Your Benevolence Is Not a Selling Point

Since we pub socially relevant personal journeys, I get a lot of authors who feel the need to tell me of their intent to donate part of their royalties to the foundation of their flavor. It’s lovely you want to do this, but it’s not a selling point. Sadly, many authors confuse this benevolence for a reason that I should entertain their books.

It isn’t.

I admit that I’m a capitalist pig and my end game is to sell lots of books to readers who are excited to read about really cool things, so that is where I put my focus. It may be that your book coincides with a great foundation, and your royalties could help them greatly. This, I applaud….but it’s not a selling factor, so it’s best that you simply keep that plan to yourself. Instead, use your precious query letter to describe your extraordinary book.

And while we’re speaking of benevolence, would it be too rude to suggest that you not ask me to ascribe to your cause by forking over a percentage of our profits to your foundation? Given the types of books we publish, we could go broke giving to every single foundation that our many books fit into. I hate having to say no, and I can’t help but feel put on the spot when an author or their foundation request a donation from us. I’m always happy to donate a few books, but we are very much a profit-based entity. Our authors depend on that.

Resist the temptation to allow your zeal influence your query letter. This is business; you have a product – a brilliant manuscript – and we are in the market for such a product. That is your focus. What you do with any remuneration you may enjoy are between you and your accountant.

2 Responses to Your Benevolence Is Not a Selling Point

  1. ericjbaker says:

    Telling it like it is; More people should do it.

  2. Val says:

    Well said! I hate the guilt factor. I can not afford to say yes to everyone who asks me to donate to their cause.

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