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Thread: Parson Place Press LLC

  1. #1
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Parson Place Press LLC

    Anyone heard of this publisher?

    http://www.parsonplacepress.com

    I haven't subbed my work to them, not really considering them, but just thought i'd share because their submission guidelines, as well as their mission statement on the front page, are kind of... overkill. And humourous too, I guess.

  2. #2
    Tired and Disillusioned Momento Mori's Avatar
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    It's full of red flags - the reddest being the constant claims that they're not a vanity press, except that they do then admit to running a subsidy press option. Their contract is also a joke, IMHO. I'd be interested to know whether a lawyer drew it up for them.

    I'll do a flog when I get a moment but there's nothing there that would make me want to submit a manuscript to them.

    MM
    Last edited by Momento Mori; 02-08-2011 at 04:25 PM. Reason: Skim read the contract for LOLs

  3. #3
    Tired and Disillusioned Momento Mori's Avatar
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    Flog coming up:

    Parson Place Press Website:
    New authors, in particular, will have an easier time being published and read, while Christian readers will have the chance to read literature that might not otherwise be published, not because the literature is necessarily inferior or heretical, but because of so-called salability and marketability.
    God forbid that a publisher should want to publish books that it believes it can sell and market. If it's open about not being interested in that, then it's a red flag for me.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    If you check out any of the other Christian publishers, you will notice a disturbing trend has overtaken them. In order to submit manuscripts to them, they require that an author either already be one of their clients, or have an agent, or be recommended by one of their existing author clients.
    I smell bullshit. Commercial Christian publishers are no different to other commercial publishers. Some will only be open to agented submissions but there are respectable ones out there that will be open to unsolicited subs. You just need to do your research.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    If you are a good writer, and by that, we mean, if you are able to string together a series of intelligible sentences that hold a reader's interest, then you have a fairer chance of getting published at Parson Place Press than perhaps anywhere else in the publishing industry right now.
    That's not a high standard IMO. Plenty of people can string sentences together, the trick is to be able to do it in such a way that people want to pay to read it.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    Of course, the only place where you're guaranteed to be published is with one of the many POD self-publishing (aka subsidy) companies that have arisen out of this very popular method, and even that depends upon whether or not you can afford their fees.
    This is particularly amusing given that buried in their FAQ they then admit that they're running a subsidy operation as well.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    Since Parson Place Press is not a self-publishing company, there are no fees for you to pay in order to be published
    Unless you take Parson Place up on its subsidy publishing arm.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    at a 50% even split, even that is fairer to you, the author, than you'll likely find anywhere else.
    No, there are plenty of small publishers out there using this precise model and offering 50% royalties on net.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    Furthermore, because we pay no advances, every sale of your book is shared with you from the very beginning. You don't have to wait until your book has earned back the advance paid to you before you can start enjoying the profits of its sales.
    But of course, if you get an advance then you have the cash up front so you're automatically in the black. If you're only getting royalties then you're dependent on making sales and (as I will come onto later) this publisher doesn't seem geared up to making sales and even if it was, the fact that it's POD means that it's not likely to be getting books physically into stores because it won't offset, which means that the author is already hamstrung before they begin.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    While Parson Place Press will submit your book to be listed in the catalog of newly-published books which book distributors, wholesalers, retailers, libraries, etc. use to make their purchasing decisions, there's no guarantee that the buying, reading public will hear about it so they can do the same. Therefore, it's up to you, the author, to promote it however and wherever you can, as often as you can.
    So Parson Place is relying on the author to effectively sell their own books and yet Parson Place wants 50% of the profit. Does that seem fair to anyone? If you're an author going out there and selling your own books then you might as well go the whole hog and use Lulu because at least you have control over the product and what you do with it.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    Press releases are an effective means of getting media attention, when they're well-written, and Parson Place Press will submit a limited number of press releases on your behalf to your local media and area bookstores at no cost if you will provide us with the contacts, but you may want to consider hiring a publicist to bring out the really big guns.
    Press releases are useless for selling books because you can send them out to as many papers and outlets as you want but if the paper doesn't do a story about it, no one else will see them.

