I'm published with Silver Publishing. I have a series--my first--under contract there.
I was put on a partial payment plan for royalties. Although others were given a chance to get their rights back, he was not in breach of my contracts at that time, so in effect, I was left with no choice but to stick it out. I offered to let him keep my royalties accrued through date of reversion, in return for the rights back to my series. His response was to ask for editing fees, then he'd release them. Bear in mind, he was in breach at the time, by virtue of the 'partial repayment plan forced on us. At no time did I sign a new contract, agreeing to give him an extension on paying my royalties.
The proper certified letters have been sent and the publisher has signed for the notification. I have received no acknowledgment of my letter from the publisher.
I now must wait out the ninety days to see if he elects to return my rights or catch up my royalties.
In the ebb and flow of discussion, I see many of you have posted the things we 'ought' to do, as Silver authors. I'd like to address these posts in one blanket statement. All the contract chatter has little to do with what is happening at Silver Publishing, for me.
Author royalties appear to have been used at some point to pay for business expenses. I don't think this is in dispute. The dispute arose after the admission. He elected to keep the doors open. He chose not to stop planned expansion. He told us he hired a consulting firm. He told us this incident could be weathered. He's good at telling us stuff. He tells us lots of stuff.
True, or false? How will we ever know? The figures we have are his figures. He's called his own veracity into question, yet offers no independent verification his figures are accurate.
To be clear, I feel I'm being coerced into becoming a co-conspirator in his attempt to recoup and distribute the amount of the original...loan(?) he floated himself from funds he had (has) a fiduciary responsibility to safeguard. I can see no other way to state the facts. this is my opinion, and I do not offer it lightly.
Had he taken the money out of his hands, had he had an independent audit done so that we could have confidence we knew the extent of the 'problem', then perhaps I could see leaving the doors open to new authors.
He did none of those things. The money is still in the hands of the very person who mismanaged it.
Instead, we have authors coercing silence from other authors, with one question leading the verbal barrage: "And how much money does he owe you, again?"
The implication is plain. I read it as only the top five he owes have the right to speak out and protect the public. I expect to be tarred and feathered and held responsible if he cannot meet his next partial payment of an ever-changing 'plan'. I accept I will be the new reason these authors cannot keep their cars, their homes, their kid's vacation plans, what have you. God forbid, we drop the blame where it belongs. God forbid we stop whitewashing what has gone on at SP. Because then..and I quote, "No one gets any money."
I'm stuck. My series is dead in the water. I will not give him the next two books, and there are those who would like to make me feel I am therefore part of the problem.
To them, I say this: "Refresh your memory on the definition of the term co-conspirator."
To the rest, I say "Writer beware."