Hard at work this week with Mesh, which is why you didn’t see any updates from me. Taking a moment to re-post something I said on Reddit, in answer to the question: Why Would Anyone Pay Andrew Cuomo $4 Million for a Book? It’s not hard to understand why someone would ask this question. After all, Cuomo is a controversial figure, and $4M book deals aren’t exactly falling off trees these days. Nonetheless, the answer is pretty simple: Here’s why Andrew Cuomo got a $4 Million book deal:
He got $4M because publishers know they’ll make it back and more. Publishing advances are an investment, think of publishers like VCs who know when a product is going to sell big and are therefore willing to risk more money on the front end. A book written by a famous person is generally considered a goldmine since that person has a built-in fan base to market to. Need proof? [Look at the buzz generated by Kylie and Kendall Jenner when they “wrote” Rebels: City of Indra](https://www.eonline.com/news/512230/kendall-and-kylie-jenner-s-book-cover-revealed-get-the-first-look-at-rebels-city-of-indra?cmpid=tweol-manual). The book wasn’t great, people took turns dunking on it online, but Simon & Schuster were willing to buy it. Why? *Because they knew it would sell.*
So politics, ethics, and morals aside – what you’re looking at is a very simple transaction for mainstream publishers. This book will sell, right or wrong. They’ve done their due diligence and come up with a negotiated number for advance against royalties. That number may have certain performance KPIs built in, we’ll never know. The main thing for any author is to write something people will pay to read, and that’s why the Cuomos, the Bill O’Reilly’s, the Larry Kings, the Dave Berry’s, the Erma Bombeck’s of the world will always score a big payday when their new book comes out. It’s also why, as an author, I’m looking for ways to build an audience that will buy my book while I’m writing my book. Both tracks take time and effort, but since I want to do this for a living, I know I have to be about that business within my life’s circumstances.
So there you have it. This is why why Andrew Cuomo got a $4 Million book deal. His book is a bankable commodity, the publisher is prepared to support something they know will sell well.
Think of your writing projects as individual business startups, and you’ve taken your first step toward writing something that’s worth a $4M advance of its own.