INFORMATION FOR AUTHORS
We get many requests to carry books from both self-published and traditionally published authors. Here’s a run-down of commonly requested info.
I wrote a book. Will you carry it?
First of all, congratulations! Writing a book is difficult. We try to support as many authors as we can. That said, we simply don’t have room to carry every book. With so many self-publishing resources available these days, we receive numerous emails each week from authors interested in having us carry their books. We carefully consider if the book looks professionally published/illustrated and if it fits with our store customer base. Some genres simply aren’t in as much demand here as they are elsewhere, and we have to take this into consideration.
If your book has been published through a traditional publisher and we feel we have the appropriate audience for it, we will order it through them or one of our regular distributors on standard industry terms. If your book is self-published or not available through our regular distributors, or is only available on a non-returnable basis or without the standard terms, we may decide to purchase from you directly. If we decide your book is a good fit for our store we generally start with five copies, depending on genre, and reorder as they sell.
Books must be professionally bound with the title printed on the spine. (People won’t notice your book if they can’t see the title when it’s on the shelf.) The better your cover, the better your chances of selling a book. We use the standard 60/40 split for payment – you, the author, get 60% of the retail price if you provide your book directly to us. 40% goes to us. Pricing must be consistent.
Below is a link to our form for us to learn about and consider your book(s). Please do not show up with a copy of your book for us to review. We are unable to accommodate walk-in visits or telephone inquiries as when our doors are open we’re focused on helping customers, pricing and shelving books, and other day to day activities to keep the shop operating.
Do you have any tips for making my book successful in a bookstore?
To end up with the best product you can, a book to be proud of and one people want to read, we have some very basic tips:
- We strongly encourage all authors to have their book professionally edited. A potential reader flipping through your book will likely walk away if there are obvious spelling errors (particularly on the cover).
- Think about hiring a professional graphic designer to do your cover and layout–given a choice the public is much more likely to pick up a book that looks good. Formatting errors disrupt the flow of a story (for fiction) or can cause real confusion about events (for nonfiction). As mentioned above, the book title and preferably your name should be printed on the spine.
- Buy an ISBN and have a barcode printed on the back cover. It’s difficult to restock your book if we can’t easily track it in our system.
- Go with an affordable publishing company so you can price your book reasonably within its genre. Look at other published books in the same genre, trim, and bulk to get an idea of common pricing and price your book accordingly. You don’t necessarily need to print the price on the cover but be consistent; your book should sell for the same price through every outlet.
- Send people to us to buy your book! Send friends and family to us, and list us on your website as an outlet for your book with a link to our store’s website. Don’t give away free copies if you want to sell copies.
- Whenever you do publicity for your book, list us as an outlet. People need to know we carry your book. We can’t buy copies from you unless people are buying them from us. If you’re sending people to online retailers we will not be able to carry your book.
- How are you going to promote your book? Having your book published is a big, exciting step, but it’s only the first step in getting your book into the hands of readers. You need to market your book; how are you planning to do that?
- Here is a link to a wonderful article called “How to Talk to a Bookseller: A 10-Step Guide for Authors” written by Melissa Lion who was a bookseller and the events coordinator at DIESEL, a bookstore in Oakland, California before leaving to write full time. http://www.bookweb.org/news/how-talk-bookseller-10-step-guide-authors
- Tor published a great article by Lish McBride about what you, as an author, can do to make your events more successful. http://www.tor.com/2017/01/30/the-authors-guide-to-no-show-events/?utm_source=exacttarget&utm_medium=newsletter&utm_term=tordotcom-tordotcomnewsletter&utm_content=na-readblog-blogpost&utm_campaign=9780805098631
Can I have a signing at your store?
We generally book our events 3-6 months in advance. If your book is already published and has been for some time, then the viability of an event is minimal. If you are planning to publish in the near future, then an event is more likely. Events can be just a signing, a presentation (if it is non-fiction), or a story time if it is a picture book. Events are solely at our discretion and availability. Fill out the form above and if we are interested in an event, we will get back to you.
If you have any further questions, please email us at orders@aaronsbooks.