Lawyer Helen Sedwick monitors so-called “self-publishing companies”, aka vanity publishers or subsidy publishers, through a legal lens and wrote another great article for BookWorks.She explains that too many writers are intimidated by the self-publishing process or simply don’t have enough time. Many of these companies grab too much control over the author’s work.
An Expensive Mistake for Authors.
These self-publishing companies own the book cover, interior design, and ISBN. Helen Sedwick explains that authors are often bound to outrageously high retail prices which can kill their book sales. Other companies are tricking authors into contracts that give them audio and translation rights, even though they don’t provide those services. If an author manages to get out of a contract somehow or the company bankrupts (think Booktrope) then the author has to start book production from scratch: they have to buy their ISBN, have to get a new book cover and book layout etc. – a very costly departure from the predator…
. Read the Contract.
Lawyer Helen Sedwick advises to read the contract, the Terms of Service (TOC), especially the License or Grant of Rights. If that section gives the company exclusive rights, turn away. Self-publishing contracts should be non-exclusive. An exception here is KDP Select, because the author is in control in this 90-day exclusivity agreement.
In her article, she shows contract clauses and provisions that are favorable for authors and on the other side those that should be avoided under all circumstances. She “translates” the legalese for authors, and explains the implications. Her mantra: an author-publisher always should maintain control over how and where the book is sold.
Reading another warning by Writer Beware regarding certain publishing contracts by deceptive businesses, I was reminded to blog once more about the dangers of “being published”.
These days not only the classic vanity publishing companies are taking advantage of authors who want to have their book in stores, but also (in the past) respected legacy publishing houses try to get on the bandwagon and persuade independent writers to get “published” with them.
The expression “publisher” should be legally protected and it should be forbidden by law to call themselves publishers if a company is just trying to deceive writers! Read more about vanity publishers and un-ethical publishing contracts in: Vanity Publishing aka Subsidy Publishers.
. Lots of Predators Out There…
Authors are surprised when so-called publishers want money up front. Publishers are supposed to pay authors, aren’t they? There is nothing wrong in this. The trouble comes if the author, having signed a hefty check, is led to expect that his book will be treated in the same way as all the other books coming onto the market. To pay for publication is no guarantee that a single copy will appear on the shelves of even the local bookshop. Authors feel they have been conned, persuaded to part with money for services not rendered.
. Century-old Scams…
If you think writers and publishers today are dodgy, get a load of the crooks and scoundrels of 18th-century London Publishing scams that seem to be nothing new. Read this Salon.com article about the worst publisher of all time.
. Author BEWARE!
Despite the evidence, there are still writers who fall into the trap of vanity publishing – often with open eyes. That is why as soon as one vanity publisher goes out of business, another soon fills the gap. Here are a few tips on what to look out for. Read it in a former blog post – and BEWARE!
CON is Part of the Word “CONtract”.
Here is an excerpt from a contract where the vanity firm extends the right to the universe – in case people make home on Mars or the moon: “The author hereby grants the publisher, during the full term of copyright, the sole and exclusive right to manufacture, print, publish and sell and to otherwise use, as set out further in this agreement, including, but not limited to, acting as agent and/or exercising any or all subsidiary rights, throughout the universe.” (a company in Renfrew, Ontario, Canada)
Author and e-Book Builder Deena Rae Wrote in one of her Blogs:
“The world of publishing has always been filled with scammers, and top of the list are vanity publishers. To those who have been in the world of publishing a vanity press used to be a bad thing, but with Penguin, Random House, Simon & Schuster, and even Harlequin are bringing a sheen of “respectability” to vanity publishing…
Many writers have taken a strong 70-page idea and stretched it into a weak 300-page book because that was what the industry demanded. Amazon gave short formats – Singles – an identity. Any writer can approach Amazon directly, as Stephen King, a prominent author, did with Guns, a nonfiction essay too long, at 8,000 words, for most newspapers or magazines. Another hit was his Single Mile 81, a top seller.
