The Author as Publisher (Dream? Or Nightmare?)

Another fascinating and informative post from Kristine Kathryn Rusch. This time about the use of contract addendums to grab the rights of authors.

Are you ready to stand on your own and keep the publishers and agents out of the equation?

Here’s a litmus test.

Which of the following best describes you and your feelings about personal finances?

a) You are comfortable hiring a financial planner to handle things for you (or would be if you had enough money for it to make sense to do so). You’re reassured by the idea that the planner is a professional who knows more than you do about the subject, and you trust that any conflicts of interest that may be inherent within the relationship will generally be resolved to the benefit of you and your interests.

b) Although you aren’t naive about your own ability to beat the market, the thought of having a third party trying to beat the market with your money (and taking a cut either way) doesn’t seem like the right way to go. You’d rather invest the money yourself (i.e., in low-cost mutual funds), learning what you need to know to make practical if safe investments, and ultimately maintain control over what happens to your money without paying someone else to be involved.

If you answered a), you may be temperamentally suited toward trusting publishers and agents. If you’re fortunate enough to have a choice between traditional publishing and indie publishing, you should still check to see whether the publishing contracts are in your best interests, but you might be fine with giving them the benefit of the doubt and expecting things to work out for the best.

But if you answered b) (or, as in my case, “b, b, b, hell yes b!”) you’ll probably look forward to not being involved with the whole mess.

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