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Thread: Mercury Retrograde Press / Hermes Books

  1. #1
    It's cold out there dlparker's Avatar
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    Mercury Retrograde Press / Hermes Books

    Does anyone have any experiences (good or bad) of this publisher to share? They seem to be new and express an interest in fantasy and sci fi, as in: "...explores the edges of genre, myth, and the sentient mind. Fantasy with a psychological edge and character driven science fiction are specialties of the house."

    URL is: http://mercuryretrogradepress.com/index.asp

    They also have a Facebook Blog, interesting in that it often posts comments from the editors on their current slush readings.

    I'm a little more puzzled by their choices of books, especially given the high-concept riff (which induces in this writer a bout of puzzled scratch-the-head) in "About Mercury Retrograde Press".

    I see primarily fantasy in their catalog, no well-known authors so far, and one rather, um, unusual work about "Christ Corporation and the Anti-Christ: ("Anointed"). (I have no idea if this is anti-, or perhaps even pro-, religion). No standard sci fi so far.

    However, looking at some of the trade announcements, they do seem to be actively looking to buy.

    Since I recently submitted to them and could not find a thread, well, here it is, and please post any experiences you have for the benefit of your fellow writers. Thanks.

    Danielle

  2. #2
    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
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    How we publish

    Books released under the Mercury Retrograde imprint are published in Trade Paperback and eBook formats.

    Hermes books are published as eBooks; select Hermes collections are released in Omnibus Trade editions when complete.
    No surprise: POD & ebook.
    Pleasant surprise: website and excerpts are far more literate than most self-pubs turned publisher (IMHO).
    ICAO
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    Achievers strive for excellence. Perfectionists drive themselves to extinction. -- A Grapple A Day
    I've never known any trouble that an hour's reading didn't assuage. -- Charles DeSecondat

    II 2016: 2017:

  3. #3
    It's cold out there dlparker's Avatar
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    The Facebook blog is rather nice too, with its editorial riffs on slush readings.

    But the real proof in the pudding is what books they actually publish. That's the real indicator of their taste, I suppose, as their editor mentioned on their blog.

  4. #4
    Super Browser triceretops's Avatar
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    I just know that they respond back in a timely fashion. I had two books rejected by them--form.

    Tri

  5. #5
    It's cold out there dlparker's Avatar
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    I also just received a prompt friendly response to my submission... and they did ask for the whole manuscript.

  6. #6
    has a hedgehog annetookeen's Avatar
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    sent a sample to them today. I saw some of their books, and the covers look nice. I've always had a weakness for book covers. ><


    "The Light Bringer's Kingdom", my science fiction fantasy novel, now available in Amazon
    My Blog: www.the-sword-that-speaks.blogspot.com

  7. #7
    It's cold out there dlparker's Avatar
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    Please be aware that on June 13, 2011 the publisher Mercury Retrograde Press offered all its authors the option to be released from their contracts. Publisher quoted schedule delays due to creative exhaustion as the reason the offer was made.

    I notified the publisher I would like to avail myself of the offer, and am waiting for my official releases to arrive.

  8. #8
    Super Browser triceretops's Avatar
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    So they're going belly up, I presume. So sad. For the authors.
    Tri

  9. #9
    It's cold out there dlparker's Avatar
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    It is indeed sad for the authors, as I've been waiting, as you can see, for those official letters of release from contract. They have not been forthcoming.

    I have the publisher's group email that offers all her authors release from contracts, I have my cc"d email accepting her offer, and I have her email reply that she would send the formal releases.

    But what if she doesn't send them, which seems to be indicated after they were promised "within a few days"? Is the email correspondance good enough?

    I presume it is, but should I see a lawyer to get those formal signed releases? I don't have a lot of money, but there are supposedly Lawyers for the Arts who devote a certain amount of pro bono time to assist creative types. Georgia, where I would probably have to seek assistance, seems to have a better than usual organization.

    I wish the publisher would settle this decently, and send those releases.

    Any advice appreciated.

  10. #10
    It's cold out there dlparker's Avatar
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    And I've followed up several times with the publisher. No reply. Reason for no reply: I don't know.

    She is still active on her blogs and Facebook, and has made a recent post about "writers should read their contracts". She never announced the release from contracts offered to all her authors, and perhaps did not want it out. I am only speculating here of course.

    But it's out. And when a publisher offers all its authors blanket releases from contracts, I think authors should grab their goodies and just be glad to take them elsewhere.
    Last edited by dlparker; 07-25-2011 at 07:36 PM.

  11. #11
    It's cold out there dlparker's Avatar
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    Publisher just replied the releases were going out in the mail today. (Maybe she reads AW).

    I must say, there is nothing like thinking of having 4 books (2 series) and the work of at least 3 years to make a writer sweat blood. I'm looking forward to receiving those.

    Anyway, I hope this sad situation never comes up again, but if anyone can answer the question I had above, just for my general knowledge, much appreciated.

  12. #12
    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
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    Still in business, and Anna Branscome has joined the editorial staff.
    ICAO
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    Achievers strive for excellence. Perfectionists drive themselves to extinction. -- A Grapple A Day
    I've never known any trouble that an hour's reading didn't assuage. -- Charles DeSecondat

    II 2016: 2017:

  13. #13
    Cat hair collector PVish's Avatar
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    From the Mercury Retrograde blog:
    On January 17, 2014, Mercury Retrograde Press will cease normal operations. By that date, all the books Mercury Retrograde has published will go out of print; the rights to those stories will return to their authors.

  14. #14
    Grr. Argh. Thedrellum's Avatar
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    Although it's sad that the press is ceasing operations, at least it didn't go down in flames taking everyone with it.

    That seems a rarity in these small press situations.

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