. Amazon’s Sub-Store
In January 2011, Amazon launched a sub-store on its US website to sell something it called a “Kindle Single” : “Compelling Ideas Expressed At Their Natural Length”, as they call it. The internet giant Amazon pays 70% royalties, for Singles priced between 99 cents and $4.99. “Typically between 5,000 and 30,000 words, Kindle Singles are editorially curated and showcase writing from both new and established voices – from bestselling novelists and journalists to previously unpublished writers.”
. The Guardian explained:
“It may not sound like a call to revolution. But Kindle Singles are. Writers can seldom express ideas “at their natural length”, because in the world of traditional print only a few lengths are commercially viable. Write too long, and you’ll be told to cut it (as Stephen King was when The Stand came in too long to be bound in paperback). Worse, write too short, and you won’t get published at all. Your perfect story is 50 pages long – or 70, or 100? Good luck getting that printed anywhere. Commercial print publishers have never liked novellas or novelettes, authors always have. Indeed, many writers have done their best work at that length, despite the difficulty of finding publication. Hence the revolution. Because the new length exploits this hole in traditional publishing.”
. How Much Do Kindle Single Authors Earn?
The top-ten list of bestselling Kindle Singles includes a number of big-name writers. But how is the format working for writers who don’t have the brand of a Stephen King or Jodi Picoult? Gigaom.com offers well-researched insights from their interviews:
Author: Oliver Broudy
Bio: Former managing editor of the Paris Review; writer for Men’s Health
Kindle Singles: “The Saint,” $1.99 (3/2011), “The Codex,” $1.99 (10/2011)
Sales: “The Saint”: 41,826 copies, “The Codex”: 5,009 copies (both figures through January 2012)
Estimated royalties ([price * number of copies sold] * 0.70): $65,241.16
. Author: Frank D. Gilroy
Bio: Author of the 1965 play “The Subject Was Roses,” which won the Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award
Kindle Single: “Lake,” $1.99 (11/2011)
Sales: 12,500 as of February 2012
Estimated royalties ([price * number of copies sold] * 0.70): $17,412.50
. Author: Mishka Shubaly
Bio: Musician; bassist for The Freshkills
Kindle Singles: “Shipwrecked,” $1.99 (4/2011), “The Long Run,” $1.99 (10/2011), “Are You Lonesome Tonight?” $1.99 (3/2012). “The Long Run” is the ninth-bestselling Kindle Single overall, by units.
Sales: “Shipwrecked”: 21,024 copies, “The Long Run”: 60,567 copies, “Are You Lonesome Tonight?”: 11,406 copies.
Estimated royalties ([price * number of copies sold] * 0.70): $129,544.82
Read the whole story by Laura Hazard Owen in her post: “Exclusive: How Much Do Kindle Singles Authors Make?”
. If You Want to Have Your Single Published
Amazon criteria’s – Submission Policies – are:
• Original work, not previously published in other formats or publications
• Self-contained work, not chapters excerpted from a longer work
• Not published on any public website in its entirety
• Currently not accepting how-to manuals, public domain works, reference books, travel guides, or children’s books
“A Kindle Single can be on any topic. So far we’ve posted fiction, essays, memoirs, reporting, personal narratives, and profiles, and we’re expanding our selection every week. We’re looking for high-quality writing, fresh and original ideas, and well-executed stories in all genres and subjects. You also can write to our editors at firstname.lastname@example.org”
The latest Kindle Single Bestsellers in a variety of genres can be found at Amazon’s “Singled Out” page. If you are an author and already published a Single at Amazon, let us know about your experience and success.
If you would like to get more support in all things publishing, have your book intensively promoted and learn how to navigate social media sites – or to learn how you can make yourself a name as an author through content writing: We offer all this and more for only $179 for three months – or less than $2 per day! Learn more about this customized Online Seminar / Consulting for writers: http://www.111Publishing.com/Seminars
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The key to a good publishing contract is clarity. For authors, it is helpful to keep in mind that most contracts are not take-it-or-leave-it propositions. Be courteous. Be tactful. Knowing what to ask for is critical. Use an agent or attorney who understands the parameters of the typical publishing deal to negotiate your contract. Working through an agent or attorney allows the author to preserve his creative relationship with the editor or publishing house, explains Attorney Lloyd J. Jassin on his website.
