How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Jenny Your Own Question

Jenny
Jenny, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 6305
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor specialising in Employment Law and general legal matters. Please start your question For Jenny Only
32019188
Type Your Law Question Here...
Jenny is online now

Hihi I signed a contract with Austin Maccauley to publish a

Customer Question

hihi I signed a contract with Austin Maccauley to publish a novel and paid an installment (1/3) fee 5 months ago. They have yet to submit an edited version of my book (which by the way is very publishable) and they are now asking for the 2. Third. I would by now have expected to see an edited manuscript, had meetings with the editor etc but alas I get boffed off with emails. Having researched the publisher I want to terminate the contract and ideally get my money back but if not at least be free to sign another publishing contract - the contract I signed also included an option on a second book
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
Hello my name is ***** ***** I am happy to help you today. Do you have a written contract with the publisher and if so is there a termination clause in that contract?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Yes I have a written contract -

there is a clause called Discontinuance of Publication which gives the Publisher the right at his total discretion to discontinue with the publication of the book

But there is otherwise no termination clause

Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
Ok thanks, ***** ***** contract set out the publishers obligations and has the publisher failed to meet those obligations?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Yes

There is a clause called Production Programme

which gives the publisher 290 working days to produce the work in the Publishers edition

This clause does not specify what type of interaction the author is supposed to have with the publisher during this period.

There is a second clause which refers to the publishers pre-publishing responsibility which states the Publisher has to provide the Author with a copy of the edited manuscript for proofreading

Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
Ok thanks does the contract say when and how the balance of the fee must be paid?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

The contract says a total fee of 2300£ is payable - their offer to pay in installments came in different documentation

on 29th of June I was offered to pay in 3 installments but there was no specification of what the Publisher had to do in between the 3 installments falling due

Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
Ok that has covered what was in the contract, did they otherwise agree with you to do the work in a certain way? For example did they tell you they would do things within a certain time frame or that they would correspond with you in a certain way prior to you taking out the contract?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

There were a couple of phonecalls with a lady called Dasiy Wilson Sub Editor, who also contacted me initially by email April 2015, prior to me signing the contract who said that there would be a personal editor assigned and he would be in contact with me to discuss editorial changes to the manuscript, and in general work with me but no time frame for this was offered.

12 of June I was contacted by ***** ***** Production Coordinator who told me that the production department would now deal with my work. The email implies high standards of editing and a lot of time and imput on their part. They will need to co-operate with me fully in this process and there may be a few weeks between updates. Loads of emails until I paid first installment on the 26 June. Since then noone came back to me unless I chased them, except for the accounts department reminding me of future installments due and invoices.

Tom Haynes has been in touch with me for the second time via email (1st September) and claimed that he is working on layouts and editing of my book. In this most recent email he says that when finished he will send the book for my approval. This approach concerned me and I started to check on blogs what the experiences other people had with this publisher. When i consulted writers blogs, it seems that for the unknown authors they sign up this way they simply just put the manuscript thought a desk top soft ware and put it out as the final publishing copy i.e. no work at all. Hence my concern about progressing with the contract.

Ideally I would like to terminate this contract and look to have my book published elsewhere is there any way I can do that?

Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
Unfortunately as the contract itself does not contain a cancellation clause and they are not in breach of the contract the only way you can try to get out of the agreement is by saying that you consider it amounts to a misrepresentation.
This means that you have been told that the work would be done in a particular way and it has not.
If you have evidence that they are not going to personally edit the work but it will go through a computer programme , this is also evidence that it amounts to a misrepresentation.
I would suggest you ask for a refund of the money you have paid and say you no longer want to work with them as you believe the contract has been misrepresented to you.
They may well try to pursue you for the balance of the contract on the basis that you are in breach of contract by cancelling.
If you have email evidence to support the misrepresentations then this will help you defend such a claim.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Would a way forward be to ask for a specific outline of editorial and promotional services which are going to be provided?

Should the publisher be given a 1 week timeframe to provide this outline?

Once either confirmation is received of a very limited service propositon contrasting with the on the website and verbal proposed service or no outline is received would it then be correct to proceed to claim misrepresentation and send a letter outlining the misrepresentation and thus my decision to terminate the contract?

Does the publisher need to be given a chance to defend their service?

Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
Hi yes, your way forward sounds sensible.
At the moment as there is no claim, as such, there is no need for them to have the right to defend themselves. You are simply putting forward your position.
It might be that they will respond to say they are providing the service under the contract and you are obliged to pay the remainder of the fee.
At this stage you do not know what they will say. They may well decide it is too much hassle to proceed.
If you have any further questions please do ask. If i have answered your question I would be grateful if you would take the time to rate my answer. Thank you and all the best.
Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
Hello is there anything further you would like to know about this as I note you have not yet rated my answer which is an important part of the process?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

No at this stage until they reply to an email I will send today there is nothing further

Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
Hi that's fine, It would be great if you would now take the time to rate my answer as I am not otherwise credited for my time.

If you need further help with this I will answer your follow on questions for free.

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Thank you so much for your help. Your answers were really useful and came back so quickly. Great! Maggie
< Previous | Next >
  • Thank you so much for your help. Your answers were really useful and came back so quickly. Great! Maggie
  • A quick response, a succinct and helpful answer in simple English. I believe I can now confront the counter party with confidence -- worth the 30 bucks! Rick
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C.
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP
  • I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin
  • Just let me say that this encounter has been entirely professional and most helpful. I liked that I could ask additional questions and get answered in a very short turn around. Esther
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Jo C.

    Jo C.

    Barrister

    Satisfied Customers:

    30316
    Over 5 years in practice
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/EM/emus/2015-7-7_192327_bigstockportraitofconfidentfemale.64x64.jpg Jo C.'s Avatar

    Jo C.

    Barrister

    Satisfied Customers:

    30316
    Over 5 years in practice
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BE/benjones/2015-12-1_0437_ennew.64x64.jpg Ben Jones's Avatar

    Ben Jones

    UK Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    11553
    Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BU/Buachaill/2012-5-25_211156_barrister5.64x64.jpg Buachaill's Avatar

    Buachaill

    Barrister

    Satisfied Customers:

    1754
    Barrister 17 years experience
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/JO/jojobi/2013-3-19_0265_maxlowryphoto.64x64.jpg Max Lowry's Avatar

    Max Lowry

    Advocate

    Satisfied Customers:

    894
    LLB, 10 years post qualification experience
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/UK/UKLawyer/2012-4-12_9849_F2.64x64.jpg UK_Lawyer's Avatar

    UK_Lawyer

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    750
    I am a qualified solicitor and an expert in UK law.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/KA/Kasare/kasare.64x64.jpg Kasare's Avatar

    Kasare

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    402
    Solicitor, 10 yrs plus experience in civil litigation, employment and family law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/OS/osh/2015-7-7_19268_gettyimagesb.64x64.jpg Joshua's Avatar

    Joshua

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    8199
    LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice