Start journaling your heart out today. Have your very own Journaling Kit™ shipped to your doorstep...FREE!

E-books Workshops
Free Course
Support Us
Founded April 2000. A Writer's Digest Magazine 101 best Web sites for writers (2001 & 2003)
The Artist's Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity by Julia Cameron
Write an E-book in 28 Days...or Less!
Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles

Buy a novel by Lucille Bellucci at and receive these .pdf bonuses:

  • 17 Ways to Make Amazon Your River of Gold
  • Make Money with Radio
  • Success Bound
  • Book Promotion: NOT for Sissies
  • Harvey Mackay Rolodex
  • Top 20 Talk Radio Topics
  • Harrison Bonus
  • Million Dollar Rolodex

    E-mail Lucille at lucil95783 AT aol DOT com to claim your bonuses.
  • Write Any Book in 28 Days... Or Less!
    Write Any Book in 28 Days... Or Less! New course reveals fresh secrets. Click here to learn more.

    The Secret Behind Creativity REVEALED! It's all in the brainwaves. Find out here!

    EasyEbookPro Books

    Click here to advertise with us for 2 whole months for only $35!

    Home Columns

    To Sign or Not to Sign

    The Ailment: Recently I made my first sale, a short article for which I was offered $20, and I have just received the contract which says that the article may be used anywhere within the publishers network. Although I knew that this on-line site required all rights, except copyright, when I submitted the article, I am not happy that the article could be published in print and I will not receive any additional income from it. Is there anything I can do?

    The Cure: "Yes! First of all, put down the pen. NEVER sign a contract you are less than happy with unless you can live with the absolute worst-case scenario that you can dream up.

    New writers often believe that in submitting their article for publication, they are entering into a binding contract. This is not the case unless the writer's guidelines actually state that. It is the signed contract that is legally binding. Until you sign that document, the article remains yours and you can, if you desire, withdraw it from the publication.

    Before you do that however, there is something else you can try. Negotiation. Yes, that's right, you don't have to be a best-seller writer or Pulitzer Prize winner, in order to negotiate with editors. In your situation, you have three options. You can:

    • withdraw the article completely without entering into discussions with the editor;

    • negotiate better payment for your article where you feel you are happy for them to publish it wherever; or

    • negotiate the rights you are prepared to sell with the article.

    If an editor wants your article, they will agree to your terms, or at least try to meet you half way. It could be that a particular editor must abide by strict company guidelines, in which case you need to make a decision on option a, but most editors will try their best to iron out the problem with you. You could, for instance, stipulate in the contract that you are selling "Electronic Rights Only" which would mean that the editor could use the article anywhere on the internet, but not put it into a print publication.

    The main thing to remember is that the article remains yours until you sign the contract. If you aren't happy with the contract, DON'T SIGN! Contact the editor and discuss your problem with him/her and see if you can come to some arrangement, and if not, then you need to decide if you can live with the article being sold for a low amount and someone else profiting from it, or whether you prefer to remain unpublished until you can find another publication with better policies for writers.

    Good luck!

    Copyright © 2001 Katie Gustafsson

    Katie Gustafsson is an English freelance writer/translator/poet who lives in Sweden with her soul-mate/husband (whom she met online), Mikael, and their baby son, Jake. Her writing credits include print and on-line publications in short stories, articles and poetry. Recent articles include work for Amateur Chef magazine, and where she is the guide for the USA for Foreigners section. She is owns the Wake Up Writing site.

    The Authentic Self: Journaling Your Joys, Griefs and Everything in Between by Shery Russ

    WEEKLY WRITES: 52 Weeks of Writing Bliss! Kick start your imagination, ignite your creativity, and begin your journey towards becoming an outstanding writer.

    Grab a copy of WEEKLY WRITES: 52 Weeks of Writing Bliss! from and receive 2 free e-books to encourage and nurture the writer in you. You'll also receive Write Memories, a journaling workbook available for free only to WEEKLY WRITES book owners. And finally, as a WEEKLY WRITES book owner, you'll have free access to e-mail courses such as JOYFUL WRITES: Celebrate Your Life through Writing

    For excerpts, reviews and what you need to do to receive the 2 free e-books, Write Memories and sign up for free e-mail courses, just head on to the Weekly Writes Book Official Site. (Clicking on the link will open a new window.)


    The Journaling Life: 21 Types of Journals You Can Create to Express Yourself and Record Pieces of Your Life

    The Authentic Self: Journaling Your Joys, Griefs and Everything in Between

    Journaling Kit - Four Journaling Books to help you put your life and memories on paper


    The Web
    This Site

    Celebrate Your Life through Writing

    Creative Nurturing of the Writer Within

    6 Approaches to Journaling

    21 Ways to Jumpstart Your Muse

    Imagery in Writing


    Children's Writing
    Freelance Writing
    Science Fiction & Fantasy
    Technical Writing


    The Frugal Book Promoter: How to Do What Your Publishers Won't by Carolyn Howard-Johnson

    WEEKLY WRITES: 52 Weeks of Writing Bliss! by Shery Ma Belle Arrieta-Russ

    Home | Articles | Columns | Workshops | E-books | Free Course | Quotes | E-zines | Top Fives | Support Us
    © Copyright 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005 Shery Ma Belle Arrieta-Russ & The e-Writer's Place.
    Materials appearing in this Web site are owned and copyrighted by their respective authors and/or writers. Please read our Privacy Policy and TOS. No part of this website may be reproduced without consent from its owner. Original site design by Shery Russ. Hosting & maintenance by
    WriteSparks! Lite free software for writers
    Our sister sites: | | | | | | | | Writers Web Designs | | Aspiring Authors | Books | | | | | |