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It shouldn't be this hard...but lets talk about the pros and cons of all the different ways to buy a book!

I CANT BELIEVE I FORGOT TO MENTION THIS but I signed a bunch for my UK publisher as well and they're available at Waterstones:

Amazon (just put it in your cart):
BAM (signed):
Barnes and Noble (signed): (not signed, but helps bookstores!)

Today's Chat with Cat Valente:

July 6 @ 7:00 PM ET
The Town Hall with The Strand
With special guest John Green
*Ticketed* Crowdcast Event
Get tickets here:

July 7 @ 7:00 PM ET
YouTube Vlogbrothers Launch
With special guest John Green
FREE YouTube Event
Sign up here:

July 8 @ 7:00 PM ET
Cuyahoga County Library with Mac’s Backs
With special guest Ashley C. Ford
Get tickets here:

July 9 @ 8:00 PM ET
Watermark Books & Café
With special guest Roman Mars
Get tickets here:

July 10 @ 8:00 PM ET
Magers & Quinn
With special guest Cory Doctorow
Get tickets here:

Bookstores that will definitely have signed copies:
FACT & FICTION - Missoula
NOVEL - Memphis
CONTENT - Northfield MN
MAGERS & QUINN - Minneapolis
SCHULER BOOKS - Grand Rapids and Okemos locations
There's a lot that goes into the decision of which ki--like, how you buy a book, in what format, and where you buy it from and I'm just gonna pull the curtain back a little bit so you can understand some of what's going on behind there, 'cause it's weird.  The first thing I will say is a lot of times people ask like, what's best for me, and this isn't to say that, like, I just want people to read my book, and yes, everyone I know who is an author, the first thing they want is to reach people and making money is a path to being able to do that, so the main thing is having people thoughtfully engage with your work.  That's the best reward that we get out of this.

But leaving all that aside, if you want to know what's best for me financially, I make the same amount of money whether you buy an e-book or an audiobook or a physical book.  I make the same amount of money whether you buy it at an independent bookstore or if you buy it on Amazon.  Same to me.  What is more important to authors than where you buy a book is when you buy it.

Now, again, if you go to the library and you get this book, I will be just as happy, but if you're asking what's best for an author's career, pre-orders are a really big deal, because everyone knows like, we are aware of how many books are selling right now and the publisher knows that information and they adjust the marketing budget that they're spending on the book based on that information.  They spend more time internally promoting it, talking to booksellers about it, talking to other authors about it.  That's a lot of how buzz happens.

Now, I'm very lucky that I don't have to push pre-orders too hard, but if you have an author that you love and you're able to pre-order their book, it's so helpful.  It also drives down the price on Amazon when you pre-order on Amazon.  Here's a weird pull back the curtain thing.  So, we had the signed edition and the non-signed edition up on Amazon., and of course, the vast majority of people bought the signed edition but then it sold out, so there aren't any more signed copies on Amazon.  You can still get them a couple other ways that I'm gonna talk about (?~1:53).

So then the signed edition went down and the only edition that's up is the unsigned hardcover and that hasn't had very many people buy it, pre-order it, or even go to the website for it, so it's not being discounted at all, which means that the audiobook is like, $11 on Audible, the e-book is $13, and the book itself is $27, full price.  You can get it for less at, which is a frustration that we should have anticipated.  We didn't think we were gonna sell out of signed editions so fast.

Amazon's discounting is all done algorithmically.  It's done based on how many people go to the website, how many people put it in their cart and how many people buy it.  So for example, if a bunch of people, like, went to Amazon, went to the product page, put it in their cart and didn't buy it, that might result in a discount.  I'm not saying you should do that, I'm just saying that's what would happen.

There are big advantages to buying the book on Amazon.  It's why people do it.  The #1 is that it's usually cheaper, though in this case, so far it isn't, but there's also this thing that Amazon has where if the price goes down between when you order the book and when it ships to you, you get the book for the lowest price it has been in that period of time, and you don't get charged until the book ships out.  That's pretty cool.  I don't know if there will be a discount ever.  I'm assuming that there will at some point.

