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Thread: BlaqRayn Publishing / BRPP Network

  1. #1
    Making it up as I go along... TheOneTrueBen's Avatar
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    BlaqRayn Publishing / BRPP Network

    Welllll, this is new.

    I just got threatened with slander on a Facebook page by Kim Morrow, self-proclaimed owner of Blaq Rayn Publishing Plus (aka BRPP) when I called her outfit a vanity publisher as opposed to a "legit" publisher.

    Here is their website: http://blaqraynpublishingplus.org/

    Their pricing page advertises various packages starting at $200 for works of 2500-7000 words (flash fiction or poetry), and maxing at $500 for work that is 100K words or more.

    One thing they do differently is claim that they do not charge a percentage of royalties.

    I haven't seen a copy of their contract, but even if they don't charge a percentage, this still looks like a vanity operation to me because they charge up front. Anyone care to chime in on this?
    I am The One, True Ben. Accept no substitutes or replacements.
    Author of Zompoc Survivor: Exodus and The Demon's Apprentice series.

  2. #2
    Back in the black, & staying there! Marian Perera's Avatar
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    From their Services & Prices page:

    BlaqRayn Publishing will publish and promote your work at a price you can afford and others in the industry will laugh at. We at BlaqRayn are not about getting rich…we are about making dreams come true one published book at a time…
    GRAND OPENING PACKAGE $25 – One daily post in *Facebook groups, Pinterest and Twitter.
    They're a vanity press, all right.

    Also, slander is spoken, libel is written.


    "The novel has a dark, eerie, fairy-tale feel." Washington Post's review of The Beast Prince

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  3. #3
    Live a little. Write a lot. Karen Junker's Avatar
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    As an aside, I have been the victim of a spurious lawsuit which cost tens of thousands of dollars to defend (and which was ultimately dismissed with prejudice). Anyone can sue for any reason and if they have the money to pay for it, you can be at their mercy. Most of the time they are just blowing smoke, but...good luck.
    Karen Junker
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  4. #4
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    Most likely she's blowing smoke. Probably the best thing to do is not to respond.

    I don't know which is more unfortunate: the website, the name, or the initials (BuRPP).

    - Victoria

  5. #5
    Mildly Disturbing Filigree's Avatar
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    Do not respond to her in any way. If she escalates, then go talk to the EFF and (if you are in the US) to Ken White at Popehat. You can also talk to the folks at Harvard's Digital Law service (I'm getting their name wrong. I'll PM you later with info.) You don't have to do this alone.

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  6. #6
    Making it up as I go along... TheOneTrueBen's Avatar
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    Thank you Filigree. I'll do that very thing with alacrity. I also have some legal help of my own through work, but I'm glad I have options.
    I am The One, True Ben. Accept no substitutes or replacements.
    Author of Zompoc Survivor: Exodus and The Demon's Apprentice series.

  7. #7
    Cat hair collector PVish's Avatar
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    The book covers on the BlaqRayn Pub Books page are, uh, interesting. Most seem to have the publishing company's name on the front, except for this one by Xlibris and a few others. I didn't check out all the books, but this one, this one, and this one (with Blaq Rayn Pub on the covers) are published by Createspace.

  8. #8
    figuring it all out AngelsAvengeMe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PVish View Post
    The book covers on the BlaqRayn Pub Books page are, uh, interesting. Most seem to have the publishing company's name on the front, except for this one by Xlibris and a few others. I didn't check out all the books, but this one, this one, and this one (with Blaq Rayn Pub on the covers) are published by Createspace.

    Jesus, those are some... interesting book covers is right. Yikes!

  9. #9
    Mildly Disturbing Filigree's Avatar
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    Good Lord, those are painful to look at for long.

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  10. #10
    Wilde about Oscar aliceshortcake's Avatar
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    "Blaq Rayn"? Is this outfit a publisher or a fifteen-year-old's Goth band? And why do so many of these idiots not know the difference between slander and libel?
    "There is only one thing worse than being obliged to sit cross-legged on the grass, and that is being obliged to sit cross-legged on the grass near an ant colony"
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  11. #11
    practical experience, FTW M.N Thorne's Avatar
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    Those book covers are just awful!

  12. #12
    Romance with Kick-Assitude! Cassie Knight's Avatar
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    Here we go--another organization who charges authors for its services yet claims they are not a vanity press.

    Seriously? How hard is it to understand that if you charge an author--for ANYTHING--as a publisher you are a vanity press?

    I don't get it. I just don't.

    Now, I'm not saying they are all bad but if it walks like a duck, clacks like a duck, it's a duck. (I know this isn't her's but it's been on the brain lately as I've been watching People's Court and Judge Milian. )
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  13. #13
    Mildly Disturbing Filigree's Avatar
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    Responsible printing services charge, but they are upfront about what they do. They don't pretend to be publishers.

