Author Topic: Series switching publishing houses?  (Read 5015 times)

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Offline anonymous

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Series switching publishing houses?
« on: October 09, 2008, 02:35 PM »
Has anyone heard of -- or have an example of -- a series that has switched publishing houses mid-stream (but maintaining the series)?

(For ex. starting the series at house A for book 1&2, then getting dropped by A but picked up by House B for 3&4, etc. Or just a switch in houses for any reason sometime over the course of the series.)

Any genre.

 :thankyou

Offline Mandy Hubbard

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Re: Series switching publishing houses?
« Reply #1 on: October 09, 2008, 02:42 PM »
I have heard of this. But now am blanking on the series.

Its not common, becuase the problem is, that if house B published books 4, 5, 6 and then house A decides to go out of print on books 1, 2, 3, well House B is kind of screwed, unless/until rights revert to you and they can put out books 1, 2, 3-- if sales even warrant that. So, yeah, sticky.
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Offline Sacha

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Re: Series switching publishing houses?
« Reply #2 on: October 09, 2008, 03:21 PM »
I think I once read on Meg Cabot's website (or maybe in an interview?) that this happened to her.  I got the impression that the original publisher had decided to stop publishing the series, meanwhile some of her other books became popular (Princess Diaries Series) and so her publisher for Princess Diaries re-published all the books in the first series (with new, hip covers) including the final books that had been planned but dropped by publisher #1.  I think they changed the author name from her pen name (Jenny Carroll) and published them under her now famous real name.

It must have been either her 1-800 series or her Mediator series but I can't remember which.  Perhaps there's more info on her website.

Offline LindaJoy

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Re: Series switching publishing houses?
« Reply #3 on: October 09, 2008, 03:46 PM »
It's really rare and I've only seen it happen in two situation -- one listed above where an author gains "Meg Cabot" fame and readers want to read all her books. Ellen Emerson White achieved this, too, with her PRESIDENT'S DAUGHTER series (although I can't be sure it was a different publisher; could have been the same publisher.

Interestingly enough Ellen Emerson sold/reprinted her books with a small publisher a few years ago--before the recent rerelease by a larger publisher. I've seen other authors have their books reprinted to a smaller publisher, too, since the small publisher is more eager to publish books with a built-in audience.

Several of my series have gone out of print and I retained the rights and am still hoping to have REGENERATION (teen clones) resell. But so far no interest. I did try to do it myself for my midgrade series, MY SISTER THE GHOST, by selling the reprint rights for the first two books to WINGS (an e-publisher who also does a paperback format). The first GHOST book went on to win the EPPIE 2004 award for best children's book, but there isn't much of an audience for this market so these books rarely sell.

So reselling a series to a new publisher isn't easy...but never say never. I'm still hoping to achieve it by continuing to write/publish and hope something I write makes it "Meg Cabot" big.
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Offline Stephanie Ruble

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Re: Series switching publishing houses?
« Reply #4 on: October 09, 2008, 05:30 PM »
Other than Meg Cabot, I can only think of graphic novel examples.

The Amelia Rules series (graphic novels) is being switched to another publisher. They're re-releasing the titles + planning for new books. It was just announced, so no news yet on the success of the switch. The announcement from PW: "Ginee Seo of Ginee Seo Books, an imprint of S&S/Atheneum, will take over the publication of the graphic novel collections of Amelia Rules, the self-published kids' comics series by cartoonist Jimmy Gownley. Amelia Rules!: The Whole World's Crazy, due out next summer, is the first of five collections that reprint Gownley's original self-published collections, with the rest to follow later. Starting in fall 2010 Gownley will create new titles in the series. Judy Hansen of Hansen Literary Agency did the deal."

<edited to add> Jimmy was self pubbing Amelia, but then was picked up by a publisher (Scholastic, I think). Now it's switching to S&S.

The Flight Anthologies also switched publishers, but that's an adult/all ages anthology series that went from a small publisher to a big publisher.
« Last Edit: October 09, 2008, 05:31 PM by sruble »
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Offline sjkincaid

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Re: Series switching publishing houses?
« Reply #5 on: October 11, 2008, 09:03 PM »
I'm pretty sure rights revert back to you after seven years whatever happens, so if it's been a while since the first book you're free to do anything with it.
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Offline Amy S

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Re: Series switching publishing houses?
« Reply #6 on: October 12, 2008, 02:12 PM »
Amelia's Notebooks (Marissa Moss) moved from American Girl to Simon and Schuster. Don't know the reason or the rhyme for the move, but my boys love them. I think they're pretty great too. She has an e-mail on her website. You could ask if you want.
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Offline Christine Norris

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Re: Series switching publishing houses?
« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2008, 07:35 AM »
I'm pretty sure rights revert back to you after seven years whatever happens, so if it's been a while since the first book you're free to do anything with it.

It actually depends on whatever your contract says. Many publishers have contracts for five years, with optional renewal, some shorter. If the book is selling well, both parties may opt to renew it. (I am not a lawyer, but this is common)

Seven years is a long time for a book contract.
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Offline TFree

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Re: Series switching publishing houses?
« Reply #8 on: January 04, 2009, 11:02 PM »
I believe Edgar & Ellen moved from Tricycle to S&S.

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Re: Series switching publishing houses?
« Reply #9 on: January 05, 2009, 11:41 AM »
Kristin Cashore's Graceling came out from HMH but she is moving with her editor to Dial, so the second and third books in the series will be issued from there.

So it's not always because a series is dropped that a new publishing house can be involved.