There's also a wonderful argument going on at :
Basically there are several groups in the US who think there is, and should be, a distinction between self-published authors and traditionally-published authors. In order to join such organisations, you have to earn say, $1,000 over a calendar year.
"The Published Authors Network has strict requirements on who can join their organization. You have to earn $1,000 in the form of an advance on a single Eligible Novel. Or you have to earn $1,000 in the form of royalties or a combination of advance plus royalties on a single published Eligible Novel. Finally, you have to pull in $5,000 in the form of earnings for a Self-Published novel."
The "author" of the article goes on at length, and the comments section that follows is a hoot. But seriously, if this goes through, UK authors are going to struggle to gain a foothold in the US. Our much smaller market place makes it very difficult to earn such an amount in such a time. With a new book from an unknown author, it strikes me as virtually impossible.