Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Don't Worry About All Of Those Rights...

I am here to tell the majority of writers out there to quit worrying about your electronic, international, movie and other rights for your book. It isn't worth it!

That's right! Quit worrying.

Now remember, I did say the majority of writers out there. I didn't say a thing about whether you are published or not. Considering the majority of writers out there are unpublished, this one is for you!

Here's the deal. I am constantly frustrated as I hear the unpublished writers obsessing over all the rights in contracts they don't have. I sit on panels, I do guest blogs, I talk to writers in conferences and you are all obsessed over things that simply aren't applicable to you yet. Now, should these be issues you want to be aware of? Sure. But for right now, you have only one thing to worry about. Writing a story.

There are far too many people out there teaching classes, writing articles and pushing the unpublished writers to worry about things that are far from necessary at this time. You have to write that darn book, make it amazing and get either me or one of my fellow colleagues to fall head over heels for it. For some of you, simply finishing the book is the key thing.

As I said though, being aware of these other issues are certainly things to keep on the back burner, but that is where these issues need to stay. Besides, for many of you, it may be 10 years before you see that contract and by then, things will really have changed. Still, just pay attention.

It is still about finishing that book.

I spoke to one author recently who was worried about getting in contact with a famous personality she put in her book to get backing once the story was sold. Heck, the story wasn't even finished yet and she was already on the marketing plan.

I talk to other authors that are already out promoting a book, both on their websites, Facebook sites and in their bookstores, without a story to give to anyone. This is simply a waste of time. All of the time spent with this frivolous work could have been spent making a story that I won't reject for some really stupid issue.

Look. Quit worrying about the other stuff. Write the darn story. Make it amazing and then we can go on from there.



  1. Does this apply to copyrights too? Do you believe it is safe enough to start sending manuscripts out to agents without that protection? I believe most agents, like you, are trustworthy, but there is always that possibility of getting in with a person looking for their own gain.

  2. Since the work is not published, even the copyright thing wouldn't likely stand up in court. Obviously, if you are doing your research on agents, they wouldn't be selling your story to someone else.

  3. Good morning, Scott
    you are a good read every morning! We fall in love with our "babies" and simply can't tell when they're
    ugly. After studying oil painting for years, it was most
    discouraging to realize after being told how to "correct" a painting, you still fumbled it. I can do a pretty decent painting today because my patient instructors kept "telling" me how to do better. Writing appears to be the very same. Thanks for hanging in there with us.