Monthly Archives: December 2010

What to Expect When You Are Expecting a Royalty Payment

What to Expect When You Are Expecting a Royalty Payment

If you elect to publish with a traditional publisher, you will be paid in the form of a Royalty. Rates vary on the publisher, type of book … the deal that you agree to. There are standards and in most cases, they’ve been around a long time—as in decades.

Royalty rates are calculated either on the retail (or cover) price of the book, or on the net price which is the price at which the publisher sells to the retailer (usually around 50% off).

In the past, the major New York publishers always paid royalties based on the cover price. Judith’s 4th grade teacher, Mrs. Russell, warned her students not to use the words “always” and “never.” As the case is here. Gradually, we are seeing NY publishers shift to the net price … meaning that the Royalty is basically cut in half. Royalties can be negotiated … so if a publisher says this is what they pay … your response is … maybe.