Self Publish EBooks – Let’s Do The Math

Unless you’re Stephen King or one of the other best-selling authors, you’re not going to make the same income by being traditionally published as you would if you self publish your book as a Kindle ebook. Don’t believe? Let’s do the math.

Author A is a mid-list Author with XYZ Publishing House (names have been changed to protect the guilty).

Author B on the other hand, is a non-conformist. She self-publishes on her own site and puts her books in Amazon’s Kindle bookstore.

Now for the math:

XYX publishes Author A’s book and prints 25,000 copies (their normal run for her genre). The paperback book sells for $6.95.

For this scenario, Author A will get 7% of the gross. So 25,000 X 6.95 = $173,750 X.07 = $12,162.50. The book was not reprinted as more than 2,000 books were sent back to the publisher so the royalty Author A actually received was reduced by $973.

Now Author B publishes her book on the Kindle so there is no print run. But she does sell the same number of books as Author A in the first year because her book is being sold worldwide.

Because Amazon pays a royalty of 70% for buyers in the United States and other Countries – 35% royalty, Author B’s royalty will be measured at an average of 52.5%. To be even more fair, Author B sells her book for $4.95 on Amazon. So 25,000 X 4.95 = $123,750 X.525 = $64,968.75.

Money isn’t the only difference between the two authors. Author A is locked into a contract and since her publishing company won’t reprint, the only money she’ll receive is 7% of the 70% her publishing company makes selling it as an ebook on Amazon.

Which means Author A is dead in the water. She’s locked into a contract and it will be years before she can get her book back to self-publish.

While Author B will be selling her ebooks year after year. Even babies being born today will end up paying for and enjoying her books.

So tell me again, why you prefer to be print published rather than selling your own books as Kindle ebooks?

And with your books on Kindle, it’s entirely possible your name could be right up there with Stephen King but without the baggage of a go nowhere contract. Just Google Amanda Hocking if you don’t think this could happen.

Judith Tramayne’s passion for the last 13 years is helping Authors self-publish ebooks. Her “Kindle eBook Course” has 18 videos and 7 image-filled PDFs shows how to EZ-ily make a Kindle ebook. Visit

Author: Judith Tramayne
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