Saturday, October 23, 2010

Why do some publishers do that?

No parties will be named so.

Two publishers have received request for return of rights back and handled it in a very unprofessional manner... They have so far, to my knowledge, ignored them. Why?

I mean honestly. If an author isn't happy at a publisher and request rights back, why keep them? All it does is cause even more animosity in the author. That animosity grows and the next thing you know lawyers are involved, the court system and even the Romance Writers of America (RWA). Not to mention the behind the site bad mouthing that goes on in private emails.

Why not just give them their rights back and let them go on their way? These two publishers have had blog after blog hashing out all the sorted details. To the point in some cases where READERS won't purchase from that company in solitarity with the authors. Now the publishers look bad, the authors that are happy are being hurt and in a few cases chastising those that want to leave.

If an author wants to leave - why keep them? It may be for no reason other than the author has a personality clash with someone, or wants to rework a book to make it better. But they are ignored. Then they get angry. When all it would take is a few clicks of the mouse to delete the books from other vendors and their own website, signing a release of rights, dating it and emailing it to the author - all could be done, I'd guess, in a few hours at most a week with epublishers. Print books probably longer.

One publisher stated, when asked, that they have to go to court about the right revisions. Why? Did they go before a judge when the signed a contract? If they did - okay but if not why do they need to do that now? Why change from 90 DAYS to 90 BUSINESS DAYS? Why are they keeping unhappy authors? In my state we have a right to work program - meaning you can leave your job for any reason you want including "I just don't want to work their any more."

I understand contracts - but if you (publisher) gives a termination clause then live by it. Right?


  1. If you find out the answer, share.

    The really sad thing - it impacts the good publishers, too. People don't trust them and the whole industry starts getting a bad rep.

    T D McKinney

  2. Oh Sweetie,

    Some people like having power. It defines them and gives them delusions of grandeur. Releasing authors means they have not the level of control over their "minions" their delusions have convinced them they have. Instead they want to get crueller and more difficult.

    There needs to be a business watchdog where such situations can be mediate within the business ratehr than having to resport to the Courts. That place does not yet exist...and if it did, would it become corrupt because of the power it affords?

    I wish I knew what the ultimate answer was. All we can do is stick together and try to make the generations coming up behind us aware of the pitfalls and hopefully avoid the pitfalls we have endured.