Discussion in 'Publishing' started by stephenspower, Feb 4, 2015.
The SFWA just announced:
SFWA Welcomes Self-Published and Small Press Authors! - SFWA
It's still all about the money, though. I agree with some of the comments, that perhaps number of works sold might be a better measure. Oh well.
Do we have any eligible members here? Does anyone know whether it's worth the membership fees?
I'd qualify, if I was interested.
Why would one join? I think the main reason would be the grievance committee, if you had a problem/contract dispute. The emergency medical fund could be useful under some circumstances, but I don't know the details. Their publication, the Bulletin, I did get via subscription, but I've found it less and less useful or of interest to me over the years.
If I qualify, I am guessing there are more than a few others that are members here that would as well. Me? I don't see a compelling reason at this time. Might change my mind on down the road.
-- Actually, there is a forum where there might be significant interaction and information sharing that could be of value, but it might be less geared toward self and small press authors at this time, than it would be for the established membership. Just speculating on this.
To me it's the forum and the community that might have potential, but it's impossible from the outside to know whether it's engaging or not.
I don't know what they would put in a bulletin that would make it worth it. Do you know if they publish any statistics or is it all commentary?
Meh. Can't work up much enthusiasm. I'm not sure it's worth joining, personally. After last year's snafu I lost a lot of respect for the organization.
I've been thinking about joining, but I just can't figure out why. Lot of money for a forum and magazine subscription. And do you have to achieve the sales goals every year?
The Bulletin is a quarterly magazine that has articles, like advice from agents, how to market, convention information, updates on markets, highlighting authors, things like that.
I think having the qualification criteria based on income isn't a bad thing. It's supposed to be a "professional" organization and "professional" generally means "income." The amounts are still very low (maybe even too low), so it's not a significant barrier to entry.
It's taken WAY to long to lower this barrier. Back when I was earning $45,000 - $55,000 a month in self-publishing income I thought it was pretty incredible that I couldn't get into an organization that someone who was paid a few hundred for an article could get in.
Now, being a member is another thing. The organization needs to do better at providing real benefits to it's members - imho.
Yeah I qualify on several of my novels. In essence the bar is not that high. If you sell a book at $3.99 you get $2.79 royalty (70% royalty) per sale. They've set the bar at $3000, which equates to 1075 sales per year. Of course its a lot more for those selling at 0.99c - 35 cents (35% royalty) per sale. 8571 sales per year.
My comment to the SFWA was what can you do for me? Ninety bucks may not be a lot, but I don't see the value to indies. I mean they sided with Hachette against Amazon - that absolutely wasn't indie friendly. And then there's the whole sexism debacle / mess.
And lets be honest. Sticking "Member of the SFWA" on my author profile isn't going to net me any more sales.
I sometimes listen to the Writing Excuses podcast, and they're frequently talking about all of the authors that they know personally. They're always naming people and saying how great they are and recommending their books. And I keep wondering, "Gee, I wonder if SFWA is one of the places that they meet all these awesome writers." Just having a way to reach more of those kinds of experienced professionals is invaluable.
Of all three book festivals I've entered (of which the benefits themselves are debatable) each wanted to know if I was a member of any professional (writing) organizations. In this case, would membership be beneficial? What about including membership in a query letter?
ETA: These questions aren't exclusively for psychotick ;-)