Dawn Colclasure's Blog

Author and poet Dawn Colclasure

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Collaborative book projects are expensive

Not too long ago, I posted about how I came upon the realization that I really SHOULD pay writers contributing original material for the Revisions book. (Took me long enough, right??) Well, recently, I've been asked about what kind of compensation I would be providing to people who are sharing their stories for the haunted cities book.

I wish I could say my answer is "financial compensation," but, alas, that cannot happen.

I really wish it could be. But it can't.

As it is, I have to save money for paying all those writers for the Revisions book. So it seems like the only kind of compensation I can provide would be a contributor copy. I wish it could be cold hard cash, but I only make so much money a month, as it is, and I can only afford so much. As it is.

Of course, aside from a payment upon publication of the book, I could provide a share of the royalties. Yes, I am aware of this option. However, I tried that before, with the Midnight Oil book, and I screwed up royally on that. And I do mean royally. I never really thought much of this agreement between myself and those writers since my royalty checks for that book were extremely scarce, and I've never gotten around to doing the math on all of that, either. (I AM making it a point to correct this, though. I WILL set aside the time to do the math and figure out what I owe those writers then send them a check. I MUST set that straight. The guilt over screwing up on that has hung over my head for so long. As it is, it took me months to pay the cover artist of that book. But I WILL get it resolved. That's a promise!)

But because I messed up on that, I won't make it an option anymore. I'm just too worried I'll mess it up again. I feel so bad about messing up the first time, as it is....

This whole thing has made me realize two things:

One: I won't be doing anymore collaborative projects with people. It is just too complicated and expensive.

Two: Doing a collaborative project is expensive. You pay contributors, you pay for information, you pay for travel expenses and phone calls. There's just so much money that has to go into a collaborative book. Which is why these two books will be my last collaborative books.

I am immensely grateful to all of the writers and paranormal investigators who took the time to contribute to these books. I harbor no ill will or resentment towards any of them who expect to be paid for their time, or even to receive a contributor copy. Believe me, I understand. I'm in the same boat. I rely on the money I earn from writing to help pay bills, put food on the table, etc. So I know where you are coming from.

Soon these two books projects will be done and then I'll move on to other book projects. But it just doesn't look like I'll be doing more collaborative book projects. However, I am grateful that, at least, I have done these books. I know readers, and writers, will enjoy them and appreciate them just as much as I have.

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home