Author K.L. Hall
What to do When Waiting 60 Days for Amazon to Cut Your First Royalty Check
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Before I jump into the reason you may have clicked on this post, let me start by spilling the tea. Ready? Here it goes. When you publish a book on Amazon, you are NOT paid monthly, initially. For example, if you publish your book in January, you won’t see your first royalty check from that book until the end of March. This will happen for every book you publish. The good news is, after the initial 60 days pass, your payouts will be monthly from there on out.
Let me break it down a little more: you release BOOK A in January. You'll receive your first payout for BOOK A at the end of March. Come April, you'll receive your next payout for BOOK A (so on and so forth). Now let's say you release BOOK B in April. You'll receive your payout for BOOK A in April, but won't see a payment for BOOK B until the end of June along with whatever you made for BOOK A.
It's also important to note that Amazon does have a payment threshold you will need to meet to be paid through wire transfers and checks it won’t matter if you made $25 or $2,500, you’ll g If you have your payments set up to come directly to your bank account, then it won’t matter if you made $25 or $2,500, you’ll get what is owed to you after those 60 days. But, if you elect for a wire transfer or check, then your sales will have to have accumulated at least $100 during that payment period to receive your payout.
You may be wondering why Amazon’s pay schedule feels, well…late. After all, you worked hard on your book and quite frankly, it’s YOUR money and you want it when you want it, right? Trust me, I get it. The first 60-day hump is usually the hardest. On the bright side, you will know well in advance the amount your royalty check will be (so there’s no guessing and calculating on your part), and unlike traditional publishers, Amazon doesn’t make you wait six months to a year before they pay you.
It's also important to note that Amazon does have a payment threshold you will need to meet in order to be paid through wire transfers and checks (there isn’t a threshold for direct deposit). WIN! If you have your payments set up to come directly to your bank account, then it won’t matter if you made $25 or $2,500, you’ll get what is owed to you after those 60 days. But, if you elect for wire transfer or check, then your sales will have to had accumulated at least $100 during that payment period to receive your payout. (If not, Amazon will hold your payout until you meet the threshold.)
Now that you know you’ll be waiting a cool 60 days to receive a payment, let’s dive into things you can do while you wait.
Continue to promote your book.
The last thing you want to do is let the buzz completely fizzle out after working so hard and so long on your book. Once you begin getting paid for your work, you’ll want to keep that up. That means you still need to be introducing your book to new readers, asking existing readers to leave reviews or ratings, selling your paperbacks, interacting on social media or however you connect with your readers, etc.
Write your next book.
This is especially true if you’re writing a series. You don’t want to let too much time pass in between releases if you’re trying to build a consistent fan base. Your readers will be looking for the next installment, and if you have them wait 60-90 days for the next book, they may lose interest and choose not to follow up with the second purchase.
Set up your Amazon Author Central Page.
If you haven’t already completed this task, this is a great way for new readers to learn about you and your work when they are browsing for a new book to download on their Kindle devices. Setting up your Amazon Author Central page is super easy. They even recently redesigned the website to make it even more intuitive. Utilizing this free resource is also a great alternative to use if you’re not quite ready to launch a full-blown website. You can list all of your available books, bio, connect a blog, list any upcoming appearances or signings you may have, etc. Get started with that here.
Sharpen your writing skills.
As an author, you should never stop wanting to improve your craft. Take the time to read some books that can help you with developing your characters, dialogue, settings, etc. (I’ve got a lot listed in this blog post). Some of my all-time favorites include:
1. The Writer’s Guide to Deep POV: Create Realistic Characters, Settings and Dialogue
2. Emotional Beats: How to Easily Convert your Writing into Palpable Feelings
3. The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Character Expression
Thesauruses: Plots, Settings, Traits and More:
1. The Rural Setting Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Personal and Natural Places
2. Master Lists for Writers: Thesauruses, Plots, Character Traits, Names and More
3. The Urban Setting Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to City Spaces
If you find yourself mentally spent with all the writing, editing, promoting, etc. then it’s OKAY to take a little break and regroup. You just wrote and released a WHOLE book! That’s a big feat that not everyone can say they’ve done. Live it that moment for a bit. Congratulations!
To learn more about getting paid through Amazon's KDP program, click here.