Friday, April 27, 2012

Bilbary: What's in it for Authors, Publishers, and Agents?

After reviewing its Terms of Service, Site Usage, and FAQs, I'm still in a fog regarding exactly what provides authors, publishers, and agents. Cryptically, all I could do, as an author visiting this site, was send Bilbary's customer-service folks an email noting my interest in "becoming a Bilbary partner."

As such, here's the email I wrote them. I'll post their response. Note that Bilbary required a brief overview of my writing background.
I wrote and self-published four novels (3 adventure, 1 romcom), which exist as ebooks on several platforms. I have many more titles in various stages of development.
I am interested in offering ebook copies of my titles to subscribed readers on

I read the site's terms of service and faqs, but found very little regarding rights retention and nothing about how Beilbary benefits authors/publishers.
Please email me with specific details regarding Bilbary's program and offerings to self-published authors (including, but not limited to, royalties calculations & payment schedules, DRM options, content ownership, exit/termination schemes, et al.).

Thanks and regards,
LC Cooper, author of:
Christmess (novel)
Legacy (novel)
Simmering Consequences (novel)
The Voices of Cellar's Bridge (novel)
"Halloween's Perfect Storm" (short)
"Of Yellow Snow And Christmas Balls" (short)
"Dan's Accidental Convertible" (short)
"One Lousy Wish" (short)


  1. Have you heard back yet? (yeah, this is how behind on blogs I am, LOL!)

    1. *Sigh* Yeah, I heard back in the form of a boilerplate lawyer-ish contract.

      I see very little that benefits the author. One section explicitly states that Bilbary takes ownership of the titles! I read this several times over (ref. section 5 "Taxes"), and although this section appears to contradict other sections, the fact that it exists and that it was approved by corporate officers for distribution raises a major and show-stopping concern.

      Then, there's the part about the book-lending service, from which an author stands to receive only pennies for each title.

      Then, there's this teensy-wheensy issue about Bilbary setting the final price - and that the author's price is meerely a "suggestion." This scheme further supports my belief that Bilbary will "own" the titles it allows to be published on its site.

      From what I could tell, an author could expect to receive no more than a 50% royalty for sold books (and way less for checked-out ebooks).

      The vibe of the contract was extremely one-sided, heavily slanted to benefit Bilbary.

      It's contract demanded a lack of transparency, and the sketchiness of the contract, itself, gave me the vibe that honesty and good-faith disclosure were aspects that would be lacking from an author's relationship with Bilbary.

      The only positive I found was that the contract claimed that authors/reps would be paid 45 days after a copy's sale. With all the other text slanted against the author, I had to wonder why they were offering better-than-industry standards. The precedence makes me question the validity of this claim.

      After reading the contract, it's not a stretch to understand that Bilbary was created on the backbone of Ingram Content Group. This felt like window-dressing - that Bilbary will be a 21st-century consumer/author interface cloaking the traditional publishing business model. "Gee, Toto, it looks like we never left Kansas."

      I was very disheartened, so I'm sorry it took so long to respond or provide an update. I desperately want to believe that my interpretations are incorrect, and I eagerly hope that a Bilbary official can, in writing, alay my concerns.

      I hope you have a great weekend.

      Take care,


Thank you for your comment! As my gift to you, please click link below
for your free copy of my ebook "Legacy".

Take care,
LC Cooper