April 14, 2021: What’s the deal? What have we agreed to?: Exploring publisher agreements and contracts

The Book Publishers Association of Alberta is pleased to announce an upcoming panel webinar: What’s the deal? What have we agreed to?: Exploring publisher agreements and contracts, featuring Glenn Rollans (Brush Education), Karen Clark (University of Regina Press), Marilyn Biderman (Transatlantic Agency), and Matt Williams (House of Anansi).

This panel of industry professionals will give an overview of the principles underlying a publishing contract from the points of view of the publisher, author, and agent. The discussion will cover tangible and intangible elements, including understanding expectations, publishing and subsidiary rights, best practices in negotiations, publisher agreements for scholarly presses, copyright, and royalties. There will be plenty of time for Q&A, so come ready with your questions.

This event is free for members of the BPAA. Please register to reserve your spot by 4:30pm MST on Tuesday, April 13.

Glenn Rollans is president and publisher of Brush Education, an independent Canadian higher-education publisher. Over the past four decades, he has accumulated a long and varied publishing résumé, including lots of teaching, rebuilding, buying andselling. He was co-owner of Les Éditions Duval / Duval House Publishing (K to 12 educational resources), Director of the University of Alberta Press (academic, scholarly and literary), and Editor-in-Chief at Lone Pine Publishing (trade and reference), while also working as an educator, writer, and researcher. He’s a former co-director of the Business of Publishing program (University of Chicago), director of the Banff Publishing Program (Banff Centre), and co-chair of Access Copyright. Glenn serves on the Association of Canadian Publishers board as past president, as past president on the board of the Book Publishers Association of Alberta, and as the representative of the Canadian Copyright Institute to the Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights of the WIPO.

Karen May Clark is an experienced Acquisitions Editor in scholarly publishing, with a lifelong commitment to literature and the humanities, social justice, Indigenization, and environmentalism. She has a PhD (ABD) in Indigenous and Canadian literatures from University of Alberta and a Master of Arts in memoir writing and testimony. As an academic, Karen has earned many accolades, including a Governor General’s Award, University of Regina President’s Medal, and a SSHRC doctoral award for her dissertation, “Witnessing Whiteness: The Indian Residential School System in Canada.” She has also studied in France, England, and the USA.

After a dozen years of teaching literature at the post-secondary level, Karen moved into academic publishing, first at Texas Tech University Press and then at University of Regina Press. Since 2014, she has been the acquisitions editor at University of Regina Press, where she has acquired and edited several award-winning books, including Harold Johnson’s Firewater, Trevor Herriot’s Towards a Prairie Atonement, James Daschuk’s Clearing the Plains (new edition), and Blair Stonechild’s The Knowledge Seeker.

Before joining Transatlantic Literary Agency in 2017, Marilyn Biderman worked at her own literary agency and consultancy practice for seven years, where she helped launch the careers of début and prize-winning authors.  She had previously worked at McClelland & Stewart for twelve years, most recently as Vice President, Director, Rights and Contracts. At M&S, she handled the international rights for many renowned authors, including Leonard Cohen, André Alexis, and Madeleine Thien. 

Marilyn is a member of the Law Society of Ontario, a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School, and also holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Toronto in English Literature. She has guest-lectured at the publishing programs at Humber College, Ryerson University, Simon Fraser University, the University of British Columbia, and taught a course in the publishing program at Centennial College. She has also mentored many publishers under the auspices of the Association of Canadian Publishers and the Canada Council, and has acted as a juror in literary competitions. She has authored several papers on copyright law; served as a founding executive of the recently-formed Professional Association of Canadian Literary Agents, and served for many years on the organizing committee for the International Visitors Program of Toronto’s International Festival of Authors. She was also a member of the Branding Committee for Canada’s participation at the Frankfurt Book Fair as the featured guest country.  Marilyn served for many years, most recently as chair, on the board of Canada’s dance magazine, The Dance Current, and is especially proud of her work with the St. John Ambulance Dog Therapy program. 

Matt Williams is VP, Operations at House of Anansi Press / Groundwood Books in Toronto. He is a past-president of the Association of Canadian Publishers, and is currently Vice Chair of CanadaFBM2021, the industry group that is helping to organize Canada’s Guest of Honour presence at the Frankfurt Book Fair.

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