Sunday, May 20, 2012

What's Up With the Lawsuits?

Dear Author's Jane (who's a lawyer in her day job) put up a great post about the lawsuits against the publishers and Apple. She explains what's going on, what the complaint actually is, who's in trouble and for what, and who's not in trouble and why. There's some legalese, but the explanations are clear and very readable. Highly recommended for anyone interested in the business of publishing.


Thursday, May 10, 2012

Anthology Markets

If you've just wandered in off the internet, hi and welcome. :) I do these posts every month, so if this post isn't dated in the same month you're in, click here to make sure you're seeing the most recent one.

Markets with specific deadlines are listed first, "Until Filled" markets are at the bottom. There are usually more details on the original site; always click through and read the full guidelines before submitting. Note that some publishers list multiple antho guidelines on one page, so after you click through you might have to scroll a bit.


31 May 2012 -- Professor Challenger Anthology -- ed. J.R. Campbell and Charles Prepolec, Edge Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing


A broad range of new and original stories built around Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's LOST WORLD character Professor George Edward Challenger. Stories derived from the aftermath of events in the Lost World are welcome however simply revisiting or rehashing the Lost World without good cause is not. Challenger is a man of science first and foremost, not an explorer. Mash-ups or crossovers with public domain literary characters are welcome.

For inspiration think X-files, Quartermass, DR. Who, cryptozoology, aliens among us, supernatural occurrences, science gone awry in a Dr. Moreau, Invisible Man, Dr Jekyll vein, nature run amuck, monsters large and small, world threatening cataclysm, Lovecraft mythos, think H.G. Wells, Jules Verne, E.R. Burroghs, John Wyndham, Nigel Kneale, alternate history, new lost places, steampunk, whatever -- Be creative.

Mine the potential for all it's worth! Push it out there, get weird, play, have fun!


== The anthology is part invitation and part open submission. Priority will be given to invited authors but an invitation to submit is not a guarantee of acceptance. A minimum of two slots will be held for open submissions. Acceptance is based entirely on suitability of story and quality of writing.
== The maximum length for stories is 10,000 words, with shorter works preferred.
== Do not query before submitting.
== Email submissions to:
== Emails MUST contain the word "submission" in the subject line, or they will be deleted automatically by the server. Please also include the story title in the subject line.
== Submissions MUST come in an attachment: Rich Text Format (.rtf) or Microsoft Word (.doc) are the only acceptable formats.
== Emails MUST contain a cover letter in the body of the email; for security reasons, email attachments with no cover letter will be deleted unread and unanswered.
== Cover letter: include your name, the title of your story, your full contact information (address, phone, email), and a brief bio. Do not describe or summarize the story.
== Reprints (stories having previously appeared in English in any format, print or electronic, including but not limited to any form of web publication) will NOT be considered.
== Submission format: no strange formatting, colour fonts, changing fonts, borders, backgrounds, etc. Leave italics in italics, NOT underlined. Put your full contact information on the first page (name, address, email address, phone). No headers, no footers, no page numbering. DO NOT leave a blank line between paragraphs. Indent paragraphs. ALWAYS put a # to indicate scene breaks (a blank line is NOT enough).
== ALWAYS include your full contact information (name/address/email/phone number) on the first page of the attached submission.
== This is a professional market paying up to 5 cents per word plus a single copy of the book. Full rate to 7,500 words, half rate for balance to 10,000 words.
== Rights: for original fiction, first World English publication, with a two-month exclusive from publication date; for all, non-exclusive anthology rights; all other rights remain with the author.
== Spelling: the editors will consider stories using British, Canadian and American spellings.
== Response time: initial responses (no / rewrite request / hold for further consideration) will be prompt, usually within fifteen days. Please query if you've not heard back within 30 days.
== We do not advise that you submit more than one story.
== Simultaneous submissions are not encouraged but are acceptable. Should you receive a "rewrite request" or "hold for further consideration" response, please indicate immediately whether your story is under consideration anywhere else.

Email submissions to:


1 June 2012 -- Weird Science -- Torquere Press

Who doesn’t love the idea of the mad scientist, working away in his lab, his sexy creature or lab assistant just waiting for him to notice them? Or what about the grad student who discovers just the potion that will make him the stud his oblivious roommate has always wanted...

