So Sarah Palin and Joe the Plumber both have book deals, with Sarah’s rumored to be worth $7 million. These kinds of book contracts are what make hard working, talented, undiscovered, underpaid writers (like me) CRAZY! That’s all I have to say. Except, maybe, WTF!

If you’d like to hear more from me today, check Pop Syndicate where I have a fascinating author Q/A with Angela Wilson.

  1. I SOOOOO agree! Joe the Plumber has a book deal without proving to anyone that he can actually write. Palin can finally pay for that wardrobe with her advance. Serves the publisher(s) right if no one buys their books and they’ve fronted all that $$. Of course, it means less of the pie for everyone else, and more publishing house excuses when they’re asked why they don’t invest in new authors.

  2. Have you seen the quotes from a huge agent on the subject of big advances to celebrities? It made me sick (and was inaccurate, to boot) because he defended them.

    I have said before and I’ll say it again, probably until I’m blue in the face: the number of mid-list authors who could benefit from having even part of that advance put into their publicity budget is probably staggering. And not fair to the mid-list authors who are going to lose their careers while the publishing industry loses money on a celebrity.

  3. Ohhh..L.J., I couldn’t agree more! Earlier this week a fellow write and I were both blogging about the struggles of being a writer and what it’s like when the universe doesn’t receive your work the way you feel it should. And then to see this…to see that people without talent or even desire to be writers are offered millions of dollars. And for what? Their opinions on life? Didn’t Palin get enough of an opportunity to share that with us already? If you were here right now my irritated screams would probably be hurting your ears.

  4. Are you kidding me?!! $7m for a Palin book? More than $5 for a Joe the Plumber book (and I’m talking his advance, not what I would pay, which would be $0) is nuts.

    AAAkkkkkggggrrrr. I just refuse to buy a celebrity book — or even a wannabe celebrity book.

  5. I will say this: people put in various amounts of work to reach their goals, and have various amounts of luck. True, some people get lucky like Joe the Plumber and don’t really do anything (if it makes you feel better, people like Joe and those that win the lottery usually end up a lot worse for wear afterwards!) Others, like Palin (whatever your political stance) put a decent amount of effort into their careers. It’s not fair but true that money comes to those that already have it. Also not fair, amount of effort doesn’t necessarily translate to amount of success. It’s where you put your effort that counts. Let’s say Bill Gates makes 1,000 times more the average person. Does he really work 1,000 times harder? No. He’s made good choices. If you really want to be a millionaire, get a job in a well-paying, underappreciated field and spend less than you make. Writing is very unlikely to do that for you.

    (BTW, this doesn’t mean I agree with the advances. This is why I think that publishers should do away with or severely reduce advances. And why I support alternate forms of publication.)

  6. All I can hope is that no one buys the tripe that comes out of their minds. Unfortunately, the average reader of pulp will buy the books just because they recognize the name.

    Too bad more thought isn’t given by the reading public to what they buy.

  7. Remember the many million-dollars advance given Bill Clinton for “his” book? I never read the thing, much less bought one, but I read some of the excerpts in the “news” papers and magazines. What a load of terribly-written garbage.

    One reason I started 4RV Publishing was to give people who could write a chance to be published without already being famous or rich or having a connection that paid off.


  8. Celebrity books are always going to be with us, I’m afraid, and rarely earn back their advances. When are publishers going to learn? Probably not until they’re in bankruptcy court.

    BTW, L.J., I enjoyed your interview with Angela Wilson once I found it and my AOL screen wasn’t freezing up.

  9. GAH!!!!!! Considering all the stuff that gets turned down and/or writers who make minimal advance money for GOOD work, these sort of faux celebrity book deals PISS ME OFF.

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