The other thing that's nice about Amazon is that if you order a certain way and you have Prime and you order two-day shipping, I think that it actually arrives at your door the day the book comes out.  That is cool.  It is a thing that Amazon's logistics network makes possible that's very hard to do in any other way.  Of course, you can also get the book the day it comes out, like, exactly when you want it, by going to your local bookstore or Barnes & Noble or  Books-a-Million or something, so it's not like you can't get it the day that it comes out, but it is cool that Amazon has that thing.

If you want to read the book in English but you are not in America or in the UK, you can order them on starting around when the book comes out, maybe a couple days after that, and we will send them anywhere in the world.  If you're thinking, I don't know how to order this book and that's frustrating you, that's why we got 'em for sale on DFTBA.  

Now, if you want to read it in your native language, there are a bunch of languages that this book will come out in as time goes on, but I don't have the exact list of that yet, because I don't know the exact list yet.  It varies.  It has been acquired for publication in certain countries.  That doesn't mean that they're actually gonna do the translation and publishing, but if you want to read it in English, we got you at DFTBA.  It will be available soon, and all those I think are gonna be signed.  We ship everywhere.  Now, it might take several weeks to get to you, but it's better than not getting it at all if you want it.

Oh God.  Hi.  It's Hank from the future, 'cause apparently this long-ass video didn't have enough information in it.  If you wanna get signed copies of the book, they're not on Amazon anymore.  You can get them at or  They will also be available in some stores.  They'll be available in some Targets.  They'll be available in a lot of independent bookstores, but I don't know which ones.  I know some of the ones that will have them and I will put the list of them in the description, but it's just like, you know, 20 or so independent bookstores.  There's a lot more than that in America.  You can e-mail them and ask them if they will have it but turns out, there is not an easier way to figure that out.  You have to send an e-mail and be like, hey, will you have a signed copy of A Beautifully Foolish Endeavor and they will tell you the answer to that question.

I understand that there are pros and cons here, but I do really appreciate it when people go the extra mile and try and figure out how to support independent bookstores, so good  on you for that.  Alright, back to the video.

The reason, though, that authors and publishers often talk about buying stuff from independent bookstores is that one, we like, recognize that that's like, a really nice experience and we like those people.  Like, it matters so much to an author's career whether like, booksellers, this is the term that we use for people who either run or work in book stores, to what extent booksellers, like, hand-sell a book.  That's what these say, and that's when somebody comes in and they are looking for something and you say, like, are you looking for anything in particular and they tell you about a book that sounds exciting, and that works gets done by booksellers.  It also gets done, of course, by everyone.  Like, I think that we all take personal recommendations for books very highly and that's how I have found most of the books that I really love, and a lot of books still sell in book stores.  

Now, of course, the pandemic has changed some of that dynamic to some extent, but if all those independent bookstores went out of business, there would be a lot of selling that just didn't happen.  Like, people go into bookstores to buy stuff, and usually not new releases, but new releases get them in the store, and that keeps that community space thriving and it keeps  the publishing industry more healthy, and from the inside, I can definitely tell that, you know, they're trying to make their business work and be healthy in an ever-changing world and it's hard.

One of the ways this is done is by encouraging people with sort of, perks of some kind to buy the book early, things that are limited in quantity or that promote different editions, and so this is like a, or different formats even, so for example, I signed a lot of physical books for this.  So getting a physical edition means you might be able to get a signed copy.  I also, last time I did a, like a special edition with Barnes & Noble and that had like, an essay in the back that wasn't available any other way.  

