Re: Royalties question

Subject: Re: Royalties question
From: John Hedtke <jhedtke -at- OZ -dot- NET>
Date: Fri, 8 Mar 1996 04:44:34 GMT

"Dana B. Mackonis" <writer -at- handel -dot- jlc -dot- net> wrote:

>My attorney just called me about one of his clients, a programmer that has
>been asked to write a book and they are offering her royalties. She has no
> idea what a fair offer would be. Can someone who has had experience in
>this, please email me privately or post to the list what a fair % is for

>Can someone also send me information about electronic rights and how you may
>have handled those in connection with a book deal.

>any information will be greatly appreciated, and if it is of interest to
>those on the list, I will summarize and post. Thanks...

I've written 12 books so far (most of them computer books) and I
lecture on how to get published. I'd suggest 10-15% royalties with no
exclusions (such as "15% royalty unless the discount rate is over 50%,
in which case the royalty drops to 10%").

Some publishers are not IMO trustworthy (based on the number of
lawsuits by authors I've heard about -- when the number hits double
digits, you know something's happening). Asking around about
publishers is a good idea.

Publishers I work with now include Osborne/McGraw-Hill, MIS: Press (a
division of Henry Holt & Co), Ventana Communications, and Peachpit
Press. I'd also be eager to work with IDG or Addison-Wesley at some
time, but I haven't approached them yet with an idea that they could
do better than anyone else.

For more information, look at "How To Be Your Own Literary Agent" by
Richard Curtis.

Yours Truly,

John Hedtke
Nothing in this article is legal advice. It's all just opinions.

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