There should be a large neon sign that says: NEVER, NEVER, NEVER sign a contract without having your contract lawyer going over it and explaining it to you in detail – sentence for sentence. The contract clauses described here in this blog post are the “norm” in publishing. It is difficult to see how your publishing agreement will play out in the long term, what you sign today could have profound, long term consequences.
Contract attorney Ivan Hoffman explains in his blog:
“In the US, many contracts that consumers commonly sign, such as for mortgage or auto loans or to obtain a credit card, are subject to statutory requirements for fairness, clarity, etc. If some of the clauses and drafting techniques commonly included in publishing contracts used by publishers were found in consumer contracts, those provisions would be…
. Are you thinking about approaching an agent or publisher for your next book? Do you know what clauses publishing contracts usually contain? How do you read a publishing contract? What your income will be – compared to author-publishing? This blog post and the following two will help you to “take the con out of the work con-tract”.
Wikipedia explains: “A publishing contract is a legal contract between a publisher and a writer or author, to publish written material by the writer or author. This may involve a single written work, or a series of works.” And as with every legal contract, authors are faring better when consulting a lawyer that is specialized in publishing contracts – BEFORE – they sign it.
Traditional Publishing Contracts – Part One of a Series
You might remember an article How Harlequin Publishing Deceives Their Authorsfrom last summer in this blog, about the planned class action suit against the publisher. Today I stumbled about a sequel of J.A. Konrath’s blog: Harlekin Fail, Part 2, where he explains the contract practices of the trade publishers in general, and how they deceive their authors. From today on we will look more closely into these practices.
When offered the opportunity to publish traditionally, about two-thirds of self-published authors are interested. The supposed prestige of a traditional publisher, the wide distribution a publisher can generate and help with marketing, are the reasons, cited in surveys. However the perception of traditional publishing is often not up to date in public, as the way of book marketing (and the whole traditional publishing business) has totally…
Are you eager looking forward to get a publishing contract or happy you received one? Finding a publisher who will consider your book idea and then getting your manuscript published is time-consuming and can often be a frustrating experience. Going with a big publisher is not easier than author-publishing. You will be surprised to learn about the following facts, often the hard way:
Your Book Has Only 3 Months to Fly Off the Shelves
If your book does not sell within the first three months of its bookstore life, it will be returned to the publishers ware house and disappears from bookstores and could end up at “A Buck a Book”. Shocking: 90 to 95% of books don’t pay back their advance. Royalty will only be paid if the authors advance is paid back. What you get upfront as an advance is usually all you will ever get.
Screw Up on Your First Book? You Are Out!
If you do well with it, publishers will be eager to see your next title. But if you don’t sell a lot of books, your agent or publisher will not want to read your manuscript when you will offer your second book.
Traditional Publishing is Very Slow
Unless you wrote a political tell-all, your book is going to ”be in the making” for up to two years until it goes into the bookstores. You need to be sure your topic is timeless and that you will be interested in publicizing it years from now.
No Foreign Rights
Unless you have a savvy agent (preferably speaking several languages) who is trying to sell your book abroad, there is little chance that your publisher actively tries to find buyers in foreign markets.
Most Likely You Will Only Receive Your Advance
You can get as little as $5,000 or as much as $500,000, but either way, you will have to pay 15% of this amount to your agent, and the remainder will be paid in thirds or quarters over the next couple of years. So you first need to “earn out” the advance, before any royalties will be paid to you.
Slowest Get-Rich-Quick Scheme
Breaking into big money publishing is like becoming a movie star – being talented definitely helps, but luck plays a big role and the odds might not be in your favor.
No Publicity for Your Book
Until a decade or two ago, publishers did some marketing for books. Now, in the best case, they might send out some galleys and wait to see if anyone is interested. Then they focus all their publicity on the books they expect to be a bestseller. If you want your book to be a success, YOU will have to do ALL the publicity yourself!
