Hello to our beloved Authors!
We literally could not do what we do without you, so thank you for visiting this page and thank you for writing!
Two very important things before we begin:
- Please understand that we evaluate tens of thousands of new books every year and field hundreds of event requests per year.
- We are receiving stocking requests from self- and conventionally-published authors directly at the rate of 10-15 per week. Thank you for understanding that we cannot handle phone calls or drop-in visits. Unsolicited samples that are dropped off or mailed to us will be donated unread.
Let’s get started!
Frequently Asked Questions:
- My book is recently or about to be conventionally published by a major or larger independent publisher and readily available through standard distribution channels.
- I published my own book and did not use CreateSpace or Amazon publishing or printing services
- I did use one of Amazon’s services to publish my work
- I don’t understand much of any of the above AND/OR I’d just like to learn more about being a professional in the book business
The best way to get your book on our shelves is to have your publisher contact us with information about you and your book. We can work with them directly on getting it into our inventory. We love our publishing partners and like keeping them in the loop. We are also used to dealing with them regularly and the process goes much faster.
If you feel your publisher is unable or unwilling to contact us, please send us an email of no more than 100 words containing the Title, ISBN, your website, a high resolution image of your book jacket, your contact information, compelling reasons for carrying the book at Spotty Dog (ex. “I have friends and family that have expressed interest in buying it locally”, “the book is set in the “Hudson Valley”, other unique reasons that would compel a reader to buy it from us and not elsewhere). Please copy your publisher in the email. That is industry standard professional courtesy.
Read on to see if your book is a good fit for our shelves!
In an effort to make things easier for you and us, we have developed some guidelines to keep interactions with our indie authors professional, straightforward, and profitable for both parties.
- To be considered for our inventory, books must be:
- not published or printed by Amazon or any of its divisions such as CreateSpace
- professionally packaged
- priced appropriately for the market
- suitable for our inventory
- published within the last 6 months or not yet published
- An evaluation copy of your book may be dropped off or mailed with a copy of the consignment agreement inside or emailed in advance. Please read more about the consignment agreement in step 3. They will not be returned. You must put contact information in the book.
- If your title is accepted, you receive 60% of the cover price of any books sold. We receive 40%. This is non-negotiable and the absolute minimum margin under which we can sell books and still remain profitable. We will take 2-5 copies of each (our determination). Please review our consignment agreement. Note that we do not pay freight for consignment books—they must be dropped off or the freight paid by the author. Damaged or stolen items are the sole financial responsibility of the consignor/author.
- Checks for consignment books are cut 3 times per year:
- The second week of January
- The second week of May
- The second week of September
- Any books that have not sold at least 2 copies every 4 months will be removed from inventory using the above schedule. This is standard for all of our books, not just consignment titles.
- Books on consignment are shelved based on our best practices and placement is not subject to negotiation. Table or wall displays are not guaranteed.
- We ask that you mention The Spotty Dog Books & Ale or independent bookstores in general as a sales outlet when promoting your books and consider linking to our Bookshop.org page. We can provide you with a targeted link that will take customers directly to your books. Authors whose sites link only to Amazon will be cause for title rejection.
If you choose to publish with any company other than Amazon or Amazon-owned subsidiaries or printing services, we would be happy to consider your title(s). However, we do not carry any Amazon products because it is not an intelligent business move to put money into the pockets of a direct competitor whose stated mission includes the intent of causing our business to fail.
If you choose to publish by other means, please let us know. We would be happy to reevaluate then.
I don’t understand much of any of the above AND/OR I’d just like to learn more about being a professional in the book business
Unfortunately, we don’t have time to answer questions for each individual author about how the book business works. There are wonderful resources out there. Spend some time researching our industry. Here are some places to start:
- Become a regular at independent bookstores! Attend author events! Not only will you learn a lot, but we will get to know you and folks that support us we do our best to support back.
- Join a writing group and get to know other authors. Most are happy to share their experiences.
- Attend an online class.
- Follow an industry expert or two.
- Subscribe to Shelf Awareness for the book trade to keep up on trends and topics relevant to our industry.
- Read some of our recommended books for writers!
- Learn more about regional and national trade booksellers associations programs for authors here.
After you’re done, read some of our recommended books for writers!