Contract Levels - What you can expect from us

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In this section:

    The Three Different Collective Ink Contracts

    If you are offered a contract with CI, it will always be one of three types:

    • Level 1
    • Level 2
    • Level 3

    Level 1 and 2 are traditional publishing contracts where CI shoulders the financial risk of producing the book. Around 85% of our books are published with these contracts.

    Level 3 is a co-publishing contract. This are for rare books when we strongly like a title but feel the market is limited or difficult, and/or the title is expensive on the design front. In those cases, we ask you for a small subsidy.

    Very rarely we offer a contract on the basis that the author also take up an Extra Publicity campaign. If we do this, we will explain our reasons clearly.

    No matter which contract you are offered, we do the following for every book we publish:

    • Offer royalty rates which are some of the most competitive in the industry – 25% on ebooks and 10-25% on print books
    • Offer subsidiary rights – 60% in your favour
    • Do not ask for "non-book" rights like TV and film
    • Copyedit, proofread and publish your book in print and as an ebook
    • Create an AI sheet whose data is distributed to book databases worldwide
    • Employ some of the best sales teams in the business to present your book to major trade accounts including all the major bookshops in the USA and the UK; also offering your title to trade-marketing programs such as ABA Advance Access, Publishers Weekly, Ingram catalogue, The Bookseller Buyers Guide, IndieBound UK
    • Assign a dedicated publicist who promotes your book in the media online, in print and on air
    • 6 free copies sent to you, within a month of your publication date being set
    • Offer 15 hard copies to send out to key reviewers and contacts and unlimited digital review copies
    • Promote your book online via CI social media
    • Promote your book online via the CI newsletters to retailers, foreign publishers, and consumers to encourage orders and rights deals
    • Undertake additional publicity work for every 500 copies of your print or ebook that are sold

    The CI contracts broken down

    Level 1:

    • Five figures potential sales.
    • You the author will have a track record of that, in the last three to five years.
    • An outstanding text from a first-time author, tailored to the right market.
    • There are compelling endorsements from recognizable names.
    • We are confident that the bookseller will feel “This is one we have to stock".
    • Print books: 10% up to 1000, 15% between 1,001 and 5,000 copies then 20% after that.
    • Ebooks: 25%.

    Level 2:

    • Titles which will likely sell in the thousands.
    • Great text, right presentation.
    • You, the author are more likely to be known nationally than internationally.
    • You have, or will get, good endorsements from key figures.
    • You have a good “platform” and are actively committed to marketing.
    • Print books: 10% up to 1000, 15% between 1,001 and 10,000 copies then 20% after that.
    • Ebooks: 25%.

    Level 3

    • Rarely offered as titles are worthwhile publishing, but likely to only sell in the hundreds.
    • Titles which will likely sell in the hundreds.
    • You, the author aren’t particularly known.
    • Buyers are unlikely to stock many initially.
    • Your title could do a lot better on sales if word of mouth is good, and you are committed to promote and market your book.
    • Royalties for printed books – 10% on the first 1000 copies, 15% between 1001-10,000 copies, 25% thereafter.
    • Royalties for ebooks – 25%
    • Titles at this level are a financial risk for the Publisher, so an Author contribution required – £500/$750 + £20/$30 per 1,000 words..

    How we offer a contract

    The Managing Director offers a contract based on the Reader Reports.

    When they decide to offer you a contract, you will receive an email notifying you. You can then log in to our database to view your offer, read the comments from the Publisher and Reader Reports, and accept or decline the contract.

    We cannot change the generic contract wording. If there is a point that would make sense to change across all of them, please raise that on the Author Forum and we will give it due consideration.

    For contracts with an author contribution, we send an invoice once you have accepted the contract – this should come through in a few days. Standard terms are 'Payment in 30 days from invoice'. If the final completed manuscript comes in at more than 20% above or below the original submission or estimated word count, we will send another invoice or supply a refund. There are no further costs.

    How to Accept or Decline your contract

    • Read the Terms and Conditions.
    • Tick that box.
    • Tick Accept or Decline.
    • Print off a copy for your records – it is legal.

    If you Decline your contract, there is an opportunity to leave us comments. We read all feedback left, but please do not expect a direct response.

    How to download your contract

    Visit your Contract page. Click on Review contract terms (PDF download) to download a PDF of your contract.

    Sometimes we offer a contract on the condition you take out an Extra Publicity Service

    In the large majority of occasions, it is entirely your choice whether you use our Extra Publicity Services or not. But sometimes we love the manuscript, but see that you have very little "platform", and are a very new name. Then we might offer a Level 2 contract on the condition you buy an Extra Publicity Package.

    If you accept the contract, the office will be in touch via email within the next week with an invoice and payment details.

    I have been offered a contract with an author subsidy and I can not afford it. What should I do?

    If we offer you a contract with an author subsidy, and you cannot afford it, we're sorry about that; please don't take it and stretch yourself financially. If you object to it on principle, well, we just have to differ.

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