Tag Archives: cory-doctorow

Cory Doctorow’s Experiment: Does Free Work?

For his next collection of short stories to be published, titled With a Little Help, author and blogger-extraordinaire Cory Doctorow will be running an experiment so that he can see whether his strategy of offering his work for free is working.

With prices to range from $0.00 to $10,000 for various packages, Doctorow is to track his financial progress and the progress of the experiment as a whole on his new column at Publishers Weekly.

This first column looks at how he will be making money (his marketing and publicity strategy will be covered soon, too):

  • E-book: free, in a wide variety of formats
  • Audiobook: free, in a wide variety of formats
  • Donations: whatever happens
  • Print-on-Demand trade paperback: $16 (approximately; price TBD)
  • Premium hardcover edition: $250, limited run of 250 copies
  • Commission a new story: $10,000 (one only)
  • Advertisements: TBD
  • Donations of books: TBD

That’s how the money is going to come in. To be honest, I have no idea how much money that will be ($10,000 has already come in, of course). But I do know what I’ll do about it. I’m going to disclose it, all of it, every month, in a running tally in a monthly column here in Publishers Weekly. And incidentally, this article is grossing me all of $900, less my agent’s 15% commission, and the columns $400 hereafter. I will then put this into an appendix, which will be added to new editions of the book and compared to the revenues from Overclocked. That’s as close to an apples-to-apples comparison as I can come up with, but I think it will speak well to the question: what’s the best a writer like me can do on his own, versus with a traditional publisher for whom he does everything he can to aid in book sales?

via Marginal Revolution