Saturday, July 28, 2018

Cause of death? Exposure

I'm at the day job today because of reasons (like, I don't feel like being fired, and health insurance is a good thing to have and maintain.). Anyway, a coworker approached me and asked if the book was out yet.
I told her not quite, but showed her first draft of the ebook .pdf that I got back from my designers the other day. She gave it a glance and said, "Hey, why don't you just forward that over to me so I can read it?"

It took me a moment to realize she was dead serious. "Yeah, um, no. That's how stuff gets leaked and plastered all over the place before publication." She agreed that would be a bad thing to have happen. Good, glad we have that sorted.
Then, she went on saying how it's  not a big deal because I'm going to give her the first signed copy. Well, that's news to me. Still, I smiled and said I'd be happy to sign a copy when it came out and told her the paperbacks are $9.99.  Undaunted, she continued, "Yeah, I can't wait to get my free signed copy."

Gentle readers, I implore you, never, ever assume that just because you know an artist, writer, or craftsman in any way that you will be getting free goods/services from them. It's rude.

Publishing, whether independent or traditional, is not a cheap process. Even with the money raised by my Go Fund Me, I'm still paying quite a bit out of pocket. So before I turn a profit on this endeavor I'll probably have to sell a lot of books. Agreeing to tell your friends about it is fine, and I appreciate it, but artists of any sort cannot live on exposure. It makes for a shitty breakfast, especially when the kids want waffles.

"But, A.J.!" you say, "You have a day job! Your husband has a job! Surely, SURELY you can spare one measly copy?"  While, it's true, I have a day job and my husband has a job, it doesn't mean I like losing money for publishing my books. My hope is to maybe make a little extra cash so things aren't so tight all the time. You can't break even let alone profit if you give your work away... no one can. Now, will I give free copies to certain people? Sure, I will. They are people who have been integral in the process. People who have done a lot more than just asked, "So, how's the book going?" every so often at the office.

Artists work too hard and for too little already. Asking someone to create something for you for free is not only presumptuous, it's, as I said before, rude. If your friend/family member/coworker is an artist, be a super cool friend and support them! If you like books, music, comics, cartoons, art of any sort... pay for it. That shit don't come cheap.


  1. Jesus. The nerve.

    If you were making huge advances and on a best seller list and were in Oprah's book club and stuff, it'd be a different story. But you worked HARD for this, and you damn well better get paid.

    You deserve that.

    We're buying a copy. Tell ya that.

    1. I appreciate that. I really do. In all seriousness, there are probably only 3 people who will be getting free copies. My mom and Mel (she lives in NZ and won't be able to buy it) and Emanuela (she lives in Italy and is the person who inspired my character, Ino.)

  2. I bought it in NZ! Because Mel recommended it.

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