• Guest please check The Index before starting a thread.

Hilliard & Harris / Fenton Press

Kate Nepveu

Re: The race is not to the swift, but to those who persevere

HeartWriter said:
Within the next ten years, the golden two-percent, like Grisham, Clancy and Steel will vanish.



Re: The race is not to the swift, but to those who persevere

>>More than 12 millions books will be in print. Publishing will evolve into a near-cottage industry on one side, and a couple mega-giants on the other. Books in print will no longer be defined by a title, but by specific criterion and their readability- one to five stars.<<

This sort of thing was being predicted back in the late 1990's--you remember, when e-books were supposed to replace p-books within five years. I don't see any sign of it so far.

- Victoria


Re: The race is not to the swift, but to those who persevere

Like the paperless office....


Re: for heartwriter


I'm sorry I didn't see this before. I just noticed the 'email notification' option below.

Thank you for the welcome! I've just started lurking about and occasionally posting.

My book is The Second Circle: Tools for the Advancing Pagan -- definitely a niche sort of book. That means a tiny advance, but more potential to eventually earn out (because this sort of book doesn't go out of print the way fiction can -- so it could sell tiny amounts forever). Still, I'm not quitting my day job. :)

Kensington is top notch. Everything a real publisher is that the scamsters aren't. And I discovered from the Ingrams number posted here somewhere that I have 207 sales since the book came out in February. I have no idea how good or bad that is, but I'm happy.


Re: Has anyone heard of Hilliard & Harris Publishers?

Victoria says:
I've seen several Hilliard & Harris contracts, and they're author-unfriendly in a number of ways, including the Grant of Rights, which is much too sweeping and endures for much too long (10 years), and the royalty clause, which allows the publisher to deduct a menu of costs from the book's income, including printing, shipping, sales transaction fees, bookseller discounts, insurance, and the costs of promoting and marketing the book. It would be easily possible to manipulate things so that the author never received any income at all. There's also a very restrictive Option/Noncompetition clause.
That's enough to make my hair stand on end. They charge all that to the writer? That's so wrong. Utterly nonstandard. Bad, bad, bad.


Re: Has anyone heard of Hilliard & Harris Publishers?

Hilliard & Harris is a back-side vanity publisher masquerading as an independent press. It's an author mill that turns profits through author volume. They provide limited POD distribution, no promotion and generate enough sales to pay themselves.

H&H now has an on-line store < store.hilliardandharris.com/ > and a couple of the authors I have contacted are curious if H&H will try to divertt web-sales exclusively to their on-line store and remove others, like Amazon, out of the loop.

After I turned down their contract, I went to Borders and Barnes & Noble. Most of their books are not available at either.



I signed with an agent this week for The Beech Memorandum. She said the minimum royalties for a first-time fiction author is ten to twelve percent of cover-price for the first 5,000 books, and fifteen percent there after.

Of course, that is the minimum! My agent said she's will work for something higher. I sent her my H&H contract and she called back. She explained that a publisher will want to give authors an incentive to write more and better stories. H&H is an author mill or a back-side subsidy publisher. Their income is generated from the majority of author effort, inwhich H&H probably won't share much, if any, with the author. But as we have clarified earlier, legally Hilliard & Harris doesn't have to.

I read carefully and completely Victoria Strauss's Writer Beware www.sfwa.org/beware/ , including sample contracts.

Had I not, I might have been snookered into signing with H&H.

James Hood


About Hilliard & Harris

They offered me a contract last year and I see their policies have not changed. Here are things that stopped me.

1. Payment was to be on the net profit of each book.
2. They retained on the "next book" the exact terms as the "current book. "No re-negotiation." The term: 10 years.

The only thing Stephanie Reilly would agree to change, was deleting "other reasonable costs" from the list of expenses.

Needless to say, our phone conversation was short though she used the phrase 'trust me' a lot. I asked for 20% net on the first five thousand books sold, and then I would take 15% of cover price after the first 5,000 sold. Stephanie Reilly hung up after telling me that I was being silly and unreasonable.

It's sad that people like H&H use and hurt new authors who trust them.


Re: The race is not to the swift, but to those who persevere

Yup. It's always being predicted, and it never happens. True, publishing is perpetually in flux; but you should automatically doubt publishing models that (1.) project near-future cataclysmic change, and (2.) boil down to a justification for letting your book be published by a house that won't do the work of selling it.


Re: Has anyone heard of Hilliard & Harris Publishers?

I learned from my writers group that Stephanie Reilly uses the Delphi Technique in negotiating contracts. We recommend that a person learns about the counters for that before engaging in negotiation- as futile as the effort may be.


Re: Has anyone heard of Hilliard & Harris Publishers?

What's the Delphi Technique?

- Victoria


Re: Has anyone heard of Hilliard & Harris Publishers?

