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Book Publishing Contract Template

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This publishing contract, the “Contract,” is entered into as of [contract creation date] by and between [Sender.Company], the “Publisher,” and [Client.FirstName][Client.LastName], the “Author.” This publishing contract governs the publication of the work(s) listed below:

Author will deliver to the Publisher the original manuscript tentatively titled [Title of Book], the “Book.” The Book shall be [fiction/nonfiction] and will contain approximately [number] words and [number] pictures/illustrations. The Book shall be [describe the book as accurately as possible]

Grant of rights

[Client.FirstName][Client.LastName] grants [Sender.Company] full right and title to the following, in perpetuity:

  • The right to publish, sell, and profit from the listed works in all languages and formats in existence today and at any point in the future.
  • To create or devise modified, abridged, or derivative works based on the works listed.
  • To sell the rights granted or allow others to use the listed works at their discretion, without providing additional compensation to [Client.FirstName][Client.LastName].

These rights are granted by [Client.FirstName][Client.LastName] on behalf of him/herself and their successors, heirs, executors, and any other party who may attempt to lay claim to these rights at any point now or in the future.

Any rights not specifically granted to [Sender.Company] above remain with [Client.FirstName][Client.LastName].

The rights granted to [Sender.Company] by [Client.FirstName][Client.LastName] shall not be constrained by geographic territories and are considered global in nature.


Publishers shall register the copyright to the Book, identifying the Author as the owner of the copyright, as well as the author of the Book, within 90 days of initial publication of the Book. Publisher will give Author a copy of the registration certificate. Publisher and any sublicensees will place a copyright notice in Author’s name in all copies of the published Book, as follows:

©  [Client.FirstName][Client.LastName][year of publication]

Author compensation

Advance against royalties

[Sender.Company] shall provide [Client.FirstName][Client.LastName] with an advance against future royalties in the amount of advance amount. This advance shall be paid to [Client.FirstName][Client.LastName] as follows:

$ [amount] on the signing of this Contract

$ [amount] on acceptance of the complete manuscript of the Book

‌$ [amount] on Publisher’s initial publication of the Work or within [number] months after acceptance, whichever comes earlier


[Sender.Company] agrees to provide the [Client.FirstName][Client.LastName] with royalties as follows:​

Hardcover rates

Publisher shall pay Author the royalties on copies of hardcover edition sold by Publisher in the United States through regular book wholesale and retail channels, minus returns:

  • ‌First 5,000 copies: 10% of the Retail Price
  • Next 5,000 copies: 12.5% of the Retail Price
  • All copies after 10,000: 15% of the Retail Price

Paperback rates

For trade paperback:

Publisher shall pay Author the royalties on copies of trade paperback edition sold by Publisher in the United States through regular book wholesale and retail channels:

  • 7.5% of the Retail Price, minus returns

For mass market paperback:

Publisher shall pay Author the royalties on copies of mass market paperback edition sold by Publisher in the United States through regular book wholesale and retail channels, minus returns: 

  • First 150,000 copies: 8% of the Retail Price
  • All copies after 150,000: 10% of the Retail Price

Audiobooks and ebooks

Publisher shall pay Author royalties on any verbatim electronic text edition or electronically delivered audio recording of the verbatim text of the Book:

  • 25% of the Publisher’s net receipts on all copies 


[Client.FirstName][Client.LastName] agrees to deliver a completed manuscript, the “Manuscript,” to [Sender.Company] no later than [manuscript due date]. The Manuscript may be delivered via certified mail or email in printed or digital format. 

Additionally, [Client.FirstName][Client.LastName] shall deliver all artwork, prefaces, references, acknowledgments, and other “front matter” or “back matter” at a date to be determined by [Sender.Company].

Should [Sender.Company] deem any delivered material to be unacceptable for any reason, [Client.FirstName][Client.LastName] shall be granted a period of time (to be determined by [Sender.Company]) to correct such defects. If [Client.FirstName][Client.LastName] fails to correct defects in the time granted, [Sender.Company] reserves the right to cancel this book publishing contract with cause.

Should [Client.FirstName][Client.LastName] fail to deliver the Manuscript or related materials, or fail to correct defects in time granted, then the Publisher will send the Author a written notice providing the Author with a 30-day grace period to deliver the Book. If the Author does not deliver within the 30-day period, the Publisher may terminate the Contract by a second written notice. [Client.FirstName][Client.LastName] shall be required to pay any advance payments received back to [Sender.Company].

Representations and warranties

Author represents and warrants that:

  • Author is the sole owner of the copyright of the Book and owns the rights granted to the Publisher.
  • The Book is original and has not previously been published‌.
  • The Book does not contain anything that is unlawful or deceptive.
  • All statements in the Book purporting to be facts are true or based on reasonable research for accuracy. 

Full agreement

This Contract constitutes the full agreement of Publisher and Author and supersedes all prior contracts, understandings, and discussions, whether written or oral, regarding the Book. No change of this Contract will be binding unless written and signed by both Publisher and Author. 









Book Publishing Contract Template

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