Contracts

The Benefits of Having an Agent

The Benefits of Having an Agent

Today I’m covering some back-to-basics information. While people have always asked me about the advantages of having an agent, I’ve noticed an increase in the frequency of the question in this age of independence and do-it-yourself. People want to know: Do I need an agent? If I had one, how would they help me? Is…
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What’s Happening With My Publisher Contract?

Over the past month I’ve had the opportunity to review and negotiate five separate publishing agreements for different clients, each from a different major publisher. Each one has taken some time, and my clients frequently write me wondering and worrying, saying things like, “How is the contract coming along?” I’m not always sure what they’re actually…
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What Does a Publishing Contract Cover?

Many of you are looking forward to the day you sign your first publishing contract. But you also wonder… what the heck is in a publishing contract, anyway? Below is a brief overview of some of the important contract clauses. This is *NOT* by any means comprehensive—contracts vary and are typically 12 to 20 pages…
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youtube

Advances: How Can I Find Who Got What?

Today I debut my video blogging. Please go easy on me – I’ve never done this before! I decided that in my video blogs I’ll answer questions readers have sent me via email, Twitter, my Facebook page, or the blog. So if you have a question you want me to answer in a video, send…
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Multi-Book Contracts

Do You Have to Sign One? In my May 3 post, “Will Your First Book Be Published?” I mentioned multi-book contracts, and blog reader Marion asked: “Do you have to sign for a multi-book contract?” Her concern was mainly that she wasn’t sure she wanted to be locked into deadlines since her first book took…
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The Dilemma of the Prolific Writer

I have a few clients who are very prolific. As soon as they’ve finished a manuscript (including getting outside feedback and going through a few rounds of revisions) they’re always excited to move on to another. They immediately brainstorm a new story and get going on it. They can write two or more terrific manuscripts…
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Royalty Rates

I’ve written about royalty rates several times, and I usually avoid using actual numbers because royalty rates are varied across types of publishers, types of books, and book formats. But people keep asking me, so I’ll try to explain a little more clearly here. Royalty rates are calculated either on the retail (or cover) price…
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Reversion of Rights

Blog reader Sue Harrison said: I’ve found myself in a frustrating situation with a publisher regarding the definition of “out-of-print” [and not being able to obtain] a reversion of rights to two of my novels. These novels have earned back their advances but are no longer available to the public. I’m guessing this situation has…
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Answering Questions On Contracts, Part 2 of 2

Denise Grover Swank asked: What should an author do if they are offered a contract from a small publisher but don’t have an agent? → Do your best to understand it. Be ready ahead of time by reading (and maybe even printing out and keeping in a notebook) all the blog posts you can find…
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Answering Questions on Contracts, Part 1 of 2

Last week I did a post giving a cursory glance at a few important clauses in publishing contracts. It would take a whole book to go into detail on contracts, so on this blog I’m just trying to get you familiar with some of the basics. Today I’m going to answer some of the questions…
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Publishing Contracts

I’ve been negotiating quite a few contracts lately, and you’d be surprised how this aspect of an agent’s job stays constantly interesting. Publishers are always changing their contracts in small and large ways, needing more and more to protect their interests in this difficult economy, so agents have to stay diligent in making sure their…
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