The purpose of the Delphi technique is to elicit information and judgments from participants to facilitate problem-solving, planning, and decision-making. It does so without physically assembling the contributors. Instead, information is exchanged via mail, FAX, or email. This technique is designed to take advantage of participants’ creativity as well as the facilitating effects of group involvement and interaction. It is structured to capitalize on the merits of group problem-solving and minimize the liabilities of group problem-solving.

--Unless we're talking about something else--



vrauls said:
Kensington, by the way, is a large traditional publisher with a good reputation.

How does a writer without an agent get Kensington to even look at their work?



Hilliard and Harris

CaoPaux said:
Any further dealings?
I didn't check out Absolute Write before I contacted Hilliard and Harris. The end result was that H&H asked to see my manuscript. I was about to mail it today when I decided to check AW out first. Needless to say, I am not mailing the manuscript to H&H.

But I would love to be able to send it to Kensington Books, without having to go through the ordeal of finding an agent that doesn't charge a fee for "office expenses".



American Aquarium Drinker
Super Member
Feb 12, 2005
Reaction score
edorothyb said:
How does a writer without an agent get Kensington to even look at their work?


It depends. I know that the editors of the Brava and Aphrodisia lines will look at unagented work.

Donna Pudick

Dec 21, 2005
Reaction score
Hilliard & Harris publishers

Anyone have a bad experience with this house? They are a small press, not recommended by P & E. Seems one of the sticky points is they want all film rights to the books. P & E says bad contract. What do you say?

Donna Pudick

Dec 21, 2005
Reaction score
anyone know Hilliard and Harris?

Hey folks, at once, thanks for sending me to this thread. Sounds like my questions have been answered by y'all. --D


i am dragon. roar.
Super Member
Feb 12, 2007
Reaction score
The universe. Duh.
I occasionally review books for an online magazine, and recently got a free copy of a novel from Hilliard and Harris to review. The cover of the book looks okay to me, but the writing-and the plot-seems kind of boring.

I thought about sending them my YA novel, but I decided against it, especially since Zebra Books has agreed to look at a partial of my manuscript, and I like Zebra better (Zebra Books is a part of Kensington Books, I believe). :)

It also says on the inside of the book that the cover art design was done by someone named S.A. Reilly.

Last edited:


Oct 28, 2008
Reaction score
Their contract et al. (Hilliard and harris)

This is what they sent me. Notice the contract stipulates (ooh, big lawyer word) that the author must by 100 copies.
Read it and weep ladies and gentleman. Sorry if the indents didn't go through.
I tincludes the contract, FAQ, marketing suggestions and two other docs.

Hilliard and Harris Publishing Agreement BOOK PUBLISHING AGREEMENT
THIS BOOK PUBLISHING AGREEMENT (“Agreement”) by and between Stephanie A. Reilly, LLC, a Maryland limited liability company, t/a Hilliard and Harris Publishing Company, P.O. Box 275, Boonsboro, Maryland, 21713-0275 (hereinafter “Publisher”) and the individual named in paragraph 1. A. below (hereinafter “Author”) is made as of the date set forth next to the Publisher’s signature below (“Effective Date”), with respect to the Work identified and described in paragraph 1.B. below.
NOW THEREFORE, in consideration of the promises and conditions set forth herein, and for other valuable consideration, the receipt and sufficiency of which is hereby acknowledged, the parties agree as follows:
1. Identification of Author, Work and Agent.
A. Author. Please complete the following:
Name:______________________________ Citizenship:____________________
____________________State:____________Zip Code_____________________
Phone:________________________ Facsimile:___________________________
E-Mail: _______________________ Soc. Sec. Number: ____________________
Work. Please provide the title and a brief description of work to be published:

Title: ____________________________________________________________
Description: ______________________________________________________
The above described work shall hereinafter be referred to as the “Work.”
Agent. The Author hereby appoints the following person as its agent (“Agent”):
Name: _____________________ Company: ____________________
Address: _________________________________________________________
____________________State: ____________Zip Code ____________________
Phone: _____________________ Facsimile: ____________________

