Saturday, 2 February 2019

Mine? - No, It’s Yours’

It’s not mine - it’s Yours
(and yes, this photograph is offensive)
A story ‘what I wrote’ is currently on sale in the Yours Fiction Special. Normally I would be very excited about this and to some measure I suppose I am. ‘Guess Who From’, is printed alongside one written by Celia Imrie. To have my story listed next to hers is thrilling.

Except ‘Guess Who From’ is not my story. Yes, I wrote it. But it is no longer mine because when I sold it to Yours (part of Bauer Media) in 2016 I sold it with all rights. This means that the story belongs to Bauer.

Delighted to see there is a demand for short
story fiction. If only writers were better regarded.
Because it is theirs they can reprint it whenever they wish, without my permission, without my knowledge and without any further payment - as is the case here. They can use another name, or even no name at all. I understood this when I accepted their payment three years ago so I am not in any way moaning about the consequences.

There was a time when only a few magazines demanded all rights, Yours being one of them. Sadly TIMedia changed their terms last year and all stories now purchased by Woman’s Weekly are under an ‘all rights’ contract. This week news has broken of another Bauer magazine, ‘Spirit & Destiny’, demanding all rights.

Despite complaints and adverse publicity, the unfair bargaining position means that individual writers are faced with accepting such unfair terms imposed by large corporations or to stop submitting and selling. It’s not a good position to be in.

What was once mine is mine no longer. It’s Yours.