Now, it always sort of like, annoyed me as a person who really loves audiobooks, that there isn't a version of that for audio, so for A Beautifully Foolish Endeavor, we've put some supplemental content after the book ends.  I--one of my, like, doors into the world of thinking critically and thoughtfully about the internet and the effects that it might have on the future of society is Cory Doctorow, so Cory and I had like, an hour-long chat where you can hear us talk a little bit about writing.  He's a novelist as well, and a little bit about, sort of a lot about the future of the internet and where we're headed if we sort of like, follow our current path and how to maybe take some different paths.  That, to me, is like a way to say like, I can't sign your audiobook, but here is, here is something that I think will add to your experience.  It's not like a guarant--like, you don't have to consume this piece of content, but it's there and it's only for people who got the book in this particular format, but audiobooks also you have an opportunity to buy it in different ways and different places.  I'm sorry that this video does not have any coherent structure.

You can get audiobooks on Audible, which is how I get most of my audiobooks, but I don't love Audible because they have these exclusive editions that make it difficult or impossible for libraries to get that audiobook, which seems wrong.  There's also a thing called which works functionally the same as Audible.  It does not have all of the same books, largely because of Audible's exclusive program but it has, you know, 90+% of books, and Libro actually shares the revenue from each book you get, each credit that you turn into a book, it works the same way as Audible.  It shares the revenue from that with a bookstore of your choosing, so you get to support your community in that way.  You can also choose another community to support if you feel like your community's doing okay.

I actually use both, 'cause I use more credit--I always use more credits than I have on audiobooks.  Audible really needs to figure out how to make sure libraries can access Audible Exclusives.  It would make me much more enthusiastic in my support of them.  

There are also other ways to buy physical books.  You can get, just like Libro helps out bookstores, this place called, that does the same thing.  You buy it online but you can choose the bookstore that you'd like to support and then there's my book tour, which we are doing in partnership with local bookstores.  It's all digital because pandemic and all that, but there are four book tour stops that cost money, but they cost the price of the book and you get the book tour and they're signed and they will send you a copy of the book.  It won't arrive on the day the book comes out, but it will arrive shortly thereafter.

Every day, we'll have a different conversation with a different person.  On July 6th, the day before the book comes out, that will be with John, my brother, John Green.  July 7th is the free event that'll happen on vlogbrothers with me and John, and then July 8th with Ashley Ford, July 9th with Roman Mars from 99% Invisible, and then July 10th with Cory Doctorow.  If you are in America, you don't need to know anything else about that except that it's gonna be fun and you should come.

If you are not, some of these bookstores are shipping internationally.  Some of them aren't.  Some of them are charging different amounts for shipping internationally, so if you'd like to come to any of those events but you're from a place where they're not shipping or shipping is too much, might I suggest, and no pressure to do this of course, but like, if you want to do this and you're  like, what, I guess I can't go and you're mad that you can't go at all, even if you don't care about getting a copy of the book, for you special few, I imagine there's not many of you, you can just put in the address of the DFTBA warehouse, which you can find by Googling that and they'll send it to us and then we'll sell it for charity or maybe give it away to a classroom or something ,depending on how many we get, but there are so many different--you have to make your choice about how you order the book!  

You can go read it at a library, you can borrow it from a friend, or you can not read it!  That is also an option.  It's my least favorite one of the things on the tiered list, but it's okay.  I understand.  I also do not read every book.

All right, that's it!  Also, that's not it.  Tomorrow, Wednesday, so maybe today, depending on when you're hearing this, I'm doing a book, live book club event with Cat Valente.  You have to register for it, so you should do that right now!  And also, you have to register for all of the tour events, including the free ones, so if you wanna register for the free one, you have to do that.  You have to put your name and e-mail address in.  I don't know why.  I'm sure that they won't do anything bad with it, but if you want to do one of the paid events, you especially have to register because of how you have to pay for it because of how we're gonna send you a book.  The first 500 people to register will get a pin, special limited edition pin that is, the Town Hall event, the first one on the 6th, the pins have already sold out of that one, but the rest of them, the pins are still available if you want to register for one of those, see me and Ashley or Roman or Cory, those are gonna be fun.  I look forward to seeing you there.