What are my options for pre-publication reviews?
Your publication agreement will contain a provision regarding providing Advanced Reader Copies (ARCs), also referred to as Galleys, to you to attempt to obtain pre-publication reviews. You will be provided with a PDF ARC or Galley to submit to reviewers as well as the option to request print ARCs or Galleys. If you request print ARCs/Galleys, you will agree to reimburse for the printing costs plus shipping and handling and any taxes. Authors are responsible for identifying reviewers and submitting ARCs/Galleys to them. The only exception to this is if a reviewer requires that the request come from the publisher; in that case, we will submit it for you provided we receive all the required information and reimbursement for any out-of-pocket costs. Whether an author chooses to submit PDF or print ARCs/Galleys to reviewers should be decided on an individual basis; if there are any factors that might make a review more likely, such as a connection to a current topic in the media or personal connections to reviewers, we recommend that authors do submit for pre-publication reviews. If none of those factors exist, it will not hurt a book to submit and may help, but since there are costs involved, we leave this up to the author to decide. Though a pre-publication review never hurts, authors published by such a small publisher as LBP should keep in mind that book promotion and marketing can be described by the cliche "it's a marathon, not a sprint," because, unlike the largest publishing houses, we are not going to pull your book from print if it doesn't do well in the first few weeks, which provides time to more slowly build momentum regarding reviews and sales. The decision of whether to send a reviewer a PDF or print ARC/Galley will be made by the author according to his or her preferences and the reviewers' specifications, preferences, and/or requirements. Note that this is only referring to pre-publication reviews where certain reviewers (mostly large publications) require ARCs or Galleys three to six months prior to publication. Seeking post-publication reviews is highly recommended in every circumstance.
I’ve already provided LBP my manuscript when I submitted it for publication. Why do I have to deliver it again?
With your submission, you provided your manuscript in PDF format; LBP needs to have it in Word or Rich Text Format, cleared of any formatting. The later date gives you a chance to change anything you’d like to before final submission.
How do I clear my manuscript of formatting?
First, in Word, under the Home tab, click on the paragraph symbol (¶); this will show all of the formatting present in your document. Several of the paragraph symbols in a row means you have used hard returns rather than page breaks. Delete these paragraph symbols, and at the end of each chapter or poem, insert a hard page break by pushing the “CTRL” and “ENTER”/”RETURN” keys at the same time. If you see an arrow pointing toward the right, this means you have pushed the tab key rather than using the tab function in Word, so go through and delete all of these arrows. If you have not broken your typewriter habits, you may also have hard paragraph returns at the end of the line - please delete this and allow the words to wrap from line to line. There should only be paragraph symbols at the end of paragraphs. This should get your document ready for publishing.
Provision 4C states that the Publisher can deem that the materials delivered by Author are unacceptable and request Author corrects any defects. Does this mean that I have no control over the manuscript, i.e. that you can rewrite the entire manuscript if you find it “unacceptable”?
LBP wouldn’t rewrite the manuscript. This is included in case for some reason the author makes sweeping changes that weren’t expected and acceptable.
How flexible is the timeline that is included in the agreement?
This is just a proposed timeline and a way to keep us both on track to getting the book published. LBP includes conservative deadlines, so it’s possible your book may be published sooner than indicated. If necessary, we can change any timeline item by agreement or by necessity should there be some unanticipated delay beyond one or both of our control (such as a pandemic). Please note that if you do not meet a deadline, the rest of the timeline will be delayed by the same amount of time that passed since the deadline.
Can you define the nature of the editing/proofreading process? Does it include substantive/developmental editing or just copy editing? And does the proofreading include formatting? Why do I have to review the proof if you have already performed an edit? And if you perform the edit why aren't you responsible for errors, not me?
LBP will do a copy edit (not substantive or developmental) and then a proofread after we receive the printed proof. This blog post I did might help explain the revision/editing process better.
Having your review after editing is part of our collaboration and working as a team. You will likely find that with any publishing agreement, the author is ultimately responsible for the manuscript. The author must be ultimately responsible for everything in the book.
The agreement mentions that out-of-pocket expenses will be deducted from any royalties owed to me. Does this include my Author copies?
You are not required to purchase any Author copies, but if you do, these will need to be paid for immediately and will not be deducted from royalties. Half of the estimated amount will be due before the books are ordered, with the balance due upon delivery of the books.
Since you mention both Amazon e-books (Kindle) and Draft 2 Digital and only Amazon paperback does this mean that your focus as a publisher is on digital, and that is your strength and expertise vs. print copy?
No, not at all. When you publish print on Amazon it goes everywhere, but when you publish an e-book on Amazon it’s only available on Kindle. Publishing the e-book on Draft 2 Digital gets it available for Nook, Kobi, iBooks, and the other e-book platforms.
What is the 55% discount to retailers; is it 55% off the retail price? If so, how much money do I make? Regarding accepting returns (which I understand many retailers require or certainly find as an incentive to carry the book) and “assuming the cost therein,” how much would the cost per book be?
Yes, the 55% is discounted from the retail price and it is what retailers require to carry paperback books, with some also requiring allowing returns. I don’t know what the exact royalty will be for each book as that depends on the platforms, but your part would probably be a lot less than you’d hope (around $0.50 per $11.99 book sold). This just applies to books sold wholesale to bookstores. There will be higher royalties for books sold directly by Amazon, etc., and that amount varies.