That’s the idea behind the Weird Science anthology. We’re looking for sexy, romantic male/male stories about what happens when science gets wild and wonderful in the name of love. Make us laugh, make us fall in love, and make us happy at the end! We’re not looking for hard science fiction or horror for this anthology, but we do want fully realized stories with strong characters.

Stories should be between 5000 and 12000 words long, and should be submitted in full and include a synopsis and author biography in the cover letter. Please put your name or pseudonym in the manuscript as well as in your submission email.

Send submissions to with Weird Science in the subject line. Payment is a $50.00 flat fee for first time electronic and print rights for three years, and a print copy of the book. No reprints, please. Deadline for submissions is June 1 2012 for an October 2012 publication.


1 June 2012 -- Dark Trails -- ed. Michael Knost

Payment: Pro rate, plus percentage of shared royalties.

No reprints and no trunk stories

Story length: Up to 7,500 words.

No multiple or simultaneous subs

Deadline: Friday, June 1, 2012 (Do not inquire on story status until after September 1, 2012)

Mail submissions, queries, or questions to:

Michael Knost
Dark Trails Anthology
PO Box 12
Logan, WV 25601


Stories should be set as a weird western or dark western. Regardless of your use of “weird” or “dark" in the story, the main focus must be with the fact that is it a western FIRST.


Format your manuscript according to:

Be sure to include your name, address, and email on the manuscript. If this information is not on the manuscript, I will reject it without reading.


30 June 2012 -- Torn in Two -- Storm Moon Press

Expected Release: November 9, 2012
Genres: Any
Pairings: Bisexual
HEA or HFN Ending Required? Yes

It is often said that bisexual men are ‘torn in two’ by the opposing expectations from society. They are often accused of being confused or riding the proverbial fence between gay and straight. To many others, their attraction to men makes them ‘not straight’, while their attraction to women makes them ‘not gay’. It is this conflict that sets them apart and often ostracizes them from both communities. At Storm Moon Press, we’re of the mind that bisexual men are often misrepresented in fiction, and in this anthology, we would love to see that change for the better.

Torn In Two is a collection of short stories highlighting bisexual men, including their relationships with both men and women. We recognize that different characters will have different levels of interest in their partners, but above all else, we want to see stories that celebrate that diversity. These submissions need to contain an HEA/HFN ending, as we want to portray bisexual men in a positive, hopeful, and respectful way.

Authors will receive royalties as well as an initial payment of $50 for their story. This payment is not an advance and does not have to be earned out before royalties are paid. Royalties on individual e-book releases will be 50% of cover price on direct sales through Storm Moon Press' e-store, and 40% of cover price minus distribution costs for sales through third party vendors. In addition, authors will receive the same percentage royalty on sales of the anthology e-book divided equally among the authors, as well as 25% of cover price on direct sales of the print anthology through Storm Moon Press' e-store, and 20% of cover price minus distribution costs for sales through third party vendors, also divided equally among all authors. All royalties will be paid quarterly.


30 June 2012 -- Extreme Planets Anthology -- Chaosium Inc.

Chaosium is expanding into new lines of speculative fiction. Extreme Planets will be the first of these publications, with a science fiction anthology of short stories set on or about alien worlds that push the limits of what we believe is possible in a planetary environment.

These could be planets with gravities many times that of the Earth or orbiting neutron stars so their oceans are elongated into egg shapes. Carbon worlds or diamond worlds, iron worlds, or planets with extremely elliptical orbits. Worlds made of exotic elements or with bizarre atmospheres. Planets were time and space behaves strangely or against the laws of physics. Even artificially created worlds can find a home in this anthology, either transformed by bizarre technology or the creation of alien civilisations. Mostly, we hope you dazzle us with worlds we haven’t even thought about.

So how to people survive on these extreme planets? Do human’s adapt the environment to suit their needs, such as through terraforming, or do they change their own bodies to survive, such as through pantropy or cybernetic enhancement. Can humans manipulate the environment or the laws of the universe itself, such as by creating artificial gravity, to survive in these conditions? For a rounded story, these concepts need to be addressed, because there is no story that does not address the human condition.

