Here are the terms and conditions for my writing commissions and trades. I have tried to bold all the most important parts, but any commissioner should read through all of them. These are subject to change, though whatever the terms and conditions were at the time the commission was agreed upon will be in effect for that commission.
COMMISSION TYPES/PRICES: Micro Short Story - 1,000-2,000 words: $15 Small Short Story - 2,000-4,000 words: $30 Standard Short Story - 4,000-6,000 words: $50 Long Short Story - 6,000-10,000 words: $75 Extended Short Story - 10,000-15,000 words: $120 All amounts are in USD. 1. I will do my everything I can to keep the story within the word count for the type of commission we agree to. If I find myself completely unable to reach the minimum word length, I will refund you the difference between the type of commission we agreed on and the type of commission that the story fits in. If I go over the agreed upon word count, you are not responsible for paying anything additional. 2. I am currently not accepting commissions for anything less than 1,000 words or anything greater than 15,000 words.
GENERAL: 1. I reserve the right to refuse a commission or a trade for content, known previous behavioral issues, or for any other reason. I will usually explain the reason for refusal, though this is not guaranteed. 2. I will only have up to five short story commissions/trades at a time in my queue. If you see five listed, assume that I am not open to any more for the time being, even if I haven't updated my status. I will sometimes close the queue with less than 5 in it at my discretion. 3. I work on short story commissions and trades more or less in the order that I add them to the queue. On occasion, when facing a writer's block on a particular story, I might start working on another story or work on a personal piece of writing if I am not close to missing an estimated due date on a commissioned/traded story.
INQUIRING ABOUT A COMMISSION: 1. To inquire about a commission, please send me a note through this site, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or contact me through one of the instant messaging services listed on my profile page (I prefer receiving a note or email as this is easier to keep track of). I prefer to have at least two methods of contact. 2. When inquiring about a commission, please let me know a general idea of what you would like to see, as well as any character details you would like to see. If you are using pre-existing characters or settings, please send any references (visual or text) that I would need. Also include the type of commission you would like (chosen from my commission list). 3. When you inquire about a commission, I will reply with any questions I have and to make sure I understand your idea. I will also advise you if I think I will be able to tell your story with the type of commission you have selected, or tell you what type of commission I feel would best fit your story idea. 4. Before I will add you to the queue, I will give you an estimated due date of when the rough draft of the story will be completed. This will be based on the amount of stories I have in the queue, the estimated length of those stories as well as yours, and my schedule.
PAYMENT: 1. I ONLY accept payment via PayPal. This is non-negotiable. 2. For any commission that costs $30 or less, I will need it to be paid in full before I add you to the queue or start any work on your story. For any commission greater than $30, I will need to be paid at least half the amount before I add you to the queue or start any work on it, with the remainder paid after I complete the first draft and before I will complete the final draft. 3. When sending payment, please select "goods or services" as the type of payment. I will return any payment sent as "friends and family", and the commission will not be added to the queue. Any PayPal fees will be covered by me and do not need to be factored in to the amount paid.
DRAFTS: 1. Drafts will be sent via Dropbox or email attachment in both .txt and .rtf formats. If there is any other format you desire, please let me know and I will make a reasonable effort to accommodate this. 2. When I am finished with the first draft, I will send it to you for approval/suggestions. At this point, you can let me know of any changes that you would like to see made to any part of the story. 3. If these changes require more than 50% of the story to be rewritten (not counting grammar/spelling changes), or if it causes the story to be bumped into the word count of another commission type, an additional fee (up to 50% of the original cost or the difference between the amount paid and the cost of the next-highest commission type, whichever is greater) may be required to proceed. 4. After we have agreed upon what needs to be changed for the final draft, it should take no more than two weeks to complete. 5. I will submit the final draft to you for any minor changes that you would like. No more than 10% of the story should need to be changed at this point; anything beyond this may require an additional fee of up to 50% of the original cost or may be rejected at my choosing. If I have not heard back from you within 24 hours of submitting the final draft, I will post the story to my accounts for public viewing. You may still request changes up to 72 hours after this posting, and I will make every effort to accommodate them.
