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Thread: The Angone House of Publishing

  1. #1
    Wilde about Oscar aliceshortcake's Avatar
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    The Angone House of Publishing

    'The catwalk of romance novel vanity publishing'

    http://www.theangonehouseofpublishin...ome/4570329404

    AHoP doesn't actually launch until 12th December, but Executive Managing Director/Founder/Cover Designer Danielle-Claude Ngontang-Mba has big plans.

    The Angone House of Publishing will specialize in self-publishing romance novels but only as ebooks format through several distributors...As a writer myself I understand the challenges of wanting to get your manuscripts published or even finding a suitable agent to represent you. I decided to self-publish my book and others like mine because I knew I wasn't the only one in this predicament...I will be responsible for the ebook format conversion, the cover design and all the promotional marketing campaigns.
    http://www.theangonehouseofpublishin...ome/4570329404
    I was unable to find any information about Ms Ngontang-Mba's book, but if the standard of English on the AHoP site is anything to go by I'm relieved to hear that she isn't also an editor. But wait...

    Make sure that your manuscript has been copy edited and proofread. We do NOT provide this service and will not accept your manuscript otherwise.
    Or as the submission form puts it:

    I confirmed that my manuscript have been proofread copy-edited
    So there's no quality control - AHoP is publishing the slush pile.

    What exactly does AHoP offer?

    SIGN UP WITH US NOW and we will send you a 25% off voucher for Our Incredible 2 Ebooks deal 243.75 instead of 325.
    http://www.theangonehouseofpublishin...use/4571289331
    I'll let the experts deal with this one as I have no idea how much it costs to genuinely self-publish an e-book. Of course, what AHoP is doing isn't really self-publishing as they provide the ISBN.

    With the way this industry has been trending this past couple of years, self-publishing ones novel has been a really successful way to get your creative input heard!
    http://www.theangonehouseofpublishin...use/4570329406
    Well, I suppose it depends on how you define success.

    We will offer...a 2 ebooks publishing deal for the price that most self-publishing companies would advertise for only 1 ebook deal and without including marketing.

    We will also not randomly publish your ebooks into the wild world of "ebooks trading market" but will do a group release with full marketing and key dates as well as classify the ebooks in different lines/themes to better target our audience.

    You will have about to keep 75% of net royalties.
    In case you were wondering what "a group release with full marketing and key dates" is supposed to mean, here's what AHoP has to say about distribution:

    An ebooks group release schedule every 8 weeks: the ebooks will be distributed with the Amazon Kindle, iBookstore and more...all other the world!

    The author(s) mini bio will be available on the Angone House website site

    A targeted online group marketing campaign.
    And a 'targeted online group marketing campaign' includes...what?

    You won't be surprised to learn that Ms Ngontang-Mba has no previous experience in publishing. She may have the best of intentions, but budding romance novelists are unlikely to build a career by publishing with a company whose founder describes it as both a self-publisher and a vanity press. Indeed, the fact that AHoP admits that its books are out-and-out text dumps means that they won't be regarded as publishing credits.
    Last edited by aliceshortcake; 12-06-2012 at 04:42 AM.

  2. #2
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    The name of this company alone tells me just about everything I need to know.

    - Victoria

  3. #3
    practical experience, FTW eternalised's Avatar
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    If the covers are the images displayed below on the main page, then their titles are unreadable. I'm also faintly suspicious those background images were taken straight from the internet, maybe even without asking the artist's permission.

    I'm not sure about the last statement - so take it with a grain of salt. It may very well be Mrs. Ngontang Mba made these herself as cover designer, but even then, the title is near unreadable on some of these.

    The website design isn't very inviting. Since it will be an eBook publishing venture, I would have at least expected a better layout. I know it's a huge difference between creating eBook layouts (interior and exterior) and webdesign, but it would show a certain tech-savviness if the webdesign were better.

    If I click on the links, I'm brought to a blank page. Not sure if that's intentional, since the site is still in the process of being build.

    Mrs. Ngontang Mba probably means well, but I don't see how an author who's self-published one book can claim to know enough about self-publishing to run a publishing house.

    The fees aren't the highest I've ever seen, but they aren't very cheap either. For that money, I could hire a cover artist and maybe even have someone look at the interior of my eBook. You can get ISBNs for free from Smashwords, Createspace and Amazon. Since the alternative is having an ISBN tied to The Angone House of Publishing, I'd say I wouldn't mind getting a free ISBN from Amazon instead. Naturally you wouldn't be able to hire an editor for that price, but then again, the publisher doesn't hire an editor for your book either, and requires it to be edited, copy-edited and proofread up front.

    Their marketing strategies leave big question marks for me. Releasing books in bulk (eight or something at a time) is a valid way of gaining exposure used by several publishers, so I don't have any complains there. I do fear that that's the only marketing authors will get when signing up with this company.

