Shady Business: Are YOU being PLAYED???
How can one spot when they have been played for a fool? Most of the times you discover you have been played when everything is said and done, after the fact. I unfortunately know how it feels to be played and made a fool of. There are things that an author, old or new, should do prior to getting involved with anyone who intends to help you build up your brand or sell your books. Some publishers may approach you are looking someone to help them make money. This could be beneficial to you and that publisher but it is always best to get another opinion about the situation. Let me give a real life example that actually happened to me…..
Some authors that need to get experience are sought out by publishers who need people to write for them. You have to be aware of what you are signing up for. Just so you know a publisher who wants to publish your work should be paying for the expenses that come with producing a book. In my case, I sent my manuscript to a publisher, and that publisher loved my work so much that instead of publishing my manuscript the publisher wanted me to co write a book with them. I agreed. When doing a co-write with a publisher, there are a few ways this can done. A publisher can either pay all the expenses and giving you a percentage or you and that publisher can split the cost, and you get equal rights and say so for the production of the book. I got NOTHING.
The publisher asked me for half of certain expenses but was aware of my financial difficulties at the time. It would have been beneficial for the publisher to do one of three things: A) pay for all expenses and modify my contract so that instead of me getting 50% royalties and copyright, I would receive some or no copyright and would get a percentage of royalties B) put the project on hold until my finances were better or C) inform me that they decided to go with another author. None of these options were pursued. The publisher sold me on the idea that we would make all decisions together, but this was never the case. The publisher was making decisions then asking me to pay for them. This is unfair, and I didn’t want to pay for anything I had NO say so in. The conclusion of my story is that this publisher is currently in a lot of legal trouble. Our book, or should I say her book with both of our names on it, sold VERY well. I, however, didn’t see any profit from the sales of the book. Even though I didn’t lose any money from this deal, but I lost the time I spent writing it as well as my ego taking a hit.
Don’t ever be afraid to do your research about any publisher’s business dealings with other authors or people in the industry. When we started working together, this publisher was well-known but no one had complaints about the work that was being produced by this person.
I say all of this to say that anyone could be taken advantage of by someone who sees a quick hustle. It’s ok to admit when you have been made a fool of. I was made a fool of, but I am now moving on from this ordeal.
Above is from Drica's Corner: dricascorner.tumblr.com