Know Your Rights…

The last few weeks have been an interesting experience for me as an author, one I hope I never have to go through. Due to some issues with Sea Crest eBooks, I requested they release me from my contract with them and remove my ebook Light in the Darkness from sale. They returned my rights to me without argument, which I am grateful for. But this got me to thinking about what writers should know about their rights.

This post is by no means exhaustive, but I want to share a few things I’ve learned in my journey as an author.

1. Authors have the right to contact their publisher if they’re concerned about something to do with their book. In my case, it was suddenly discovering my book for sale somewhere due to an apparent change in policy I hadn’t been notified of.

2. Authors have the right to make sure the publisher upholds the contract. I had to contact my publisher about a clause that had been ignored. The issue was eventually resolved.

3. Authors have the right to ask questions. If you are concerned about something your publisher is doing or not doing, you should feel comfortable contacting them. Sometimes, a simple email is all it takes to clear up an issue that, without being addressed, could grow into an insurmountable problem.

The only other thing I have to add is know who you’re submitting to. I was  already leery of new publishers, but after my recent experience, I’ve learned to be even more leery and only go with publishers I trust implicitly. There is one brand new publisher I plan on submitting to as soon as I rewrite my manuscript, because I know the person in charge and trust her to do right by her authors…something she’s already proven she’ll do through her work with White Rose Publishing.

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