Re: Typical Book Deal?

Subject: Re: Typical Book Deal?
From: Bruce Byfield <bbyfield -at- progeny -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 24 Jan 2001 10:17:50 -0800

Elna Tymes wrote:
> I can second the bad experiences mentioned in dealing with computer book
> publishers. It wasn't always like that, but when I left the field some ten
> years ago, it was becoming like that.
> The basic problem is that the shelf life of a new computer book is maybe six
> months at best. And how well the book does usually is directly related to how
> well the program or device on which the book is based does in the market.

Writing computer books almost makes novel writing seem lucrative by
comparison. I've been in negotiation with a couple of companies,
both for myself and for business associates, and the churn and burn
mentality of the publishers makes clear that, whatever your
motivations, they shouldn't include money.

In the most recent example, a publisher wouldn't pay the person I
was representing for some introductory material, but refused a
request for an insert advertising a relevant service or any other
alternative form of payment. Apparently, busy professionals are
expected to donate their time for love of the subject.

Bruce Byfield 604.421.7177 bbyfield -at- progeny -dot- com
Director of Marketing and Communications, Progeny Linux Systems
Contributing Editor, Maximum Linux

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