File Under: Evil Corporate Thoughts

February 17th, 2006 · No Comments
by Booksquare

In a move that should strike fear into the hearts of all authors, Penguin in Australia is moving to cut author royalties on second, third, and subsequent editions of their work. Australian authors traditionally receive a 10% royalty on all editions — oddly, Penguin wants to penalize authors for selling lots more copies of books.

The Penguin proposal will reverse the Australian publishing trend of granting higher royalty rates, or “escalators”, once book sales exceed a certain threshold.

Penguin’s excuse — bringing their agreements in line with other international rates — is a bit precious. This is about cutting costs and increasing corporate profits. It’s only logical that other major Australian publishers will follow suit.

Authors should recall, often, that they are licensing their work to publishers. Without successful books, publishers don’t make money. There are many ways for the publishing industry to improve the bottom line — authors should not accepts a lower rate for providing the industry with the product it needs to succeed.

File Under: Publishers and Editors