At BookLocker, we don’t upsell authors on worthless marketing products and services. Unfortunately, almost all of our competitors do. If a product or services costs more than resulting book sales are likely to bring in, that’s a worthless item, in our opinion.
There are many self-publishing services, as well as marketing firms, that for a hefty fee, offer to get your book displayed at BEA, Frankfort Book Fair, or any number of other book fairs and industry events across the country, and the world.
At the last book fair I attended, there were countless lonely authors sitting behind tables, offering to autograph their books. There were also large displays by some publishers with copies of some of their authors’ books. And, there was one celebrity author there who was attracting everyone. So, those lonely authors were sitting alone, not selling any books, while the celebrity author was surrounded by people clamoring to buy autographed copies of his books.
Of course, the authors who were displaying their wares weren’t walking around and buying each others’ books. That’s one beef I have with industry events. They’re usually a bunch of competitors who gather under one roof, hawking their services to a bunch of people who are also…hawking their own services.
Even if a celebrity isn’t in attendance at a book fair or other event, there’s no guarantee you’re going to sell any books. Imagine a large hall filled with tables that are filled with books. It’s a bit daunting, to say the least.
Worse, what if you paid to have your book displayed at an event, and then sold no copies, or could never obtain proof that your books were displayed at all? There are complaints online from authors who say they paid to be displayed at an event, but never received any proof that their book was, in fact, on display and for sale.
Here are the ridiculous prices some firms are charging to display authors’ books at book fairs:
Regional display is $1299. National is $1999. (That’s for 5 shows.) There are other packages in between, as well as a bunch of bells and whistles that we can’t see much, if any, benefit from.
“Your book will be displayed along with other AuthorHouse titles in a prime position on the exhibit floor. Your book will be displayed face-out on the shelf.”
One book will be displayed? One lousy copy? Out of how many thousands on that exhibit floor? How many copies of an author’s books are selling for that price? How can the author sell multiple copies if only one is displayed? How many authors are turning a profit from these services? We’re betting few to none!
Let’s do the math. If a paperback is priced at $14.95 and if the commission for that sale is (we’ll be generous here) 25%, the author would need to sell 347 copies of their book at that event in order to pay for the cheapest package. Is AuthorHouse displaying 347 copies of that author’s books at that string of shows? Are the then SELLING 347 copies at this 5 shows? We doubt it, which is why we’d like to hear from authors who have purchased these types of services.
This firm is owned by Author Solutions, which also owns AuthorHouse, iUniverse, Trafford, and more. Author Solutions has settled lawsuits with authors in the past. Interestingly enough, Xlibris is offering the same services as AuthorHouse, but at different prices. For example, the National Show book exibit is $1799, not $1999. Hmmm…
This firm is also owned by AuthorSolutions, which also owns AuthorHouse, Xlibris, Trafford, and more. iUniverse is offering the same services as AuthorHouse and others here. The National Show book exibit is $1999, which is $200 more than the Xlibris and Trafford prices. Why?
And, this firm is owned by AuthorSolutions,, too, which also owns AuthorHouse, Xlibris, iUniverse, and more. Trafford is offering the same services as AuthorHouse and others here. The National Show book exibit is $1799, which is $200 less than the iUniverse and AuthorHouse prices. Why?
This firm works with AuthorSolutions so it’s not surprising they’re offering some of the same services as the firms above. The regional exhibit is $1399, which is $100 more than the price AuthorHouse charges. But, don’t be fooled! For like publishing services, AuthorHouse’s setup fees are $1799 while Lulu’s are $1089. Read details about setup fees charge by all of these firms, and others, HERE.
HAVE YOU PAID SOMEONE ELSE TO DISPLAY YOUR BOOKS AT A LARGE BOOK FAIR?
If you have paid to have your books displayed at a large book fair, we’d like to hear from you. Which fair was it, how much did you pay, how many books were displayed, and how many did you sell? Did you turn a profit or not and would you do it again? We will not publish your name, book title, or any other identifying information, of course.
HAVE YOU ATTENDED A BOOK FAIR YOURSELF, AND DISPLAYED YOUR BOOK(S)?
If you paid travel and lodging (or only had to travel locally) and, of course, paid for copies of your books, and then attended a book fair to market them directly to passersby, we’d like to hear from you, too! Was it worth the time and expense? How many copies did you sell? Again, we will not publish your name, book title, or any other identifying information.
Contact Angela HERE.
Got questions about Print On Demand and Self-publishing? Ask Angela Hoy.
About The Author
Angela Hoy is the publisher of WritersWeekly.com, the author of 19 books, and the co-owner of BookLocker.com (one of the original POD publishers that still gets books to market in less than a month), PubPreppers.com (print and ebook design for authors who truly want to self-publish), and Abuzz Press (the publishing co-op that charges no setup fees).
Angela lives on a 52' Irwin Center Cockpit Ketch (sailboat) with her family and pets. Keep up with her family's adventurous liveaboard lifestyle at GotNoTanLines.com
WritersWeekly.com - the free marketing ezine for writers, which features new paying markets and freelance job listings every Wednesday.
BookLocker.com - According to attorney Mark Levine, author of The Fine Print, BookLocker is: "As close to perfection as you're going to find in the world of ebook and POD publishing. The ebook royalties are the highest I've ever seen, and the print royalties are better than average. BookLocker understands what new authors experience, and have put together a package that is the best in the business. You can't go wrong here. Plus, they're selective and won't publish any manuscript just because it's accompanied by a check. Also, the web site is well trafficked. If you can find a POD or epublisher with as much integrity and dedication to selling authors' books, but with lower POD publishing fees, please let me know."
Abuzz Press offers FAST and FREE book publication, but only accepts a small percentage of submissions, and only works with U.S. authors.
PubPreppers.com - "We Prep, You Publish!" Print and ebook design for authors who truly want to self-publish. Offers formatting and design services only, and then provides simple instructions for authors on where to sign up to have the print and ebook editions printed/listed/sold. Cut out the middle man. Keep 100% of what bookstores pay for your book!
Angela's POD Secrets Revealed Series can be found HERE.
Have a POD Book with another publisher? See if BookLocker can give you a better deal. (BookLocker offers "disgruntled author discounts" to those who want to move from other POD services.)
See BookLocker's publishing packages HERE.
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Angela is the creator of the Original 24-Hour Short Story Contest!
Read More Of Angela's Articles HERE