Page 1 of 9 Pages __ _ __ (Author’s Initials)8/06Hilliard and Harris Publishing Agreement
E-Mail: ____________________ Soc. Sec. Number: ___________________
The Agent shall act as the Author’s representative for the purposes of this Agreement in accordance with the terms of paragraph 17.
2. Grant of Rights to Publisher. The Author, on behalf of him/herself his/her heirs, executors, administrators, successors and assigns, exclusively grants, assigns, and otherwise transfers to Publisher and its licensees, successors and assigns, all right, title, and interest in and to the General Publication Rights (as defined below) for the Work, throughout the world, including but not limited to all copyrights therein (and any and all extensions and renewals thereof) for a period of TEN (10) YEARS from the Publication Date (defined in paragraph 8.A). Upon the expiration and/or termination of this Agreement, the rights granted herein to the Publisher shall automatically revert back to the Author; provided, however, that any contracts entered into by Publisher with third-parties shall not be affected by such reversion of rights. For the purposes of this Agreement, General Publication Rights shall mean and refer to the exclusive right to publish, or to authorize others to publish, all or any portion of the Work in book form including, without limitation, all hardcover, softcover and electronic editions (including “mass market” editions) of the Work in all print formats (i.e., large, small, or condensed), and the General Publication Rights shall also include the secondary rights of any and all audio, electronic, television, movie, cinematic and other versions of the Work, as well as the general licensing rights to merchandise and other items based on the Work (hereinafter, “Secondary Rights”), with the revenues generated from such Secondary Rights being divided between the Author and the Publisher in accordance with the provisions of paragraph 10.
3. Copyright. The Publisher shall, in all versions of the Work published under this Agreement, place a notice of copyright in the name of the Author in a form and place that Publisher reasonably believes complies with the requirements of the United States copyright law. Author agrees to execute any and all documents necessary to complete the copyright process and to provide proof of copyright to Publisher as set forth herein.
4. Manuscript/Author’s Biography. Upon the Author’s execution of this Agreement, Author agrees to deliver to Publisher ONE (1) complete single-spaced typed copy of the manuscript of the Work in the English language (“Manuscript”). The Manuscript shall be in 12-point type, in a standard font. The Author shall deliver the Manuscript on a CD(s), in a size, format and word processing program acceptable to Publisher and will also email a complete copy of the manuscript to [email protected]. Publisher reserves the right, in its sole and absolute discretion, to reject and not accept any Manuscript that does not otherwise meet with its approval. In addition, the Author shall prepare and submit by email with the Manuscript, two (2) separate biographies of the Author: one shall consist of approximately 30–60 words for use on the back cover of the Work; and one shall consist of approximately 250 to 500 words. In addition, the Author shall prepare and submit one (1) synopsis of the Work that shall consist of approximately 500 to 1000 words.
Page 2 of 9 Pages __ ___ (Author’s Initials)8/06Hilliard and Harris Publishing Agreement
5. Artwork/Frontmatter/Backmatter and Third-Party Consents.
A. The Author shall also deliver to the Publisher within ten (10) days of the Effective Date any artwork, photographs including a color photograph of the Author, illustrations and other similar items (collectively “Artwork”) that are to be included as part of the Work and such Artwork shall be in suitable form for reproduction. The Author, at Author’s sole expense, shall also obtain all written authorizations and permissions (to the extent required) for the use of any copyrighted Artwork and/or for any other proprietary materials used in the Work and the same shall be submitted to the Publisher.
B. Author shall also prepare and submit to Publisher on a date designated by the Publisher, an index, bibliography, table of contents, forward, introduction, preface or similar matter (hereinafter “Frontmatter or “Backmatter”) as Publisher may deem necessary for inclusion in the Work.
6. Editing and Publication Format. Publisher shall have the right to correct errors, and/or edit and revise the Work for any and all uses contemplated under this Agreement (collectively “Editing”), provided that the meaning of the Work is not materially altered, and the Publisher shall have the right to distribute, advertise, promote and publish the Work in a style and manner which Publisher deems appropriate, including without limitation typesetting, paper, printing, binding, cover and/or jacket design, imprint title and price. Publisher agrees to consult and work with Author on the Editing, but the Editing will at all times remain within the sole and absolute discretion of Publisher. Notwithstanding the editorial changes and/or revisions made by Publisher, Author’s warranties and indemnities set forth in this Agreement shall remain in full force and effect.
7. Proofs. Publisher shall furnish Author with a proof of the Work, and Author agrees to read, correct, and return all proof sheets within fourteen (14) days after Author’s receipt thereof. If Author fails to return the proof sheets with in the said fourteen (14)-day time period, then Publisher may publish the Work without the Author’s approval of such proof sheets not so returned.

8. Time of Publication/Term of Agreement.

A. Publisher agrees that the Work, if published, will be published within EIGHTEEN (18) months of the Effective Date, except as the date of publication may be extended by events and forces beyond the reasonable control of Publisher. For the purposes of this Agreement, the Publication Date shall be a date designated by Publisher, but in no event shall the Publication Date be any later than the one and one half-year anniversary date of the Effective Date.
B. Pursuant to the provisions of paragraph 2, the Publisher shall have the exclusive rights to the General Publication Rights of the Work for a period of TEN (10) years commencing as of the Publication Date. Thereafter, the General Publication Rights will revert back to the Author; provided, however, that any sales, royalties, and/or other revenues generated from the sale of the Work under this Agreement (regardless of when paid or collected) shall continue to be
Page 3 of 9 Pages __ ___ (Author’s Initials)8/06Hilliard and Harris Publishing Agreement
collected by the Publisher and credited in accordance with the terms of paragraph 10 of this Agreement. In addition, the Publisher shall have the right to terminate this Agreement upon ten (10) days advance written notice to Author, if Author shall in anyway breach or otherwise fail to strictly comply with the terms of this Agreement.
9. Authors’s Copies. Author shall purchase ONE HUNDRED (100) copies of the Work on Hilliard & Harris’s date of publication for promotion and personal use, at a discount of FIFTY PERCENT (50%) off the retail price set by Publisher for such copies; provided, however, that no royalties shall be paid on such sales. Author shall be permitted to purchase additional copies of the Work, for personal use and promotion, at a discount off the retail price set by Publisher for such copies; provided, however, that no royalties shall be paid on such sales.
10. Royalties.
Publisher shall pay the Author, as an advance against and on account all monies accruing to it under this Agreement, the total sum of TWENTY-FIVE DOLLARS ($25.00) payable as follows:

(i.) On Hilliard & Harris’s date of publication of the Work the advance of TWENTY-FIVE DOLLARS ($25.00) will be paid. The advance may be credited to the author’s purchase of the Work.
All advances paid to the Author hereunder shall only be repayable in the event Hilliard & Harris terminates this Agreement arising from Authors’ default or breach.

For each Edition of the Work published by the Publisher under this Agreement, the Publisher shall credit the Author’s account with TEN PERCENT (10%) of the list price for Trade Paperback copies sold and THREE PERCENT (3%) of the list price for Hard Cover copies sold when sold at discounts up to but not including FORTY PERCENT (40%), net of returns. For each Edition of the Work published as an Electronic Book (e-book), the Publisher shall credit the Author’s account with a royalty equal to TWENTY-FIVE (25%) of the amount determined by deducting all manufacturing costs of the copies so sold from the amount received by the Publisher, net of returns. For each Edition of the Work when sold at discounts of FORTY PERCENT (40%) to SIXTY PERCENT (60%) of list price, the Publisher shall credit the Author’s account with a royalty equal to TWENTY-FIVE PERCENT (25%) of the amount determined by deducting all manufacturing costs of the copies so sold from the amount received by the Publisher, net of returns. Copies Sold shall mean and refer to the copies of the Work sold pursuant to the terms of this Agreement, less returns of any and all copies sold, and shall specifically exclude promotional and review copies and/or the Author’s copies (whether provided free or purchased by Author). An Edition of the Work shall refer to the Work as published in any particular content, length, and format. If the Work is materially revised or redesigned in any manner, or expanded or shortened in length or content, then the Work as revised shall be considered a new Edition.
Page 4 of 9 Pages __ ___ (Author’s Initials)8/06Hilliard and Harris Publishing Agreement
C. Publisher shall pay to the Author the royalties due and payable under this Agreement on a semi-annual basis. Publisher will notify Author of the payment schedule upon publication of the Work. Publisher shall render to Author electronically along with such royalty payments a statement of account on the sales of the Work, and other relevant information used to determine the royalty payments owing and due to Author. Pursuant to paragraph 12 below, the Publisher shall have the right to withhold certain royalty payments in accordance with the terms of this Agreement.
D. With respect to the sale of any of the Secondary Rights, the Publisher shall credit the Author’s account with FIFTY PERCENT (50%) of the Secondary Net Receipts (defined below) generated from the sale of such Secondary Rights. For the purposes of this Agreement, Secondary Net Receipts shall be defined as: gross revenues actually received by the Publisher from the sale of the Secondary Rights, net of transaction costs associated with the promotion and sale of the Secondary Rights. Amounts due hereunder shall be paid to the Author in accordance with the provisions of paragraph 10.C. above.
11. Author’s Representations and Warranties. Author represents and warrants to Publisher that: (i) the Work is not in the public domain; (ii) Author is the sole proprietor of the Work and has the full power and authority, free of any rights of any nature whatsoever by any other person, to enter into this Agreement and to grant the rights which are granted to the Publisher in this Agreement; (iii) the Work heretofore has not been published in whole or in part in any form; (iv) the Work does not, and if published will not, infringe upon any copyright or any proprietary right at common law; (v) the Work contains no matter whatsoever that is obscene, libelous, violative of any third parties’ right of privacy or publicity, or otherwise in contravention of law or the right of any third party; (vi) all statements of fact in the Work are true and are based on diligent research; and (vii) Author has not entered, and will not hereafter enter, into any agreement or understanding with any person or entity which might conflict with the rights granted to the Publisher under this Agreement.
12. Indemnity of Publisher. Author shall indemnify, defend and hold harmless Publisher, its subsidiaries, and affiliates, and their respective shareholders, officers, directors, employees, members, partners, agents and other related representatives, from and against any and all claims, debts, demands, suits, actions, proceedings, and/or prosecutions (collectively “Claims”) based on allegations, which, if true, would constitute a breach of any of the foregoing warranties, and any and all liabilities, losses, damages and expenses (including reasonable attorney fees) in consequence thereof. Each party agrees to provide the other party with prompt notice of any Claims, and the Author agrees that upon a Claim being made, the Publisher may withhold any royalties or other amounts due to Author under this Agreement as security for Author’s obligation hereunder.
13. Advertising, Promotion, and Sales. Publisher shall have the right to use and license the Author’s name, image, and likeness and biographical material for advertising, promotion, and other exploitation of the Work. In addition, the Publisher shall have the right to determine the time, place, method and manner of advertising, promotion, and other exploitation of the Work, except as Author and Publisher may set forth in a writing signed by both parties. Notwithstanding the foregoing, however, the Author acknowledges and agrees that the Publisher
