Sunday, August 22, 2010

Ravenous Romance

So back in late 2008 Ravenous Romance opened up with a lot of rhetoric about revolutionising the epublishing industry.  At this point, from what I have seen of their sales, they are about average for the genre. Book-a-day, while still at the top of the website, seems to have gone by the wayside in terms of new content. Today's "book of the day" is from May of last year and "this week's books" date not only from this week but up to four weeks ago

Ravenous is closing in on their second anniversary, which is more than a lot of epublishers do, but in the absence of any real amount of information it is still hard to say much either way.  So if anyone out their had sales data and has not reported it, please do.  Also if you have any experience about quality of editing, marketing, payments (timely, reliable?) and whether they are still acquiring new work, I would appreciate an update.

10 comments:

Angelia said...

I just subbed to Ravenous, a lesbian fairytale for their "Rumpled Silksheets" anthology. I'll let you know how it goes. They seemed to be having trouble getting subs for that one, and extended the deadline.

They do attract some serious talent. They got Brian Keene (arguably the next Stephen King) for their Hungry for your Love anthology. He said they paid nicely.

Anonymous said...

They are still actively acquiring books. They also tend to like to work with the same authors over several books and they prefer to work with authors with established publishing track records, though they are also open to new writers.

They also do get reprint rights for their books with established trade houses. I just signed a print deal with Red Wheel/Weiser for an ebook that first came out from Ravenous 2 years ago.

Anonymous said...

and also, their payments are timely and reliable.

Anonymous said...

I'm not a RR author, but I did get a chance to review their publishing contract. If I'm reading the rights clause correctly, there's no "out" for the author. The contract I saw took rights for 3 years, and after that, it's renewable in 1-year increments, at the publisher's discretion. I saw nothing that stated the author could pull out after the first 3 years.

Additionally, if an author has more than one book with Ravenous, and one book sells out its advance but the other doesn't, Ravenous can (and does) hold back royalties from the second book until the advance from the first book is covered.

Also, I've been told at least one author has received frequent late royalty payments, and no reporting at all on third-party sales.

Anonymous said...

You don't get third-party sales reporting until the second quarter your book it out, since it takes at least one quarter for RR to get the third-party sales numbers in.

Re: cross-collateralizing earnouts on books: most traditional publishers do this, especially in multibook print deals. the way around it is not to agree to multibook contracts.

Anonymous said...

>>You don't get third-party sales reporting until the second quarter your book it out, since it takes at least one quarter for RR to get the third-party sales numbers in.<<

I know how it works. No reporting on at least one book (that I'm aware of) after being available on 3rd party sites for over 2 quarters.

>>Re: cross-collateralizing earnouts on books: most traditional publishers do this, especially in multibook print deals. the way around it is not to agree to multibook contracts.<<

Or go with a reputable epublisher that doesn't include these types of clauses in their contracts (which includes just about every other epublisher I've dealt with, personally, or know of through friends). :-)

Anonymous said...

FWIW, Ravenous is willing to negotiate on several components of its boilerplate contract, including the components cited in the above comments. Pretty much all publishers have a draconian boilerplate contract. The bigger issue is whether they're willing to negotiate.

Anonymous said...

Regarding the comment right above this one by Anonymous, actually most epublishers do -not- have a boiler plate contract. Epublishers don't usually have to negotiate their contracts because they're not rights grabbers to start with. There is one exception that I know of, which is Samhain. They do have a boilerplate contract. Sure it's negotiable, but it's a minefield for anyone who doesn't understand legalese.

Anonymous said...

I'm not a Ravenous author either but I've never heard of an e-publisher that holds the payout on the first book until the second earns out. How is this contract author friendly?

Anyone else heard of this? Have you had such clause in any of your contracts?

I also heard from an author who once wrote for them that they've been continually late in paying royalties and are very difficult to deal/communicate with.

From what I've heard from the
beginning -- still stay clear.

Oh, if they are actively acquiring books, what happened to their book a day blast?

Anonymous said...

I've got a story in one anthology that appears to be selling pretty well (I don't have anything to compare it with) and like Angelia I have a sub for the Rumpled Silksheets anthology. It's the same editor for both, who was thorough and a delight to work with. The anthology has popped up as 'book of the day' more than once, which did provice a nice spike in sales.

My main issue has been the $100 minimum payout on royalties. I've heard it is negotiable, but it didn't occur to me for the first sub. I'm going to see what I can do with the second anthology. Contracts seem harder to negotiate with anthologies (I tried on the 'length of copyright clause' first time around) as they prefer all authors in the anthology to be working under the same terms.