED anthology.