This is a science fiction anthology—no fantasy or horror. Good characters, engaging plots and mind-blowing settings are important to us, and we also like a good sense of adventure and mystery. Literary style is fine, so long as there is a plot. Most of all we are looking for the staple requirement of the SF genre: a sense of wonder.

The anthology will be printed in both trade paperback and online e-reader formats.

Submission guidelines
== Send us your best science fiction extreme planet story.
== Story length 4,000 to 10,000 words (We may accept a couple of novellas up to 20,000 words from established authors – please query). Payment will be US 3 cents a word and 3 contributor copies. Further copies can be purchased from the publisher for half price.
== Original stories only: no reprints, multiple, or simultaneous submissions.
== Stories may be submitted via email: extremeplanets [at] gmail [dot] com with EXTREME PLANETS [Story Title] by [Author Name] in the header.
== Manuscript format: double spaced, large margins, left justified, Times New Roman or Courier New font, US English spelling. Double quotation marks for speech, not single. RTF preferred but will accept DOC files. Manuscript is to include author’s name and contact details on first page.
== The editors reserve the right to use their discretion in selecting stories.


30 June 2012 -- A Killer Among Demons -- ed. Craig Bezant, Dark Prints Press

A Killer Among Demons aims to encapsulate the deep, intriguing, and twisted tales that arise from the wonderful combination of paranormal/supernatural crime.

We are going to leave the guidelines quite open for this one because, to be honest, we want to be surprised. Not sure? Think of a crime that can’t be solved through traditional methods; a murder committed by a mythical creature that, by all means shouldn’t exist; an on-the-seat-of-your-chair thriller of ghostly comeuppance; a Scooby-Doo-type pulpy crime where the gang tries to rip off the mask of a monster, only to find it’s its real face; and so on…

This title will be published as both a limited print edition and an eBook/digital edition.

We are looking for short fiction 3,000 to 10,000 words in length. If you have work outside this range, please query before sending. Please submit one story at a time.

Please submit via the standard methods you have already taken the time to research – eg. A readable font, 11 or 12pt, 1.5 to double line spacing, a header with the title and your name, and PAGE NUMBERS. You may include a cover letter/intro about yourself and, specifically, your writing.

Payment is a flat fee of AUD$75.00 per story (regardless of length) for both Australian print rights and International Digital rights, plus a contributor’s copy of the print edition.

The editor for this anthology is Craig Bezant.
You can submit via e-mail at:
or via post at: PO BOX 3079, Joondalup, Western Australia, 6027

Response time is ~8 weeks. Please feel free to query after this time.


1 July 2012 -- Charity Sip Blitz -- Torquere Press

[Announced on a closed loop, but with permission to repost; general guidelines link below.]

It's that time again, where all of our great authors get together to donate to a charity working within the GLBTQ community! This year, Torquere Press has chosen NOH8 as the donation charity, and authors who contribute agree to
donate 100% of their royalties to NOH8, with Torquere Press matching the donation.

This year's theme, since this is Torquere Press' ninth anniversary as well, is leather. Nine is the leather anniversary, y'all! How cool is that?

Leather can be reflected in any way in the story. BDSM may immediately spring to mind, but leather can also mean cowboys, fast cars, Italian shoes, jewelry, or any of a million other things. We want stories that show LGBTQ
characters in positive situations, and have strong stories with happy endings. (Or at least happy for now.)

Word count is 3000 to 8000 words, and those limits are firm. Please adjust your manuscripts accordingly before submission. Deadline for submissions is July 1, 2012. Please send all submissions to with Charity Sip Blitz in the subject line. For formatting questions or other content questions, please refer to our general guidelines here.


31 July 2012 -- Steampunk Cthulu -- ed. Brian M. Sammons and Glynn Owen Barrass, Chaosium, Inc.

The age of steam meets the age of Cthulhu, in a past where technology unbound warps Victorian Britain and the world at large into a dark Steampunk reality.

