So - if James Frey's books are returned, does he owe the publisher his royalties back? And, if he has to pay back money would his agent bear the brunt also?
There's something I've been wondering about in regards to advances and royalties (apologies if the answer is already somewhere in the Snarchives). I know that a writer doesn't start receiving royalties until they 'earn out' their advance, but what if the book doesn't sell, and they never earn out the advance - does this happen? If so, and the book is remaindered, would the writer then have to repay the outstanding amount, or would the publisher simply cut their losses?
Thank you, Miss Snark - I can't say how much I appreciate your blog. (well, you just did, and you're welcome)
James Frey doesn't have to give back the money. Neither does his agent.
And if his book had tanked, he still wouldn't have to.
Advances against royalties are at the publisher's risk: you don't have to pay them back if the book doesn't earn out. You do if you fail to deliver the book.
More than half of all books fail to earn out their advances. This is not a happy thing.