    We will also not randomly publish your ebooks into the wild world of "ebooks trading market" but will do a group release with full marketing and key dates as well as classify the ebooks in different lines/themes to better target our audience.
    This concern me. The group release is fine, but what do they mean with full marketing and key dates? And the last part, classifying the eBook in different lines/themes seems like something every publisher, even those who offer little to no marketing would do.

    Has Mrs. Ngontang Mba hired someone to do the marketing (I can't access their 'about' page right now, so I can't look it up) or does she intend to do so herself? As publisher, cover designer and executive manager she seems to have a rather full plate already.
    Visit my website.



  4. #4
    Wilde about Oscar aliceshortcake's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eternalised View Post
    If the covers are the images displayed below on the main page, then their titles are unreadable.
    Strictly speaking they aren't covers, just images representing AHoP's six lines. As far as I can make out there are no books yet, not even the founder's own, which makes me wonder what the countdown to the launch date is all about.

    I love this bit:

    The author(s) mini bio will be available on the Angone House website site
    Someone call the Department of Redundancy Department!

  5. #5
    practical experience, FTW MickRooney's Avatar
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    My first wall of shame... and I accept it with Pride.

    You have to love the freedom of speech and press : http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=259856 I found today a whole Thread about the Angone House. They raised a couple of valid points self-promoting their own works. So thank you for opening my eyes a little more and not calling a fraud, I mean it in the best of ways. Danielle-Claude Ngontang Mba
    - From Angone House of Publishing's blog and Facebook page.

    Running a publishing house/self-publishing service is not about learning on the job at the expense of your authors.

    *popcorn*

    This is train crash publishing. |-(

  6. #6
    Wilde about Oscar aliceshortcake's Avatar
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    My goal is simple: I want the Angone House to become a recognized brand for well-written, guilt-free, sexy, sometimes even erotic self-publishing novels; all at very affordable prices.
    http://www.theangonehouseofpublishin...ome/4570329404
    But...how will Ms Ngontang-Mba know if the books published by her company are well-written? Unless I've misunderstood the information on the AHoP website, there is no selection process. Submitters are simply asked to confirm that their work has been copy-edited and proofread. Unless the writers in question are untypically good at spotting mistakes in their own work or have employed an editor, it's quite possible that AHoP will be publishing books full of grammatical and stylistic errors. Even if the company did provide editing, however minimal, the dodgy English on the website and blog wouldn't inspire confidence in Ms Ngontang-Mba's ability to spot and correct errors during the file conversion process.

    Another thing: what exactly is AHoP? The founder herself refers to it as "the catwalk of romance novel vanity publishing", she provides a "self-publishing" service in which the author doesn't own the ISBN and also wants her company to be taken seriously as a "recognized brand". Let's see...which "brands" churn out unedited books published, in one way or another, at the author's expense? The first two that spring to my mind are PublishAmerica and Author House. And they're recognized for all the wrong reasons.

    I agree with MickRooney - this is a disaster waiting to happen.

    Also, with regard to the quote from AHoP's blog:

    They raised a couple of valid points self-promoting their own works.
    "Self-promoting their own works"? Really? I see that those words have now been deleted!
    Last edited by aliceshortcake; 12-07-2012 at 05:10 PM.

  7. #7
    practical experience, FTW MickRooney's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aliceshortcake View Post
    But...how will Ms Ngontang-Mba know if the books published by her company are well-written? Unless I've misunderstood the information on the AHoP website, there is no selection process. Submitters are simply asked to confirm that their work has been copy-edited and proofread. Unless the writers in question are untypically good at spotting mistakes in their own work or have employed an editor, it's quite possible that AHoP will be publishing books full of grammatical and stylistic errors. Even if the company did provide editing, however minimal, the dodgy English on the website and blog wouldn't inspire confidence in Ms Ngontang-Mba's ability to spot and correct errors during the file conversion process.

    Another thing: what exactly is AHoP? The founder herself refers to it as "the catwalk of romance novel vanity publishing", she provides a "self-publishing" service in which the author doesn't own the ISBN and also wants her company to be taken seriously as a "recognized brand". Let's see...which "brands" churn out unedited books published, in one way or another, at the author's expense? The first two that spring to my mind are PublishAmerica and Author House. And they're recognized for all the wrong reasons.
    There you have it, Danielle. Clearly, you have acknowledged you are reading this thread. You've already had some advice and 'aliceshortcake' has done an excellent job of underlining the misgivings we already have. We could go on and on about what a publisher should be to its authors, about industry experience, branding, distribution, contracts etc. But I don't think anything more on our part would be taken as constructive criticism. I'm not in the habit of knocking someone and their business unless I've good reason. I admire someone who is prepared to be adventurous and make something of their ideas - even be a little crazy (I think that's how you describe yourself) - but it's a different story when there is potential to harm other authors.

