Money Changes Everything

Agents and advances

Previous AE coverage of these issues:

Money Changes Everything
Commerce, philanthropy, and the culture of the academy

"We should be more creative in thinking about how we reward people for what they've done."
Rich Rothenberg, Professor of Family and Preventive Medicine

"If I'm going to accept [the Sloan Foundation's] money in good faith, I have to minimally carry out their agenda."
Bradd Shore, Professor of Anthropology

University, Inc.
License income, patents, start-ups, and research expenditures for a selection of eleven institutions

Who sees the money?
Emory's recently revised intellectual property ownership policy

Writing Crossover Books
Can scholarship sell?

Agents and advances
For the crossover book

Ex libris
Crossover titles by Emory authors

Help on the horizon
The new program in manuscript development

Return to Contents

To scholars trained for a life of dialogue with a small network of specialists in their subfield, gaining fluency in the language of agents and advances may seem
daunting. While traditional monographs generally still do not garner advances,
contracts for crossover books with scholarly publishers may include advance
payments typically between ten thousand and thirty thousand dollars. And, although scholarly presses still do not require authors to use literary agents to contact them, some do deal with agents. Marketing professor Jagdish Sheth has noticed a growing preference for agents at publishers like Free Press and commercial publishers like Simon & Schuster. While agents sometimes approach professors, Sheth and physics professor Sidney Perkowitz say they found agents they like through referrals of friends and colleagues.

For books with real crossover appeal, publishers and sometimes authors also
occasionally hire publicity agents to market books. Yale University Press launched political science professor Harvey Klehr’s The Secret World of American Communism at a news conference on the advice of a public relations firm. The strategy worked: Klehr and his co-authors’ scholarly findings inspired many newspaper stories and columns and boosted sales.