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Ruth2
04-16-2012, 12:58 AM
I'm working on a memoir, hopefully to be published in the US and Slovenia.

It's possible I wouldn't attract an agent -- I'm unknown here, and so is the subject of my book.

The subject of my book is very popular in Slovenia, but publishers there pay a straight fee for rights. Very rarely do they pay royalties. There's a possibility I can sell the Slovene rights as soon as the manuscript is done.

Would that discourage an agent if I sold the Slovene rights, retaining all others?

Thanks for any insight!

MarkEsq
04-16-2012, 04:56 AM
Hmm, interesting question. Do you think there's a US market for it? I'm wondering, because you might just want to go for the Slovene market if not.

I guess that answers the question in part - it would put off an agent if a large segment of your market audience was already cut out of the picture. It's so hard to know, not having read the book and not being an agent, but it is a good question so I wanted to throw my worthless thoughts into the ring. be interested to see what others say.

Ruth2
04-16-2012, 05:11 AM
Hmm, interesting question. Do you think there's a US market for it? I'm wondering, because you might just want to go for the Slovene market if not.

I guess that answers the question in part - it would put off an agent if a large segment of your market audience was already cut out of the picture. It's so hard to know, not having read the book and not being an agent, but it is a good question so I wanted to throw my worthless thoughts into the ring. be interested to see what others say.

Hey Mark! What I need to find out is how payment is done when an American book is sold over there. A normal print run is 500- 1500 books.

I'd love to sell the book here. But I'm not sure what the odds are in doing it. Too bad it's too early to talk to agent.

Thanks!

Terie
04-16-2012, 11:35 AM
Would that discourage an agent if I sold the Slovene rights, retaining all others?

It shouldn't make any difference at all. The only thing that matters to a US agent or publisher is the manuscript.

If the book were picked up by a US agent or publisher, the only thing they wouldn't be able to do was sell the Slovene rights. Since those don't sound terribly lucrative anyway, I kind of doubt it would put an agent off.

The only thing that might work out to your disadvantage would be if the agent/publisher could've got a better deal on the Slovene rights than you can get on your own.

Ruth2
04-16-2012, 03:48 PM
It shouldn't make any difference at all. The only thing that matters to a US agent or publisher is the manuscript.

If the book were picked up by a US agent or publisher, the only thing they wouldn't be able to do was sell the Slovene rights. Since those don't sound terribly lucrative anyway, I kind of doubt it would put an agent off.

The only thing that might work out to your disadvantage would be if the agent/publisher could've got a better deal on the Slovene rights than you can get on your own.

Thanks, Terie. I hope that's the case.

rac
04-17-2012, 11:22 PM
The only thing that might work out to your disadvantage would be if the agent/publisher could've got a better deal on the Slovene rights than you can get on your own.
Most large agencies have specialists working on foreign rights who are expert negotiators. Since you believe your book would be popular in Slovene, you might want to get some offers from Slovene publishers first, and then take them to an American agent who is with an agency that has a foreign rights department. Agents who know there will be money coming from foreign sales will be more willing to take you on.

Jennifer_Laughran
04-18-2012, 02:05 AM
Agents who know there will be money coming from foreign sales will be more willing to take you on.

While it is true that sometimes coming to an agent with an offer already on the table means that SOME agent will snap you up... to be perfectly honest, an offer from Slovenia is very unlikely to be the type of "bird-in-hand" that will tempt or sway an American agent. It's a numbers issue -- a Slovenian offer is likely to be quite low, which means 15% of quite-low for the agent.

They will have to fall in love with the book and think it has US/UK potential -- which of course, they could do without your shopping it to Slovenia first.

Ruth2
04-18-2012, 04:54 PM
rac: Thanks-- I appreciate it!

Jennifer: Thank you so much!

Yes, I've heard that Slovenia is a whole 'nother ballgame when it comes to publishing there vs. here. Apples and oranges, and don't expect to get rich.

I'm confident my book will be published there because of my subject. Here, though, I'm not sure at all. I'm unknown here. A smaller press might be better.