Book Publishing Contract
The following book publishing contract is the general template your contract will follow. Please understand that when when you publish your book with Black Lotus Books, the exact conditions of your contract may vary. You will have the opportunity to negotiate the terms of your contract. We welcome you to read this contract, and to learn your rights as an author. We believe you will find that our contract vastly favors the rights of the authors compared to similar agreements within the publishing industry.
This book publishing contract, hereafter referred to as the “Contract”, is entered into as of the Contract’s date of signing by Black Lotus Books L.L.C, hereafter referred to as Black Lotus Books, and AUTHORNAME. This Contract governs the publication of BOOKTITLE, hereafter referred to as the “the Book”. BOOKTITLE is a work of Taboo GENRE, and is approximately _________ words.
Grant of Rights
AUTHORNAME grants Black Lotus Books the exclusive right and title to the following, for a period of no less than _____ years from the date of BOOKTITLE’s publication date:
- The right to publish, sell, and profit from BOOKTITLE in English language paperback books, hardcover books, digital books “eBooks”, and audio format “Audiobook”, in whichever way Black Lotus Books sees fit;
- To use BOOKTITLE in electronic and print forms, including re-printings;
- To use BOOKTITLE in any genre-related anthologies.
These rights are granted by AUTHORNAME on behalf of himself and his/her successors, heirs, executors, and any other party who may attempt to lay claim to these rights at any point now or in the future. Any rights not granted to Black Lotus Books above shall remain with AUTHORNAME, including the copyrights to BOOKTITLE, and all subsidiary rights, including foreign language rights, film, television, theatrical adaptation, animation “cartoon”, radio, comic book, and merchandizing rights. Any subsequent books in BOOKTITLE series, the “Series”, shall remain the intellectual property of AUTHORNAME.
Should AUTHORNAME wish to publish subsequent books in a series related to BOOKTITLE with another publishing company, AUTHORNAME must wait to do so until the term of this Contract is complete. The rights granted to Black Lotus Books by AUTHORNAME shall not be constrained by geographic territories and are considered global in nature.
Exclusivity and First Option to Publish
Black Lotus Books requests that upon signing the Contract, AUTHORNAME provide Black Lotus Books with the first option to publish any other books written by AUTHORNAME within the taboo romance, taboo erotica, and taboo fantasy genres; “Taboo” shall be defined as subject matter which is outside of established cultural norms. Should Black Lotus Books choose not to accept said books for publication, AUTHORNAME shall have the right to self-publish the books in question, or to seek publication of said books with another publisher.
Black Lotus Books requests that for the duration of the Contract, and for a period of 3 years after, AUTHORNAME will not directly or indirectly engage in any business that competes with Black Lotus Books, to include the establishment of a competing publishing company or online bookstore. AUTHORNAME agrees that this non-compete agreement will not adversely affect his/her livelihood.
AUTHORNAME will not at any time or in any manner, either directly or indirectly, use for the personal benefit of AUTHORNAME, or divulge, disclose, or communicate in any manner, any information that is proprietary to Black Lotus Books. The nature of the information and the manner of disclosure are such that a reasonable person would understand it to be confidential. AUTHORNAME will protect such information and treat it as strictly confidential. The obligation of AUTHORNAME not to disclose confidential information shall continue indefinitely after the effective date of this Contract’s signing.
Black Lotus Books has attempted to limit the non-compete provision so that it applies only to the extent necessary to protect legitimate business and property interests. If any provision of this Contract shall be held to be invalid or unenforceable for any reason, the remaining provisions shall continue to be valid and enforceable. If a court finds that any provision of this Contract is invalid or unenforceable, but that by limiting such provision it would become valid and enforceable, then such provision shall be deemed to be written, construed, and enforced as so limited.
It is agreed that if AUTHORNAME violates the terms of the Non-Compete and Confidentiality clauses of this Contract, irreparable harm will occur, and monetary damages will be insufficient to compensate Black Lotus Books. Therefore, Black Lotus Books will be entitled to seek injunctive relief (i.e., a court order that requires AUTHORNAME to comply with this Contract) to enforce the terms of this Contract. The prevailing party shall have the right to collect from the other party its reasonable costs and necessary disbursements and attorney fees incurred in enforcing this Contract.
