When Your Books Outlive You – Estate Planning Experts Offer Advice for Writers

estate planning for authors last willSo, you’ve built a writing empire, or more likely, you’ve published a couple of books and they sell enough to pay your cable bill each month (or your coffee bill, if on a smaller scale). Now, you die; what happens? Well, that is going to depend on how you’ve planned for it. I talked to a couple of estate planning experts on what self-published writers need to do to ensure their intellectual property assets (that fancy legal term for your books) pass on in a way that you want. Estate planning, like a good novel, has a few twists and turns, so here’s the skinny so you don’t get caught off guard. Continue reading “When Your Books Outlive You – Estate Planning Experts Offer Advice for Writers”

Collaborative Contracts for Authors

collaboration contract for authorsIn this age of cooperation among writers (much better than competition!), it seems like we see a lot more collaborative efforts. From multiple writers on a single book to multiple writers banding together to create boxed sets, more and more authors are finding supportive boosts from working together: the antithesis of the lonely writer squirreled away at a corner desk, writing in dim isolation. The only drawback (if that’s what you want to call it) is the added consideration of how rights are assigned and profits are distributed.

My brother and I have found that we feed off each other’s creativity. We’re both writers, but we differ in that he’s got the knack for writing screenplays, a fairly bare-bones way of setting down a story, while I write novels where I can expand and expound. Either of us, I think, would be hard-pressed to write in the other’s style. So we’ve worked out a way to combine our efforts so all the bases are covered. Continue reading “Collaborative Contracts for Authors”

Yet Another Reason to Be an Indie

Who me? I would *never* do anything like that!
Who me? I would *never* do anything like that!

Do you secretly dream of being traditionally published?

When someone you know is offered a contract, do you experience a moment of intense envy? Do you smile, and say ‘congratulations’ while silently screaming ‘why not me’?

Don’t worry, your dirty little secret is safe because….yes, hand-on-heart, I too share your shame. Despite everything I have learned about the traditional publishing world in the last two years, I still haven’t completely quashed the romantic notions I used to hold about the Big Six. I guess it’s like the dream of finding Mr Right and living happily ever after, it never completely dies.

But to quote the Bard, “All that glitters is not gold…”

Every contract we sign, whether it be with Amazon, or one of the New York set, will contain a warranties and indemnities clause, and the language is remarkably similar. In effect, this clause absolves the ‘publisher’ from any blame or financial responsibility if the book breaks any laws. That is, if the poop hits the fan, the author is responsible for the clean-up. Continue reading “Yet Another Reason to Be an Indie”

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