Thursday, September 10, 2009

More Stuff on E-bookery

Got an inquiry from somebody wanting to know if the Matador novels were ever going to be put forth as ebooks. I haven't heard that such is the case, save for the most recent one, The Musashi Flex, which is a kindle title.

So I sent my editor and note and will see what she says. If she doesn't want to, I could -- I think I've got files on them somewhere ...

I used to get asked if Ace was ever going to put the first three together as an omnibus, too. That might be something that would be useful for -- if I had the rights to do it ...


Bobbe Edmonds said...

You DON'T own the rights to the Matadors?

Aren't you, like, the AUTHOR?

Did you sign your soul away too?

Stan said...

Me, Me, Me memememememmemem ME! I want it!

Ahem, if that should ever be the case, Mr. Perry, I would be very interested in purchasing those items

Very sincerely yours,


Thanks for the great way to start the day!

Dan Moran said...


I'm guessing the magic of "in print" has something to do with it. A publisher who keeps your books "in print" can keep the rights forever, essentially.

"In print" means something quite different today, what with e-books and all.

Apropos of nothing, my word verification is:


For some reason this reminds me of "de plane"...

Steve Perry said...

Yes and no, Kid. I own most of the rights; some, I share with Ace-Berk. That's how it was done back in the day, and to some extent, is still done.

The Man Who Never MIssed came out originally almost twenty-five years ago, and my then-agent had some clout, but not enough ...

For the longest time, I didn't have computer files on these -- I've gone through a bunch of computer systems, the first three Matador novels were stored on a a bunch of floppy disks the size of dinner plates, and once the books saw print, I tossed those. What did I know about ebooks back then?

A year or so ago, an ebook pirate scanned, edited, and put the Matadors all up on a webpage. All quite illegally. I sent my editor a note when I spotted this. Penguin unlimbered the lawyers and shut him down pretty quick.

I managed to get copies of the PDFs before that happened. Seemed only fair.

As Dan said, a certain amount of time out-of-print, I can get all the rights reverted; however, each time that the books have gotten to that point and I start talking to my agent about doing it, Ace has reprinted them. This is much easier to do then it used to be, what with electronic files being readily available. And it only takes a few copies to satisfy the contract.

Now and then, a game company or movie producer wanna be shows up and wants an option on the books. So far, none of these have panned out, but they have been good for some free money when they try. If one ever does take off, Ace will hustle to get the books out in print again -- this stuff all feeds on itself, it's like a snowball rolling downhill.

These novels have held up pretty well, but they are somewhat dated, in that the future has caught up with some of what I used. I'd be happy to see a TV miniseries or Major Motion Picture or bestselling video game based on them because that would make me some money in my dotage and keep the books selling for a time.

Of course, I could eventually write The Siblings of the Shroud, and that might spark some interest in reprinting the old ones, too.

Someday ...

Steve Perry said...


Ace's current ebook policy is to cover books that are in print and selling. My editor allows as how she will check with them and see what's what, but I wouldn't hold out a lot of hope that they'll be at or Borders online any time soon.

Never know, but ...

Bobbe Edmonds said...

I'm sorry, I'm not trying to be dense. (It just comes naturally).

So, when you turn in an ms. and it gets accepted, you lose any control over it? How do you decide if it will get made into a movie, or something (assuming the offers come in). I know a publishing house has DISTRIBUTION rights, I know what those are, but is there nothing to keep the rights of the ms. itself in the hands of the author?

That seems like...Indentured slavery, to me.

Ed said...

As you know - I would love to see Siblings printed. Since you have worked with Clancy and others maybe they can work with your book (s) too ---- that should get the publishers moving and maybe bring in more readers to your books. Just don't let them write too much, you do great on your own. Anything to generate more interest in Matador books, movies etc.