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What is a typical rate for a textbook contributor?

Q: What is a typical rate for a textbook contributor? Do I have any negotiation power if I think the rate isn’t fair?

A: Lorraine Papazian-Boyce, author of ICD-10-CM/PCS Coding: A Map for Success, and the upcoming Pearson’s Comprehensive Medical Coding: ICD-10-CM/PCS, ICD-9-CM, CPT, HCPCS:

“I’ve contributed to dozens of projects for multiple publishers over the last 8-9 years. It is a wonderful way to get started in the field, gain credibility with a publisher, and earn money here and now. The rate for contributors depends on the type of content you’re being asked to develop, such as exercises, a chapter, supplements, etc. It also varies by field and publisher. I’ve usually received a flat rate per project, but sometimes it’s pieced out, for example, per exercise or question written. As with any freelance work, you need to figure a reasonable rate that you would like to make per hour and estimate how long the work will take based on your experience. Ask for the project to be as well-defined as possible, or define the scope yourself upon acceptance. Then if (when) the scope expands, you have a basis for negotiating more money or refusing the work. In my experience, rates are usually, but not always, negotiable especially with a well-reasoned rationale. Negotiability also depends on your own experience and credibility and how hard-pressed the publisher is to find someone.”