Books don’t sell themselves, as most writers sooner or later find out – often too late. If you are interested in making money or selling your book for a long time, better consider e-books and self-publishing. But in any way, marketing skills or at least the willingness to learn about marketing and PR to promote your book, are essential for an author.
Self-publishing Seems to be Easy
- if you know what your are doing. Sure, anyone can become a small publisher. YOU call the shots. YOU retain the rights to your book. And YOU take home a much higher royalty than you would normally get from a traditional publisher – IF you sell any books… And that’s often the problem.
. Books are Not Sold Automatically
We get emails, often several per day, from writers who have just recently published a book, with the question “what we can do for them.” Well, in almost all cases we have to start with Adam and Eve. And explain to them how exactly (author-) publishing works.
Think and learn first how to publish professionally, so that readers see you as a “real” author. And learn how to establish your platform and how to market your book – before writing it. You would never start building a house with the roof, before even building the foundation, the frame and walls. Why would you then do it in your new publishing profession?
If you would like to get more support in all things publishing, have your book intensively promoted and learn how to navigate social media sites – or to learn how you can make yourself a name as an author through content writing: We offer all this and more for only $179 for three months – or less than $2 per day! Learn more about this customized Online Seminar / Consulting for writers: http://www.111Publishing.com/Seminars Or visit http://www.e-book-pr.com/book-promo/
to advertise your new book, specials, your KDP Select Free Days or the new Kindle Countdown Deals.
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Foreign Rights as well as translations into other languages can be a great way to leverage the value of your manuscript – but don’t expect big numbers right away. Revenue will be an advance and approximately 6 – 10% royalty of the retail price, minus percentage for the agent. It’s also a long-term project as it takes around 18 months until the book is translated and finally available online and in bookstores.
Foreign rights belong to your book’s subsidiary rights. Like other sub-rights, such as audio, movies, book clubs, paperback reprints, electronic rights, foreign rights can be sold and separated from your book’s primary rights – which you totally own anyway as an independent author-publisher.
. Before you sign a contract: Always first contact your national writers’ association for further information and get legal advice from a lawyer who is specialized in copyright. This could save you several thousand dollars – if not more.
. Let’s Start With the Revenue You Can Get from Your Book’s Retail Price: Earning possibilities for your book.
If you sell your book on your own website ca. 90 – 95%
Selling through Amazon, B&N, Kobo, Apple or other online retailers: up to 70%
Selling your manuscripts to a trade publisher, earns a (small) advance and ca. 8 – 10% royalties – but this will be subtracted from the advance and only if you “earn out” your advance, which means the book is really selling well, you receive royalties.
For most authors the advance is all they really earn.
If You Want to Let Your Book Translate in World Languages You can certainly just translate your book and sell it through online retailers worldwide. Most spoken languages beside English (albeit not necessarily e-book readers) are Mandarin, Spanish, Hindi, Arabic, German, Russian, Russian, Portuguese, Bengali, Japanese according to Wikipedia.
Start With Maximizing Your Foreign Presence – For FREE To maximize your presence in overseas Amazon Kindle stores, just set up an Author Central account in each of those country-specific sites where your book is available. As Amazon divided the world in single countries, announce your Countdown Deals, new book launches or Free Kindle KDP Days in several languages: Order at http://www.Fiverr.com a short translation of 10 tweets in Spanish, French, German etc. for $5 / 200 words. The countries with the most usage of eReaders, according due to a survey of Bookboon are USA, UK, Netherlands, Belgium, France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Denmark etc.
A good idea would also be to join ALLI
New rights services are growing up online to help authors meet rights buyers directly without having to travel to a book fair and using technology to extend reach. ALLi now has an arrangement with one of these, Pubmatch. Members have access to Putmatch’s premium service through ALLI (usually $79.99) at the deeply discounted rate of $9.99. Pubmatch will facilitate communication, data warehousing and the simplification of rights marketing for publishers, agents, authors and others, making it the go-to place for the international publishing community to find new titles and new talent.
