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Thread: Telemachus Press / NovelHelp

  1. #1
    Without Shame gan_naire's Avatar
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    Telemachus Press / NovelHelp

    Does anyone know anything about this place? It looks like they're a print on demand and electronic publishing company. John Locke is an author with them and he has multiple books on the top of Amazon's bestseller list. Just wondering about the place, I still want to go with an agent over self publishing though, just curious about this place.
    Conformity leads to death of not only the human spirit, but to imagination.

  2. #2
    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
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    Adding link: http://telemachuspress.com/

    Also, "sister" company NovelHelp: http://www.novelhelp.com/
    ICAO
    ---------

    Censorship always defeats its own purpose, for it creates in the end the kind of society that is incapable of exercising real discretion. -- Henry Steele Commager
    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
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    "With full transparency to the author, we are a for hire author services company enabling print-on-demand (POD) and eBook delivery." (My emphasis)

    Some prices here.

    As always when considering a publishing service, comparison shopping is a good idea.

    - Victoria

  4. #4
    Tired and Disillusioned Momento Mori's Avatar
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    gan_naire:
    John Locke is an author with them and he has multiple books on the top of Amazon's bestseller list.
    Just as a note, I checked out Lock's current Amazon rankings and the highest was 42,000 so I'd be interested to know when he was on the bestseller list (note - I'm not saying he wasn't, but it's possible to stack the list at Amazon so you can hit it for an hour or so). Also, in the latest reviews for his books as published by Telemachus, the reviewers note that there were formatting problems on their versions, which does not inspire confidence.

    As far as the Telemachus website goes, they've got a link on the first page to an award won by one of their authors (Winslow Eliot - first place romance). However that award was given by Readerreviews, which is a site offering paid review and promotion services (although I should point out they also do free reviews, including posting Amazon reviews for your books). As such, I'd question the worth of a review or an award from such an organisation (an organisation which I had not previously heard of before seeing the link on the Telemachus site).

    Ebooks are being published through Smashwords and my understanding is that authors could just use Smashwords direct for less than what Telemachus is charging.

    To be fair, Telemachus is up front about charging fees and they don't take any royalties. But you need to weigh up the amount they're charging as against the value of their distribution. Some of the testimonials say they've made their money back and I have no reason to doubt that, but you will be dropping a lot of money in advance.

    MM

  5. #5
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    It's Locke's Kindle editions that are best sellers. They've got some impressive rankings.

    Interesting to note: they all seem to be priced at 99 cents, which appears to be one of the main keys to Kindle best sellerdom.

    - Victoria

  6. #6
    Tired and Disillusioned Momento Mori's Avatar
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    victoriastrauss:
    It's Locke's Kindle editions that are best sellers. They've got some impressive rankings.
    Ah yes. So they are. I sit corrected.

    MM

  7. #7
    Without Shame gan_naire's Avatar
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    Im still very new to the epublishing deals, so when I saw that he was on the bestseller list, I thought that meant for paperbacks too, which is what I bought because I don't think I could stand to read a book electronically. I'm not a fan of ebooks either way and though they're gaining popularity, I think it's still something that hurts authors and their work. It just seems too easy to rip off and pirate. Also a musician once stated that the record companies hadn't caught up with the royalty ratio of electronic downloads like iTunes and Rhapsody, that any time someone bought one of his songs, he didn't see any difference in the amount of royalties for the download as compared to if someone bought his cd outright. Granted this was a while back and I'm sure things have changed (maybe), but either way it left a very paranoid sour taste in my mouth and made me want to make it so none of my work if I ever got published was available for download. Again that might just be my paranoia going overboard.

    I started reading his book Saving Rachel, so far it is a great book and it does hook you from the beginning and so far it hasn't let up from being non stop action, which I actually like in a book. So while I'll probably buy all his other books, I definately wouldn't download them. Maybe I'm just old fashioned that way or maybe I'm just really paranoid.

    But I do appreciate the answers and after looking at the sites listed, I'm glad my choice is still to find an agent and not mess with self publishing since I don't have the time to self promote that much and I don't know enough about the publishing business to feel comfortable doing that. I didn't know exactly what this publishing house was like, do now though.
    Conformity leads to death of not only the human spirit, but to imagination.

  8. #8
    practical experience, FTW Angkor's Avatar
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    Telemachus charges exorbitant fees: $995 per ebook and $1995 per print book. Casual perusal of their website screams Overhead! -- meaning they've got lots of staff who need to be paid regularly. An author can save a lot of dough either doing it him/herself, step-by-step, or by choosing a much less costly outfit. Moreover, I question what kind of mutually beneficial cozy deal John Locke has with them that he's promoting them so vigorously.

  9. #9
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Hello,

    My name is Claudia Jackson from Telemachus Press. If you see me on Twitter or Facebook, I am also known as "NovelHelp." I've been reading the discussions above and would like to put a few rumors to rest.

    Telemachus Press is a "work for hire" author services company. I have worked for over 20 years as a computer consultant/trainer and my business model has always been: if you pay me to do something, I don't own the work -- it is your intellectual property.

    I started Telemachus Press; there are only four full-time people in the company. The other people that make up the Telemachus Press team are resources that we rely upon and they work on an as-needed basis, thereby keeping overhead low so that we can continue to provide a quality product.

    Yes, authors pay us to produce their books and get them into the distribution channel. A fee for a service.

    We put the eBook accounts in the author's name. Authors check their own sales numbers and monies go directly into their own account. The POD is all done through Lightning Source Inc. (Owned by Ingram). We collect royalties on the author's behalf from LSI, send the authors 100% of their royalties with full reporting (a copy of the LSI report). We take no additional fees. If authors order POD books from us directly, they buy them at cost. We do not mark up the books, they pay actual fees and we show them the LSI receipt. Full disclosure.

    NovelHelp started as a twitter name, sharing info about self-publishing and then became a blog. It is a site where I provide information about self-publishing. Documents and resources are there for the do-it-yourself author. Once a computer teacher, always a teacher. I just like sharing information.

    John Locke came to Telemachus early in 2010 from another self-publishing company. There is no "cozy deal" and he pays the same as all other authors.

    It just so happens that John Locke is one of the nicest guys you'd ever want to meet and has promoted us because he believes in what we are doing.

    If anybody has any questions, I am happy to answer them. Claudia

  10. #10
    Without Shame gan_naire's Avatar
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    I can't believe I forgot all about this thread. I know I have a very bad memory, very bad, but I never remembered creating this thread. I do remember having a conversation with a friend not but a couple hours ago about John Locke and using him as an example that I might try that route instead of the traditional route of using an agent.

    I still need to learn as much as I can about getting published without an agent, but damn this is just creepy. Glad I stopped getting high a long time ago, I can only imagine what would happen if I saw this while stoned.
    Conformity leads to death of not only the human spirit, but to imagination.

  11. #11
    practical experience, FTW Angkor's Avatar
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    For a much more affordable and also reliable author services firm, check out Pedernales Publishing (www.pedernalespublishing.com). They'll do pretty much everything these high-fee outfits do, but at a lower cost (currently $650). They don't offer promotional/marketing services, but can recommend firms that will assist in this area. There's simply no need to spend thousands of dollars for an excellent book cover, formatting and professional uploading onto Amazon, Smashwords, LightningSource, etc.

  12. #12
    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
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    NovelHelp site gone as of '14.

    One hopes they weren't involved in Locke's ... less-than-ethical promotional activities.
    ICAO
    ---------

    Censorship always defeats its own purpose, for it creates in the end the kind of society that is incapable of exercising real discretion. -- Henry Steele Commager
    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:

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