In Steampunk Cthulhu (yes that’s only a working title) we are looking for stories set in a world where futuristic visions of technology, advanced machines undreamt of in the Victorian era, are powered by steam, or sometimes the inscrutable minds of dark, god-like beings.

Undreamt of yes, and maybe a nightmare here, think of what would happen if HG Wells had sent his Time Machine to a past when the Elder Things ruled the globe, or Jules Verne’s Captain Nemo was an evil acolyte of Cthulhu? Of course we don’t want you to limit yourselves to fictional characters of the genre, but you can use these, historical personages and your own protagonists and cultists of Cthulhu.

Space travel, journeys to the center of the earth and 20,000 leagues under R’lyeh, we want to see Victorian globetrotting adventurers and wild technologies in the Wild West. Think zeppelins crossed with tomes of forbidden knowledge, steam powered automatons battling indescribable beasts from beyond time and space, fanciful high-tech gadgets and blood drenched arcane artifacts, the wonders of tomorrow meting the horror of inescapable doom, and if you can put your own unique spin on both the steampunk setting and the Cthulhu Mythos, so much the better.

Authors should be well versed in both the stempunk setting and Lovecraftian horror as a good blending of both is what we’re after. If you’re looking for info on steampunk, check the Wiki ( for a brief overview and a small selection of authors and books to get you started. If you need to bone up on your Cthulhu Mythos you can read all of H.P. Lovecraft’s stories online for free here: or just look around your local bookstore – if you’re still luckily enough to have a local bookstore – as the Cthulhu Mythos has never been hotter.

This book will be published by Chaosium. Authors will receive .03 a word and 3 complementary contributor copies, with the option to purchase more at a 50% discount.

8000k word limit. Contact the editors if your work is both longer and outstanding. The deadline for submissions is July 31. Please send submissions as .rtf files to both editors below. If you have any questions, feel free to ask.

Brian M. Sammons
Glynn Owen Barrass


31 July 2012 -- Into the Darkness -- ed. C. Dennis Moore and David G. Barnett, Necro Publications

INTO THE DARKNESS Anthology is looking for dark, brutal, unrelenting horror fiction from new and established authors alike. One of the things we always loved with the magazine was finding new voices in modern horror and we want to start doing that again.

Here’s some things we’re looking for:

==Solid story and interesting characters are the two most important elements.
==Modern voice. Nothing old fashioned. No traditional ghost stories. We’re not looking for writers trying to channel Lovecraft or Poe.
==New monsters. If you’re going to create a monster then explain the monster. Don’t just throw it in at the end. The monster is probably a hell of a lot more interesting than anything else. Same goes for killers and psychos.
==If you’re going to give us a vampire, zombie or other traditional monster please do something new and interesting with it.
==Violence, sex, profanity and gore are all fine as long as they are integral to the story. If you’re just trying an experiment in writing only grossout we don’t want it. After 20 years we’ve seen it and it’s boring. And don’t try and shock us by using the word cunt 50 times in your story. That’s just sad.
==Humor is always good.
==Urban fantasy is a favorite genre of ours.
==Angels, demons, heaven and hell are all topics of interest for us.

WORD COUNT: 1500-10,000
PUBLISH DATE: Late 2012/Early 2013
FORMAT: Trade Paperback and eBook for International distribution
RIGHTS: First print and electronic Exclusive Worldwide English Language Anthology Rights for a period of one year.
PAYMENT: $.02/word. Two copies of the trade paperback. Payment upon publication.

==Email submissions ONLY to:
==Submissions should be in standard manuscript format and attached as either an MS Word document or an RTF file.
==All submissions MUST have your name, address, email and phone number.
==Check here for proper manuscript formatting:
==Email subject line: ITD – Story Title - Author
==No reprints
==Multiple submissions: up to two stories per author can be submitted but send as separate emails.
==No simultaneous submissions.
==Response time of 1-2 months.
==And for f**ksake, please have some sort of grasp of spelling, grammar and punctuation. No manuscript is perfect, but seriously, don’t waste our time if you can barely spell your name or speak English. This has happened. Not kidding. :P


31 July 2012 (or until filled) -- Once Upon an Apocalypse -- ed. Rachel Kenley and Scott T. Goudsward, Chaosium

Over the river and through the woods does not always lead to grandma’s house or happy endings – especially if grandma’s house is infested with zombies… or if grandma is really a Lovecraftian being in disguise. Once Upon an Apocalypse is a two volume post apocalyptic anthology laden with the undead and otherwordly mythos crossing into the realm of fairy tales, nursery rhymes and other timeless stories. Editors Rachel Kenley and Scott T. Goudsward and publisher Chaosium are currently open to submissions for these two books of mixed up retold fairy tales.

