Miss Snark, have you ever encouraged a client to take a somewhat smaller advance, on the theory that if you don't earn out your advance, it's really tough to sell again? Or is that crazy talk?
Call me crazy, but I always believe every book I sell is going to do well. I'm always shocked as hell when a book tanks. And yes, some have. It's just totally f/ing depressing and even thinking about it makes my face paler than Killer Yapp's delicate snout.
No, I never encourage anyone to take less dough cause I think the book won't earn out. I encourage clients to look at more than money: for back list support, editorial expertise and stability, and publicity and marketing support. That's worth reduced upfront dough.
But mostly Miss Snark smiles sharkly at editors and encourages them to open their coffers a bit more and pull out the file marked "serious money".