Black Lotus Books agrees to pay AUTHORNAME the following percentage of BOOKTITLE’s net sales, “Royalties”:
- For each digital copy, “eBook” of BOOKTITLE sold, AUTHORNAME shall receive 70% of the eBook’s net
- For each audio copy, “Audiobook”, of BOOKTITLE sold, AUTHORNAME shall receive 30% of the Audiobook’s net
- For each print version of BOOKTITLE sold, either in hard-cover or paperback form, AUTHORNAME shall receive 20% of the print Book’s net
In the case of electronic copies of BOOKTITLE sold in Black Lotus Books’ online stores, “net sales” shall be defined as the total profit of the electronic book’s sale after discounts (if any) are applied.
In the case of electronic copies of BOOKTITLE sold in online stores not owned by Black Lotus Books, “net sales” shall be defined as the total profit of the electronic book’s sales after discounts (if any) and listing costs or commissions taken by the retailer are applied.
In the case of print copies of BOOKTITLE sold in Black Lotus Books’ online or brick-and-mortar stores, “net sales” shall be defined as the total profit on the sale of the printed book sold at regular, discounted, or wholesale price after the cost to print and ship the book to Black Lotus Books and any applicable taxes on printing are applied.
In the case of print copies of BOOKTITLE sold in online stores not owned by Black Lotus Books, “net sales” shall be defined as the total profit on the sale of the printed book sold at regular or discounted price after the cost to print and ship the book to Black Lotus Books and any applicable taxes on printing and any listing costs or commissions taken by the retailer are applied.
Where BOOKTITLE is used in anthologies and compilations which include the works of other authors, AUTHORNAME’s royalties shall be calculated based the percentage of BOOKTITLE’s wordcount within the compilation, and the payment structure outlined in this Contract shall be applied to BOOKTITLE’s percentage of the composition of the anthology.
Black Lotus Books will make all effort to sell BOOKTITLE, and anthologies which include BOOKTITLE, at a fair market-value price.
AUTHORNAME will be paid his royalties on quarterly basis. The quarters shall be based on the calendar year. Black Lotus Books shall send AUTHORNAME’s payment via PayPal, within 7 business days of the closing of the last month of the quarter. Black Lotus Books will make every effort to provide detailed sales and analysis information concerning BOOKTITLE with each payment.
Waving of Employee Rights
AUTHORNAME certifies and acknowledges he is an independent contractor for all purposes related to Payment, and that compensation in the form of a percentage of net royalties does not equate to employment status with Black Lotus Books.
Black Lotus Books shall make no tax withholding from AUTHORNAME’s Payment. AUTHORNAME shall not be entitled to receive any employment benefits from Black Lotus Books, including without limitation: vacation pay, sick leave, retirement benefits, Social Security, Workers’ Compensation, disability or unemployment benefits, as a result of the Payment or this Contract.
At Black Lotus Books’ request, AUTHORNAME shall provide such documents and information as Black Lotus Books may reasonably need to comply with reporting requirements of various governmental taxing entities regarding the payment of royalties.
Should AUTHORNAME receive $600 in royalty payments or more during the calendar year, Black Lotus Books will require information from AUTHORNAME as is necessary to comply with federal tax law. It will be AUTHORNAME’s responsibility to report his own income as required by state and federal law.
For the rights granted above, in addition to fees paid (if applicable), AUTHORNAME will receive one copy of BOOKTITLE in whichever medium it is published, by Black Lotus Books, within 30 days in the case of electronic files, and within 60 days in the case of print versions. AUTHORNAME may purchase print versions of BOOKTITLE from Black Lotus Books at the wholesale distributor price. AUTHORNAME will be responsible for paying any applicable shipping and taxes on the cost of BOOKTITLE purchased from Black Lotus Books.
Manuscript Completion Requirements
AUTHORNAME agrees to deliver the completed Manuscript of BOOKTITLE to Black Lotus Books, no later than DATE. The Manuscript may be delivered in .doc, .docx. form. Additionally, AUTHORNAME shall deliver all artwork, prefaces, references, and acknowledgements if applicable, to Black Lotus Books by DATE. Should Black Lotus Books deem any delivered material to be unacceptable for any reason, Black Lotus Books shall return the material to AUTHORNAME with a detailed explanation of the corrections which need to be made, and AUTHORNAME shall be granted a period of 14 days to correct such defects. If AUTHORNAME fails to correct the defects in the time granted, Black Lotus Books reserves the right to cancel this Contract with cause.
Black Lotus Books agrees to provide a final draft of BOOKTITLE, including the proposed book cover to AUTHORNAME via email, prior to publication of BOOKTITLE. This final draft shall include all content, including artwork, frontmatter, and backmatter. AUTHORNAME agrees to review and return the final draft with any corrections to Black Lotus Books within 30 days of receipt.