    Danielle, publishing is a business, not a whim or a good idea. It requires careful planning, experience, and above all time and finance. I've looked at the AHoP website, your LinkedIn profile, your Facebook profile and page. I don't see how a qualification in film production and design in Toronto sets you up to be a (e)publisher for other authors when I can find no record or footprint of you as an author/editor. I can't find a single book you have self-published/traditionally published anywhere, and that's a worry. Perhaps you have published under a different name: fair enough if that is the case. I suspect it is not.

    I don't think you have thought this fully through. What thought have you given to a business plan? Are you even contemplating this as a full time business? What thought have you given to formulating a business contract with authors? How much do you really know about the publishing industry and what authors really want/need?

    The more I look at AHoP, the more I see grave concerns. You have a skillset in design, yet the AHoP website is poorly designed and concieved. The grammar and communication of your business concept is poorly executed. Others here on this thread might disagree, but I actually like your basic concept of a sassy, sexy small press with attitude. You can build and gow it as a business, but I don't believe you are ready for 12/12/12.

    I would ask you to take a deep breath, step back, focus on building your author community and links, learn more about the publishing industry - digital publishing and marketing - before you launch AHoP. It might take a year, two or three, but your business will be better for it.

    Here is my suggestion.

    Digitally self-published your own books, work with other authors who are close friends, exchange ideas and experience of the process. Make your mistakes and successes. Don't take money off your author friends for your assistance because they are probably giving you more than you realise.

    Then, and only then, consider AHoP as a viable business venture with skilled professionals on board.

    I would also like you to engage in the discussion here. Many of us would be happy to share some advice, here, or privately.
    Last edited by MickRooney; 12-07-2012 at 08:57 PM.

  8. #8
    Wilde about Oscar aliceshortcake's Avatar
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    There have been some interesting developments on the AHoP site pertaining to proofreading and copy-editing services:

    Please note before submitting your manuscript:

    If your manuscript hasn't been professionally copyedited and/or proofread, we will contact you regarding your options and possible additional charges. Proofreading and/or copy-editing will be done by a professional third party.
    http://www.theangonehouseofpublishin...now/4570855023
    This could get pretty damned expensive, and were I submitting my work I'd want to know exactly who this third party is and what their qualifications are.

    The first official ebooks release for the Angone house will be February 14th, 2013 with St Valentine's Day being the theme holiday for the Angone House Holiday Trend Line.

    The deadline for submission is January 13th, 2013 for proofread and/or copy-edited manuscripts only.

    You would need to submit your manuscript at least 8-10 weeks before the release date if it hasn't been proofread and/or copy-edited yet.
    http://www.theangonehouseofpublishin...nts/4571756309
    Let's be honest: most of the writers who submit to this company will be novices frantic to see their work in print ASAP, a sure-fire recipe for error-riddled manuscripts. First-time AHoP readers who have the bad luck to choose a beginner's ineptly self-edited book probably won't risk making the same mistake twice. More experienced writers who understand the need for real editing are unlikely to submit their work to a vanity/faux self-pub anyway, and even if they do the AHoP will end up as a two-tier system with the dross tainting the reputation of the decent stuff.

    Also, I'm left with the impression that AHoP accepts anything the company is paid to publish (well, the founder herself refers to AHoP as "vanity publishing"). Copy-editing and proofreading alone won't make a commercially unpublishable book readable - they aren't substitutes for stylistic/content editing.
    Last edited by aliceshortcake; 12-11-2012 at 02:49 AM.

  9. #9
    Wilde about Oscar aliceshortcake's Avatar
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    Angone's first book, the owner's This Could Have Been Our Song, has been released - via CreateSpace and exclusively on Amazon - in both e-book and paperback form. A quick perusal of the first few paragraphs reveals that the copy-editor credited in the Acknowledgments managed to miss quite a few errors:

    Let's start with one eye then slowly opening the other, raising my head a little, and please make the knockings stop.

    "It's Marcus. I'm back," he answers, waiving a bag.

    ...chewing on her eggs benedict.

    ...I had to get the fancy dish, Eggs Baron la carte.

    [I could be wrong here, but shouldn't it be 'eggs Benedict' and 'eggs Baron'?]

    ...I went for the bohemian chick look.
    If this copy-editor is the "professional third party" mentioned on Angone's site I'm not impressed by the quality of her work; if this is the standard of copy-editing Angone's authors can expect they might as well publish directly through CreateSpace. There are also some formatting problems and the cover is awful.

  10. #10
    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
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    Still only the one book, and the site is MIA. Looks like she's dropped the pretense and gone straight to Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/weissdaughter
    ICAO
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