Christmas may be long gone, but the gift of reading keeps on giving and now is the time for authors to celebrate with some (almost) free money: the Public Lending Right. If you are a resident of the UK or Ireland and you ever need a reason for donating your books to the library - on top of all the obvious ones like promoting reading and supporting this valuable and increasingly undermined public service - this is it.
What is the PLR?
The PLR is a system where authors who've written books that are in public libraries get a little revenue each time somebody borrows their works. It's a way to repay writers who won't be earning a royalty from a sale in a bookstore. The hardworking folks at the PLR office pay a nominal fee based on how borrowed you were - and in the interests of fairness, you can't earn more than around £6000, so the big names don't get to hog all the money.
In the current political climate, both the PLR and the libraries it springs from are under threat, so if you are a writer or a reader, please do your bit to help support both as best you can.
Here's my Top Ten Library Loans of my novels for 2012 (with 2011's position in brackets)
1 (1) Peacemaker
2 (3) The Flight of the Eisenstein
3 (2) Nemesis
4 (-) Hammer & Anvil
5 (6) Red Fury
6 (8) Icarus Effect
7 (-) Cast No Shadow
8 (4) The Blood Angels Omnibus
9 (5) Synthesis
10 (9) Day of the Vipers
My Doctor Who Western Peacemaker continues to remain top of the charts, although my first Horus Heresy novel The Flight of the Eisenstein came in a strong second. As always, my thanks to everyone who supported their local libraries and borrowed my books.