I seem to recall a radio interview with Hootie and the Blowfish years ago. The boys talked about hitting the big time and all the usual stuff. But the one thing that stuck in my mind was how they claimed to have declined a massive advance in favor of a more modest one. Although a risky move, they argued that it paid off in the long run because they weren’t in debt to the
company store record company for years and years. They claimed to make more money, quicker, than if they had taken the huge advance and dug a financial hole for themselves. Or, hell, maybe that interview was about chicks and briefcases full of cash and I just mis-remembered it.
The reasonÂ I mention this now, and God forgive me for even uttering the Hootie name on this website, is that GawkerÂ seems to agree with the technique of avoiding advances.
In a regular feature entitled Unsolicited, an anonymous editorÂ provides Gawker-readers insightsÂ into the publishing industry. And in a recent post entitled Why You Don’t Want a Big Advance, the editor explains that “accepting a six figure deal is one of the biggest career mistakes a first time author can make.”
The editorÂ makesÂ a number ofÂ valid points. I can’t really argue with anything he/she says. But in a classic case of do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do, andÂ since so many big-time, powerful publishingÂ folks read this blog, let me just make this clear. My personal opinion on a six figure advance? Yeah, hand it over.Â I’ll take my chances. Where do I sign?
Darius Rucker was able toÂ do those Burger King commercials for financial back-up. Me, I’m just luckyÂ to avoidÂ workingÂ the fryer at BK so I’ll be more than happy to cash that big advance check.