Notes on negotiating rates for
Print media / Editing/producing books

These are some things to remember when negotiating rates for book editing and production work. And please send us your accounts of successful negotiations.

  • Abstracts, blurbs and indexes are copyright works. The editor/indexer and the publisher should agree on how many editions, distributed how widely, are covered by a contract; extra licensed uses should attract an extra fee.
  • The rates are suggested as minima from which freelances will negotiate upward according to their experience and specialist knowledge and the value of the work.
  • When negotiating over editing of a book, particularly when the editor is working from home, it is essential to be clear at the start on the timetable and how the invariable alterations to it will be communicated.
  • The rates for shifts do not include paid time off.
  • Freelances who are registered for VAT will add it to every invoice.

We especially welcome information on usual practice for extra licences for use of indexes in further editions.

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Text © Mike Holderness & previous contributors; Moral rights asserted. The collection (database right) © National Union of Journalists. Comments to please. You may find the glossary helpful.

The National Union of Journalists must not, can not and would not wish to dictate rates or terms of engagement to members or to editors. The information presented here is for guidance and as an aid to equitable negotiation only.

Suggestions apply to contracts governed by UK law only. In any event, nothing here should be construed as legal advice.