Author Access, Value, and Thick Skin



I do a lot of conventions where I find other authors. At almost every show, if there are at least a half-dozen authors, at least one of them is charging too little for his or her books.

I know a lot of folks undercut themselves on pricing models. I had a friend who owned a coffee shop and ran it for years and years. He always felt he couldn’t increase prices because people would complain. But he had the best coffee around. When the local gas station raised prices on their coffee, people didn’t complain, they just paid an extra .30 for crappy coffee and went about their day. I think there’s an issue of access at play. My friend would would have to hear someone grumble.

As an author, we don’t like raising prices because we are going to hear about it. People have access to us—either from newsletter subscribers, social media, direct sales, or Goodreads/reviews on Amazon or elsewhere. The only answer for negative people is thick skin. Your book will not be a good fit for everyone and you could give it away and still get 1 star reviews—your books’ quality and salability have much less to do with price than authors realize.

But here’s the thing: Everyone is grumbling and all the time. It’s usually not something you can do anything about. You or I can’t change the fact that the cost of paper is rising, or that inflation is killing buying power.

But you can be out ahead of the trends with your pricing models…

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