Business Musings: Let’s Talk Real Business, Shall We?

Two weeks ago, I posted about agenting changes, and linked to a Hollywood Reporter piece about the new writer/agent relationship. Many of you had sent me that piece, because it is shocking in its happy talk about what is, essentially, a predatory scheme. I promised you all three posts inspired by this piece. The agenting piece is the expected one, along with last week’s post […]

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Business Musings: Agenting Changes

This past week I got one of those letters. Someone wrote to me to tell me how great his agent is and what a great deal his agent got him. Not for his novel, but for his movie option. I get “my agent is great” letters all the time, but usually they’re about book deals. If someone feels the need to write to me about […]

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Business Musings: Attorneys

As I’ve mentioned in previous blog posts, I’ve been taking a pretty extensive Entertainment Law class. Initially, I took it to learn about industries related to mine, as I get back to licensing. But I found the first semester fascinating, because it filled in a lot of gaps in my learning. It also filled in a few gaps in my teaching. For years now, I’ve […]

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Business Musings: Contracts: Traditional Publishing (The Year In Review 4)

Here’s a weird thing about businesses: When a business is rolling in cash, the people who run it loosen their grip on the details. Instead of solving a problem, they throw money at it. Often they don’t recognize the problem for the danger that it might be, until it comes back to bite them, years down the road. However, when the business notices that its […]

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Recommended Reading List: August, 2021

I threw out a book of essays in August. I mean literally tossed the book in the trash. The book was considered one of the best books of 2019 by a whole bunch of mainstream literary reviewers, all of whom are on my suspect list now. The book is exceedingly well written. The author writes about all the awful things she’s seen in her life…and […]

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Business Musings: Writing Screenplays (Hollywood Part 3)

The short version of this post: Don’t. Just don’t. Don’t write screenplays, even if someone tells you “you’ll make more money if you do.” The medium version of this post: Write screenplays only if you want to work in Hollywood. Otherwise, write the next book. The long version of this post: Brace yourselves, and settle in for the read. Before I go any farther, let […]

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Business Musings: Content, Content, Content (Hollywood Part 2)

A few weeks ago, I got a survey from the Global Licensing Group, the people in charge of the Las Vegas Licensing Expo. They wanted to know my opinion (and probably hundreds of other people’s opinions) about content. Is it important? Why is it important? How should I/we/they handle it? Oh, and am I a content provider (licensor) or someone who licenses content (licensee)? I […]

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Business Musings: A Cautionary Tale (Hollywood Part 1)

I’m starting a tiny new series because of everything that’s been in the news of late. But first, let me give you a caveat. For decades, Dean and I have said “Hollywood” when we really mean the film and/or TV industry. That word wasn’t accurate 30 years ago; it’s less accurate now. The industry has mushroomed. It’s not even one industry anymore. You can do […]

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Business Musings: The Kickstarted Game Changer (Part Two)

For decades publishing has been a stagnated industry, relying on fifty- and sixty-year-old methods to sell books. Most of the practices within the industry are also at least fifty or sixty years old. Sure, the industry has made some modifications to accommodate innovation, like the ebook, but those are minor tweaks. Those tweaks do not take into account the actual changes in the world. What […]

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Business Musings: Time and Money (Again)

And so it begins. I received three different emails this week from writers, wondering what to do about delayed or non-payment. These writers are smart enough to ask. I have no idea how many others aren’t asking at all, but believing all will be Just Fine Eventually. At the end of April, I wrote a blog post titled “The Trainwreck.” It’s mostly about traditional publishing, […]

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