Publishing/Writing: Insights, News, Intrigue

07/31/2010

Authors Have Real Power in the Wylie/Random House Fiasco

Filed under: Andrew Wylie,authors have power,e-books,Random House — gator1965 @ 12:03 pm

Let’s talk, again – but from a different perspective, about the Wylie literary agency entering the publishing business with their Odessey Editions e-book publishing deal with Amazon.

The air is thick with high-stakes suspense and intrigue in the publishing world!

And what is at stake in this standoff?…Publishing rights, that’s what. And who initially owns ALL rights? Neither the agents nor the publishers! The authors (creators) do. So, it seems to me they are the ones who hold the true position of power…And authors are the one common denominator with both publishers and agents and the entity that drives their money-making capability!

So, why is all the publicity and hoopla concerned with Random House and Wylie and only secondarily with the authors they both supposedly “represent”?

I’ll tell you why, because writers are not organized as well as a business industry/force to be reckoned with. Oh, there’s the Authors Guild, but they are weak as water and came out with a statement RE the Wylie/RH fiasco to this affect:

“publishers have brought this on themselves.” …Well, DUH!

The only thing at odds here is who owns the digital publishing rights before they came into existence. The authors owns ALL rights to their work unless they sell or contract them to others…And they cannot sell or contract any right that does not exist at the time of the contract or transaction.

I suggest all authors go back and review the exact wording in contracts with their agents and publishers and between their agents and publishers…I think they will find they can sell this new publishing right to whomever they desire.

Read this insightful article: Agent vs. Publisher: Could the Andrew Wylie/Random House stand-off happen in Canada? by Mark Medley in the Canadian National Post

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