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Author Royalty Request Information

I am interested in compiling statistics about the types of ebook formats being purchased. I understand that an author’s royalty statements which include ebook sales are broken down by format (via a different ISBN). If you want to share, even anonymously, that would be awesome. I’ve set up a new gmail account: [email protected]

What I would like is a breakdown of the formats. I.e., Romantic Suspense Book A sold 5 kindle units, 5 mobipocket, 3 ereader, and so forth. You can send me a jpeg of your ISBNs if you like or you can just tell me the units. Whatever you feel comfortable with sharing. I don’t want to know the value of your royalty, just the number of units sold, if that is something you want to share. If you think this is intrusive, obviously, don’t share the information.

The reason I am asking for this information is that I am interested in seeing to what extent the ease of purchase is making Kindle the better option or whether iPhone readers are gaining in prominence and so forth. Thanks guys.

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. Ann Somerville
    Dec 05, 2008 @ 23:27:53

    I understand that an author's royalty statements which include ebook sales are broken down by format (via a different ISBN).

    Not at Samhain they’re not. They’re broken down by venue. I’ll send you what I have but you won’t find any format info in it because I don’t receive that.

  2. Jane
    Dec 05, 2008 @ 23:30:13

    @Ann Somerville: I wonder if it is just NY royalty statements that are done this way. Thanks, though, I think the information will still be valuable because I can mark the Amazon sales as Kindle and a Sony sale as Sony and a eReader sale as eReader.

  3. Ann Somerville
    Dec 05, 2008 @ 23:33:52

    Yes, and sales through Mobipocket will be their format too.

  4. Anne Douglas
    Dec 06, 2008 @ 08:22:49

    Neither LI or EC break theirs down either.

    Venue doesn’t help much when it comes to FW or ARe as they offer a multiformat file system, and as has been stated before, many authors have the bulk of their sales through those venues.

    The data from NY would be interesting, but it’s a pity that the major ePubs (quite possibly with a much larger data pool) information would not be useful. And their info might show quite a different result than kindle/iphone dominance.

    Although, if asked nicely, possibly some of TPTB might release some data? In percentage form at least they wouldn’t be making any exact sales numbers known (which none of them seem happy to do).

  5. JD
    Dec 06, 2008 @ 08:55:41

    Sales at LSB aren’t broken down by formats either, just whether they’re from LSB’s site or fictionwise.

  6. Christine Merrill
    Dec 06, 2008 @ 09:07:49

    The Harlequin statement has one line that says

    But the print sales info is pretty basic, too. For ex: sorted by country:

    direct pb sales through HQ
    and then
    everything else on one line.

    I think the kind of detail you’re interested in stops with the publisher. Writers don’t usually need to break things down by format or store selling. We just want a big number on the bottom line, total sales.

  7. Shannon Stacey
    Dec 06, 2008 @ 09:26:20

    My most recent Samhain statement has venues listed as such:

    2008 3Qtr ARe
    2008 3 Qtr Mobi
    2008-07 Kindle
    2008-07 LSI Digital
    2008-08 Kindle

    Do you still want the information, or is not going to give you the info you’re trying to gather? (Not that it’s a lot of work to gather, but there’s no sense in doing it if it’s not going to help.)

  8. XandraG
    Dec 08, 2008 @ 18:02:59

    It might not be an accurate thing anyways since at least at Fictionwise, I’ve been able to download two different formats of some books (PDFs on my smartphone just don’t really pan out all that well, but they’re fantastic on my iPod touch, so I get multiple formats when I can and put them on both devices).

  9. Ann Somerville
    Dec 25, 2008 @ 23:41:27

    May I ask if you ever received enough data to make any kind of meaningful assessment?

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