Letter from Leonard Woolf to Raymond Savage Limited (03/11/1930)



[[MS 2750/153/8]]


Raymond Savage Limited 
Panton House, 
25 Haymarket, S.W.1


3 November, 1930


Dear Mr Savage,




There are just two points which I would like to raise with regard to the agreement drafted by you:


1. As it stands the legal effect of the first clause is not clear to me.  Is the exclusive licence to publish restricted to one year from the date of publication?  As the clause stands, it is practically certain that a Court would hold that it was, that being the only period of time stated in the clause and therefore the implication being that it covers both parts of the clause.  It is true that this interpretation does not seem consistent with clause 6, but if the period for which the right to sell is given in clause 1, then it seems to me that the period for which the right to publish is given should also be stated.


2. The other question concerns the American rights and I know in advance that you will consider my view heretical.  But here it is.  My custom in such cases as this is to stipulate for a licence to publish in the English language throughout the world including America and if I sell the American rights to pay the author 90%.  My reason is that it is 500 to 1 that I shall lose money by publishing this book, that if I do not publish it it is 500 to 1 against an American publisher publishing it, that if I do publish it there is a reasonable chance that some publisher in America will take it.  In the last three weeks, two American publishers have come to me and asked whether I have anything coming out in the spring which might interest them.  In both cases I mentioned this book as a possibility.  As a result of what I said and the fact that we are publishing it, they are extremely anxious to consider it.


Yours sincerely | Leonard Woolf [signature]

Rights Statement:

Reproduced with permission from Penguin Random House UK Archive and Library owner of the Hogarth Press archive collection, held by the University of Reading Special Collections. With thanks to the Society of Authors

Source: MS 2750/153/8

Letter from Leonard Woolf to Raymond Savage Limited (03/11/1930)


University of Reading, Special Collections

Leonard Woolf writes to raise points about a draft agreement written by Raymond Savage, concerning the American rights and an exclusive license to publish.


Typescript document signed by Woolf