What TAA members value about their membership

I am a TAA member because

We recently began sending a postcard to our members asking them to complete the phrase, “I am a TAA member because…” A big thank you to everyone who has responded so far!

“TAA gives me a multi-dimensional perspective on textbook and academic publishing. By helping me understand what authors and publishers want and need, it empowers me to do a better job as a freelance editor.”
— Elsa Peterson

“TAA has ‘tons’ of resources available for a VERY reasonable cost. The website is GREAT. The TAA members and staff have been very willing to provide workable suggestions to help me solve several issues that I’ve faced in my continuing efforts to publish my first book.”
— Bill (William) H. Koenecke, Ph.D.

“Being an author of a textbook is like a long, solitary journey. It’s nice to be joined on that journey by others who know exactly what that’s like!”
— Al Trujillo, author of Essentials of Oceanography

“As a PhD student, the resources made available to improve my writing have made a big difference in getting several articles published in leading journals.”
— Bill Cleveland [Read more…]

TAA launches new website and online member community

TAA website

TAA announces the launch of its new website, featuring an updated look and improved navigation, making it easier to locate resources quickly and easily.

The new website, still available at www.TAAonline.net, introduces some exciting new features:

  • A searchable Member Directory that will allow members to connect with other members based on interests, publisher, location, and more.
  • An online member community where members can exchange ideas, ask questions and share their expertise. [Read more…]

Textbook project multi-tasking: An interview with Karen Timberlake

Karen and Bill Timberlake

Karen Timberlake and her coauthor husband Bill.

Karen Timberlake has been writing chemistry textbooks for over 35 years, publishing more than 50 texts including subsequent editions, and support manuals. She is a Professor Emerita of Chemistry at Los Angeles Valley College, where she taught chemistry for 36 years.

Over the years Timberlake’s name has become associated with the strategic use of pedagogical tools that promote student success in chemistry and the application of chemistry to real-life situations. More than one-million students have learned chemistry using texts, laboratory materials, and study guides written by Timberlake.

Here Timberlake discusses her approach to textbook authoring and her strategies for managing multiple projects. [Read more…]

How to negotiate textbook contracts strategically

Many textbook authors, especially new authors, are intimidated high stack of booksby the idea of negotiating their contracts, but strategic and artful contract negotiation is essential to ensure that you get the best offer possible.

“It is very important to negotiate your contract, because the first offer will not be the best deal, so you’ll just be leaving money on the table if you don’t negotiate,” said Stephen Gillen, intellectual property attorney at Wood, Herron & Evans.

Michael Lennie, attorney and literary agent at Lennie Literary Agency, considers the clauses regarding royalties, competing works, and the rights to electronic versions of the work to be among the most important portions of a contract to negotiate. In addition, he suggests that authors try to negotiate the reversion clause, which is a clause that determines a date for when the rights to a book will be reverted to the author in the event that it is never published or goes out of print. [Read more…]