Monday, June 20, 2011

About Contracts

I know a lot of you are curious about the publishing process, so today I’m going to talk about contracts. One thing that I didn’t know is that you don’t actually sign your contract until a couple of months after you’ve agreed on a deal. I know, this seems weird, but once you have a verbal agreement with a publisher you have a book deal. You may even start editing for them before the contract is signed. This is pretty common.

What takes so long is the fine print negotiating that your agent will do. You’ll never agree to the first draft of a contract. This is where your agent really earns their 15%. They haggle over royalty percentage and how many advance copies you’ll get. They try to work in bonuses for you, as well as guarantees on how long your book will be in print. All this takes time, especially since everything has go through your publisher’s legal department and be approved by a gazillion people.

This is a good thing, and hopefully the time spent negotiating will work out in your favor. One bad part, you won’t see any money until the contract is signed by all parties. I’ll talk more about that next time, how an advance works and when to expect the promised bucks.

I know I wasn’t very specific, but every contract is different. Any questions?

Also, blogger still isn't letting me comment on a lot of people's blogs. Sort of frustrating, but what can you do? Is anyone else having this problem?

11 comments:

  1. I didn't know some authors started editing process before they signed a contract. That's quite interesting. Rarely does a verbal agreement suffice in other aspects of the business world. Too cool! Thanks for the info. :)

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  2. Good stuff! I knew there was a delay in payment, but I didn't know why.

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  3. Demitria, if you are having problems with blogger switch to Mozilla Firefox of Google Chrome as the web browser. Internet Explorer doesn't work well with it anymore.

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  4. Thanks for sharing that. I didn't know people worked under a verbal agreement for months before signing. That's, um, very trusting on all sides.

    Keep the insider info coming. :)

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  5. Thanks for the info. It's nice to hear the point of view of someone who is in the midst of it.

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  6. I can't remember giving congrats, so congrats on your book!

    I use Google Chrome and commenting is fine most of the time.

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  7. This is really interesting. Thank you for sharing. I had no idea it could take so long, but I guess now that I think about it, it makes sense.

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  8. That's very good information. Who knew it took so long.

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  9. Interesting post. I changed to Chrome and that fixed the problem. It seems to be only the comments that follow the post that's doesn't work. The blogs that have pop up comments are okay for me
    Ann

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  10. Missing in action? Hope all is well.

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  11. As a future fan of your work I'm prodding you to give us at least one update a month please :)

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