Archive for the ‘Contracts’ Category

re: Can I Use Classic Rock Song Lyrics?

posted 8/3/16

Dear Editor…

I am working on a new short story, and I make use of several classic rock songs. They are integral parts of the story and character development, and I use around 3-4 lines per song. “Fair Use” guidelines are of course vague and my main concern is an editor not publishing due to copyright concerns. So how should I go about this?

Sincerely,
BB

Click here to read the answer...

re: Must I Contact Descendants for Biography?

posted 12/14/15

Dear Editor…

During the recent Picture Book Idea Month hosted by Tara Lazar, I had a question that popped up (and was referred your way). I have a nonfiction biography I’m working on (creative nonfiction). If the person still has possible living descendants, do you track them down for permission to write about the historical person (if they’re not someone famous)? What would a publisher’s or editor’s perspective be on a project like this? Any idea?

Sincerely,
Jena

Click here to read the answer...

re: Wait for Agent or Enter Contest?

posted 4/29/15

Dear Editor…

For several months I had planned to enter a YA novel contest with a small Indie publisher. The window to do this is from May 1 to June 30. Recently I was asked to submit a full of this same novel to a requesting agent that I thought was a no response. The contest is for unagented authors. How do I handle this if don’t hear from agent before the deadline?

Sincerely,
Unagented But Hopeful

Click here to read the answer...

re: Can My Small Press Book Get a New Life with a Big Publisher?

posted 4/10/14

Dear Editor…

I have a book published by a small press. It was never reviewed by any of the major kidlit reviewers prior to publication. However, an editor at one of them later told me she would have reviewed it had she known it wasn’t self-published. The book received positive reviews. I’m working on new projects, but still feel this project didn’t get its best shot. Is there a process for submitting a small-press book to large publishers when sales have not reflected the book’s potential?

Thank you,
M.

Click here to read the answer...

re: What Lurks in the Fine Print of Writing Contests?

posted 3/1/13

Dear Editor…

Is it all right to submit the same piece of writing to more than one contest?

Sincerely,
Elizabeth

Click here to read the answer...

re: I Don’t Want to Bug My Agent, But…

posted 12/20/12

Dear Editor…

My agent will be negotiating a two-book deal with a publisher for me. An experienced children’s author friend of mine brought up four issues I might want to talk to my agent about: separate accounting for the two books, escalation clause, electronic rights split, and who has the right to sell the film rights. My main questions to you: Should I talk to my agent about this before she starts negotiating? Just bring up one or two of these issues now? Or wait and see what she and the editor come up with first and then get into it? (Is this last option a bit late in the game?)

Thanks,
Debut Author

Click here to read the answer...

re: President Obama’s Book Contract v. Mine . . . Any Similarities?

posted 9/14/12

Dear Editor…

Business Insider just ran the article “How Barack Obama Made His Fortune” by Walter Hickey that included details of President Obama’s book deal for The Audacity of Hope. Obviously I’d never get a $1.9 million advance, but how about the rest of the percentages? Would my book contract look like that?

Thanks,
Anonymous

Click here to read the answer...

re: How Long Does a Publisher Have the Rights to My Book?

posted 6/28/12

Dear Editor…

When you sign a contract, does the publisher get the rights to that book for its whole copyright time?

Thanks,
R.

Click here to read the answer...

re: Can I Use That Title, Too?

posted 10/26/11

Dear Editor…

Is it OK to use the same title for a new YA novel as an already published adult novel?

Thank you,
Laurie

Click here to read the answer...

Guest Editor Randy Morrison re: Legality of Using Real People in Fiction

posted 9/28/11

Dear Editor…

I was wondering what legal problems (if any) are associated with using real people as characters in fiction? I’m not talking Elvis, or someone who would obviously have an estate with a problem, more like a fantasy novel about people who have disappeared through the ages (like Louis Le Prince, or Dorothy Arnold.) What’s the rule? Is it easier to just avoid it altogether and name them something else?

Thanks,
Megan

Click here to read the answer...