International Book Fairs Do not just turn up at an international book fair, hoping to sell your book. Meetings are arranged well in advance (4-6 months) with acquisitions editors at international publishing houses, to whom new projects are pitched, and new potential publisher customers can be discovered.
Top Publisher for French Foreign Rights
If you want to talk about foreign rights with a French publisher one of the biggest in the world, Hachette who are also partnering with Phoenix Publishing & Media Group in China and holds a 25% share of Atticus in Russia.
Top Publisher for Spanish Foreign Rights – Good for U.S.A. too! Planeta leads the world’s Spanish-language publishing markets in Spain and Latin America. The company has further strongholds in Portugal and France, where it owns Editis, the country’s second-largest group. Grupo Planeta is present in 25 countries, with more than 100 imprints and a catalogue of 15,000 titles.
. Choose your foreign rights agent carefully! Most agents charge 20% (or sometimes even 25%) on foreign sales. This 20% rate is justified because normally two agents are involved (the second one being in the foreign country), and they end up splitting the commission. If you are not represented already, why not try to find agents or even publishers yourself in other countries, especially if you speak more than one language?
There are things to watch when negotiating foreign rights deals – hopefully an agent will keep an eye on these, but it’s worth knowing about it:
Term of the deal: Five years is most common, anything longer then you should be expecting a premium from the publisher.
Country / Territory for the contract: You might sign away Portuguese language rights without realizing that it will include publication in Brazil (and Mozambique, Angola, Macau, Cape Verde etc). Also, giving worldwide Spanish language rights could cause friction with any United States publishing deal, as there is a large Spanish reading audience in the US.
Tax situation in your and the potential publishers country: While there are now many treaties which allow for uninhibited flow of money between countries, you could lose some of your advance to a foreign government’s tax.
Before signing a contract with an agent or a publisher, how can an author tell if the company is good with foreign rights? Ask about their previous sales! Contact authors who work with that publisher or agent and ask them about their experience. It’s also possible to find out the name of foreign publishers and go to their web sites and see what books they have recently published.
Find out what authors the agency represents overseas, then ask those authors about their own experiences. Again, foreign rights are only a portion of an author’s income, so that’s something to bear in mind. Check your agreement with a translations rights agent carefully. Never, ever! give world rights away as standard, and you should also insist in a large upfront payment.
Every writer, no matter if they author-publish (self-publish) or if they have sold their manuscript to a publisher, have to do their own marketing. But how can you promote your book, if you are on the mercy of a publisher – trade or vanity? What if you don’t own the ISBN and if you have no access to the retailers’ publishing / author pages, such as Amazon, B&N or Apple? We had clients who’s publishers where not able to properly set up the Amazon page, did not choose the proper category, took weeks to make changes to a wrong price and months to add the images and text the author had provided for their Goodreads or Amazon page.
This is a huge problem (among many others) that authors face after they have given away their work for a pittance – or worse, have paid thousands of dollars to a vanity publisher. So, what’s the difference between both, beside the fact that they make it difficult for their authors to market their books?
Your book has only 3 months time in bookstores to sell – before being discarded!
Bookstores generally are wary of vanity books (except maybe local writers)
Authors needs to have a platform in order to build a brand
Needs to learn about the publishing / book distribution industry
Needs to plan the publishing / marketing process
Authors have to find / compare author services (POD, distribution, formatter, designer)
Authors pays for printing or ebook-formatting, editing services, cover image
Authors can decide everything: cover image, publishing date, retail price etc.
Authors can do their own or hire marketing services
Authors get up to 70% from the books retail price (or 100% if sold from own website)
Authors own their ISBN – which is FREE in Canada! and low-cost in other countrie
Bookstores generally are wary of author-published books (except maybe local writers)
Conclusion: If an author has all these challenges, waiting times (or costs to cover, in the worst scenario) – and cannot even do the necessary marketing without huge problems, what is the point in having or even paying a publisher? Why not author-publish / self-publish in the first place, and be totally independent when it comes to your marketing? Whatever you will decide, take your time, don’t rush in anything and don’t let you sell any services, before you have thoroughly evaluated them. It does not matter if your book launches a month or a year later – important is that you have a platform as a writer and that you find a way of publishing that suits you and that gives you the freedom of your own decisions. If you decide to go with a publisher, don’t forget: Real publishers sell to readers – vanity publishers sell to writers!
