Sunday, August 23, 2015

Kontracts

One of the more vexing things I've encountered as an editor is dealing with writers.  You would think, after a writer submitted a story to an anthology and was sent a contract which had the same terms that were described in the writers guidelines, that individual would sign and return the contract so that person would be included in the book. Not so, unfortunately.  Without exception, every anthology I've edited has had at least one holdout who would not sign the contract and was ultimately dropped from the project.  Meanwhile so many writers are looking for that opportunity to get published.

Why?  I have no idea.  We're not talking about someone who replied and said "I don't like paragraph three in the contract." Oh no.  We're talking about somebody who sent in a story, was sent a contract, then went as silent as a submarine in a war zone.  No, we just waste everyone's time and at the end of the day go silent, No contract is ever returned and no reason why is ever given. I once had to cancel a charity contract because half the writers would not sign the contract or respond to the offer.

I don't think these so-called writer support groups and the people who crank out writing books have a clue this goes on quite often.  Well, it does.  And I'm working on a book right now where this has happened yet again.  I doubt that I will ever understand it. My contracts are very simple agreements. There is nothing duplicitous or complicated about them. Hell, the book I'm working on right now has a lawyer who is one of the contributors and he has no problem with my contracts.  No, it's something else--something very strange in the makeup of people who call themselves writers. 

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