    And why would you want to spend money on a publicist? Even at 50% royalties, you'd have to sell a shit load of books to make back the cost. And need I say that it's the publisher's job to publicise their books helped by the author. That's what incentivises publishers to sell books to cover their costs.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    We are not a vanity or subsidy press simply because we use the print on demand (POD) method of printing, binding, and distribution. That said, we may choose to offer the subsidy publishing option in exceptional cases.
    So you're not a subsidy press except when you're a subsidy press. Good to know.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    Parson Place Press may choose to offer subsidy publishing (sometimes called self-publishing) as an option for very narrow topics with extremely limited target audiences, but these will be the exception, rather than the rule. Our same standards of publishability will apply to these books as to our other titles. Be sure to read our Author Guidelines for full details of our publishing criteria. We will negotiate cost-sharing, etc. when we elect to publish a subsidized title.
    If Parson Place doesn't think there's a market then it shouldn't be selling the book, period. No author should be paying to be published and especially not to an outfit that will then require you to work on selling your own book.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    You must, however, grant us both print rights and reprint rights world-wide, as well as world-wide electronic rights, in order for us to be able to legally publish and distribute your work anywhere in the world in both print and eBook formats.
    They don't need worldwide rights. They're based in the US, they should only be taking US rights. Given that they don't seem geared up to selling in the US, I don't think that you can expect them to sell your books anywhere else.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    A valid U. S. copyright registration number will instantly resolve any legal challenge that may arise. Since all works published by Parson Place Press remain the property of the respective authors, the obligation and/or responsibility to register a copyright therefore rests with the author. You must obtain this application from the U. S. Copyright Office. Then you must complete and return it to the U. S. Copyright Office with the appropriate registration fee. The U. S. Copyright Office will then notify you when it is registered and provide any additional information they deem pertinent at that time.
    No. Registering copyright is the publisher's job. The fact that Parson Place expects the author to do it and pay for it as well shows IMO that they are neither professional nor familiar with standard publishing practice.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    Note that all tables, charts, graphs, photos, etc. will be printed in black and white. While full-color printing is available, it is considerably more expensive, even to the point of being cost-prohibitive.
    Yeah and given that the company's reliant on authors to sell, you can't expect them to take the risk of colour printing costs if the author then doesn't go out to sell copies.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    You will receive three complimentary copies of your book upon publication. That's one for yourself and two for whomever you choose (like the one who gave you the most encouragement to keep writing and who never doubted for an instant you'd be published one day).
    Yeah, but then that's two people who won't buy a copy.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    If you wish to order more copies of your book for other relatives and friends, or if you want to sell them on your own Web site or even out of the trunk of your car
    Oh please. Not the old trunk of a car routine. That's got barnacles on it.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    As a special privilege to authors, you may purchase copies of your book at the same wholesale price as other book distributors and sellers. This will usually be anywhere from 40% to 50% off the suggested retail price.
    Check what impact that has on your royalty payments - I would expect author sales to normally fall outside royalty payments, which means the author will have to sell at a mark-up to make any money back. THat's where it becomes important to also check what the cover price is. If the price is too high than even a 40% discount could leave the book too expensive to sell on - see the experience of anyone published with PA.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    when your book is published, it will also be listed in the Ingram Book Group books in print database and the Bowker's books in print database, as well as in Advance (for all books), Christian Advance (for explicitly Christian books), or both (at our discretion), depending on whether it may appeal to a non-Christian audience as well as a Christian audience.
    None of this is the same as being available in stores.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    The Parson Place Press Managing Editor is currently working to convert all existing Parson Place Press titles into the two most popular eReader formats: Kindle and Nook. Future published titles will be made available in each of these formats within six months after they are published in their hard cover or paperback formats in order to give the printed versions an opportunity to get established and sell before being offered in an eBook format.
    If there's no guarantee that the company will publish you book in eformat then they shouldn't get those rights.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    In order to keep costs low, Parson Place Press does not pay advances to our authors. The good news, however, is that you can begin receiving royalties from sales of your book as soon as they equal or exceed $5.00.
    A company that's worried about its costs is generally a worrying sign. The fact that you then have to wait to earn $5 on top of selling your book adds insult to injury.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    your royalty will be 50% of the net profit from all wholesale purchases of your book when you publish it with Parson Place Press. The net amount is what is left after the cost of printing is deducted. The cost of shipping is excluded from royalty calculations. In the case of eBook sales, Parson Place Press will share 50% of the net proceeds we receive from Amazon (for Kindle eBook sales) and Barnes and Noble (for Nook eBook sales). We believe this to be the most generous plan in the industry right now.
    It is not normal or generous or good practice to pay royalties on net for print books. The fact that Parson Place is deducting these costs means that the author is de facto paying to be published as well - the only difference is that they're paying from the back end rather than the front end.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    Since it usually takes at least 90 days for book buyers to settle their accounts with us, we will settle with you when buyers settle with us. Therefore, we require a minimum of 30 additional days (a total of 120 days from the closing of the sales period during which a purchase was made) to pay out royalties to our authors. It could take less time than that, but it may also take longer. Furthermore, if there are returns, your royalty payment will be withheld until your previously paid royalty amount corresponding to these returns is recuperated.
    So you'll get your royalties within 120 days unless you don't.

    Returns shouldn't factor into this given that they're using POD.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    Parson Place Press is a small publishing house with rather limited resources available for promotions and publicity. Therefore, while we will be glad to assist with the distribution of an initial press release announcing your book's publication by both email and fax to your local media using a contact list you provide, we simply cannot compete with the big budget publishers on television and radio and in magazines, newspapers, etc. As we grow in both number of titles published and income, we expect to do more of these kinds of promotions. Nevertheless, publicity and promotion of any book is as much the author's responsibility as the publisher's.
    They're open about not being geared up to sell your book so why should you give it to them?

    Parson Place Press Website:
    Since Parson Place Press is a POD publisher, there are no pre-release review copies or galley copies available for distribution to reviewers, or for press kits, etc. It is therefore your responsibility to provide review copies of your book upon a reviewer's request. You may purchase additional copies of your book at the usual wholesale price (minus your royalty share) for review copies after your book's release, or, if you wish to launch a publicity campaign through a publicist prior to your book's release, the public release of your book may be delayed and advance copies may be printed for the purpose of distribution to reviewers, etc. before it is finally released to the public.
    No author should have to buy review copies of their book. It's in the publisher's interest to provide them for free to maximise sales. The fact that Parson Place isn't suggests to me that they're only interested in selling to authors. That's a definition of a vanity press.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    A book's life in print lasts only so long as the reading public's interest in reading it. The reading public's interest is gauged primarily by quantity of sales. When a book's sales drop below a bare minimum of 25 per year, it is no longer worthwhile to keep it available, since there is an annual fee to list it in the books in print database, and after splitting the net profits with the author, Parson Place Press must earn at least enough to cover this cost to justify maintaining the title in its list of published books. Paltry sales is a sign either of poor promotional efforts or reader disinterest. Therefore, when a book's sales decline below this minimum, Parson Place Press will give the author the option of purchasing the balance of the shortfall below 25 each year or letting the book go out of print.
    All interesting but Parson Place is a self-proclaimed POD operation so what costs does it anticipate here?

    Parson Place Press Website:
    In the non-fictional literature category,
    Uh. What?

    Parson Place Press Website:
    In the fictional literature category
    Uh. What?

    Parson Place Press Website:
    book length manuscripts of not less than 80 pages in the format shown below
    Publishers usually go by word count, not page numbering.

    Parson Place Press Website:
    I have dreamed of being a published author almost my entire life, since grade school, at least. I know how difficult it is to get an editor even to consider your book proposal for publication, let alone to actually publish it, and I used to have a box full of rejection slips to prove it! In fact, it was the result of this overwhelming sense of discouragement that prompted me to dream yet an even more daring dream than being a published author -- to own and manage my very own Christian publishing house, not only so I could publish my own writings at will, but so I could help other talented authors like you and me get published, too.
    So the founder, Michael L White, couldn't get commercially published and decided to set up his own company. There's nothing on his page to suggest he has any experience of running a publisher or worked within the publishing industry.

    Really, there is nothing here that would attract me and to be honest, most authors could do it for themselves with Lulu to better effect.

    MM

  4. #4
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Wow, that was fun, but also a real eye-opener as well. I did sense something fishy about Parson Place, not that i was really considering subbing to it anyway, but it sounded... well... strange.
    Thanks, MomentoMori.

  5. #5
    Oh, the humanity. Giant Baby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Momento Mori View Post

    Parson Place Press Website:
    In the non-fictional literature category,
    Uh. What?

    Parson Place Press Website:
    In the fictional literature category
    Uh. What?

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  6. #6
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Oh, i forgot to comment on that: yes, that "fictional literature category" or whatever thing was so absurd. Not to mention long-winded. Actually, the whole website is long-winded and just... strange.

    And their submission guidelines are a laugh.....


    Indents and Spacing tab
    General
    Select Justified from the Alignment: box
    Select Body text from the Outline: box.

