Amanda Hocking

Amanda's Blog Post

Pink Headphones

December 7th, 2010 by
This post currently has 23 comments

I still have signed paperbacks for sale (no boxsets yet). My Blood Approves has sold out for now, but I’ll be getting more in soon. Check out the paperbacks: here.

My dog is almost three years old. When he was a puppy, I bought a pair of pink gel headphones. They were $9, and I spent almost a half debating whether or not I should buy them. I had hardly any money – as in I lived on ramen because I could afford it. But I wanted my headphones so I could listen to the radio on my phone.

I liked to listen to Back Track USA on Saturday mornings when they play 80’s and 90’s music, but the only way I could that was on my phone, and my phone requires headphones to listen to the radio.

So I finally caved and bought these headphones, because I really, really like music from the 80’s and 90’s. I came home,  used them once. Then I left my dog (then a puppy) alone in my room with my headphones while I went to the bathroom. When I returned, the headphones were destroyed.

I was so upset because I couldn’t afford another pair. I literally did not have another $9 to spend.

Two weeks ago, I was at the store, looking at headphones. I have gone without headphones for the past two and half years, but since getting my laptop, I wanted to be able to listen to music on not crappy laptop speakers. So I was looking at headphones, thinking about how I didn’t really need them, and blah blah… when I realized that I could afford headphones. I could just buy a pair. And I’d still have money to eat. In fact, I’d already paid all my bills for the month.

So I bought the $14 headphones. Yep. I’m living large now.

It’s so weird to just be able to buy stuff. I mean, I can’t buy anything I want – like a big screen TV or a Delorean. But I can buy new headphones. Or Inception on Bluray/DVD combo pack.

I actually had to save up to buy The Dark Knight when it came out. I’m not even kidding. And to this day, I don’t own Star Trek the new movie because when it came out on DVD, I had no money, and now for some reason, I keep forgetting that I don’t own it.

When people make an argument for raising books prices, saying we should sell ebooks for $6.99 or even sometimes $9.99, this is what I think of. It’s not that I don’t work hard on my books. It’s not that I don’t think my books are equal to traditional published books.

It’s that I had to wait three months until after Claudia Gray’s Hourglass came out because I had to save up for the ten or twelve bucks at Walmart. It’s that when I ordered a used copy of J. D. Salinger’s Franny and Zooey from Amazon for $2 I felt guilty because I didn’t know how I was going to pay my car payment that month.

I write books, fun romance books with vampires and zombies and trolls and witches. I’m not curing cancer. I’m entertaining people. And when people are struggling to make ends meat, I can’t in good conscience charge more than I already am.

And I am so grateful to you all, and to everything that’s happened this year. Thank you!!!!

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  • jenavii says:

    I like your more now that I’ve read this post.

    My boyfriend, my dad, my sister and I all pitched in for me to get a Nook. So when I had it all charged and was ready to download a book, I was disappointed to realize I’d have to dish out MORE money to buy a book. So I browsed and downloaded samples. Then I got lucky and came across Switched. I saw the price, read the summary and bought it.

    Now I’ve read all yours books and am anxious for more. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Also, my little opinion may not mean much to others, but your books are great enough to be sold at $9.99. Awesome sauce.

  • Racheal McG says:

    I do agree that your work is well worth the 9.99 or more ebook value, but i think it’s absolutely wonderful that you still remember being broke all the time, and you sell your books so cheap. That may have come out wrong, sorry. I worked a server job for four years pregnant and then single mom, making 3.95 an hour plus tips, and not everyone tips. My sister an I roomied up and were still only able to afford homemade sweet tea and instant cups of noodles. We only ever had one cabinet in the kitchen that was always filled and it was filled with containers of baby food. And now that I’m married with a good household income, and my second baby on the way, I never take any of it for granted. I donate as much as possible, and I always bargain hunt and save leftovers. Just because you have the money, doesnt mean you should waste it. I think it’s wonderful to see someone living their dream, and not taking it for granted!

  • Anonymous says:

    I have a very important question. I am young and i feed on your kinda books are you making another book for hallowland? I love your work and everything you do!!

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I stumbled across your books by browsing and reading reviews, best discovery I’ve made in a long time. I’ve read all the MBA series and I’ve now finished the two trylle books I was actually surprised how cheap your books were but I have to say although i would have paid more for them, I wouldn’t have been able to buy them so quickly, the joys of the kindle is that you can purchase the next book as soon as you finish the last word of the previous book and with your pricing this has become possible. You now have another fan sitting on the sidelines waiting the release of more of your work, keep it coming, I’ll keep buying it.

  • Anonymous says:

    Wow. I love this post. I have read a lot of your books (all but Hallowland) and I just wanted to say your books are so good I can’t put them down. I find myself reading all your blog post because I am just so eager to find more. More things about Wendy, Finn, and Tove. More things about Alice, and Peter, and Jack but I guess mainly more about the person that wrote them. I would have never read your books, or been this interested in your characters you have created if it were the common $9.99 because I can’t just spend money like that. I just wanted to thank you for your books, your blog, and your characters that I am in love with! (wendy and Finn!) Thanks I’m looking forward to your new books.
    — Morgan ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Anonymous says:

    I just wanted to say thank you for not having a high price on your books. My husband always gets on my case for spending so much money on books every month so I am glad I came across your great books for an awesome price.

  • MightyJesse says:

    I adore your work and think you are very wise for pricing your work as you do. By making your books affordable and accessible, you reduce the temptation to pirate, or buy used copies. There is an invisible threshold of “reasonable pricing” that people are willing to pay for things that they find “necessary” in their lives. If they cannot afford the price set by the owner of what they consider necessary, they will still acquire it through other means outside the owner’s control.

    My evidence is the list of 10 most frequently pirated software titles of 2007… All of these titles are EXTREMELY PRICEY, but people consider them necessary. So they steal them. The key is to make it easier to pay for your work than it is to steal it (Or buy it from a used book store, or check it out of the library… etc.).

    I’m very glad that you and a ton of other authors out there have seen the logic of that lesson, or still have compassion for the underpaid/underemployed. All that aside, I’d have paid $7 for every one of your books without batting an eye. I’ve paid more for less, but firmly believe that yours is the way of the future.

  • Cricket says:

    I’ve not read any of your work (yet), and actually just “found” you moments ago through I forget which source, but this post has me wishlisting each and every one of your books and movin’ ’em to the top of my “to get when I can” priority list. ๐Ÿ™‚