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Thread: High Rock Press (formerly BlackWyrm Publishing)

  1. #1
    practical experience, FTW Anarchic Q's Avatar
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    High Rock Press (formerly BlackWyrm Publishing)

    Someone started following me on Twitter and so I checked them out. They have a book published by http://www.blackwyrm.com/ and I went to look at the site. It has a poor Web of Trust rating and other than their own site and their facebook page, google doesn't show me a whole lot.

    They seem to be quite active though and are available in a lot of gaming stores. They have no submission guidelines though, and to submit you hit "Email us" and select "Submissions" from a dropdown.

    I didn't see any real red flags other than the lack of guidelines and the poor WoT rating. Anyone have any experiance?
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  2. #2
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Re: BlackWyrm Publishing

    BlackWyrm Publishing here.

    Years ago, the webhost we were using had also hosted some kind of shady client (I can't remember if it was file-sharing, a virus, or what). Because of that, every customer of that hosting service got blacklisted all at once by some of the overzealous blacklisting agencies.

    We left that host a few yeasr back, and petitioned to have our site removed from the various lists, but our tarnished name still lingers.

    --
    Dave Mattingly
    www.BlackWyrm.com

  3. #3
    practical experience, FTW areteus's Avatar
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    Ow, that sort of thing can stick for ages. I hope you manage to clear it up soon! And well done for coming here and answering the point.

  4. #4
    soup
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    No more info on these guys though? Sales and whatnot?

  5. #5
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    We've been in business since '03, and started with roleplaying and reference books. We started publishing fiction three years ago, and have come out with three dozen novels since then. I'm on my way to the prestigious KY Book Fair right now, where three of our authors have been selected.

    --
    Dave Mattingly
    www.BlackWyrm.com

  6. #6
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    They're distributed by Lightning Source. This is indicative of print on demand companies.

  7. #7
    Three of a perfect pair. AW Moderator amergina's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackwyrm View Post
    I'm on my way to the prestigious KY Book Fair right now, where three of our authors have been selected.
    For what?

    --to receive an award?
    --because their books received some kind of recognition?
    --to have a spot to sell their books?
    --to sit on a discussion panel?
    --to receive head noogies?
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  8. #8
    practical experience, FTW MicheleLee's Avatar
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    Being in the area I see BlackWyrm and their authors at cons all the time. They seem sweet and enthusiastic.
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  9. #9
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    Cons are a great way to get your name out there and sell a few books. But rarely does a publisher sell enough books to warrant the costs associated with participating in one.

  10. #10
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Quote Originally Posted by priceless1 View Post
    They're distributed by Lightning Source. This is indicative of print on demand companies.
    True. We do some offset printing and some POD; our approach depends on the particular project.

    Quote Originally Posted by amergina View Post
    For what?
    --to receive an award?
    --because their books received some kind of recognition?
    --to have a spot to sell their books?
    --to sit on a discussion panel?
    --to receive head noogies?
    Good questions. The KY Book Fair selects 150 authors who have published books during the year, out of the 1000+ that are submitted. Three of our authors were juried in to sell their books at the event.

    Quote Originally Posted by priceless1 View Post
    Cons are a great way to get your name out there and sell a few books. But rarely does a publisher sell enough books to warrant the costs associated with participating in one.
    Any given title is very unlikely to pay off at a single event, but by bringing several dozen titles with us across a variety of genres, it tends to work out. Plus, we try to take the long view, and focus on building an audience and a presence, trusting that the quality of our material will bring the audience back to us.

    --
    Dave Mattingly
    www.BlackWyrm.com

  11. #11
    practical experience, FTW MicheleLee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by priceless1 View Post
    Cons are a great way to get your name out there and sell a few books. But rarely does a publisher sell enough books to warrant the costs associated with participating in one.
    True, but I consider it a point in their favor that they're trying to promote their authors where they can. I've heard of some major publishers who didn't bother having the books of an author attending a con at their booth.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by MicheleLee View Post
    True, but I consider it a point in their favor that they're trying to promote their authors where they can. I've heard of some major publishers who didn't bother having the books of an author attending a con at their booth.
    I, too, consider it very cool they attend cons to promote their authors. The problem lies in their ability to sell books to a wider audience. Some publishers don't attend cons because they already have national distribution and have a much larger footprint.

    The question to ask here is how they're getting their books distributed to a national audience. If attending cons is the only way this publisher can promote and market their books, then this is something to consider. Lightning Source doesn't have sales teams pitching their books to genre buyers, so it's important to consider how they market and promote their books.

  13. #13
    I grow my own catnip JulieB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MicheleLee View Post
    True, but I consider it a point in their favor that they're trying to promote their authors where they can. I've heard of some major publishers who didn't bother having the books of an author attending a con at their booth.
    As a conrunner, I've never seen this. I have seen a publisher sell out of a particular author's books, though.

    Regional publishers tend to do a LOT more promotion at regional conventions, though. Some of them have regular distribution. Some don't, but they're there backing up their authors with books. This kind of grass roots promotion is important.

    If you're thinking about submitting to a press in your region, my suggestion is to attend a convention or two and talk to authors and to the publishers. Observe. Talk to the people at the publisher's table. Often, the publisher or someone high up will be there running the table. Talk to the authors. Check out the quality of the books for yourself. Don't be afraid to ask tough questions.

    Ask yourself what YOU want. If you want this book to be on the shelves of every B&N in the country, that small regional publisher probably can't make that happen. But they MAY be able to sell a lot of books. There's a publisher in my region that doesn't have "proper" distribution, yet people are lining up to buy books from their table at conventions. They must be doing something right.

    This is general and not meant to be a positive or negative about BlackWyrm. Though I do believe that it's a positive that they're out there at regional conventions.

  14. #14
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Does anyone else have any info about Blackwyrm? I note they have a 'poor contract - not recommended' listing on Preditors & Editors, but would like to know if there are any Blackwyrm authors lurking about who can comment directly.

  15. #15
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    I think the thread pretty much explains their capabilities. They don't have store or library presence, they don't appear to do much in the way of marketing and promotion except cons. Is there something specific you're looking for?

  16. #16
    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
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    Became High Rock Press in Aug '15. (Dave left; is now run by Jason Walters.) URL currently redirects to FB page.
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