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Author Agreement

PARTIES
This is an agreement between AKW Books, an imprint of Kalar/Wade Media LLC, a Washington state corporation, with home offices in Elma, WA. having a mailing address of PO Box 1975, Elma, WA 98541 USA, hereinafter known as PUBLISHER, and AUTHOR for the AUTHOR'S WORK as described in the this document.  If the WORK is the result of a collaboration or other arrangement between more than one author, the term AUTHOR will apply to all such parties and all such parties hereby agree to be bound by this agreement.
 
LICENSE
AUTHOR grants to the PUBLISHER exclusive rights to publish the WORK in electronic media, in whole or in part, and to distribute and sell the WORK directly or indirectly throughout the world.  By submitting the WORK to PUBLISHER, AUTHOR hereby grants AUTHOR's electronic copyrights to PUBLISHER for the term of this agreement.
 
TERM OF LICENSE
The license for the WORK shall extend for at least six months after the date the PUBLISHER first releases it for sale, unless another term is negotiated.  After the term expires, the license will convert to a non-exclusive right to publish and distribute. The non-exclusive license will automatically renew monthly until either party gives at least thirty (30) days written or e-mail (with return receipt option) notice that it desires to terminate this license. PUBLISHER reserves the right to discontinue publication and distribution of the work immediately if for any reason PUBLISHER deems the work to have been misrepresented by either AUTHOR or any recommending authority engaged by AUTHOR upon AUTHOR's behalf.
 
CANCELLATION
After the initial TERM OF LICENSE, either party may cancel this agreement for any or no reason by giving the other party thirty (30) days written notice either by regular mail or email (with return receipt option).
 
ROYALTIES

On all sales of electronic versions of the WORK, the PUBLISHER will pay the AUTHOR a royalty based on sales of eBooks, CD-ROM versions of the WORK, or any other electronic reproduction, distribution or transmission of the WORK.  Royalties will not be made on electronic copies provided or sold to the AUTHOR, nor on copies given away for promotional purposes to reviewers or the press, nor on works that are returned.  Royalties are based on sales of electronic versions of the WORK.  Royalties for electronic sales are 50% of the list price after any discounts for promotional purposes or for wholesale discounts to third party distributors.

PUBLISHER may participate in or initiate special discount sales for marketing purposes.

PUBLISHER does not pay advances against royalties.

AUTHOR will establish a PayPal account and provide PUBLISHER with the information necessary to make deposits into said PayPal account.  Royalties will be deposited in United States dollars into said PayPal account quarterly as long as the amount exceeds Five dollars ($5.00).  If AUTHOR is unable to establish a PayPal account, other arrangements will be made for payment on a less frequent basis and may be at AUTHOR's expense for PUBLISHER's direct additional costs.  A quarterly statement of sales and royalties will be e-mailed to AUTHOR at AUTHOR's last known e-mail address.

Any agreements between AUTHOR and any agent employed on AUTHOR's behalf is strictly between those two parties and will not be part of nor supersede this agreement.

If AUTHOR disagrees with a sales/royalty statement, AUTHOR must dispute such statement within two weeks of mailing date. AUTHOR may request a detailed copy of AUTHOR's account up to twice a year. Such account report will be delivered via e-mail.

Any legal action pertaining to an issue by either party must be initiated within one year of the date of the alleged tort or issue.
 

RIGHTS

AUTHOR may register a copyright for the WORK at AUTHOR's own expense and in AUTHOR's own name.  AUTHOR retains all non-electronic rights and subsidiary rights to the work, including, but not limited to, non-electronic copyrights , film rights, and television rights, with the exception of elements contributed by PUBLISHER, which may include, but are not limited to, editing, converted formats for electronic readers, artwork, and marketing materials; such PUBLISHER contributions remain the exclusive property of PUBLISHER.

If PUBLISHER fails to account for royalties after two notices, spaced at least two weeks apart, delivered from AUTHOR to PUBLISHER by land mail or e-mail (with return receipt), AUTHOR may cancel this agreement.

In the event PUBLISHER should become bankrupt or cease doing business, all rights to the WORK return to AUTHOR.
 

SUBMISSION AND ACCEPTANCE

PUBLISHER reserves the sole right and discretion, for any reason, to reject a submission up until actual publication.  PUBLISHER's "acceptance" of a "project" will in no way require PUBLISHER to actually publish the WORK.  PUBLISHER will notify AUTHOR of rejection as soon as practical upon making such a decision.  Notification will be via e-mail at AUTHOR's last known e-mail address.

AUTHOR will prepare the WORK in accordance with the preparation guidelines currently shown on PUBLISHER's web site the terms of which are incorporated into this agreement by reference.

AUTHOR will not be charged for regular submission and production of the WORK.  Any unusual custom work required by PUBLISHER will be negotiated between the parties and the results of such negotiation will become part of this agreement.

PUBLISHER agrees to make every effort to publish the WORK within six months of final receipt of all materials that comprise the WORK.  If PUBLISHER fails to publish the WORK within nine months of final receipt of said materials except for delays caused by of Acts of God, AUTHOR may, at AUTHOR's discretion cancel this AGREEMENT.
 

PUBLICATION

PUBLISHER intends to market the WORK as a downloadable product in one or more machine readable formats on its Internet web site.

PUBLISHER will note AUTHOR's suggestions as to categories in which to list and market the WORK, however the final decision will be made by PUBLISHER.

PUBLISHER will accept suggestions from AUTHOR as to the retail and actual sales price of the finished work, but PUBLISHER retains the right to make the final decision and to change those prices as PUBLISHER sees fit.
 

MARKETING and ADVERTISING

PUBLISHER will feature WORK on PUBLISHER's web site as part of PUBLISHER's new item  list until more new items force it off the list.  PUBLISHER currently maintains new item lists on its main sales page and the home page of PUBLISHER's "store" (shopping cart), however PUBLISHER makes no warranty to continue this practice.

PUBLISHER will feature the WORK for one month on PUBLISHER's monthly Book Club list and will offer it to Club members at an introductory coupon reduced price for that month.

PUBLISHER currently offers a Book Club which gives members discounts on purchases based upon a sliding scale.  AUTHOR agrees to allow Book Club members to purchase the WORK at those discount prices.  Club discounts are in addition to Club introductory prices described above.

PUBLISHER may at its discretion discontinue the Book Club.

PUBLISHER makes no promises to market WORK.  AUTHOR may engage in any marketing effort consistent with PUBLISHER's business model and policies.

AUTHOR grants PUBLISHER the right to use AUTHOR's approved name and likeness for marketing purposes.
 

WEB MARKETING

PUBLISHER will publish a web page on its site providing details about the WORK and the AUTHOR.  Such web page will also contain a link to an excerpt from the WORK, but never more than one-third of the total work.  PUBLISHER may publish information about the AUTHOR or the WORK.  If PUBLISHER requests promotional information, AUTHOR agrees to promptly provide it.

If AUTHOR writes under a "pen" or "pseudonym", PUBLISHER will, at AUTHOR's request, do its best to protect the actual identity of AUTHOR unless required to by order from a United States court, in the interests of United States or Canadian national security, or immediate physical threat.
 

AUTHOR WARRANTIES
AUTHOR represents and warrants that AUTHOR is the sole owner of the WORK and has the power, authority and right to enter into this agreement; this agreement does not conflict with any arrangements, understandings, or agreements between the AUTHOR and any other person or entity; the WORK is not in the public domain and is entirely original except for portions thereof for which legally effective written licenses or permissions have been secured; the WORK and all rights therein are free of liens, claims, interests or rights in others of any kind; the WORK as submitted, and its publication by the PUBLISHER, do not and will not illegally violate or infringe upon any personal or proprietary rights, including without limitation copyrights, trademark rights, trade secret rights, contract rights, privacy rights, or publicity rights of any other persons or organizations; the WORK is not libelous or obscene, or in any other way illegal; and any recipes, formula, instructions, or recommendations contained in the WORK are complete, accurate, and are not and will not be injurious to any reader, user, or third party.
INDEMNIFICATION

AUTHOR agrees to fully indemnify, defend and hold harmless the PUBLISHER and its AFFILIATES from and against any claims, losses, damages, liabilities, judgments, awards, decrees, settlements, or expenses (including without limitation, reasonable attorney's fees and court costs) arising from , connected with, or by reason of any breach or alleged breach of any of the representations and warranties set forth above, but the AUTHOR shall not be liable for any matter inserted in the WORK by the PUBLISHER or its licensees.  All warranties and indemnification made by the AUTHOR will survive termination of this agreement.

In event of such a claim described in this section, PUBLISHER may at its discretion withhold any funds due to AUTHOR pending the outcome of such claim or action.  PUBLISHER is hereby authorized to settle claims of less than one hundred US dollars ($100.00) without consulting AUTHOR.
 

MODIFICATION

PUBLISHER may modify these terms of service from time to time in its sole discretion.

PUBLISHER may modify the AKW Books web site with or without notice to AUTHOR and without liability to AUTHOR or to any third party.
 

GENERAL PROVISIONS

This agreement shall be governed by the laws of the State of Washington and any disputes shall be settled or adjudicated in the State of Washington within the County of Grays Harbor.  It contains all and the only agreement, and supersedes any other agreement, oral, written or otherwise construed as a prior agreement between the AUTHOR and PUBLISHER.  This agreement cannot be appended, changed, modified, word or words added or deleted except by the mutual written agreement of the AUTHOR and the PUBLISHER.  This agreement is binding upon the heirs, executors, administrators and assigns of the AUTHOR and the PUBLISHER.
 

SEVERABILITY:
If a provision of this Agreement is or becomes illegal, invalid or unenforceable in any jurisdiction, that shall not affect:
  1. the validity or enforceability in that jurisdiction of any other provision of this Agreement; or
  2. the validity or enforceability in other jurisdictions of that or any other provision of this Agreement.

   

Notes to the Agreement

This section is an attempt to explain the reasoning behind some of the agreement provisions. These notes are not a part of the agreement and have no legal bearing upon the agreement.  When in doubt, consult an attorney.

Parties: AKW Books and you.  If you have partners (co authors) you all have to agree to the contract.  So, work it out before you contact us.

License: You agree to give us the exclusive right to publish your book as an "e-book" on the planet Earth (Terra) for 6 months.  No one else should be publishing it as an e-book.  However, you may pursue other publication avenues as you see fit, such as traditional paper-based publication, stage plays, movies, TV shows, publication on other worlds, whatever your dreams are.  We want you to succeed as a writer.   You own all the rights except for the electronic rights and you can take those back after 6 months.  You control your property.  After 6 months, we'd like to continue to sell your book, but you can, if you wish, take your e-book rights to another publisher for simultaneous publishing or you can take them away from us entirely.  Just give us 30-day's notice.

We're in this for the long haul and we hope you are as well. In today's market, it's a rare work that pays back our expenses in just 1/2 year. This is an escape clause for authors who are unhappy with the way we do business. If you have no intention of sticking with us for the long haul (assuming you remain happy with our relationship), please take your manuscript elsewhere.

Royalties: The milk of the publishing industry.  We'll pay you half of what we realize on each sale of your book.  If we discount it to our book club members we each lose half the discount.  If we hold a sale, we each get less, BUT perhaps we sell more books. We may also market through other eBook retailers which will require some compensation for their efforts.

If you have an agent, you pay him.  If you want us to pay him instead of you, fine.  But we only want to deal with one entity.  Please leave us out of any squabbles between you and your agent.  If you wrote the WORK as a group, please designate one entity to handle the royalties.  We won't split the payments.

We keep our costs down by engaging in electronic banking.  In most countries, the most convenient way to do this is via PayPal.  You don't need a separate PayPal account for royalties.  If you already have one, it will be sufficient.  We don't need any secret information about your account to put money into it, just the e-mail address you use with the account.  If PayPal charges a small fee to handle transfers of money, we'll pay that.  They also charge a small fee to convert funds from one currency to another.  You pay that.  We're both better off if we only pay royalties when the amount is above $5.00 (USD).   We pay in United States currency.  Read all about PayPal here.  You need a credit card to set up a PayPal account.  If you want to electronically transfer PayPal funds to your checking account, PayPal does that free as long as you set up your account with your banking information.

If you don't have a PayPal account and can't get one for any reason, we will make other arrangements.  For instance, we can pay US residents by check (US dollars) on a quarterly basis if the amount owed is greater than $10 (or if you leave us).  We will discount your payment for the cost of the stamp for international mail (or wait until the amount exceeds $25.00) and throw in the envelope for free (big spenders).

Our customers will be paying via credit or debit card.  We pay the cost of that transaction out of our half.

Rights: When you wrote your book, it was automatically copyrighted under the laws of most countries.  However, if you register your copyright, you have not only the right to sue for direct damages if someone steals your work, but you gain the additional right to recover court costs and punitive damages. Copyright laws vary from country to country.  Please research those laws in your own country and obtain a "registered" copyright in your name if you wish this extra protection.  In the United States, you register your copyright with the U. S. Copyright Office.  As of late 2008, the cost was $35 for electronic registration. Otherwise it's $45 and you have to fill out a form and mail a copy of your book to the Copyright office in Washington D.C. This can take up to six months, but will not stop us from publishing your work.  You also must deposit two copies of your work with the Library of Congress within 3 months of publication. You may accomplish both tasks at the same time.  Read the U. S. Copyright Office web site for more information. When you receive your Library of Congress number, tell us and we'll add it to your copyright page.   When you receive your notice of copyright approval, you may say "registered copyright" on your copyright page.  Tell us and we'll change it.

Our contributions to the final work remain our property. You can't pass them along to another publisher without our permission (which will not be unreasonably withheld -- this is to protect us from writers who want to use us as a free editing service).

Submission: Follow the preparation guidelinesWe don't charge you to publish your book.  We are not a vanity press.  We make our money exclusively from book sales just like any other legitimate publisher.  The only difference is the format of our "books" and the fact that we don't have to deal with returns of unsold stock nor the long delays (often over a year) that plague the traditional industry.   We do ask a bit more from you, such as sending your work in final format with all artwork, but in return we pay much higher royalties.  New authors are paid royalties in the 7-8% range by the big New York publishers after accounting for returns.  Even seasoned authors are lucky to get 15%. Some very unusual cases go as high as 25%.

If we accept a project as described by you, the writing is good, and we think there's a market for it, chances are we'll publish your manuscript.  If you fibbed we'll probably reject your package.  We may also return your project if your artwork turns out to be pornographic or erotic in nature (no, we're not offended by a picture of Michelangelo's Venus deMillo).   Remember, children may be perusing our virtual "shelves".  Hell hath no fury like an offended parent.

Publication: We'll publish your mss as an "e-book" as quickly as we can depending upon our workload. Sometimes this can take several months if our backlog is high.

If you wish, you may suggest which categories your work belongs to.  If the appropriate category is missing from our web-site, by all means suggest a new one.  If your book belongs in more than one category, go ahead and suggest them.  All "fiction" will be listed in the "fiction" super-category and all "non-fiction" will be listed in that super-category.  The sub-categories are where the action is.  We'll make the final decision.

Price:  The final decision is ours and we reserve the right to change our minds at any time. We'll do so to maximize our profits which should also maximize your royalties.

Marketing: Most authors hate this word (unless they're in that field), but it's a fact of life.  We market our site and we'll feature your book as promised.  However, if you really want your book to sell, you'll have to do some of the work yourself.

Now, don't feel picked on.  The big publishers like Random House take the same attitude.  They put their advertising dollars into known names like Steven King or some book by a well-known actor or politician, not an unknown "newbie".   They'll try to get you some shelf space through their wholesalers, but the new author is expected to do the "heavy lifting".

See our Marketing page for marketing ideas.

Author Warrantees:  You promise that you own or have rights to everything you send to us and that it won't get us or you into legal trouble.  Nor is it pornographic or erotic, and no one will get hurt by following any directions in your book.

Don't worry if you've written a "heavy breathing" romance novel.  Just make sure it's not too graphic, and give it a proper rating.

Indemnification:  If you get yourself and/or us into legal trouble and it's your fault, you'll pay the bills.

General Provisions: If we go to court, it will be in Grays Harbor County, Washington State, USA.  Hopefully, we can work out any problems like adults and it won't come to that.

Anything outside of the contract (agreement) you said or we said that isn't written down and signed is just hot air.  The contract prevails.

Conclusion:  All that being said, if you don't understand the "why" of a provision, talk it over with us.  We're not hard to do business with.  We really want you to succeed and make lots of money and attract a rabid following of fans.  If you do, we'll make money too and make our customers happy because they can read good stuff at a good price.  And it doesn't hurt our feelings to bring on talented writers that the big houses missed out on.  Hopefully, if we treat you right and you succeed, you'll stick with us.  If not, we wish you the best.  At least we'll be able to say "we knew you when ...".

 

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