Here are a few of my thoughts about 'royalties only' deals, especially as offered by epublishers.

With short stories it seems to me that many anthologies will not meet their minimum payments levels (often $10-50) for years, if ever. My feeling is that it is often more honest for these comapnsies to make upfront payment and recoup their costs over time--ensuring the writer is paid within a reasonable period. I note that Torquere Press (a small-medium sized niche epublisher whose business practises I greatly respect) moved from roylaties to up-front payments for this very reason and they are now gradually increasing the size of the payments they make as their sales grow. $20-50 dollars payments may not look like much but they are better than royalites that may be much less, and greatly delayed.

With longer stories royalties-only deals are fine if, and this is a big if, the publisher has respectable sales. It is very hard to know how well epublishers sell but a private chat with one or more of their authors can be very informative. Or you might place one story with them and then wait to see how it does before investing more of your work. Epublisher sales vary wildly. It *may* be worth putting some of your work with a new, growing company but you want to ensure that you are also with at least one established, high sales publisher if you are depending upon a regular income from your work.

I would be interested in hearing other writers' thoughts on the issue of when to take royalties-only deals.