I decided to get a jump start on my New Year’s resolution (essentially, try to get a handle on marketing so I can sell more books) and with that in mind I went onto my “Author’s Page” on Amazon for the first time in a long while. Lord have mercy! I was stunned to see just how prolific I have been. I had no idea!
There were the books I knew I had written and remembered well (An Accidental Cowboy, The Horseman at Midnight, To Absent Friends, Return to Laughter, and American Riff), but then… Why I had no idea I had written (using, for some reason, the pen names of four different women) what appears to be a soft-core porno (Lucky’s Charms) that takes place in a male strip club. I didn’t even know there were such things as male strip clubs, but apparently I’ve written about one. Why am I not getting royalties, I hear myself cry? And apparently I wrote something called Love in the Cards, again using the pen names of four women (different ones, this time) that appears to also be either soft-core or straight out porno, but it wasn’t as well received as the other un-remembered sizzler, getting one mildly enthusiastic and one dismal review, so I can understand why I’m not getting royalties from it.
I have also apparently written several encyclopedias of Marvel Comics, a book on finding the perfect name for your baby (presumably it includes the fine old name of Jameson), a book about Butch Cassidy, a novel that describes itself as a “rock and roll romance” that is apparently selling like hotcakes (my royalties, if you please!), a slew of other romance novels, a scholarly look at criminals on probation (I had no idea I was so versatile), several mysteries, a self-help manual about some kind of computer technology I can’t remember ever having heard of before, a book with the mysterious title of Islam and Early Modern English Literature (I just can’t quite recall the connection between those two things, or what inspired me to write about it) and… Well, the list goes on and on.
This of course raises the question of why, if I’m so damned versatile and prolific, am I not rolling in royalties? I would like Amazon to immediately send me all royalties due, plus interest, and as long as they’re going to attribute to me things I never even heard of, let me take credit (and royalties; don’t forget the royalties) for The Da Vinci Code, all of my Harry Potter novels, plus all those works I have written under such names as Tom Clancy, Robert Ludlum, Danielle Steele, Harold Robbins, Michael Connelly, Fern Michaels, Barbara Cartland, William Shakespeare…
Damn. If I’m so versatile and prolific, why ain’t I rich?