Amazon makes it so easy to share links with book cover images and if you’re a Prime member there is an incentive to shop on Amazon. There is just one big problem. Books and Amazon.
When you purchase books from Amazon you get a deep discount and the publisher pays the author even less in copyright royalties. A percentage of pennies is a pittance and Amazon knows it. That’s why they keep selling books without making a profit. Books are their loss leaders and they make their money on selling your data and selling you other products online. Amazon’s profit margins come from the cloud. Big data. You are being bought by Amazon.
As an (aspiring) author you may want to make more informed decisions with your dollars during the holiday book-buying season. When you shop at independently owned bookstore, you and other authors benefit in terms of your copyright royalties.
Author’s Guild currently has a Fair Contract Initiative in progress. This campaign includes an effort to eliminate the “deep discount” clauses publishers to booksellers and wholesalers at big markdowns. It seems fair that when a publisher sells a book at a deep discount, the author’s take might be reduced proportionally. But there’s no proportionality in many standard “deep discount” clauses.
When you shop at an independently owned business, your entire community benefits:
Spend $100 at a local and $68 of that stays in your community. Spend the same $100 at a national chain, and your community only sees $43.
Local businesses create higher-paying jobs for our neighbors.
More of your taxes are reinvested in your community–where they belong.
Buying local means less packaging, less transportation, and a smaller carbon footprint.
Shopping in a local business district means less infrastructure, less maintenance, and more money to beautify your community.
Local retailers are your friends and neighbors—support them and they’ll support you.
Local businesses donate to charities at more than twice the rate of national chains.
More independents means more choice, more diversity, and a truly unique community.