Page 5 of 9 Pages __ ___ (Author’s Initials)8/06Hilliard and Harris Publishing Agreement
does not have, and will not establish, an advertising, promotion, marketing and/or other similar type budget for the advertising, promotion, and/or marketing of the Work, and the Publisher is not, and shall not be, obligated to expend any sums or amounts toward the advertising, promotion, and/or marketing of the Work. The Publisher shall also have the right to distribute promotional copies of the Work free of charge and/or of cost or royalties to the Author. The Author also acknowledges and agrees that the Publisher has not guaranteed, and is not guarantying, that the Work will sell or generate any meaningful revenues, and the Author understands that the success of the Work is dependant solely on the acceptance of the Work by the general public.
14. Author’s Non-Competition and Publisher’s Option. During the term of this Agreement, Author will not prepare or publish, or participate in the preparation or publication of, any competing work that is substantially similar to the Work or which is likely to injure the sales of the Work. In addition, the Author hereby grants the Publisher the right to acquire the Author’s Related Next Work (as defined below) on similar terms and conditions as set forth in this Agreement. For the purposes of this Agreement, a Related Next Work shall mean and be defined as the next book-length work, of quality form and content, that continues and/or is based upon and/or derived from the characters and story line of the Work identified in Paragraph 1B. The Author shall submit a complete synopsis and manuscript to Publisher of the Related Next Work prior to submitting such to any other publisher, and the Publisher shall have a period of FORTY-FIVE (45) days after its receipt of the Related Next Work to exercise its option to publish such work. If the Publisher desires to exercise its rights to publish such work the Publisher shall notify the Author in writing within the FORTY-FIVE (45)-day period set forth above, and the parties shall execute a new agreement similar to this Agreement. In addition, if for any reason, the Publisher reasonably believes that the Related Next Work submitted to the Publisher is not to form and quality as to be deemed “publishable,” then in such case the Publisher may return the work to the Author with a written notice specifying why such work is not deemed “publishable,” and in such case the submission and rejection of such work shall not be deemed a waiver and/or an exercise of the option to the Related Next Work and the parties shall continue on as if such work was not submitted to the Publisher.
15. Copyright Infringement. If, at any time during the term of this Agreement, a claim shall arise for infringement or unfair competition as to any of the rights which are subject to this Agreement, then the parties may proceed jointly or separately to prosecute such action. If the parties proceed jointly, then the parties shall share equally the costs and recovery of such action. If the parties shall proceed separately, then each party shall bear the costs of such litigation and the recovery thereunder. Nothing in this Agreement shall be construed or deemed to place any obligation on the Publisher to prosecute such a case, it being understood and agreed that the Publisher shall have no obligation or responsibility to pursue any such claim for infringement or unfair competition.
16. Rights Surviving Termination. Notwithstanding anything in this Agreement to the contrary, upon the expiration or termination of this Agreement, any rights reverting back to Author shall be subject to all licenses and other grants of rights made by Publisher to third parties pursuant to this Agreement. Any and all rights of Publisher under such licensees and
Page 6 of 9 Pages __ ___ (Author’s Initials)8/06Hilliard and Harris Publishing Agreement
grants of rights, and all representations, warranties, indemnities of Author shall survive the expiration or termination of this Agreement.
17. Agency. The Agent identified in paragraph 1.C. above shall act as the Author’s agent, and shall collect and receive all sums of money due and payable to the Author under the terms of this Agreement, and the receipt of such monies by Agent shall be a good and valid discharge of Publisher’s obligations to make such payments to Author. The Agent shall be fully authorized and empowered to act on behalf of the Author in all matters pertaining to this Agreement, and all notices regarding this Agreement may be sent to such Agent. The provisions of this paragraph 17 shall remain in full force and effect until such time as Publisher shall receive a written notice signed by both the Agent and the Author terminating Agent’s duties hereunder, and until such time Publisher shall have the right to fully rely upon the fact that the Agent is the duly authorized agent of Author for the purposes of this Agreement. Author shall be solely liable to Agent for all commissions and payments due to Agent for Agent’s services, and Publisher shall have no liability in regard thereto.
