This morning the Authors Guild defended (with reservations) the Wylie Agency’s new deal to exclusively publish 20 eBooks with Amazon and bypass traditional publishers. The Guild wrote: “It’s fine and proper for these authors and their heirs to exercise those rights, and we applaud the Wylie Agency for finding a way to make it happen.”
In a follow-up statement, the Guild speculated on royalty rates for individual authors under the new deal. According to these “informed guesses,” Amazon will pay Wylie Agency’s Odyssey Editions “60 to 63 percent of the retail price of the book.” The Guild guessed that Wylie will take 10 to 15 percent of those earning, giving 60 to 63 percent of the retail price back to the author.
Here’s more from the post: “For comparison, a typical contract with a traditional publisher pays e-book royalties of 25 percent of net proceeds. If the e-book is sold under the agency model, the author’s share is 25 percent of 70 percent, or 17.5 percent of the retail price of the book. After the agent’s commission, the author receives roughly 15 to 16 percent of the retail price of the book.”
The Guild statement concluded: “For a $9.99 book under the Odyssey-Amazon agreement, the author would receive royalties of $5.94 to $6.29 per book, net of all commissions. For a $9.99 e-book under a typical contract with a traditional publisher sold under the agency model, the author would receive royalties of $1.49 to $1.57, net of all commissions. The difference is about $4.50 per unit, a 300% increase in author income.”