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  1. #11
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    Little Swallow: You might consider approaching an agent or literary attorney. The fact that you have an offer on the table should make that task of finding an agent much simpler. An agent or attorney (who would likely do the job for a flat fee) could advise you on the very questions you're asking, and the investment would be well worth it.

    Congratulations and good luck.



  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by jayce View Post
    Little Swallow: You might consider approaching an agent or literary attorney. The fact that you have an offer on the table should make that task of finding an agent much simpler. An agent or attorney (who would likely do the job for a flat fee) could advise you on the very questions you're asking, and the investment would be well worth it.

    Congratulations and good luck.
    Yes, I think that's good advice. Little Swallow clearly needs some expert on-the-ground help with this.

  3. #13
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    Thank you Gary, Emily, Jena and Jayce for taking the time to reply. I have got much information from your comments.

    I understand it is difficult to say whether $ 4500 is less or more without actually seeing my book. The solution is perhaps as jayce said, to get an agent. But now that I am already in contact with the publisher, will an agent take over the work from there? What's left seems to be an agreement on the terms of the contract. Surely, I have no idea what may be best for me. I hope I can maintain the publisher's interest while I (or probably my agent) converse with them about the terms.

    Thank you jayce for wishing me luck. I'm a bit nervous.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Little Swallow View Post
    Thank you Gary, Emily, Jena and Jayce for taking the time to reply. I have got much information from your comments.

    I understand it is difficult to say whether $ 4500 is less or more without actually seeing my book. The solution is perhaps as jayce said, to get an agent. But now that I am already in contact with the publisher, will an agent take over the work from there? What's left seems to be an agreement on the terms of the contract. Surely, I have no idea what may be best for me. I hope I can maintain the publisher's interest while I (or probably my agent) converse with them about the terms.

    Thank you jayce for wishing me luck. I'm a bit nervous.
    It is generally easier to get an agent after you've landed a publisher (or at least, as in this case, gotten an offer from one) than before. The main problem is the time needed to track one down (and the expense to you of adding an agent in the equation--although, as has been suggested, an agent might be able to get enough more than the offer to make getting them worthwhile). If this is an academic press, you might find they won't work with an agent, though (on the grounds that there's not enough money in the deal to support an agent as well as an author. I have edited for a lot of academic publishers, and invariably, I make more to edit the book than the author is ever going to get for writing it. Academics published to meet tenure requirements, not primarily to make money off the book. This is one of those instantances I was posting about where the author would be pleased to see $4,500 profit for a book).

    But, if you to get an agent, you'd need to get cracking on getting that done to keep the offer on the table.

    I trust this is a trade press not an academic press that's made the offer--or I'm afraid the thread is back to me indicating that's probably a very good offer. (And academic presses don't usually give advances, for the information of those who think this is always part of a deal. They more often expect the author to come with grant money to help underwrite the costs.)

  5. #15
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    I heard/read (somewhere back in the mists of time) that Poets & Writers will offer anyone--member or not--the names of literary attorneys who could negotiate a contract. I don't know if that still is or ever was correct, but here's a link to their website: Poets & Writers

  6. #16
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    Thank you Gary and jayce once again.

  7. #17
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    I agree with those who say get an agent. Having an offer on the table should make you more desirable to a good agent, and a good agent is likely to negotiate royalties in addition to the advance (may even be able to get you more up front), unless this particular publisher only buys the license outright and doesn't pay royalties.

    Just FYI, I got a smaller advance than you've been offered on my first book (novel), but I earned way more, ultimately, in royalties. That said, I've never written in non-fiction, so don't have a clue what the norm might be there.

  8. #18
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    I didn't make over $4,500 on my first published book. Did you?
    Yes, way more. It was/is nonfiction, too.

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