What are we looking for?

For both volumes we want stories with strong narrative lines, stronger characters and a clear blending of the theme and the fairy tales. For Volume One imagine Cinderella arriving at the ball and discovering it filled with zombies. Or how different the story would be if it were Snow White and the Seven Zombies. Give us new horrors with Alice in Zombieland, and a Prince who climbs Rapunzel’s hair to get away from and find a way to defeat – you guessed it – zombies. In Volume Two we want a strong dose of Lovecraft thrown in. What happens to the townspeople in The Boy who Cried Cthulhu? Pinocchio is going to have a much harder time getting out of the Old One than the whale; a wolf would have been preferable to Little Red Riding Hood and the Byahkee and the Little Mermaid has so much more to worry about then her legs and a missing voice when she faces a Deep One.

Once you choose a story to change it’s your call how far you will take it. Make the apocalypse clear and give some meaning as to why the dead are meandering through the streets and munching on the breathing or why the Elder God has paid the town a visit. Plague, prestilence, bio warfare, meteor shower, tail of a comet… be creative.

Because we don’t want duplicates of themes, you will be able to follow the progress of the anthologies on our blog ( or facebook page ( where we’ll keep a current list of themes/tales accepted. For example, if we get a Sleeping Beauty story and it’s awesome, that will be it for the book. Stories should be 2K – 4K in length (please query for stories under or over our limit. We will consider them if they are of exceptional merit). The only true way to have similar stories is A Snow White and the Seven Zombies in one and Snow White Star Vampire Slayer in the other.

What aren’t we looking for?

We all know these are dark fiction anthologies, but gore for the sake of gore is un-needed. This is not splatterpunk or extreme horror. Sex? If the story calls for it fine but keep it to an R rating (maybe even PG-13). We don’t to hear about insertions and spurting fluids, unless is blood from a bite wound or a gun shot. Try to keep the violence towards animals at a minimum. In some mythos, zombies chew on animals and that’s fine, but we don’t want redneck zombies killing all of Bo-Peep’s sheep for a pie. Finally, though we shouldn’t have to mention it (but we will given the theme) – go easy on the child-related violence, please. And no kids and sex – that’s just skeevy.

Readingperiod – now through July 31, 2012 – or until filled.

Pay rates – Pays $.03 per word, no royalties and 3 free books and additional copies at 50% off cover.

Email subs to: ouaastories@


Stories should be an attachment to your cover letter email, NOT copied and pasted into the body of the email. The cover letter should include a single paragraph synopsis of the story and your publishing history. The submission should be in RTF or DOC format (no DOCX). Left aligned, 1/2” indentation for paragraphs, single spaced. Double space between scenes and use five stars (*****) for breaks in the story. Contact info should be on the first page of the story with word count.

Please do not query for your story until we’ve had it for at least 12 weeks. Publication is expected for the first half of 2013. No reprints and no simultaneous submissions. If we turn you down feel free to try again with a new story but give it a few days between submissions.

And please when submitting please be specific which book you are submitting to. We’re reading for both simultaneously. Subject line of the email should be Name, Story Name, Which book.


UNTIL FILLED -- All Access Pass -- ed. Amelia G, Blue Blood Books ** First Posted July 2011

Short version of what I’m looking for is: well-crafted fiction or memoir, cool erotica with music and/or music culture as a central theme, $50 first run + reprint rights, $25 reprints. More formal version below.

Call for Submissions: All Access Pass

Backstage Passes editor Amelia G is reading for a sequel to her anthology of rock and roll erotica, called All Access Pass. Below are general fiction guidelines for Blue Blood fiction projects. For this book in specific, music must play a central role in the story. Events could take place at a punk club or an outdoor festival, characters may be musicians, music may just really speak to a particular character, but it needs to be important. Stories ranging from balls-out memoir or entirely fantastical vampire sex are all fine, within the appropriate theme and quality standards.

