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Setting the price for physical books here at Fantastic Books is pretty easy. As a rule of thumb, the cover price is two and a half times the cost of printing/binding the physical book (rounded, of course; it'd be confusing to list one book at $14.73 and the next at $15.12). Everything else is determined by that cover price: the distributor demands 30%, we pay the author 10%, the editor gets 10%, and the artist receives 2%. That leaves 8% of the cover price for the publisher.
Setting the price for ebooks, however, is more difficult. There's no physical thing to print (which is a savings, of course). The distributor and/or retailer takes a varying amount, based mostly on the sale price (which they vary at will). We pay the author 50% of whatever amount we receive from sales of the ebook. Then we still have to pay the editor and the artist, and hopefully have a little left over for the publisher.
We've also learned that most people considering purchasing a physical book only consider the price last, and even though, it's not a major factor in their decision. But with ebooks, the purchasing public seems to give the price much more consideration in their buy-or-not decision.
So, while the only way we can adjust the price of our physical books is up, we can decrease the price of our ebooks, in search of the best price. Thus, we're announcing a sale. Well, not really a sale, but a pricing experiment which you'll see as a significant price cut.
We've just cut the prices of our ebooks by 20% or more. We're hoping the lower price will be offset by increased sales, in order to put more money in our authors' pockets.
We'll let you know how it works out.
Fantastic Books (www.FantasticBooks.biz) is an imprint, and the largest part, of Gray Rabbit Publications, a small but growing small-press publisher. We publish new and reprint titles as quality trade paperback books, and occasionally as ebooks. Fantastic authors include superstars James Gunn, Tanith Lee, Michael Moorcock, Mike Resnick, and Allen Steele, as well as up-and-comers such as Walter H. Hunt, Daniel M. Kimmel, and T. Jackson King. Fantastic Books are distributed by Ingram, and available in all online bookstores.
The Fantastic Books titles that are currently available as ebooks include:
Fantastic Texas by Lou Antonelli
Jar Jar Binks Must Die... and other Observations about Science Fiction Movies by Daniel M. Kimmel (Hugo-Award finalist in 2012)
Shh! It's a Secret: a novel about Aliens, Hollywood, and the Bartender's Guide by Daniel M. Kimmel
Judgment Day and Other Dreams by T. Jackson King
Little Brother's World by T. Jackson King
Interface Masque by Shariann Lewitt
Memento Mori by Shariann Lewitt
Angel at Apogee by S.N. Lewitt
Blind Justice by S.N. Lewitt
Cyberstealth by S.N. Lewitt
Dancing Vac by S.N. Lewitt
Sex and Violence in Zero-G by Allen Steele
We've also cut the prices on most of the ebooks published under our Gray Rabbit Publications imprint, including:
The Index Killer by A.R. Alan
On My Eyes by Bunny Shulman
Step by Step by Bunny Shulman
Turning Point by Bunny Shulman
In the Shadow of the Wonder Wheel by Carren Strock
The Complete Book of Presidential Inaugural Speeches, compiled and edited by Ian Randal Strock