Does this paragraph stating that Publisher will review any marketing plan submitted by Author imply that LBP has no marketing plan, only the author does? And if you do, why not outline the details here?
You will find with all publishers, including traditional publishers, that the author is responsible for all marketing. Unfortunately, those of us without a name like Stephen King don’t get marketing support from our publishers. A typical traditional publisher also only offers about 8% royalties for paperbacks, so because I offer higher royalties, I depend on the author for more marketing. Please see the “publishing options” page on this website for more details on what will be included if you publish with LBP.
Regarding the provision stating the Author retains all profits from bookstores that he/she has placed books in, the profit is after the amount to print the book and the additional percentage on top of this cost paid to Legacy Book Press. Is this correct? And does this section imply that LBP will not place my book in bookstores and that LBP does not deal with book distributors that bookstores order from like Ingram, etc.?
You will pay the cost plus our agreed on additional percentage and pay nothing further to LBP. So if you sell a book direct for $10 and the cost-plus figure is $4, you’ll make about $6. I do not directly place books in bookstores. The books will be available from Ingram because that is where I purchase the ISBN number (therefore, it’s listed in their books in print), so it will be available to any bookstore who wishes to order it, but I don’t have the resources to pursue the book stores. Again, the higher royalties I offer is meant to offset the additional work I ask of the authors. One day, I hope to expand to get LBP books into more distribution channels.
Why would there be changes to the book after publication? And does the $10 per page cost to make changes include re-pagination, so if the content change is adding a paragraph on page one, and the rest of the book re-paginates, is the charge $10 or $10 times all the pages in the book? And is the $10 for every new book printed?
This is in there to encourage the author to carefully review the book during the regular proofing process and not request excessive changes after the book is published. Invariably, the book will not be 100% perfect when published, which happens even in the big houses that have many people who review the book before publication. The $10 per page would include the repagination if required. And if it is an obvious error like a typo, I will make the change without charging you; the $10 per page will only be charged for "desired" as opposed to "required" changes.
Does LBP determine the book’s price?
Ultimately, yes, but considering the author’s opinion. For example, I’m not going to charge $20 for your book because nobody would buy it at that price, nor am I going to charge $5 because it would not cover the production cost.
How much control will I have over the book's title and cover?
Ultimately, as with all traditional publishers, the final decision on title and cover is made by the Publisher. However, I am very flexible and believe that there are several ways to do something "right." Unless it's way "out there," I will agree to pretty much any title you like, which can be changed up until the time that the book is assigned an ISBN number. For the cover, I'll actually depend on you to provide ideas and any artwork (with permission) if you have it. Otherwise, you or the cover designer will locate stock images. If you have a cover designer in mind that you'd like to work with, I'm certainly open to that, provided that any payment to your chosen cover designer is to be negotiated between the two of you.
Why is the provision stating the book will be published within eighteen months of the initial delivery date needed if dates are indicated in other provisions?
This is typical of publishing contracts. It is a protection for you in case the other timeline (which is more compressed) gets delayed. Of course, this would apply to delays created by the publisher and not the author; for example, you can't hold on to your printed proof for several months and expect it to be published by the eighteen-month deadline.
“Advertising, Promotion, and other exploitation” are vague terms. Can you please provide details of what advertising and promotion LBP is committing to for my book? And the cost of obtaining ISBN number and registration at the Library of Congress are born by me, not LBP?
This was listed on the page on the website referenced above; it is essentially the press release, a listing on the website, and promotion of other events/news on social media (mainly Facebook and/or Twitter) when you provide the information and time permits. Traditional publishing means that you don’t pay anything upfront, not that you don’t pay anything. These are out of pocket expenses.
What does it mean by the percentage of royalty paid of the publisher's NET REVENUES?
Net Revenues means what the books sells for minus the cost, which is essentially the royalties Amazon or whoever pays LBP. This amount varies so you will receive our agreed percentage of whatever Legacy Book Press gets per copy sold. I will provide an itemization of this with your royalty check. I also want to be upfront with you that bookselling is a tough road and unless you can really hustle with your marketing, you will likely receive just the one royalty check per year. If you can find a traditional publisher to pay higher royalties and do significant marketing for you, I encourage you to go with that publisher and wish you all the luck in the world.
As related to the question above, can you quantify net revenue on my book’s retail price?
I’m sorry that I cannot. This means, however, that if a book store purchases copies of your book but later returns them (and allowing this is required by many booksellers), then that chargeback for the returned book will be deducted from the royalties you are owed.
I think the provision stating that if LBP goes bankrupt the rights shall revert to Author upon payment of $100 and the agreement would terminate without notice means that if LBP goes bankrupt or liquidates, $100 would be the “fair market value” in order to receive the right of publication. And since you are a one-person company with one-person resources, what about illness, or major distraction of a personal nature in addition to bankruptcy and liquidation?
Yes, $100 would be the “fair market value” Honestly, if I go bankrupt, I would most likely just give the files to you along with the rights to republish as you wish because your $100 would be the least of my worries. Yes, you are taking a chance since I’m a one-person operation so that’s something you just need to decide if it’s worth it for you or not.
Who determines the original cost of production? And I don't understand the reference to “the plates” since because what I understand is there’s only Amazon and digital distribution on-demand printing rather than mechanical printing.
This is a standard agreement with standard language; that’s why it says “or.” There would be no plates and would just be the digital files, which are used to publish the print and e-books.