    Only one of BRPP's 'magazines' shows up on Amazon, for whatever that is worth.
    Last edited by Filigree; 07-30-2014 at 07:10 PM.

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  14. #14
    Back in the black, & staying there! Marian Perera's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cassie Knight View Post
    Seriously? How hard is it to understand that if you charge an author--for ANYTHING--as a publisher you are a vanity press?
    A lot of the "we're not a vanity press! not! not!" companies will try to obfuscate that by defining "vanity press" some other way.

    • A vanity press mistreats its authors. Our authors love us and beg us to take their money.
    • A vanity press publishes everything it receives. We're selective - we reject as many manuscripts as we accept!
    • A vanity press charges thousands of dollars. We only charge a measly few dozen or couple of hundred.
    • A vanity press doesn't edit. We run everything we publish through a spell checker.
    • Here's an author who wasn't charged a dime. Therefore, we're not a vanity press.
    • A vanity press is one which makes a profit off writers. Every cent writers pay us goes into the production of their books. We don't make a profit, so we're not a vanity press.


    "The novel has a dark, eerie, fairy-tale feel." Washington Post's review of The Beast Prince

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  15. #15
    Mildly Disturbing Filigree's Avatar
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    Vanity presses bank a lot on affinity fraud, too. They will often portray themselves as sympathetic to certain social and cultural groups. That strategy is aimed at customers who might already be less likely to trust or even approach mainstream commercial publishing.

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  16. #16
    Heckuva good sport frimble3's Avatar
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    And one of the affinity groups that falls prey to this scam is little writing groups, where no-one has any real experience, but they're all eager to get going. If one member gets ensnared by a vanity publisher and returns to the group with glowing reports based on first impressions, who's to know how many will take that as 'real experience' and trustingly follow them down the garden path?

  17. #17
    The King and Queen of Cheese BenPanced's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frimble3 View Post
    And one of the affinity groups that falls prey to this scam is little writing groups, where no-one has any real experience, but they're all eager to get going. If one member gets ensnared by a vanity publisher and returns to the group with glowing reports based on first impressions, who's to know how many will take that as 'real experience' and trustingly follow them down the garden path?
    Another being the ones who cry, "I've submitted to three publishers and all three had rejected me!" The ones who easily give up because, again, they don't understand how publishing works and three publishers is a mere drop in the ocean.
    I still poop rainbows.




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  18. #18
    Making it up as I go along... TheOneTrueBen's Avatar
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    In the thread where this publisher tried to take me to task for not accepting at face value her legitimacy as a "real publisher" (claiming I didn't know anything about publishing), she claimed that for black writers, "it's different" when you're trying to break into becoming a published author, and that seems to be the niche of authors she's trying exploi- er, appeal to.

    This in particular really upset me. No, it pissed me the f*** off. Color or culture should have ZERO impact on your ability to self-publish or be published. There is more I could say but I find that I lack the ability to get past my own cultural limitations in saying it right.

    Suffice to say, after using the tried and true but somewhat ineffective threat of legal action, she pulled another vanity publisher trick out: the glowing author testimonial. Yeah, because publishers make authors money by selling them services.

    Not buying it.
    I am The One, True Ben. Accept no substitutes or replacements.
    Author of Zompoc Survivor: Exodus and The Demon's Apprentice series.

  19. #19
    Mildly Disturbing Filigree's Avatar
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    She's not the first we've seen pull that card. The barrier to publication is often not being 'black', but being unready to publish, period.

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  20. #20
    Back in the black, & staying there! Marian Perera's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheOneTrueBen View Post
    In the thread where this publisher tried to take me to task for not accepting at face value her legitimacy as a "real publisher" (claiming I didn't know anything about publishing), she claimed that for black writers, "it's different" when you're trying to break into becoming a published author, and that seems to be the niche of authors she's trying exploi- er, appeal to.
    Some things never change. I remember an author who came here eight years ago to defend PA and stated,

    I'm a black person, speaking about black writers. Some famous ones who sold out of cars are Zane (now that she proved herself she has her own imprint with a major publisher), E. Lynn Harris, etc., and they had to pay thousands for books to be printed UP FRONT.


    "The novel has a dark, eerie, fairy-tale feel." Washington Post's review of The Beast Prince

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  21. #21
    Mildly Disturbing Filigree's Avatar
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    I'd point you toward Creflo Dollar and a large constituent of the Prosperity Gospel market, but linking on the tablet is not happening this morning.

    M/M/M contemporary erotic romance novella out now from NineStar Press!

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