On Writing & Publishing by Robin D. Owens

Personal notes on writing techniques, writing a novel, my writing career and threading your way through publishing a book.

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Location: Denver, United States

RITA Award Winning Author -- that's like the Oscar, folks! Futuristic/Fantasy Romance and Fantasy with Romantic Subplots.

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Saturday, January 07, 2006

Option Clause, Equal or Less Favorable Sale to another publisher (next to last post)

This is my reading and understanding of the contract. Do NOT rely solely upon it. Contact an agent or an attorney.Image hosted by Photobucket.com

All right, next bit. If you and your publisher negotiate and can't come to an agreement, the option clause ususally states that you can't sell the book elsewhere for EQUAL OR LESS FAVORABLE TERMS. Like, you want 5K, they offer 4.5K you walk away from the table. You can't then sell it to someone else for 4.5K or 4K.

One of the first things I negotiated out of my first contract was the "equal" word. So I can't sell for "less favorable" terms. HOWEVER, I have heard that "less favorable" can be finessed. What if your original publisher had your film rights and offered you 4.5K. Then you sell to another publisher for 4K but WITH film rights? Now it MAY be argued that my film rights don't amount to much, but who knows what will happen in the future? J.K. Rowling could say she loves reading Robin D. Owens' books. Then, I think, I would be very hot with adult audiences.

And one thing I DO know for sure. Legal disputes cost a lot of money. If it's not worth their (or your) time and money to sue, they won't.

One last bit in the Option Clause tomorrow. Oh, I know how incredibly joyful you will be to read legal stuff on a blog on Sunday!

Remember today that all your ideas are equal or better to anyone else's, and that they are priceless.


Blogger Michele said...

Thanks for all the tips!
Wow , you have been busy!
Great way to start 2006.

2:35 PM  
Blogger Robin D Owens said...

Nice new avatar, Michele! Glad I'm not speaking to myself, and I do know that I wish I'd had this myself before I sold.


6:02 PM  
Blogger Michele said...

Thanks Robin!
There's a story behind it. I started a second blog so I could experiment with changing things around without wrecking my regular blog. Messed up anyway. Turns out, blogger merges the profile of the first into the second so any changes, ANY, occur as if I'm changing the original.
I've gotten used to it. Now I like it. It wasn't 100% intentional, but isn't that the way serendipity works?

7:29 PM  

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