When submitting electronically, please make the subject of your email ALL ACCESS PASS SUBMISSION.

Before sending anything over, please ask yourself if your work passes the Blue Blood litmus test: Is it intelligent? Is it sexy? Is it edgy/counterculture? Is it cool? Email electronic submissions to For submissions of fiction or nonfiction text, please have your writing in a Word document with a .doc suffix (not .docx), RTF, TXT, InDesign, or Open Office format. It is preferred if you include an author bio or link to your website or online profiles.

The All Access Pass anthology is seeking erotic stories with a counterculture feel — Gothic, industrial, techno, rave, punk, metal, dyke, mystery, gangster, hard-boiled, science fiction, cyberpunk, steampunk, vampire, werewolf, medieval etc. At the moment, our needs are for stories primarily from a male or female heterosexual viewpoint, lesbian viewpoint, or female bisexual viewpoint. Often, we can also place male homosexual and gender bender stories in anthologies. We look for work between 2,000 and 7,500 words. Most accepted fiction is shorter than 4,000 words. Death and horror elements are acceptable so long as they do not prevent the piece from being sex-positive. Characters may die but not as part of the sexuality. Kinky is great — leathersex, bondage, vampirism etc. are all fine. Negative attitudes about sexuality are not fine. All sex must be consensual and arousing. PLEASE DO NOT SEND US STORIES PROMOTING NAZIS, RAPE, INCEST, OR THE SEXUALIZATION OF MURDER. NO SNUFF, RACISM, OR HOMOPHOBIA. If you can write genuinely arousing fiction which still works as a story, do contact us. Payment is net 60 on on-sale date and we generally purchase first worldwide rights (exclusive from acceptance to one year after publication) along with nonexclusive reprint rights.


UNTIL FILLED -- Future Daze: An Anthology of YA Science Fiction -- Underwords ** First Posted May 2012

Underwords is now accepting submissions for our next project Futuredaze: An Anthology of YA Science Fiction, a science fiction anthology for teens, young adults, and the young at heart. We’re looking for fiction and poetry that sparks the imagination, twists the heart, and makes us yearn for the possibilities of a world yet to come. At a time when every other YA book features vampires, werewolves or other fantastical creatures, Futuredaze will be an anthology for the next generation of science fiction readers.

We’re looking for hard science fiction, soft science fiction, and everything in between. Think Jules Verne, Isaac Asimov, George Orwell or Ray Bradbury with a YA focus. While we adore fantasy, Futuredaze is not the right anthology for fiction or poetry based in worlds where magic or the supernatural are the driving forces.

Futuredaze's primary mission is to inspire a love of science fiction in today's teens and young adults -- providing them with a launching pad of quality fiction that will inspire them to further explore the many branches of the genre. Give us your stories of far-flung futures, interplanetary travel, and technology just beyond our reach. Give us near futures with eerie similarities to the present. Give us robots, extra terrestrials, brave new worlds and Andromeda strains.

Most of all, give us good writing. Whether you’re a pro or still looking for your first sale we want to see the widest array of fiction and poetry possible. If you’re unsure whether your piece is right for Futuredaze, please submit it and let us determine if it’s a good fit. Our only requirement is that your story or poem operates within a science fictional universe and is written for young adults. Please no explicit sex, foul language, or gratuitous violence.

Practical Matters
Submissions for Futuredaze open May 1, 2012. Response time is two months or sooner. We will accept submissions until filled. The estimated publication date is June 2013. Electronic submissions only. Overseas submissions are welcome. Send your story or poem as a Word or .rtf attachment to and include the word "submission" and the title of your piece in the subject line to avoid our spam folder.

Please follow standard manuscript formatting and submission conventions: i.e., double-spaced, with 1" margins, and 12 pt Times New Roman font. Your story title and last name should be included in the document header. No reprints. No simultaneous or multiple submissions. For fiction, 6,000 words max. You may submit up to 5 poems at one time. If you receive a rejection letter, you may submit a different piece. Futuredaze will come out in print and as an eBook. Paying $200 per story and $25 per poem for first North American anthology rights, payable upon publication. One-year after publication, all rights return to the creators.