Should AUTHORNAME approve the material for publication, Black Lotus books shall make all effort to do so within 30 days of receiving the approved materials in the case of eBook publication, and within 90 days in the case of print publication if applicable. Black Lotus Books shall be under no obligation to print books when the total page count including frontmatter and backmatter number less than 80 digest size pages.
Should AUTHORNAME request corrections be made to the materials in question, Black Lotus Books will take AUTHORNAME’s recommendations into consideration. Black Lotus Books will not publish BOOKTITLE without AUTHORNAME’s final approval of the materials. However, should AUTHORNAME disapprove the final version of BOOKTITLE, Black Lotus Books will be under no obligation to publish BOOKTITLE in any format, and shall be entitled to recover partial editing costs, in the amount of $100 USD, and any costs of commissioned artwork, and these will be the only costs AUTHORNAME shall be required to repay. In the event AUTHORNAME should be required to repay the cost of commissioned artwork, Black Lotus Books shall provide AUTHORNAME with the receipt of payment for artwork.
Black Lotus Books agrees to consult with AUTHORNAME regarding the marketing of BOOKTITLE, but reserves the right to make final decisions regarding the sale and marketing of BOOKTITLE.
AUTHORNAME grants Black Lotus Books the right to use his chosen literary alias “Pen Name”, image, likeness, and biographical material for all advertising, promotion and other exploitation of BOOKTITLE. Black Lotus Books may use part or all of BOOKTITLE on its websites or in promotional materials to promote BOOKTITLE.
AUTHORNAME’s Pen Name, biography, and likeness may be listed on one or more of Black Lotus Books’ websites, or social media accounts, or third-party vendors, to promote BOOKTITLE. AUTHORNAME will be responsible for providing this information to Black Lotus Books and verifying its accuracy.
Black Lotus Books may have artwork commissioned based on the Manuscript to represent BOOKTITLE in the publication, as well as for promotional purposes. The rights to these images, their use, sale, and disposition will remain with Black Lotus Books.
Black Lotus Books shall include a copyright notice which includes AUTHORNAME’s name, on all published copies of BOOKTITLE in accordance with United States copyright regulations.
Warranties & Indemnity
AUTHORNAME warrants that BOOKTITLE is his sole intellectual property, that no other similar agreements governing BOOKTITLE exist, and that BOOKTITLE is not in the public domain.
Additionally, AUTHORNAME warrants that BOOKTITLE does not infringe on the copyrights, trademarks, or other intellectual rights of any third-parties. If BOOKTITLE contains written statements presented as fact, AUTHORNAME warrants that such statements are true and accurate.
AUTHORNAME agrees to hold Black Lotus Books harmless and indemnify it from all damages, costs, and expenses directly resulting from a finally sustained judgement relating to any legal actions incurred by AUTHORNAME arising from a breach of the above warranties.
Author’s Right to Cancel
Should AUTHORNAME deem that Black Lotus Books has failed to uphold the terms of this Contract, AUTHORNAME shall notify Black Lotus Books in writing, and grant Black Lotus Books a minimum of 90 days to correct such shortcomings. If Black Lotus Books fails to adequately address the issues presented, AUTHORNAME shall have the right to cancel this Contract and seek to establish a publication relationship with another publisher.
Publisher’s Right to Cancel
Should Black Lotus Books deem AUTHORNAME has failed to uphold the terms of this Contract, Black Lotus Books shall notify AUTHORNAME in writing, and grant AUTHORNAME a minimum of 90 days to correct such shortcomings. If AUTHORNAME fails to adequately address the issues presented, Black Lotus Books shall have the right to cancel this Contract.
Should either party cancel this Contract, all rights granted to Black Lotus Books shall revert to AUTHORNAME.
This Contact represents the entire agreement between Black Lotus Books and AUTHORNAME. This contract may not be altered, amended, or otherwise modified except through written form requiring hand-written signature by both parties.
Black Lotus Books and AUTHORNAME shall be granted an extension on any time-sensitive duties related to this Contract should circumstances beyond their control interfere with their ability to execute their contractual obligations.
All notices related to this contract shall be delivered via certified mail or electronic mail. This Contract shall be considered legally binding upon both parties, heirs, partners, associates, subsidiaries, successors, executors, and licensees.
This Contract shall be governed by the laws of Wyoming, United States of America. Any disputes related to this contract shall be resolved through binding neutral arbitration.
If either party is unable to physically sign the Contract, then by typing their names below, AUTHORNAME and Black Lotus Books agree to electronic signatures of this Contract, and further consent to be bound by its terms and conditions as if the Contract had been manually signed.
AUTHORNAME further warrants that no certification authority or third-party verification is necessary to validate their electronic signature.
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