18. Remainders. If the Publisher shall determine that there is not sufficient demand for the Work to enable it to continue its publication and sale profitably, the Publisher may dispose of the copies remaining on hand as it deems best. In such event, Author shall have the right, within fifteen (15) days of the giving of written notice by Publisher, to a single purchase of some or all of such copies at Publisher’s cost, plus TEN PERCENT (10%). If Author declines to purchase such copies within thirty (30) days of such written notice, then Publisher shall be free to dispose of such copies, and shall pay Author a sum equal to FIVE PERCENT (5%) of the amount actually received by Publisher in excess of Publisher’s cost to produce and sell such copies.
19. Bankruptcy and Liquidation. If Publisher is adjudicated as bankrupt or makes a general assignment for the benefit of creditors or liquidates its business, then Author may terminate this Agreement by written notice within sixty (60) days after any of the foregoing events, and upon Publisher’s receipt of such timely written notice, the rights granted herein to Publisher shall revert back to Author in accordance with the provisions of paragraph 2.
20. Miscellaneous Provisions.
A. This Agreement constitutes the entire agreement between the parties with respect to the transactions contemplated herein, and it supersedes all prior discussions, understandings or agreements between the parties. This Agreement shall be binding upon and inure to the benefit of the parties hereto, and their respective heirs, personal representatives, successors and assigns. Failure by a party to insist upon or enforce any of their respective rights hereunder shall not constitute a waiver thereof, except as provided for herein.
B. This Agreement is personal to the Author and may not be assigned by the Author. Time shall be of the essence with respect to each and every provision of this Agreement.
C. This Agreement shall be governed by, and construed under, the laws of the State of Maryland, without regard to principles of conflict of laws. The parties further agree, as a material term of this Agreement, that any dispute which may result hereunder or with respect to
Page 7 of 9 Pages __ ___ (Author’s Initials)8/06Hilliard and Harris Publishing Agreement
any issue pertaining to this Agreement shall be subject to the exclusive venue and jurisdiction of the Circuit Court for Frederick County, Maryland or the United States District Court for the Southern District of Maryland.
D. The paragraph headings as herein used are for convenience or reference only and shall not be deemed to vary the content of this Agreement or the covenants, agreements, representations and warranties herein set forth or to limit the provisions or scope of any paragraph.
E. This Agreement may be executed in counterparts, each of which shall be deemed an original and all of which when taken together, constitute one and the same instrument, binding on the parties. The signature of any party to any counterpart shall be deemed a signature to, and may be appended to, any other counterpart. In addition, this Agreement shall not become binding upon the Publisher unless and until such Agreement has been signed by the Publisher. The parties also agree to be bound by facsimile copies of their respective signatures.
F. All notices, requests, consents and other communications hereunder shall be in writing and shall be (i) personally delivered, (ii) sent by overnight delivery, or (iii) mailed by first-class, registered or certified mail, return receipt requested, postage prepaid to the addresses set forth on page one of this Agreement.
G. The parties acknowledge that they have had the opportunity to be represented by counsel in the negotiation and execution of this Agreement, and therefore, it is expressly agreed that in the case of any vagueness or ambiguity with regard to any provision of this Agreement, there shall be no presumption of construction against the drafter of such provision, but instead this Agreement shall be interpreted in accordance with a fair construction of the law. Each provision of this Agreement shall be considered separable and if for any reason any provision or provisions hereof are determined to be invalid and contrary to any existing or future law, such invalidity shall not impair the operation of or affect those portions of this Agreement that are valid.
Page 8 of 9 Pages __ ___ (Author’s Initials)8/06Hilliard and Harris Publishing Agreement Page 9 of 9 Pages __ ___ (Author’s Initials)8/06
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the parties have signed this Agreement effective as of the date set forth next to their respective signatures.
______________________ ___________________________
Print Name: _________________
Date: _______________________
STEPHANIE A. REILLY, LLC, a Maryland limited liability company
______________________ By: __________________________
Print Name: ___________________
Date: _______________________
STATE OF______________, COUNTY OF ____________________, TO WIT:
I HEREBY CERTIFY that on this ____ day of _______________, ______, before me, the Subscriber, a Notary Public in and for the State and County aforesaid, personally appeared ______________ and s/he acknowledged the foregoing Book Publishing Agreement to be his/her act and deed.
WITNESS my hand and Notarial Seal.
My Commission Expires:

Document number 2PO Box 275, Boonsboro, MD 21713-0275 [email protected] Frequently Asked Questions:
Distributors and Publishing Partners:
We are distributed by Baker & Taylor. We also sell our books directly to bookstores at the wholesale discount. We've been with Ingram for 10 years and utilize them for selected new releases. We are moving our backlist of over 200 titles from Ingram to Amazon's Printer-formerly BookSurge. The move of the backlist is to be able to sell directly to one of our biggest customers and to take advantage of the Kindle format which is supposed to be rolled out to their publisher partners this year.
We offer our distributors and Publishing partners the standard industry wholesale discount which they pass on to their buyers and readers at their own discounts.
Bookstore Sales:
Our bookstore sales are usually from the independent stores. We no longer sell directly to Borders because they have abused our return policy so many times with damaged books and books they didn't order through us and their pay cycle has exceeded 180 days. (You may have seen the PW article about these practices so it hasn't just been our company that has had problems). Our books are usually available as special orders through the big chains. Most brick and mortar stores have been suffering with their sales in the last year so we have had to tighten our credit policies as well.
How is the cover price determined?
The cover price of the books is determined by the page count after we edit and format the book.
Marketing and Author participation.
In the last ten years we have spent thousands of dollars advertising in PW, newspapers and mystery magazines (we primarily published mysteries until we decided to expand genres). We have found that the author is the key to the success of their book. Authors need to be marketers extraordinaire in order to make the book a success. Authors need to set up appearances, local signings and attend conventions that pertain to their genre. Not every author wants to market themselves and there is nothing wrong with that, but we need strong author partners. PO Box 275, Boonsboro, MD 21713-0275 [email protected] Book Production Timeline
Once the publishing agreement between Hilliard & Harris and the author is finalized and the manuscript materials are in our hands:
H&H will thoroughly edit and format the Work for proofing.
H&H will design a cover for the Work.
The author will receive a proof of the Work.
The author will receive a copy of the cover design.
The Author will review the proof and inform H&H of any changes or corrections that need to be made.
H&H will correct the proof and prepare text files.
H&H will prepare the Work for publication.
H&H will assign an ISBN to the Work and the Work will be submitted to the printer for publication.
The author will be notified of the release date and book availability.
The author will receive artwork needed for promotional use.
The author will receive ordered books.
H&H will place author and title information on the H&H website.
H&H pays royalties and advances electronically through our PayPal account. The author/s and author/s’ agents must provide a valid email address for payments, reports and all correspondence relating to the Work. Things you can do to become a successful author:
Remember that you are the best representative of your book to the buying audience and that to make this book successful, you will have to help market your book.
Our most successful authors purchase books for self promotion so as part of our publishing agreement we include the purchase of books for the author’s use. The books will enable you to successfully market your book. Here are some ideas for you to consider:
Set up a website/blog for yourself. An internet presence is essential to the success of your book, and as part of our agreement with each author we are willing to help you with this if you are unsure where to start. We can guide you to getting a domain name, finding a web hosting provider for your webpage and setting up a blog. An author website and especially one with a blog provides more avenues for your fans’ enjoyment. It is how many successful authors develop their fan base. You can set up a mailing list, have contests and list your event schedule. Look up your favorite authors online and see what you like about their websites. Incorporate your own ideas and find out what works best for you and your books. We will also link to your website on our website’s author page so that we can direct fans to you.
Promotional Business Cards, Postcards, Bookmarks and Flyers. Promotional items can help you sell your book. You can contact your local Kinko’s, or use an online printer like postcards.com, or any other inexpensive printer to have materials printed for your use at signings or for store displays to promote signings or sales. We can send the appropriate artwork to you and even directly to your printer if needed.
When you have a signing, provide these materials to the bookstore in advance for in-store display. In our experience, many booksellers have varying degrees of organization at the actual signing, so always carry displays of the cover, your flyer, business cards, bookmarks, or postcards with you for your table. It will make your appearance much more effective and less frustrating for you.
Work with your own network of professional contacts and friends and use Social Networking sites such as Facebook to reach and even broader group of people who would be interested in your book. If you belong to any organization, whether it be involved in the world of writing or not, let them know about your new book. Work the relationships that you have in your business and personal life for support, encouragement, and ideas for promoting your book. Most people will be impressed that you wrote a book and got it published and will want to tell their friends about it. Set up a Facebook page for you as an author and promote your book on your Facebook page. Engage people through your social networking who may buy and support your book with their own network of friends. Twitter is another way to reach people and promote your work. Have a party when your book comes out to celebrate the occasion. Invite your network of fans and post photos on your Fackbook page for those who couldn’t attend. Don’t be shy—this is your time to shine.
Develop a story pitch letter when approaching media outlets
Develop a story pitch letter that sets you apart from all of the other books and authors that approach the media each day. Give them a hook to help them write or tell an interesting story about you and your book. This will make it much easier for them to sell your idea and will get them interested in you and your work. Some newspapers use questionnaires that can be filled out to help them write the story so if you’ve already prepared with an easy outline for their use, you could secure that story easily.
Find local radio, newspaper, or television contacts for book reviews/interviews and familiarize yourself with the online reviewers for your genre. Introduce yourself as a new, local author. Many local newspapers love to feature local authors in articles. If they require any interaction with H&H, just
let us know how we can help. Online reviewers have grown in influence and could really help you connect with potential fans of your book.
Introduce yourself to your local librarian. Libraries may have contact with local book clubs in your area. Speaking to book clubs and arranging a signing at the library are good ways to promote yourself as an author and generate interest in your book.
Introduce yourself to your local bookstores. Most bookstores welcome new authors and will set up a signing for you. Independent bookstores are usually easier to deal with. The large chains have restricted inventory and may not be able to special order books. Our successful authors always have books on hand. Most stores, large or small, will welcome an event or signing when they can get the books from the author, sell them at the event then pay the authors directly. There is no risk for them and it is an event for both the store and the author.
Have your friends and fans review your book on online bookseller websites such as Amazon. Encourage readers to go to www.amazon.com and review your book, favorably of course.
Attend Writers’ conferences and join Writers’ groups. We encourage you to sign up and attend Writer’s conferences in your area. Sit on a panel or promote your book in any way at these events. For every genre there is usually a fan-based convention that celebrates those books. For mystery/thriller writers there are a number of conventions across the United States and globally that provide the best opportunity to meet fans of the mystery, thriller, and detective genres. The Romance Writers of America also have a great network set up for self-promotion and marketing.
There is also a writers’ group for almost every genre so getting involved in any of these organizations will help you to promote your work and make valuable contacts. Check to see if a local chapter of a writing group particular to your genre exists. For example: mystery/thriller writers can join Sisters in Crime. For romance writers, Romance Writers of America is a good choice. Many of these groups have already put together tools for an author’s success such as a speaker’s bureau or event planning committee. If you are shy, partner with another author and do promotions together. Have fun and try to set yourself apart with your potential fans.
Get out and push your book. The purchase of author copies is a part of our publishing agreement, but if additional books are needed, we give authors a discount of 45% off the retail price of their book, and for orders of fifty or more books the author discount is 50% off the retail price, shipping is additional.
And finally…
Come to us with any questions. As an independent press our authors are our promotional partners. We are happy to provide support to help our authors succeed.​