Please check out all previous posts of this blog (there are more than 900 of them : ) if you haven’t already. Why not sign up to receive them regularly by email? Just click on “Follow” in the upper line on each page – and then on “LIKE” next to it. There is also the “SHARE” button underneath each article where you can submit the article to Pinterest, Google+, Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr and StumpleUpon.
. OK, you transferred your book into print, digital and into an audio book. Now, how else can you leverage your hard work? Let it translate into other languages, or sell foreign rights of your book. Sell your rights separately and if you still own all the rights for your book, also consider to split it apart, in order to sell it in single articles, especially if it is a non-fiction book.
The reason to show you this info graphic is to point out the possibilities for writers to either translate (let translate) their work into foreign languages, such as Mandarin, Spanish, Portuguese, German etc. - or to sell the foreign rights to their books.
The info graphic lists the top languages on the Internet, countries highlighted are chosen due to the official status of a listed language in the country. Also included are tables on internet penetration by language and world population of language. Another consideration is which Social Networks to use to market your books worldwide. Let the person who translated your book also translate short articles for Google+, Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter. This enables you to get the attention of potential readers for your translated book.
“Twitter with its short and snappy messaging is very dependent on mobile usage and smart phones. The rise of the visual web is making Pinterest and Tumblr the fastest growing social networks on the planet. Facebook is where we share with friends and family. Google+ is embedded in Google’s web assets including Gmail, local check-ins and the mobile Android ecosystems. Google is getting the data it wants from Google+. Demographics, usage and content popularity. Meaning into it’s RANKING of SEARCH RESULTS and much more.”Here are the latest social media facts and statistics provided by the latest study by GlobalWebIndex for the second quarter of 2013. It shows clearly:
Google+ is catching up to Facebook
Google+ dominates on monthly visits
Active usage is highest on FB, then Google+ and Twitter
Pinterest is the fastest growing social network
LinkedIn is the most popular for older users
Don’t forget that on Google+ you can show cover images of your book as often as you want – contrary to other Social Media where it is only possible once a day!
Foreign Right Sales
It is not that easy to sell your foreign rights without an agent or a publisher, but it’s not impossible. Women’s fiction author Kay Raymer did the whole agent query routine in 2000, but nobody would look at her novel, Hannah Street. So she sent the manuscript to her attorney, who happened to know someone at Bertelsmann / Germany. Bertelsmann made an offer on the book, and her lawyer helped arrange the contract. As a result, Raymer’s first novel appeared in Germany in 2001, a paperback original called Das Rosenhaus.
Choose your foreign rights agent carefully!
Most agents charge 20% (or sometimes even 25%) on foreign sales (including British and translations). This 20% rate is justified because normally two agents are involved (the second one being in the foreign country), and they end up splitting the commission. If you are not represented already, why not try to find agents or even publishers yourself in other countries, especially if you speak more than one language? I just found a blog post from a successful writer, who did just that: searched the internet, found contact addresses of agents in other countries and contacted them. He wrote. Read more here. and here. How you can sell your rights or split your book in single articles can be found in this blog post: http://savvybookwriters.wordpress.com/2012/04/02/why-you-should-split-your-book-apart/
If you would like to get help in all things publishing, have your book intensively promoted and learn how to navigate social media sites: We offer all this and more for only $ 159 for 3 months. Learn more about this individual book marketing help: http://www.111Publishing.com/Seminars
Or visit http://www.e-Book-PR.com/book-promo to advertise your new book, specials or KDP Select Free Days.
