So I caught this article on Wired about how Marvel released two Young Adult (YA) Romance style novels based on two of their characters, She Hulk and Rogue from the X-Men. I’ll admit, I’m a fan of YA books. The Great Brain and the Encyclopedia Brown, Boy Detective series of stories are still among my favorite reads. So I went to go check them out on Amazon.
Sure enough I found Rogue Touch on Amazon in a Kindle Edition… for $9.99.
I seriously had to double take at the price… made sure I was on the Kindle Edition… and confirmed that it was indeed listed for a whopping $9.99.
Now I get that this is a big publishing house. There is the author, editors, artists, and of course the owner of the intellectual rights that need to earn their percentages along with the publishing house. But I have to ask, does that make this a $9.99 eBook?
More importantly, how much is an eBook really worth?
I used to read a series of books known as Dragonlance. I bought pretty much every paperback in that series, and even purchased some of the core books in their hardcover editions. I never paid more than $6.99 for a paperback and never more than $24.99 for a hardcover. These were books that had authors, editors, artists, owners of intellectual rights (the original series authors), the publishing house, and the store. I received a physical book that used paper, ink, and glue for the product which then had to be delivered. All of that has another set of costs.
I now read (almost exclusively) books on my Kindle. I rarely am willing to pay more than $6.99 for an eBook. That money I spend is getting me an electronic file to be consumed on a device that I paid for and is being delivered over an internet connection that I pay for. Yes, the author, editors, artists, and owner of the intellectual rights still have to get their due BUT I’m the one who has paid for delivery, paper, ink, and glue.
I don’t understand why publishing houses continue to over price their eBooks. More importantly, I don’t understand why anyone would buy those books for that price! I’m really okay with it though. Why? Because that’s the advantage I have over the publishing houses, common sense pricing. It means I’ll sell more books at a lower price than they will at their higher price, and in theory that will translate into more revenue. I’d be willing to bet that these books are going to flop, and not necessarily because of their content. They’ll flop because they are over priced for what they are offering.
By the way, the Dragonlance Series books are priced on average at $5.59 for their Kindle editions. Glad to see not everyone is overpricing their content.
So how much is an eBook worth to you? How much are YOU willing to pay for that digital file?