REFUNDS: 1. If I have missed the initial estimated due date I have set, I will contact you with a revised estimate. At this point, you may chose to either accept this revised estimate or to request a refund in full of any money you've paid. If you accept this refund, you give up any rights to publish or reuse any part of the story that has been written or created by me. 2. If I again miss the revised estimate, you may chose to either have the total price of your commission cut in half and still receive the commissioned work in full (when it's completed), or receive a refund of the full amount you've paid. In this case, if you accept this refund, you retain the rights to publish or reuse any part of the story that has been written or created by me. 3. If I have not missed the estimated due date, you may request a refund as long as I have not started on the final draft. In this situation, the amount of the refund will be based on how much of the story I have completed. If I've completed less than 25% of the first draft (based on the higher word count for the agreed-upon commission type), you will receive a full refund. If I have completed between 25% and 75% of the word count, then you will receive 3/4 of the total cost of the commission. If I have completed more than 75% of the word count, then you will receive 1/2 of the total cost of the commission. For the purposes of refunds, any amount of the total that hasn't been paid yet is considered an amount refunded. If you accept this refund, you give up any rights to publish or reuse any part of the story that has been written or created by me. EXAMPLE: You have commissioned a Standard Short Story and have made a $25 down payment with a total cost of $50. A week later, you request a refund. If I have completed less than 1500 words of the short story (25% of 6000), I will refund the $25 you have already paid. If I have completed less than 4500 words of the short story (75% of 6000), I will refund $12.50 (75% of $50 = $37.50, minus the $25 not yet paid = $12.50). If I have completed more than 4500 words, then a refund of the amount will not be issued, since only half of the total amount has been paid already. 4. After the final draft has been started, refunds will only be issued in extenuating circumstances or if it has been longer than two weeks from when we have agreed upon what needs to be changed for the final draft. No more than half of the total cost of a commission will be refunded in this case. 5. Though I try to send all refunds as soon as possible, they may take up to two weeks for me to send through PayPal.
COMMUNICATING WITH EACH OTHER: 1. I will usually respond to any notes/emails within 24 hours of receiving them. If there are extenuating circumstances that would not allow me to respond within 24 hours, I will post this in a journal and will try to notify any commissioners if at all possible. 2. At any point after being placed in the queue, you may request a status update on your story. If I have started writing your story, you may also request to see the draft of the story as it currently exists. I will make every effort to honor this request, though I reserve the right to withhold a draft in certain circumstances. 3. If I have any questions about your story, I will send a note/email to the contact information you gave me (including multiple addresses if given). 4. If I do not hear a reply within 72 hours (three days), I will send a follow-up note/email. If I still do not receive a reply within another 96 hours (four days), I will move the story to the back of my queue and will start focusing on the next story. 5. Any time I wait to receive a reply from you past the first seventy-two hours will push the estimated due date back by however long it takes you to respond, for the purpose of determining refund status. 6. If I do not receive a reply within thirty days of sending a note/email (not the follow-up), then I will consider the story abandoned by you. Ownership rights to any work I've done on the story will be retained by me and may be reused for future work. No refunds will be issued for abandoned stories.
STORY/CHARACTER RIGHTS: 1. I will not write using any existing characters that neither you nor I own the rights to, unless you can prove to my satisfaction that you have permission to use these characters. The only exception to this will be known historical/public figures that would be covered by fair use or characters in the public domain. 2. Any characters that are original and owned by you but are related to an existing copyrighted creative work or universe (Pokemon, My Little Pony, etc.) will be decided on a case-by-case basis and must include enough unique characteristics to differentiate it from any existing copyright characters. 3. If you submit pre-existing characters or settings with reference material (this should include a name and either a visual reference or a text description), then you grant me the rights to use your characters/settings in the commissioned story only, while you retain all ownership rights over the characters and settings. 4. Any request to use existing characters or settings that are owned by me will be considered on a case-by-case basis. The ownership rights for these characters/settings will remain owned by me and may not be negotiated for. 5. Any characters or settings that I create for the story (that is, if a name or description/reference is not provided by you) will remain owned by me, may be featured in future stories or art I write or commission, and may not be used in other art without my permission. You may negotiate ownership rights over these characters/settings for an additional fee. 6. The rights to the story itself will remain owned by me. I reserve the right to submit/post the story to any website or publication I choose. I grant you (as commissioner) limited republication rights to post the story to any of your personal sites/accounts, as long as you a) give credit to me as the author, and b) do not charge money or use the story for any other commercial reason. You may negotiate unlimited republication rights over the story for an additional fee.
TRADES: 1. Trade requests are considered on a case-by-case basis. 2. Trades are given the same priority in writing as a commission, in the order that they are added to the queue. 3. The value of my part of the trade and your part of the trade should be roughly equal. We will agree upon the items included in the trade before I add you to my queue or begin any work on your story. 4. I will work up to the completion of the rough draft before seeing any work from you. However, I will not work beyond this without seeing at least a sketch or rough draft of the item you are trading to me. 5. Trade-commission hybrids are acceptable in certain situations if we agree upon them before-hand. 6. If I am unable to complete my portion of the trade but you have completed and posted some or all of your portion, I will offer an amount in payment up to the total amount that my part of the trade would have cost as a commission. 7. All other terms and conditions not dealing with payment and refunds are also applicable to trades.
If you have any other questions, please send me a note or an email.
Terms and Conditions Changelog 8/3/13 - Terms and Conditions first added.