Tao Lin is selling shares in his next novel:
"I am offering 60% of the U.S. royalties of my second novel to "the public"
I am selling 6 shares (of 10% of the U.S. royalties of my second novel) for $2000 per share.
For each share you own you will receive 10% of the U.S. royalties of my second novel.
This includes all U.S. serial, reprint, textbook, and film (and other performance) royalties.
Shareholders will receive checks (and copies of the royalty statement from my publisher) in the mail every 6 months after the book's publication (probably Fall, 2009 or Spring 2010). Shares can be resold at any price at any time, I will facilitate trading and promote it on my blog if that is what a shareholder wants. I accept Paypal.
Based on sales of my first novel I project sales of my second novel to be ~13000 after 24 months (if there isn't more mainstream attention than with my first novel). If there is more mainstream attention, and I think there is a 80-90% chance there will be, sales will be "considerably higher" I think. Regardless of the amount of mainstream attention that happens I believe that in the long term sales will remain steady and that my second novel will remain in print.
Based on what I know about my publisher, myself, the book, and my other books I do not at all think that my second novel will "fail" the above projection. My other four books are all currently in print and selling steadily and have gone through multiple printings. With each book (or "retarded essay" in The Stranger) I publish all my other books will sell more copies, and I have 2-3 books planned, and will continue to publish essays and other things. I'll probably keep publishing books until I die. I feel it is inevitable that I will receive mainstream attention at some point, if only because of my effect on "the economy," which mainstream journalists can see (and cannot ignore, due to the nature of publicly-owned companies) when they look at Bookscan, at which point sales of all my books will go up again.
My second novel is linear, focused on one relationship, and a "page turner," I think, though also rereadable. While writing it I have been focused on making it so that you both "need to see what happens next" and "can turn to any page and read it and feel interested." If I ever have a book published that sells a lot more copies than any of my other books there is a 60-70% chance it will be my second novel, I think. It will be ~60,000 words I think. My first novel was ~28,500 words. The Easter Parade by Richard Yates is ~54,000 words.
Film, reprint, and serial rights are included. If my second novel is published in hardcover my publisher will most likely sell the softcover rights to another publisher, and I get 50% of that, and you would get 10% of my 50%, which if the softcover rights sold for $30,000 would be $1500.
I think shareholders should, at worst (based on a low projection and no film/reprint/etc. sales), expect to begin making a profit on their investment within 32-40 months, after which they will "make profits every 6 months for the rest of their lives without having to do anything."
WHY AM I DOING THIS
I quit my job, my last day is in two weeks, this is currently one of my two plans to "make money." My other plan is to just sign another contract for another book, that will "give me" only a month or so though. I think currently I just want money for 3-4 months, at which point I will get some money from the Germany thing (post below this post) I think maybe. People who buy shares will "actually" help me focus more on the novel. I "actually" will work better on my second novel, the way the novel is right now, if I have no obligations or responsibilities at all, I really believe that. There is a 90-95% chance my second novel will be released faster and be higher quality (in my view) if I do not have a "real job," do not feel pressure to sell art or "piles of shit in my room that I draw on" on eBay, and have enough money to without anxiety be able to make "healthy, but sort of expensive" food choices "that make me feel good and healthy and better able to focus on writing instead of feeling like I have eating problems."
That is the "first" reason, without which I might not be doing this, but now that I am doing this there are other reasons also. I think this is another thing people can talk about in terms of me and will "in itself" "increase sales" in the long term. If anyone buys shares they will have concrete motivation to promote me and that also will increase sales. If people buy shares I will probably (55-65%), I think, make even more money than if I had not sold shares of my royalties; and if I do, in the long-term, lose $50,000 or something, after factoring in increased sales from this as a "publicity thing," I feel like I will "definitely feel that it has been worth it, for the experience of being in part a corporation, or 'publicly-owned company.'" I also feel that it will help "fight depression" if I become in some way a corporation instead of a person. I also feel it is "funny" "just to do this offer" which makes me view it like any other "funny" thing I might do in that I feel that something "has already been accomplished" just by making this offer, even if no one buys shares and people "think I'm retarded."
WHY YOU MIGHT WANT TO BUY SHARES
People who buy shares will also have more meaning in life if they already like and promote my writing, because they can promote my writing and also be making money for themselves, which can be exchanged for "goods" in concrete reality; therefore existential despair due to "having to do what you normally wouldn't be doing if you had a lot of money" can be relieved to some extent. Also it will be "funny" and "interesting" "for everyone" probably if people buy shares. You can call yourself a "producer" of my second novel if you want to do that. This is like a grant or something except it's like the stock market or something. You will be a stockholder in "Tao Lin's Second Novel's U.S. Royalties Corporation." "As people resell their shares the price of each share will go up or down, you will see this conveyed on MSNBC as a number going by on the bottom of the TV screen."
If you don't know what to do with your life, or even if you just want to relieve boredom for the 10-15 minutes it will take to send me a check or paypal me, or email me, I recommend that you buy shares of the royalties of my second novel. I recommend this because you will then know what to do for a while, and if you ever feel bored in the future, and own shares of my second novel, you know you can always promote me in order to make more money for yourself. You will never not know what to do with your life again if you own shares in my second novel, sort of. I think if Joy Williams was 25 and didn't want to have a job anymore so she could work harder on her novel, and was selling shares of that novel, the main reasons I would purchase shares would be "it will be funny if I do it" and "at least it's something different or something" and "I think I will feel less bored with life if I own shares of the royalties of a Joy Williams novel."
THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIME AND CONSIDERATION
For more information about sales of my previous books and my royalty rates and other things email me. At any point, if shareholders need money and want to sell their shares back to me, and I have extra money to buy back the shares, I will buy back the shares. If, also, at any point, shareholders want me to try to sell their shares at cost or for a profit I will advertise their share on this blog or some other site that I might make. I "can be trusted," look at my eBay rating. I will create contracts and have them notarized. You can have my phone number, address, etc., I promise I will not kill myself within 5-10 years. Really I don't think "trust" is an issue, I feel like people can trust me.
Email me: binky.tabby [at] gmail.com."