Any questions? Write to us at

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

More Harlequin Shenanigans

Harlequin is the single biggest publisher of romance, which is the single largest genre in the MMPB world. Harlequin has always courted newbie authors, famously taking unagented new writers when other New York publishers were (theoretically) requiring agent submissions more and more. They're also one of the most predatory of the publishers, and always have been; even when I was poking around on the het side of romance, I never had any aspirations of writing for Harlequin, and what I heard from other romance writers just reinforced that aversion.

Back in the late 80s and early 90s, I hung out on RomEx, a roundtable on GEnie that was the Romance Writers of America's (RWA's) online home at the time, and it was a great place. Lots of readers and writers -- both published and aspiring -- were members, and there was a lot of talk about writing and publishing, among other things. There were even published writers from other genres who hung out on RomEx because the writing talk was valuable for everyone.

One of the things I learned there was that, at the time, Harlequin's standard contract included a clause saying that you had to write under a pseudonym, and that Harlequin would own it. What that meant was that if a writer wanted to move on to another publisher, she had to start over with a new name, back in the days when communicating to all your readers that you were now writing under Jane Newname was even more difficult than it is now. This kept a lot of writers tethered to Harlequin, since moving on would most likely mean taking a sharp pay cut while they rebuilt their audience.

I heard a few years ago that Harlequin doesn't do that anymore. Well, okay, that's good. I don't know when they stopped, but the fact that they ever did it was enough to keep me away; corporate culture doesn't change that much over a decade or two, and a corporation willing to do something that skeevy, even in the past, is a corporation I'd just as soon not do business with.

Then last June, we heard that Harlequin was unilaterally changing royalty rates, notifying its authors via e-mail, and giving them a deadline to reply if they objected. Wow. So Harlequin might not be kidnapping your pseudonym anymore, but they think they can modify every active author contract they've got with a single e-mail and nobody's signature. Umm, sure. Definitely not interested in writing for Harlequin.

Now, Harlequin author Ann Voss Peterson is explaining why she can't afford to write for Harlquin anymore, despite great sales -- one book sold almost 200,000 copies, and she's never failed to earn out her advance in their first royalty period. And yet she can't afford to stay with them. It turns out that she's earning an average of 2.4% royalty on each copy sold.

Two-point-four percent? Seriously? We all know the New York publishers' royalty rates are predatory, especially on e-books, but Harlequin makes them look downright generous. Click through and read what Ms. Peterson has to say if you've ever considered writing for Harlequin, or even if you haven't. The math is horrifying. :/

Angie, still not at all interested in being a Harlequin author

Monday, May 7, 2012

April Stuff

Writing: 5058 = 1pt
Editing: 67,875 = 13pts
TOTAL = 14 pts

Koala Challenge 9

No subs last month, sucky writing, but lots of editing. That's probably not going to change this month, either, with my novel in process. I'm going to have about 5 days to do edits on 114K words toward the end of May, then it's going through two rounds of proofing (which I'll get to go over and make changes on) and they're looking to release in late July. [flail] This one's definitely going through faster than the last one, and once I get edits back I'm not going to have time for much else. Oh, did I mention the spousal unit and I are going on two out-of-town vacations...? We leave for a cruise (Alaska) this coming Friday, edits should be waiting for me when we get back on the 18th, I hope, and they're due on the 25th, which is when we fly down for BayCon so I have to get it all done in time to send it before I go.

I'm actually lucky my vacations dovetail with the schedule so well, otherwise we'd have to do some scrambling, and with a schedule this tight, that could've been awkward. On how long we have, I guess it's just a matter of what they have in the pipeline at the time and which slot they decide to put a book into. Hidden Magic got slotted far enough down the line that the schedule was almost leisurely (although it didn't feel quite so slow then), while Emerging Magic was slotted sooner and needs to hustle.

Still wish I were writing more, but at least I'll have a new book out soon, which is very cool. :)