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Thread: Light Switch Press

  1. #1
    banned as an incurable tosspot
    Join Date
    Dec 2011

    Light Switch Press

    Anyone know anything? They sound kind of hinky to me, but I'm not certain. They claim to be a "Free Publisher," although they also say:

    If you’re an author who can’t wait to have your printed book in-hand, upgrade to Expanded Distribution at any time, and your book will be available in both paperback and e-book, right away. Take advantage of our low print-on-demand prices.
    Web site:

    Their About page does not list any of their staff, and their "Compare Companies" page gets at least a couple of very clear facts wrong.

    I let myself get into an argument with someone I presume to be one of their staff at another forum. Maybe that's colored my perception?

  2. #2
    starting over Marian Perera's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Heaven is a place on earth called Toronto.
    Quote Originally Posted by robjvargas View Post
    ...their "Compare Companies" page gets at least a couple of very clear facts wrong.
    No kidding. I wish I had a dollar for each claim that eeevil trade publishers take away an author's control over their work.

    And for a place that's all about free publishing, they seem to offer a lot of paid services. Plus, if you do use the free package - as opposed to the packages which are $399 or $999, you won't get an ISBN or the book available in print until the ebook sells 100 copies.

    Not to mention, from the FAQ:

    Let us know the title, amount of books you would like to order in quantities of 25 or more, and your shipping address; you will be emailed an invoice for the amount due.

    Once your e-book sells 100 copies, you will automatically be upgraded to Expanded Distribution. To upgrade, log into your Author Profile, select "Help Link", and select “I would like to upgrade to expanded distribution” in the drop-down menu. We will email you an invoice for the amount due.

    If you would like to make edits, log into your user profile, select "Help Link", and select "I would like to make edits" from the drop-down menu. You will need to provide your title and list your edits.
    And you'll never guess what Light Switch Press will do then!

    We will email you an invoice for the time involved, based on the amount of edits.
    Sleeping Beauty-inspired m/m romance : Editing.

  3. #3
    practical experience, FTW sreeves2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    The United States

    Self Publishing - Lightswitch

    Hi, so I've recently completed a manuscript. I still need to refine it and have it professionally edited, but right now, I've decided to self publish it.
    I found an online company called Light Switch Press that seems beneficial, but they almost seem too good to be true, if this makes sense. I'm just wondering if there's anyone out there who have self published through this same company, and if it was highly beneficial or an awful experience? I know that on the website, they say that they offer many services for free, such as: cover design, ISBN, formatting, and distribution. I also read that at first, your story will be published as an e-book; once you sell 100 copies, then you start producing your own books. It just seems unreal for me to think that someone would provide free services like that. You can skip all of that and pay for a higher package that allows you to instantly start producing books, but overall, they offer free services.
    Has any of you used this program? I'm really just looking for advice, and it would be greatly appreciated. Here's their website if you don't know who they are:

  4. #4
    practical experience, FTW Celeste Carrara's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    I don't have any personal knowledge of them, but here is a link to some info on the "bewares..." forum here on AW

  5. #5
    practical experience, FTW sreeves2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    The United States
    Quote Originally Posted by Celeste Carrara View Post
    I don't have any personal knowledge of them, but here is a link to some info on the "bewares..." forum here on AW
    Thank you!

  6. #6
    Mushroom Polenth's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    From what I can see, it's not primarily a self-publisher services provider. It's a vanity publisher. They take control of the book, and so will have control of the money coming in. This means they're likely taking a cut and you have to rely on them to pay you. They're also hoping to sell you their marketing services.

    If you want to self-publish, the uploading part is the bit you really have to do. You can hire people to edit, do cover art, etc. But you should be the one who uploads that file to Amazon and the like.
    * Polenth *

    Website | Blog / Send Review Requests | Twitter
    Sunstruck - Bigfoot Urban Fantasy Novel

  7. #7
    Such a nasty woman SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    In chaos
    It looks like a vanity press to me.

    I'll merge this with the existing Light Switch Press thread in BR&BC.

  8. #8
    Wilde about Oscar aliceshortcake's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Oop North
    On the "Compare Publishing Prices" page Light Switch is compared to AuthorHouse, Xlibris and other well-known vanity presses and author service providers...and an outfit called A Book's Mind I've never heard of but which is the second most expensive option.

    By an amazing coincidence Light Switch and A Book's Mind have the same address - P.O. Box 272847, Fort Collins, CO 80527!

    There's an amusing, albeit somewhat out-of-date, blog post about ABM here:

    Light Switch seems to have been set up to take over the '100% free' arm of the business whilst ABM attempts to go up-market. Potential customers are left in no doubt that it's up to them to market their books. At the bottom of the 'Services' page we find the following quote:

    Not all marketing people are writers, but all
    writers must learn to be marketers. — Joanne Kraft
    Who is Joanne Kraft? A self-publishing expert, perhaps? No, she's the author of a single non-fiction book, Just Too Busy, published by Beacon Hill Press. Her Amazon profile describes her as "a sought-after speaker", and as such she has a ready-made conservative Christian audience. But AFAIK Beacon Hill Press isn't a vanity press or author service provider and most potential Light Switch customers won't have Kraft's advantages, so the quotation is both pointless and misleading.

    By the way, the promotional materials on that page bear the image of the book Baseball Stat Tracker by one Travis Greenfield. It was actually published by A Book's Mind and was written by one of the publishers, Floyd Oldfield:

    Two other members of the ABM publishing team, Jon McHatton and Jenene Scott, have also self-pubbed their work with the company.

    Most of the Light Switch books I examined via Amazon's Look Inside feature had not been edited to anything approaching a professional standard. I was also amused by what we're supposed to think is an impartial article about Light Switch:

    The Evolution of Publishing:
    The Virtual SCRIBE: Book Reviews & More by Bonnie Lee
    Light Switch Press has taken a huge step in the evolution of book publishing with its completely free publishing services. This true blend of traditional book publishing and self-publishing offers authors a no-risk avenue to having their book professionally published. Light Switch Press offers authors totally free publishing—no out-of-pocket costs to publish, completely free distribution, cover design and book formatting with higher royalties than traditional publishing. Authors also maintain full ownership of their work.
    Bonnie Lee is actually Bonnie Lewis:

    Publisher, Editor
    2012 – Present (2 years)Tucson area
    Author's Best Friend -- Book Reviews, Marketing/PR for new books
    Ghost writing, substantive editing, manuscript editing
    Work with A Book's Mind Publishing, Light Switch Publishing, and independent authors
    Do these people think we can't use Google?

    Finally, I wonder how many writers took advantage of Light Switch's 'free' services but couldn't resist the temptation to buy a Marketing Bundle (200 each of business cards, bookmarks and flyers) for $289.99...and how many writers didn't see their book in print because their ebooks failed to sell 100 copies.
    Last edited by aliceshortcake; 10-22-2014 at 03:16 PM. Reason: Added a bit. Added a lot, actually.

  9. #9
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin aimeeduffyx's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    The FAQS state that they're a publishing hybrid and the author keeps complete control of the book & profits (unlike the big, bad publishers), yet they go on to say the author is paid 30% of net royalties received. They don't edit, they don't give the author choices on covers or bother to do any marketing. Surely self-publishing is a better option than giving these guys 70% of your money for making a crap cover?


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