Updated – Pop Quiz on Yog’s Law

In A.C. Crispin, Absolute Write, Accountability, Ann Crispin, Atlanta Nights, Authors, Credibility, David L. Kuzminski, Filmmaker, Free e-book, Free ebook, James D. MacDonald, Mark Barrett, Money should flow toward the author, Preditors & Editors, Propaganda, Publishers, Publishing, Rachael Saltzman, Reputation, Reputation Management, Richard Tate, Travis Tea, Victoria Strauss, Yog's Law on April 21, 2011 at 5:51 pm

Money should flow toward the author” but not if:

a)     Your book is published through non-traditional means as an investment in anticipation of a return on the investment.

b)    You are donating to the Preditor & Editor/Dave Kuzminski Legal Defense Fund

c)     You are purchasing Crispin, MacDonald or Strauss books.

d)    You are purchasing the “Atlanta Nights” book.

e)     You are donating to the “Atlanta Nights” film project.

f)      You are buying “Yog’s LawT-shirts and memorabilia.

g)     You are buying “Atlanta Nights” T-shirts and memorabilia.

h)     You are paying $1000 to Deborah Doyle (Yog’s Wife) for a critique and line-edit your novel.

h)     All of the above.

”Money can flow in any direction you want, but it’s your job to know where every penny goes and what you’re getting for those pennies.”

–  Mark Barrett

“A few years ago an individual created out of thin air a concept he called “Yog’s Law.” I have no idea who “Yog” is or what planet he may be from but just like Superman there is “kryptonite” in this concept and that “kryptonite” is the facts. His over-simplistic “Money always flows to the writer” is his central argument. The problem with that concept is that he makes it sound like a movie script. Write a book, ask mom how good she thinks it is, send it to a publisher, they take it and make you a millionaire while you sit at home and watch TV. Of course writers should make money for their work, but the premise that they will never have to spend money if they publish, promote or market their books is incredibly naïve.”

– Richard Tate

“Author and publishing watchdog James D. MacDonald has in times gone by proclaimed that ”Money should flow toward the author,” better known as Yog’s Law. In today’s day and age this law holds true if, and only if, an author is traditionally published.”

– The Write Agenda

Money flows to the author? . . . . Sure, J.K. Rowling and James Patterson are multi-millionaires, but they have each cranked out several books, have movie deals, and have to sell an incredible volume of books. They are in the extreme minority, of which I am certain Mr. Yog’s Law is not a member.”

– Richard Tate

“The current publishing business model which relies on advances against royalties and the consignment method of selling cannot be sustained. A robust publishing industry is good for the reader. Yog’s law is not immutable. Writing is a creative act but selling one’s writing and making a living off one’s writing is a business act.” (Emphasis Added).


“A mainstream publisher traditionally assumes the risk of publication and production costs, selects the works to be published, edits the author’s text, and provides for marketing and distribution, provides the ISBN and satisfies whatever legal deposit and copyright registration formalities are required. Such a publisher normally pays the author a fee, called an advance, for the right to publish the author’s work; and further payments, called royalties, based on the sales of the work. This led to James D. Macdonald‘s . . .  dictum, “Money should always flow toward the author” (sometimes called Yog’s Law).”

 – Anonymous

Yog’s Law is very simple: Money flows toward the author. For commercial publishing, this is absolutely true. Once you’ve moved away from it, you’re out of the realm of commercial publishing.” (Emphasis added)

James D. Macdonald


Barrett, Mark Barrett. “The New Money Flow.” Ditchwalk: Storytelling in the Digital Age. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Apr. 2011. <>.

“Dispelling the Myth Behind Yog’s Law: The Fallacies with the Flow of Money to Authors « The Write Agenda.” The Write Agenda. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Apr. 2011. <;.

James D. Macdonald.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Web. 19 Apr. 2011. <>.

MacDonald, James D.. “Learn Writing with Uncle Jim, Volume 2 – Page 63 – Absolute Write Water Cooler.” Absolute Write. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Apr. 2011. <;.

” Publishing Business Models.”Dear Author. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Apr. 2011. <;.

“Tate Publishing of Oklahoma: TATE PUBLISHING AND THE FACTS ABOUT “YOG’S LAW“.”Tate Publishing of Oklahoma. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Apr. 2011. <;.

“Vanity press.” Vanity press. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Apr. 2011. <;.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s