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How much material can I use from one of my earlier books?

Q. I currently have two manuscripts that I am trying to place. One is a collection of essays, the other a memoir. The collection includes an essay called “Relief.” The memoir grew out of this essay, whose contents are dispersed throughout the memoir’s four main sections. The total number of words from “Relief” comprises approximately…

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What should I watch out for in the “competitive books” clause?

Q. Is there anything I have to be particularly careful about in the “competitive books” clause? A. Yes. Lots. The most important is to make sure that the prohibition on competitive works applies only to competitive books. Otherwise, your publisher might be able to prohibit you from publishing certain magazine articles and very likely could…

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