Writer Beware Goddess
Kind Benefactor
Absolute Sage
Super Member
Feb 11, 2005
Reaction score
Far from the madding crowd
The 100-book purchase requirement is the biggie, of course. This is back-end fee-charging. You don't have to pay for printing and binding your book, but you do have to lay out cash to see yourself in print.

But there are other serious problems with this contract (non-legal commentary follows):

- The Grant of Rights clause requires authors to transfer to the publisher "all rights, title and interest" in their books' General Publication Rights, "including but not limited to all copyrights therein" for a period of ten years. Unless you're doing work for hire, you should not hand over your copyright to your publisher, even temporarily.

- The very next clause is the Copyright clause, which states that all books will include a copyright notice "in the name of the author." This would suggest that copyright remains with the author. But wait--under the Grant of Rights clause, you've already transferred copyright to H&H! This is a contradiction, to say the least. Does H&H not understand copyright law? Or possibly its own contract?

- Beyond the contradiction identified above, this is an all-rights contract, even though there's little evidence that H&H is capable of selling or exploiting subrights. A small publisher shouldn't demand rights it isn't able to use.

- The 10-year term (which has no provision for early termination, except by the publisher) is much too long for a small, digitally-based publisher. Many successful commercially-published books don't remain in print that long.

- The Editing clause, which gives H&H the right to edit and revise "provided that the meaning of the work is not materially altered" is way too sweeping. You can do a lot of changing, cutting, etc., that might seriously change the tone of the work, but wouldn't "materially alter" its meaning. You really don't want your publisher to do any editing, other than copy editing, without your permission and approval.

- The royalty clause provides for a straight royalty percentage only if books are sold at a discount of less than 40%. But physical bookstores and online retailers require a discount of 40-55%. So where are such sales going to happen, other than the H&H website? As for the percentages, 10% isn't bad for a trade paperback-sized book, but 3% for hardcover is dismal.

For books sold at discounts of 40% or more, royalties are calculated on the publisher's net, less manufacturing costs (which aren't specified, so you have no idea how much they might reduce the net). This kind of reverse accounting is nonstandard--trade publishers typically pay a straight percentage of either list or net--and possibly could reduce your royalties to a pittance.

- In Clause 13, H&H absolves itself of any obligation to spend money on advertising, promoting, or marketing its books; and requires authors to acknowledge that sales are not guaranteed. This kind of language is a red flag, since you typically only find it in the contracts of publishers that do little in the way of marketing, and anticipate tiny sales.

- The Option clause provides for a kind of perpetual option. If the publisher doesn't want the book you submit as your option book, the option clause is deemed still to be in force, requiring you to submit your next book. And possibly your next and your next, until the publisher finds something it wants to publish. A standard option clause releases you from your option obligation if the publisher rejects the option book.

- Victoria