Did I mention I've taken on some new responsibilities at my company,
[breathe, LDSP, breathe]
I didn't mean to be negative or emotion-less. And I'd love to be in a position to entertain author negotiations on royalties. But the reality of the situation is that the LDS market is small and budgets are tight. That means that there is very little wiggle room for negotiation. We're not like national publishers who only pay 60¢ per copy of a paperback book. Our books can cost us as much as $3 to $4 per copy, depending on the size of the print run. Yet, we have to price our books somewhere in the ballpark with national books. Also, a fantabulous, hit-it-out-of-the-park, run-away best-seller fiction title for us means 20,000 copies sold (almost unheard of); not 200,000.
Royalties are based on the expected sales of a book (for fiction, 2,000 copies). Especially for LDS fiction, we can only go so high, no matter how well you negotiate with us. First-time authors in the LDS market are a risk, therefore, you do not have much room for negotiation at all. If your first book goes bananas, you will have more leeway to negotiate a better royalty deal on book #2.
"Good luck" means "I wish I had better news and maybe you will be able to negotiate a better than average deal and it doesn't hurt to try."