    Indentation
    Choose First line from the Special: box
    Type .25" in the By: box

    Spacing
    Type 0 pt (zero point) in both the Before: and After: boxes
    Select Single from the Line spacing: box
    Make sure the At: box is blank

    Line and Page Breaks tab
    Make sure all boxes are unchecked, except the "Widow/Orphan control" checkbox. Make sure the "Widow/Orphan control" checkbox is checked. We will take care of everything else during our editing and preparation process.

    If you've already finished your manuscript, and you're now wondering how to quickly reformat all your paragraphs to fit our requirements, here's how to do that in minutes, instead of hours. FIRST, do a Save as on your manuscript's current filename and rename it something different, like "reformatted version of my book," or some such. This is a very wise precaution. In case your attempt to reformat turns your work into a complete, jumbled mess, you can always delete that file, do another Save as, and try again. Your original work remains intact.

    Now, here's the quick and easy way to reformat your work. First, highlight all of the text in each chapter, except the chapter title and any charts, graphs, photos, etc. You can do this simply by placing your cursor at the beginning of the text block, scrolling to the end of the text block, then holding down the Shift key and clicking your mouse after the last character in that text block. This will immediately highlight everything in the entire text block. Take extreme care at this point NOT to press any other keys on the keyboard, except the ALT key plus any other underscored key on the menu, such as the "o" key for the Format menu. Pressing any of these keys without first pressing the ALT key will replace all of the highlighted text with whichever key you press. If it makes you feel better, you can use your mouse to select from the Format menu, as clicking your mouse anywhere on the screen while your text is highlighted will simply insert your cursor wherever you click the mouse and unhighlight all of your text. If you should accidentally hit a key while your text block is highlighted, you can hold down the Control key then press and release the Z key to undo that action. However, do NOT hold down the Z key continuously, or it will undo all your recent changes up to the maximum number of changes stored in Word's memory, including the changes you meant to make!


    Blah blah blah blah blah...........

  7. #7
    Writer is as Writer does Terie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Madame Butterfly View Post
    And their submission guidelines are a laugh.....
    O.

    My.

    God.

    As a tech writer who A) knows very well how to use Word and B) knows very well how to write instructions, all I can say is.......

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  8. #8
    Tired and Disillusioned Momento Mori's Avatar
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    Parson Place Website:
    General
    Select Justified from the Alignment: box
    Select Body text from the Outline: box.

    Indentation
    Choose First line from the Special: box
    Type .25" in the By: box

    Spacing
    Type 0 pt (zero point) in both the Before: and After: boxes
    Select Single from the Line spacing: box
    Make sure the At: box is blank
    My suggestion would be that the reason for all the technical specs is so that the publisher can just convert it into the PDF or other format to send to the printer, which in turn suggests that they lack the people and time to do it themselves. Like I said, I don't see anything there that an author can't do for themselves more effectively with an outfit like Lulu.

    MM

  9. #9
    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
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    No activity after '14. Anyone have recent contact?

    ETA: Meant to add this ...

    Policy Update

    As a small, independent Christian publisher devoted to first-time Christian authors, Parson Place Press has adopted a co-op approach to Christian publishing. In so doing Parson Place Press is now asking its authors to purchase a minimum of 100 copies of their newly-published books at a specially discounted author's price (wholesale minus the author's royalty share). This option makes it a win-win proposition for both the author and Parson Place Press. This option provides the author with ample copies of his or her book to market, sell, and give away for various marketing and benevolent purposes while helping to offset the cost to Parson Place Press of preparing a new book for publication and distribution. Therefore, effective 7 October 2013, this is Parson Place Press' new policy for publishing new titles.

    Yet another option for you to consider as an aspiring author is the possibility of becoming your own publisher. If you are interested in becoming an independent publisher (like Parson Place Press), you may visit the Be Your Own Publisher site for more details on how to proceed in that direction. That site is not a part of Parson Place Press, though it is operated by Parson Place Press' founder and managing editor. If you wish to proceed with seeking publication by Parson Place Press, however, and if you are agreeable with purchasing a minimum of 100 copies of your book at the time you sign the publishing agreement, then keep on reading below for details on how to prepare and submit your book proposal and full manuscript for consideration.
    Last edited by CaoPaux; 05-08-2016 at 08:39 PM.
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  10. #10
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    So many 'Christian' vanity publishers have figured out the right keywords to get victims on board. And the victims will go on for years defending their predators. I don't feel that much pity anymore.

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