• Can you confirm your royalty levels? Is it based on the suggested retail or actual sale price?
What happens is that royalties are paid out (from Amazon, etc.) on the actual price – and Amazon (of course!) takes their cut first (generally 40%).
Thus, with a $10 book that costs $5 to print (just for example) – Amazon gets $4 (40%), the printer gets $5, and there is $1 left of “available royalties” – of that $1 you get 80%.
However, for any books you sell yourself (in person, from your website, etc.) you get 100% – with no Amazon cut (and nothing to us).
  • For B&N and the like: am I correct in understanding that you have access there, and that we will be included there?
Your book will be available for all online retailers – Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Walmart, Target, Bookshop, etc. – we can make it available, but we can’t “force” anyone to include your book or any product for that matter – that is their decision. However, everything will be done according to their ‘requirements’ to get the most amount of exposure/distribution channels as possible.
  • Also at B&N and the like: am I correct in assuming that we are covered by your Retailer Buy Back program at no cost to me?
If you would like us to enable the “buy back” option, then we will be charged (print costs) for the books that are returned. 
  • Regarding your answer on my previous Book Return question, can you give me an example where “some bookstores are not able to order outside their regular distribution channels because of their own business model”? What does that mean?
We love to give bookstores – as well as our authors – the best possible royalty shares, and that would be through purchasing books direct-from-publisher. However, bookstores each work within their own business and inventory systems, and quite frankly, they are not always to their advantage. For example, we have a book signing in Manhattan next week – if the bookstore would purchase the books from me, I could get them for a lower print cost, and could pass along a larger discount to the bookstore (with the author making more money as well). However, the bookstore only orders through IngramSpark – they will not order through another channel. (Laziness in having to add another vendor to their system? Who knows their reason!) This, they insist upon getting their books from IngramSpark, who not only have higher print prices than I could secure myself but also, IngramSpark takes a 55% cut from the author while passing along only a 40% cut to the bookstore (keeping 15% for themselves.) Thus, their assistance in essentially using a middleman is costing them (and my author) 15% of the royalties plus additional print costs. Why do they do this? Honestly, there are many businesses in this world who do things a certain way, without considering the ramifications. Beats me!