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Samhain Publishing

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anne.arthur

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Also, the letters no longer appear to be going out in alphabetical order, so God knows when I'll get mine (legally I'm an M).
 

cmhbob

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I"m still not understanding what's taking so long on the letters.

This letter confirms that, effective June 1, 2016, all publication and related rights granted
by you to Booktrope and/or Libertary Co. (“the Company”) for books you submitted to
the Company will revert to you as of that date, without further notice.

This reversion of rights includes all publication rights you granted to the Company, and
any subsidiary or derivative rights, and/or distribution rights you granted to the Company.

That was the entirety of our rights reversion letter for BT. 70 words. How hard can it be?
 

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I've only got three books with Samhain, my legal name starts with B, and my Samhain contract wasn't negotiated with an agent.

But I've received nothing.

Grrrrr.

ETA: Nevermind - just got it. Now... the reading.
 
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anne.arthur

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Unfortunately, because of subsidiary rights, a lot of contracts can't simply be reverted in total. For example, they sub-contracted 3 of my titles in audio in a ten-year agreement. So Samhain can't grant me those rights in a simple reversion, because those rights are tied up elsewhere. That's part of the reason for the lengthy process for each individual letter (and again, letters that could have been written weeks ago and been ready to send out as of 3/1, but that's a whole other rant).

The owner is also trying to save her own butt by adding in the "don't sue me" part, because our contracts state we're paid monthly royalties, but her big close-up plan is wait on further payments, collect the last of the royalties owed from various book vendors, and then pay one big check to authors in June/July.

The whole fiasco is overly complicated and it's making a lot of us nuts waiting on letters that should have freaking gone out last week.
I"m still not understanding what's taking so long on the letters.



That was the entirety of our rights reversion letter for BT. 70 words. How hard can it be?
 
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Captcha

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Unfortunately, because of subsidiary rights, a lot of contracts can't simply be reverted in total. For example, they sub-contracted 3 of my titles in audio in a ten-year agreement. So Samhain can't grant me those rights in a simple reversion, because those rights are tied up elsewhere. That's part of the reason for the lengthy process for each individual letter (and again, letters that could have been written weeks ago and been ready to send out as of 3/1, but that's a whole other rant).

The owner is also trying to save her own butt by adding in the "don't sue me" part, because our contracts state we're paid monthly royalties, but her big close-up plan is wait on further payments, collect the last of the royalties owed from various book vendors, and then pay one big check to authors in June/July.

The whole fiasco is overly complicated and it's making a lot of us nuts waiting on letters that should have freaking gone out last week.

The "don't sue me" part doesn't just cover late payments, though. I mean... If I sign this I can't sue her over issues of constitutional law. WTF? How is any of this likely to become a constitution issue? It's a huge overreach.

If she said "in exchange for the return of rights, you'll agree to have your final royalties paid in a lump sum on X date rather than monthly", I'd have signed.

But the long, detailed list of things I can't sue for? All the sweeping terms about things I may never have thought about, known about, or considered, but that I'm not allowed to sue over if I sign?

I have no intention of suing Samhain based on ANY information I currently have or expect to receive. But I won't sign something that sweeping. No way.

Also, my contract says my rights revert in three months, not six. So... I'll wait the three months, I guess.

Does an e-mail count as notice in writing?
 
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gingerwoman

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The "don't sue me" part doesn't just cover late payments, though. I mean... If I sign this I can't sue her over issues of constitutional law. WTF? How is any of this likely to become a constitution issue? It's a huge overreach.

If she said "in exchange for the return of rights, you'll agree to have your final royalties paid in a lump sum on X date rather than monthly", I'd have signed.

But the long, detailed list of things I can't sue for? All the sweeping terms about things I may never have thought about, known about, or considered, but that I'm not allowed to sue over if I sign?

I have no intention of suing Samhain based on ANY information I currently have or expect to receive. But I won't sign something that sweeping. No way.

Also, my contract says my rights revert in three months, not six. So... I'll wait the three months, I guess.

Does an e-mail count as notice in writing?

That's what lawyers do though. They often overreach trying to cover all bases for their clients. And that often leads to people on the other side feeling pissed off, and causes more money for everyone in legal fees. (I'm not bashing lawyers my dad was one.)

But anyway it's not necessarily Chrissy wanting all this stuff. I'd guess it's what her lawyers have suggested would be safest for her. But if authors and their lawyers end up feeling threatened by the wording, it it can backfire obviously.
 

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That's what lawyers do though. They often overreach trying to cover all bases for their clients. And that often leads to people on the other side feeling pissed off, and causes more money for everyone in legal fees. (I'm not bashing lawyers my dad was one.)

But anyway it's not necessarily Chrissy wanting all this stuff. I'd guess it's what her lawyers have suggested would be safest for her. But if authors and their lawyers end up feeling threatened by the wording, it it can backfire obviously.

Yeah, I understand the reasons behind it, but... there's no way I'm going to sign it.

And I can't totally exonerate Chrissy from it - she's the one paying the lawyers; they work for her. She's the one who sent me this ridiculous document and asked me to sign it. If she didn't want the terms included, she could have had them deleted, but she didn't. So... no.

I stood up for Samhain on this thread several times, but they've stretched my goodwill too far. I'm done.
 

gingerwoman

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All our books are removed from kindle sale now I think? So I hope we can have our rights back pretty soon. Now I feel nervous about buying our covers after what Old Hack said. *sigh* With only two books with them it wouldn't be worth contacting my lawyer about any of this.

This all must be so terrible for those who have tons of books with Samhain, and my heart goes out to you guys. This makes me so wary of going with publishers now because Samhain's reputation was so stellar.
 

Sheryl Nantus

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Sent mine off to my agents when it arrived. Not going to sign anything until they look it over and give their thoughts.

I've got no problem waiting this out - got new works out with other publishers and focusing on moving forward. Even if I wanted to self-pub, I'd have to wait to get the money together and do it right.
 

thethinker42

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Good luck :)

My books were already covered/formatted/ready. It's 30% of my backlist, so I really couldn't afford to leave them out of print. It sucks, but... sigh.
 

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I live in dread of the day something happens to Dreamspinner, because I have SO MANY books with them - more than half my backlist, by far.

So, for sure, it's easier to make a stand when dealing with only a few books than it is when dealing with a lot of books.

What a mess.
 

Sheryl Nantus

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Good luck :)

My books were already covered/formatted/ready. It's 30% of my backlist, so I really couldn't afford to leave them out of print. It sucks, but... sigh.

Oh, believe me - it's a hit.

Samhain had seven of my total seventeen books out right now, so that's a bit less than half. But I won't sign off on anything without my agents at least giving it a look over.

:)
 

ElaineA

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I'm not affected by the Samhain troubles, but I think of all of you whenever I see something about it. The RWA has had an attorney look at the Modification Agreement if anyone is a member and wants to have a look at one attorney's opinion. (It may be helpful to both agents negotiating on your behalf, and those negotiating themselves.)

I hope you all see the best possible outcome, especially under such frustrating circumstances. :Hug2:
 

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