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popmuze
05-24-2017, 06:13 PM
I thought I'd throw this out there to the group for suggestions. Now that my new non-fiction book has been out for two months and is apparently dead in the water (sales to date, 82 copies) would it be appropriate or necessary for me to fire off an angry (yet diplomatic) letter to my editor asking why the book was never reviewed anywhere, if sales to colleges and libraries are picking up at all, why they failed to send a copy to the entertainment editor of my local paper who was willing to do a story on me, etc. Or should it go straight to the Chairman of the Board? Or should I let it go and focus on the next book, which came out yesterday to completely no fanfare and in fact whose numbers dropped five hundred points on Amazon.

Earthling
05-24-2017, 06:22 PM
Why do you think an angry letter is going to help matters?

A polite, professional enquiry about what action you both could take to increase sales and reviews, sure. A diatribe? No.

lizmonster
05-24-2017, 06:23 PM
I'd advise avoiding anger if at all possible, and cheerfully ask what the marketing plan for the book is, and how you might help. Always open with the assumption that they're as bothered about this as you are, and want to work with you to make it better. That might not be true, but it's the most professional way for you to frame what you say to them.

And if they don't work with you? Well, at least you know who to avoid publishing with in the future. :( Sorry about the frustrations, popmuze.

Anna Iguana
05-24-2017, 06:25 PM
My experience, outside publishing, is that when people behave differently than I'd wish, expressing anger rarely changes anything--and often creates new problems. If people wanted/were able to behave otherwise, they'd already be doing it.

cornflake
05-24-2017, 07:12 PM
I thought I'd throw this out there to the group for suggestions. Now that my new non-fiction book has been out for two months and is apparently dead in the water (sales to date, 82 copies) would it be appropriate or necessary for me to fire off an angry (yet diplomatic) letter to my editor asking why the book was never reviewed anywhere, if sales to colleges and libraries are picking up at all, why they failed to send a copy to the entertainment editor of my local paper who was willing to do a story on me, etc. Or should it go straight to the Chairman of the Board? Or should I let it go and focus on the next book, which came out yesterday to completely no fanfare and in fact whose numbers dropped five hundred points on Amazon.

Did you have any discussions with the marketing department prior to the release? Reviews are set up months before release, same as a story in a paper would have been done before release.

I mean you could certainly ask what catalogues and stuff they market to or etc., but an angry letter? What did they promise that they didn't deliver?

Undercover
05-24-2017, 07:18 PM
I agree with the others in holding back the anger. It's going to make matters worse. Politely and professionally ask what is being done with the marketing. I also agree if things continue to fail on their end, I would avoid publishing anything else with them and move on to a different publisher. That's what I've had to do (a couple of times). It isn't easy, but when you do, things get a whole lot better.

amergina
05-24-2017, 07:34 PM
How do you know how many copies have sold if it's only been out 2 months? Did your publisher send you a royalty statement already? I don't usually see royalty statements for at least 6 months w/ my publisher. (I do see some Point of Sales info via their author portal, but that's incomplete, since it doesn't include some sales channels.)

But in general, angry letters don't do anything. Inquisitive ones might.

AW Admin
05-24-2017, 08:02 PM
I thought I'd throw this out there to the group for suggestions. Now that my new non-fiction book has been out for two months and is apparently dead in the water (sales to date, 82 copies) would it be appropriate or necessary for me to fire off an angry (yet diplomatic) letter to my editor asking why the book was never reviewed anywhere, if sales to colleges and libraries are picking up at all, why they failed to send a copy to the entertainment editor of my local paper who was willing to do a story on me, etc. Or should it go straight to the Chairman of the Board? Or should I let it go and focus on the next book, which came out yesterday to completely no fanfare and in fact whose numbers dropped five hundred points on Amazon.

Focus on the next book.

Don't get angry.

Ask what the policy is on review copies; depending on the response, ask for a specific number of authors' copies for specific purposes/reviewers/specific giveaways.

_lvbl
06-29-2017, 09:13 PM
You don't need to get angry to get results; youll probably regret that or be regarded as unprofessional