Book payment (was Re: Issola Spoilers vs. Orca Spoilers)

pddb at demesne.com pddb at demesne.com
Fri Mar 14 10:35:05 PST 2003

On Fri, Mar 14, 2003 at 09:01:04AM -0700, Andrew Lias wrote:

> I don't know what the equivilent situation is with book clubs, but I know 
> that most authors do a good job of managing their rights (and that most 
> publishers don't live down to their counterparts in the recording industry).
> Typically an author will sign a contract that says something like 1st North 
> American Printing Rights which will allow the publication house to perform a 
> specific run of books in a specific region.  I would expect that similar 
> contracts would have to be signed to book club prints.
> In such a case, I would (wildly) guess that an author might get a flat fee 
> rather than a royalty, but I would be surprised if the author didn't get 
> anything.

In my own contracts, mostly the original publisher buys book club
rights and agrees to pay the author fifty percent of whatever the
book club pays the publisher for the right to issue a book club
edition.  There's usually a whole list of specific rights that the
publisher is acquiring, and the boilerplate often says the author
will get fifty percent of the proceeds.  Sometimes this gets adjusted
upwards, and sometimes it's lower.  Sometimes various rights the
publisher wants are crossed off and the author retains them -- foreign
rights sometimes come into this category.  So the actual agreement
if there is a book club edition is between publisher and book club,
but the author gets some additional money, as you say.


Pamela Dean Dyer-Bennet           (pddb at demesne.com)
"I will open my heart to a blank page
   and interview the witnesses."  John M. Ford, "Shared World"