The biggest challenge for every author is
getting the book into the hands of his or her reader. This is a very
difficult and laborious challenge, especially for an author who attempts to
navigate the marketplace alone. This is where ACW Press can help in ways
that few other self-publishing companies can. The following is an
introductory overview and does not reflect the complexity of the task,
but we hope it gives at least a little bit of help.
ACW Press works in cooperation with
STL Distributors to create
availability for your book. STL is the American subsidiary of Send the Light, Ltd. (STL UK), the largest
English language Christian distributor in Europe. The mission of STL UK is to
"Advance the Christian faith through the creation, distribution and retailing
of Christian resources." They are based in Waynesboro, Georgia.
STL helps to make your
book available to as wide an audience as possible through an
800# order line, warehouse fulfillment, and a team of sales representatives. We will attempt to place every book
that is a part of this program with Spring Arbor/Ingram Distributors, Amazon.com, and BarnesandNoble.com.
(Note that there is no guarantee that every outlet will stock or even list
your finished book. We can't force a store or a distributor to carry a title.)
Through STL we have a team of national
field sales representatives who take the STL catalog into
every major independent Christian bookstore in the country. In
addition, STL has a team of sales representatives who
call on the major chain outlets like Berean Christian Stores,
Family Christian Stores, Mardel's and also calls on the
major trade chains like Borders and Barnes & Noble. This
is an incredibly valuable service.
STL takes and processes credit card sales.
If possible, the 800# should be placed on
the inside of your book to encourage further orders. And it is
the number you should give out whenever you are doing any type
of media interview.
All orders are shipped within 48-72 hours.
Through our arrangement with Spring Arbor/Ingram
Distributors your book will be a part of the inventory and database
of the largest wholesale distributor in the U.S. This means that
your book will be available through special order to any bookstore
in the country.
Your book will be available on the Internet
through the major e-commerce bookstores such as
and BarnesandNoble.com (we cannot
guarantee their listing in a "timely" fashion because of the sheer numbers of
books these places deal with, but we have had good success in getting books on
these sites consistently. Other sites are not always as cooperative like
christianbook.com or bamm.com or buy.com.
The author may attend any one of the American Christian Writers conferences (excluding Mentoring Retreat and
Caribbean Cruise) with the tuition waived and may display and sell his/her book(s) in the conference bookstore
at no charge.
The author will receive one free ad in the Christian Communicator, the only monthly magazine for
Christian writers and speakers.
You must provide us with a 65% discount
off the retail price to create enough profit to pay for the services
If you are wondering what happens to that
money, consider that Faith Works must give Spring Arbor/Ingram
Distributors a 50-55% discount off the retail price. They must
give the bookstore a 40-45% discount off the retail price. Thus
STL provides order taking, shipping, handling, billing,
collections, inventory management, sales representation, sales
commissions, returns, etc. for a very small fraction of the 65%
discount you provide to them. ACW Press receives nothing (zero)
as a part of this arrangement. [see below for some guidelines
on setting the retail price of your book]
A $10.00 retail price example: Since your
discount to STL is 65 percent off the retail price, on a $10.00
book your total revenue would be $3.50.
A $12.99 retail price example: Since your
discount to STL is 65 percent off the retail price, on a $12.00
book your total revenue would be $4.55.
*Due to the discounts that must be given we recommend that
you carefully consider the ramifications of our fulfillment and
marketing services unless you have a large enough profit margin
built into your retail price. Unless you carefully price your
book, your total revenue could potentially be less than what
you paid to have the book packaged and printed.
You must pay $.015 (one and a half cents) per book per
month for warehouse space. This should be taken into account
when you decide how many books you wish to have stored in the
You agree to pay ACW Press $10 per month
per title to administrate this account. (Since we must handle
all communications, billing and marketing coordination we think
this fee is very reasonable.)
You agree to pay the $200 annual expense to have
the title maintained in the Ingram Distributors and other electronic databases
(this is a charge we must pass on to you).
However, if you publish 2,500 or more copies of your book with ACW Press, the first year's fee is
Additional marketing opportunities
Any additional marketing expense is
We also have occasional opportunities to place full page ads in trade magazines
like Christian Retailing and Aspiring Retail. This is done
on a co-op basis where authors choose whether or not to participate
in the ad. Costs can be as much as $900 per book
Unfortunately most of the opportunities sent to us are
prohibitive for the author. Some cost as much as $5,000 just to get a 1/8 of a
page placement. We chose not to bother the author with these offers because of
ACW Press does not buy your books.
ACW Press does not act as an advertising or publicity agency.
ACW Press is a service organization.
We operate on a consignment basis only. You will only
be paid for books sold through STL.
There are no promises or guarantees of the
sale of your book. Just because your book is in print doesn't mean that
bookstores will stock it on their shelves or even order it. It is up to the
author to generate the interest to drive the readers into the store to find
the book and make a purchase.
It is your responsibility to prepay shipping
to the STL warehouse in Georgia.
The field sales representatives need occasional free
copies to give to key buyers. These will be taken from your warehouse stock.
You must agree to allow us to use 40 copies for this purpose. We don't
necessarily need all 40, but it gives us a stock from which we can draw when
STL can warehouse as many books as you
wish (within reason), however you will be charged a fee per book
per month. After one year's sales history there will be an extra
warehouse fee for inventory stored above and beyond a year's supply.
Guidelines for determining the retail price of your book
These suggestions are for 5 1/2 x 8 3/8 trim size paperback books.
These are very general guidelines only. Remember to factor in
the cost of production, marketing dollars, fulfillment, freight
and discounts to bookstores when drawing up your business plan.
96 - 128 pages -- $11.00 - $14.00
144 - 176 pages -- $14.00 - $17.00
192 - 224 pages -- $16.00 - $20.00
240 - 288 pages -- $18.00 - $22.00
304 - 336 pages -- $21.00 - $24.00
Sometimes the genre determines the price. For
instance, fiction is generally priced lower than non-fiction.
An academic or textbook type work can have a higher retail price
than a general market title.
A hardcover book is generally $5.00 - $7.00
more than the paperback. A 6 x 9 paperback trim size can usually
support an extra $1.00-$2.00 in retail price.
The idea is to set a price that is fair and
reasonable. You do not want price to be an issue when a buyer
is deciding whether or not to purchase your book. But at the same
time you cannot afford to under price the book. Plus you do not
want to devalue your book with a low retail because it will then
be perceived as a "budget" book and thus "must
have something wrong with it."
We suggest you go to a bookstore and search
for books like yours and then see what the prevailing price ranges
are and make your determination from that investigation.