Wikiklesia Paperback Available | A Tale of Two Publishers

Wikiklesia CoverI’m really pleased to see the Wikiklesia book published in physical form. Go get your copy here and support Not For Sale as you do. I contributed a chapter on the move between text, audio and video, which seems to have gone down well.

Wikiklesia is one of those great publishing projects you are happy to be a part of, with no thought of payment. Good people doing good things… the gifts have cycled well.

Unfortunately this isn’t always the case. Many months ago now I was keenly asked to provide a couple of articles for a large and very well known US Christian publication. The deadlines were tight, the turnaround not easy with juggling other things, but hey – they seemed so keen and nice about it! My queries were answered by the editor within hours, they seemed really pleased with what I’d produced… And then it came to payment. I was patient, I can tell you – I don’t like hassling people for cash – but suddenly, with the articles published, I couldn’t get a squeak out of them.

Finally, after a number of unanswered emails, a cheque for one of the articles arrived, with a copy of the piece for my file, which I was more concerned about to be honest. I’ve since heard nothing about the other one, which was published months back, but for which I’m still owed.

Should I be bothered? I can take or leave the cash. Some can’t, but I’m lucky enough to have income from my teaching. But I just feel that the principle is important. It’s basically theft, right? Should writers have to hassle people for what their due, however small it might be? I know for a fact that this publication has treated others in a similar way. Is this the sort of way we’d want a Christian publication to run? I’ve no desire to write for them again, and if that means I’m shooting my US Christian publishing empire in the foot, well, so be it 😉 I’d rather spend the rest of my days pushing work out for free to projects like Wikiklesia than have the sour taste of having to chase poorly run, industrial-sized Christian publishing houses for cash.

Rant over.


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3 responses to “Wikiklesia Paperback Available | A Tale of Two Publishers”

  1. i think you should go for your money, not in an asshole sort of way but they said they would pay you for your work and you should get it.

  2. 1. The Wikiklesia cover is awful! You couldn’t get Nic on the job?!
    “I’d rather spend the rest of my days pushing work out for free to projects like Wikiklesia than have the sour taste of having to chase poorly run, industrial-sized Christian publishing houses for cash.” …Yes. If you have the option to write what you want w/o compensation, always the better choice. And if you have the choice to not do business with American companies that openly claim their “Christianity,” better still. It’s funny that all sorts of companies here will advertise their faith, I assume to attract customers who are either of the same faith or would trust someone of faith more than someone not…but given the number of horrible experiences I’ve had with Christian businesses here, it has the exact opposite effect with me.

  3. I just finished your book. I especially enjoyed the chapter of gifts. It has some great insight to it. I understand the concept of the gift starting a flow that continues beyond the economic model of paid services. But couldn’t it also be carried out by charging for an item and the “gifting” back more than was paid for. As with the artwork, it would then live in both realms.
    I say this because I came from “inside” the church where I spent the first 16 years of my professional life as a minister. I got sick of the old model of the church AND the minister being supported by the beggars bowl and all the baggage that goes with it. Now I produce products or provide services but charge for them up front. My old friends say I shouldn’t, that I should do it free of charge and allow people to give, that’s the Christian model. But as I said before I was on the inside and I know that “free” never really meant free. Free tapes were given because they knew they could pound them with fundraising letters loaded with guilt and obligation until they received far more than the “free gift” was worth.
    I think my model is much more honest and if I give more than was agreed on in the purchase will it not carry the same flow of a gift?