So, you found an artist, and want to use some of their art or commission a new piece for a cover. Great! What contract are you going to use? What rights are you going to license?
Yes, the shoe is now on the other foot – you, as the publishing house, are now licensing Intellectual Property from another individual instead of working on licensing your own IP! But don’t worry, you don’t have to come up with a contract out of thin air, or crib a bad one that demands things you don’t want to the detriment of the artist!
Instead, head to http://www.artpact.com/ and take a look at their contracts tab! Here are some model contracts, designed to be a win-win for both parties, to make you and your artist walk away happy with the deal! While you and your artist will want to negotiate on a point or two – I do not recommend just copying the contract blindly – this will allow them to keep and license rights you’re not interested in, helping them make a living. (Also, in practical self-interest, let me point out that the more ways you leave for the professional artist to make other money by licensing the IP, the more you can negotiate the price. If you want all rights for life of copyright and the original piece too, the price they ask will reflect the loss of any potential future revenue!)
Hat tip to: Melissa Gay (who is an awesome person as well as an awesome professional artist)
Writing about Dragons:
Brandon Sanderson teaches a master class at BYU on writing. Unlike some people who are brilliant at their profession but not at teaching, Brandon is actually a pretty great prof. There are multiple years of this course online, but I’ll give you the best one for watching by topic instead of all the way through.
Here’s 2012 broken into a syllabus, so you can watch it by topic.
Or, if you want to watch it straight through, by 2016 he’s gotten more polished at teaching the material. First one here.
Dean Wesley Smith.
Dean is a career writer, who also offers advice, workshops, and lectures on writing. Well over a year ago, he decided he was going to prove that if you write every day, you can really rack up your output. Since then, he’s been writing and blogging about it every day, including a month where he had a challenge to write a short story every day, and another to write a novel in a week. There are a lot of motivation bits stuck inbetween the daily updates on his general routine and output.
However, I’m going to point you at youtube, where he’s been putting up some of the oldest lectures. The one on originality is complete, the one on essentials of writing is still being uploaded.
Two caveats: First, these are lectures that are old enough that they were phased out of paying. Therefore, especially on the “essentials of writing” video when he’s talking about the current state of the market in 2012, remember it’s been a turbulent 4 years and many things have changed.
Second, Dean and Kris have been in publishing for 39 years. They have a lot of very valuable experience from all that time, and a perspective of writing as a career that’s decades older than indie. They also have some views on the market and marketing that I don’t agree with at all, because I’ve seen going directly against their views leading to indie success. So listen to what they have to say, but don’t swallow opinions down whole without chewing over them.
That ought to be enough to keep you busy for a week, eh? Let me know if you found anything especially interesting in here!