Some good hands-on information in this frank and informative interview via Comics Reporter.
... Many aspiring cartoonists probably do not know that to accept a development contract, they must also sign a full "real" contract, to have it in place should the feature get picked up. Most lawyers will charge about $1,000 to represent the cartoonist. Do you typically give, or even ever give, legally represented cartoonists a better deal than they could get on their own? (For the sake of full disclosure, whether or not to hire an attorney often comes up in cartooning circles. My feeling is that you're not going to budge on the most important parts of the contract no matter what, so the $1,000 is a waste, that creators should just ask for what they want and negotiate their own deals. Am I wrong?)
LEE: Personally and professionally, I would recommend a lawyer. Syndicate contracts are long term relationships and even if a layperson fully grasps all the nuances of a contract, it's best to get an informed perspective. For the sake of full disclosure, I know of contracts that were negotiated by the cartoonist that are better than some negotiated by a lawyer, and vice versa.
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
Universal Press Syndicate head Lee Salem answers questions about newspaper comic strip syndication for the Wet Ink blog. Dawn Douglass conducts the interview. Here's just a snippet: