This is my coworker Dan. That's me on the right. We have the same shirt. It's hilarious.
Anyways, yesterday, after a casual water-cooler chat about child soldiers, Dan asked me some questions about my web site WHICH I'VE ANSWERED LIKE FOUR TIMES ALREADY BUT WHATEVER.
That brought us round to a talk about the publishing biz, and when I told him how much money most authors make off their first books, he laughed out loud. When he realized I wasn't joking, he then proceeded to feel very sorry for me.
Then, because aside from stealing my look he's actually a good guy, he came up with an idea.
"Instead of buying your book, I'm just going to give you $5," he said. "That's more than you'd make off the sale, right?"
"Yep," I answered. "Like $4 more."
"I'm not even going to buy your book then. The day it's released, I'm just going to slip you a five."
Because crying at work isn't an option for career women like me, I laughed heartily and said I would accept his most generous offer.
But later, while sobbing on the subway like a professional, I got to thinking: Money be damned. I would much rather make zilch off my book and have readers, than make money and have no readers.
I even worked out a mathematical formula:
$0 + * * = : ) 8 <
Or, for all you dum dums out there:
No Money + Readers = Happy Enough Sideways Emily
(and yes, I was generous with my cup size up there)
So thanks, Dan, but no thanks. I don't want your charity; I want you to read my novel. And while we're at it, I want you to stop wearing my g-damn shirt!