Sunday, December 4, 2011

Agatha Christie - Contract snafu

The years 1920-1945 were considered the Golden age of British Mysteries, according to John Curran in his book Agatha Christie's Secret Notebooks, 2009. The queen of those mysteries was Agatha Christie. Christie's first novel, The Mysterious Affairs at Styles, took five years from book contract to being published in the UK. The book contract specified she would not receive any pay until 2,000 copies of the book had sold. After that she would get a 10% royalty. That wasn't the only condition though, she was commissioned to write five more novels in the same vein.

Talk about being taken advantage of, luckily Christie learned fast and was assertive. She designed her own contract in subsequent deals and the rest as they say is classic Christie.

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