Friday, November 11, 2011

It's the 11/11/11.

My parents and Barbs parents served in the World Wars. May we never come to that again, and let us remember what they opposed for us.

I was feeling a bit off-colour yesterday and today. To whine, it's always hard finishing up a book. Hard pushing... demands on my mind and body and family life, and then very little in the way of reward for some time. No feedback from readers for a long time. Even merely getting paid usually involves a lot of nagging. I thought I'd set up an Australian US dollar account yesterday so I could start going direct to Kindle and finally do something that I could have direct input and view of, and get 70% instead of 8% of the sale price. It's not of many copies, but it's cash coming in, hopefully for some years... only to have Westpac tell me that would be $50... a month. It's just not worth it. So right now I am muttering in unadulterated irritation. It will have to be done by cheque. Which will cost me extra, and mean payment only happens if we're over $100 threshold every 3 months. And then Westpac will take up to 6 weeks to clear it - something which dates from the mailship era, before the invention of those odd little silver birds and the steam driven internet. What a bunch of useless bastards the banking industry is. Now judging by the US sales on shorts, that will happen. Those add up 100-150 dollars a month, split between Eric and I. The sale of the rest through Naked Reader... well, I don't know. But I'm guessing it comes to something (I've been promised figures, but really this is why I want to do this for myself, directly. No more having to ask, and ask and ask. I appreciate they're doing their best, and struggling with being too small for too much work, but I do need this.). The UK Amazon sales however... are pretty feeble. I would yet to have got anything from them for all the shorts that are up there (the electronic payment threshold is $10 -which means I'd have a few pounds trickling in, if I was paid that way, but it might take two years to get a cheque. Yes, more stories and it will get faster. The idea behind all this is to add a cash trickle into the account to help to slow the steady monthly bleed while I wait for the if I'm lucky twice a year inflows from publishing. It won't be a flood, but publishing is being slower than usual and not keen on buying... so we have to keep trying. Not helped by Westpac who suggest I get Amazon to change their way of doing business. They also suggested I get my publisher to do things in ways that make their lives easier... I give up with these people. Do they get that actually I need Publishing and Amazon? They do not need me. I suppose that's what it is with banking. They do not need you, there is always some other sucker.

Anyway. Nil Carborundum Illigitimi
There will be e-books forthcoming from Dave Freer directly.
The hell with all of them. I will beat them yet.


  1. I'm just musing out loud here but I'm wondering whether you couldn't open a US bank account with a US bank and get a debit card that would work to pay for things in Oz. Now yes you'd be giving various *nkers a cut everytime you made a payment using it but you'd be getting the money in immediately and if there were ever stuff you wanted to buy that was from the US you could probably pay for that using the US$ account.

    Of course this idiotic anti-terrorist/drugs war thing might make opening an account impossible unless you show up in person. Not sure about that.

  2. Could you get paid via a paypal account in USD and then transfer it over to your Aus one when you need it? You'd have to check the fees/conversion rates etc but that might be an easier solution and cheaper than an Aussie bank.

  3. Yes, Francis, but I can only do that when I next go to US. Which I will do. Stuff the local bank.

  4. antikva - Amazon do it their way, you fit into it. They don't pay via paypal. I do use that solution with a couple of minor payments anyway.

  5. Dave,

    Check the Internet for Asian and European banks. You will find quite a few who provide multi-currency accounts, with no fees and worldwide Visa or MasterCard debit card access. With Internet access to view your accounts.
    They all involve a risk factor. Those I've known who used them have taken an exchange rate hit on occasion - such as the Asian banking blowout early last decade.
    The advantage explained to me is that, being international building and computing contractors, their family in Australia always has access to the funds regardless of where the contractor might be working today, and they can use the card as if it was local, in local currency or US$ wherever they find themselves that day.
    I'm not sure, but I think American Express has a similar system. Yes, an annual card fee, but last I saw it was $50 per year, not per month.