Please check out all previous posts of this blog (there are 890+ of them : ) if you haven’t already. Why not sign up to receive them regularly by email? Just click on “Follow” in the upper line on each page – and then on “LIKE” next to it. There is also the “SHARE” button underneath each article where you can submit the article to Pinterest, Google+, Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr and to StumpleUpon.
. If you are serious about being a writer, you need to know a bit about the business. Let’s start with your rights as an author and how to read a publishing contract, in case you are not an author-publisher, keeping ALL your rights.
Anne Rooney summed it nicely up: “Publishing is a business and no matter how friendly and reassuring your editor, they want to make as much money out of the deal as they can. If “it’s just the standard contract” you say that’s fine as a starting point, but now you are going to make it suitable to you and your book. If they say “no one has ever objected before” that means either they are lying or no one ever has read the contract properly and taken a professional approach.”
As an author you own the copyright, and you own all the rights to your work. You can sell – or give away these rights or use in several ways:
First Serial Rights
They can be print or electronic and mean you are selling a publisher the right to publish your article once for the first time. In the case of print rights you are free to immediately sell the piece to an e-magazine or e-zine before print publication and, after the print magazine containing your article hits the newsstand, you are free to sell it again as a reprint to other print markets.
First Serial Rights Electronic
However, first serial electronic rights are different – for sample e-magazines or e-zines buy first rights for an exclusive time period, usually one year (often for the laughable amount of $5 or $10), and at the same time, ask for non-exclusive rights after that. While you can immediately sell the same piece to a print market as a “first print right,” you cannot even post the article on your own website until the year is up. After that you are free to sell the article to other electronic markets as a reprint and post it yourself online everywhere you want.
North American first serial rights
Most Canadian and US freelance authors sell North American first serial rights, reserving the right to sell in other world markets (e.g. Great Britain, Australia, Asia). Specify what type of rights you are selling: First North American Electronic Rights Only.
Second Serial Rights
These are reprint rights and apply to print and electronic markets. Never sell reprint rights, keep them at all costs. Even you will earn less money for each reprint, you can sell your work over and over again.
Other rights that authors and freelancers hold are subsidiary rights, including, but not limited to movie rights, dramatic, TV and radio rights, audio and other media rights.
However, don’t give up or sell your electronic rights to a traditional book publisher without receiving a large lump sum or at least 50% royalty from the retail price. Most publishing houses are not really experts in e-publishing and often don’t use the electronic rights to your book. But it would prevent you from e-publishing your own work or selling it to a high-royalty-paying e-publisher.
In this case the author gives up all future income from the article or book and only retains the copyright. Giving up all your rights should be only considered if a tremendous sum is paid for.
Copyright Protection in the USA and Canada
Copyright protection in Canada is automatic upon the creation of a given work, regardless of the medium of its creation, and it lasts until fifty years after the creator’s death – in the USA seventy years.
Before You Sign Any Contracts:
Always first contact your national authors’ or writers’ associations for further information and get legal advice from a lawyer who is specialized in copyright. This can save you ten thousands of dollars.
If you would like to get help in all things publishing, have your book heavily promoted and learn how to navigate social media sites: We offer all this and more for only a “token” of $1 / day for 3 months. Learn more about this individual book marketing help: http://www.111Publishing.com
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111Publishing was named after a series of guidebooks, who's titles are all starting with "111 Tips" and is a sequel of a book and magazine publishing company, founded in the 1980's in Europe. At that time the focus was on technical manuals, guide books and magazines in the aviation and travel sector, and expanded now into a wide variety of non-fiction books, travel guides and short stories. Our publishing company is located in Nova Scotia, Canada. We are committed to publish & market books and to help authors on their way to success.
“Nobody ever made money writing a book – only by selling it”. Are you one of those writers, hiding behind your laptop, terrified at the thought of “marketing”, because your skill is writing – not marketing? Authors need BOOK PROMOTION, but don’t want to appear like a “used car salesman”. Even if you are signed up with an international publishing house: You have to do your own book marketing and run a viable social media presence! We can help: Individual training and customized marketing consultations for your book and your author platform. Register for the online consultations and start your road to success!