Photo by Miss Thelma
The initial offer was £10K GBP. I said no.
He came back with £15K. I said no.
Then it was £20K for both Logo Design Love and Identity Designed. At that point I said £50K, because I wasn't too interested in selling but still wanted to share my get-out figure. He said no, as expected.
A few months later a different approach was made: £10K up front with another £5K each month for a year, so £70K in total for both sites. I still wasn't keen to sell, and I thought it'd be risky to count on followup payments, so I said it'd take £100K (not including Identity Designed).
And that was that, until some weeks later I was offered £45K up front. That's when I started thinking about my mortgage, and I went back with £60K. The compromise was £57.5K (about $90K USD).
I talked it through with my publisher, because I knew if I sold the website that I'd want to distance myself from the brand name. I asked if there was any precedent for a book title being changed between the first and second editions. There wasn't. And I was told it'd harm book sales if I didn't have control of the online presence.
I also talked to others I respect. The general consensus was, "Don't sell (for that price)," which was ultimately settled when my publisher said that now's the time to work on a second edition of the book (I'm expecting a contract offer in the next couple of weeks).
Not to mention the credibility factor that would accompany a sale — this was always a big factor, raised in the comment thread a few months back.
Anyway, all done. No deal.
If there's a lesson here, it's that you can create a saleable asset of significant value by simply spending a few hours each week building a website on-the-side. You need to enjoy it, though, summed up nicely by Alan Watts.
"Forget the money, because if you say that getting the money is the most important thing, you will spend your life completely wasting your time. You'll be doing things you don't like doing in order to go on living, that is, to go on doing things you don't like doing. Which is stupid."