A Philosopher's Blog


Posted in Business, Miscellaneous by Michael LaBossiere on March 23, 2012

I must confess I am slacking a bit on the blog this week, mainly by posting that I am slacking on the blog. I’ll probably need to be a bit slack the next few weeks as well. The reason is, of course, my job.

On the positive side, this week I have papers due in my ethics class, next week I’m giving tests and the week after that is more papers, this time in my Modern class. After that, I have finals week-which might lead to more slack. As might imagined, my job gets  the majority of my time and the blog gets some of what I have left.

On the negative side, it looks certain that I won’t be teaching this summer. Like most faculty, I am on a nine month contract (that means three months of unpaid “vacation”) and I am not guaranteed summer employment, even when there are students enough to overfill the class (which is always the case). This is supposed to be due to budget cuts. Education is rather odd in this way-there are, right now, students who would fill the class I used to teach in the summer.  To use an analogy, there are customers who are ready to buy the shelves clear, yet the shelves are to be kept bare and the store closed. I must admit I do not quite get why this works the way it does, given that what faculty are paid to teach a class is generally way, way under what a class brings in. But I’m just faculty and hence have only a very indirect influence on things.

Since I need to pay for things like food, I need to devote a lot of time to writing. As might be imagined, writing this blog does not pay-but writing for gaming companies, Amazon and Barnes & Noble does. As such, I’ll need to focus even more effort on writing that actually results in some income. Fortunately, I just finished a contracted book (I signed a NDA, so I cannot say anything until it is officially announced) and I am busy lining up other contracts and writing until I run out of words.

I will, of course, keep this blog going and will also continue writing for the other blogs I contribute to. It is, after all, a compulsion.

My latest venture is that I’m taking a stab at selling material for Paizo’s Pathfinder on Amazon. While gaming is not as big as it was in the golden age of dice, perhaps this will help a bit. In any case, you can check out my test module, Little Island at Amazon. Like my other books, it is 99 cents, of which 65 cents goes to my benevolent book overlord, Amazon. Amazon actually is fairly generous-my contracted work usually gets me about 8.5%.

I put up an author’s page at Amazon, which allows me to fully experience the joyous delusion that I am an author.  It is  a wonderful thing. I’m just waiting for Oprah to discover me.

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2 Responses

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  1. anon said, on March 23, 2012 at 9:36 am

    Its amazing how little person who actually writes stores/books typically receive. Do you receive any compensation if somebody with prime “borrows” your book for free?

    • Michael LaBossiere said, on March 23, 2012 at 11:55 am

      Prime works out great for the top authors. The way it is supposed to work is that the Prime bonus cash is divided up among the top folks. So, if your book is in the top, you can make out well. I put mine in Prime mainly so that it would show up a bit more (that is, I’m using it to “promote” the book). As might be imagined, people generally tend to use their one free borrow to borrow a bestseller that normally is on the high end of the price range.

      In all my years of writing, Amazon has provided the best payout. They offer 35% of the sale price or 70% (with the condition that they can lower the price to match other books of the same type and also a price requirement). I’ve made much more on my 99 cent books on Amazon than I made on my “real” book.

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