Advice for Authors Entering Into Their First Publishing Contract

Publishing contracts can be confusing and intimidating, especially for first time authors. How do you make sure you're getting a fair deal? By working with a professional that knows how publishing contracts work. This may be a literary agent or attorney. First time authors don't have a lot of bargaining power, says literary agent Steve Hutson, but if you know what you're doing you can negotiate a better deal. Hutson has never seen a publishing contract that he can't improve for an author, whether that's through a higher royalty, higher advance, or by holding back certain rights.

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  • I am publishing my first book and hope to finish the writing within the next 2 or so months. I am self publishing with print on demand. The book is non-fiction and is about a testcase specification for a large scene Holodeck. In the book I cover several different types of Holodeck and I also discuss a high level design of an optical computer and show how this can be used in a larger Holodeck motherboard via tiling. I found you post helpful but I think I have already signed a contract but I think I might follow your advice and haggle a little when other expenses arise, coloured diagram count and black and white picture count etc. I found your post helpful.