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Thread: [Pub Svcs] OGHMA Creative Media

  1. #1
    practical experience, FTW wonderactivist's Avatar
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    [Pub Svcs] OGHMA Creative Media

    Anyone have a good experience with this group? Three local friends PAID thousands of dollars for "publishing deals" with OGHMA over a year ago. As if that wasn't bad enough, the terms of their agreemens have not been met. This group seems to be trying to look like an indie publisher. And their imprints have imprints? Yet none of the three "deals" have been fulfilled, two of three have no book, the other has no promotion—and that's what she paid for.

    Please tell me good experiences if you have any. I will take this down if proven wrong. Otherwise, I must at this point put up a huge beware. They hurt people I care about.


    Last edited by wonderactivist; 07-13-2015 at 12:59 AM. Reason: snipped personal details

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  2. #2
    Write. Write. Writey Write Write. mrsmig's Avatar
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    KINGLET: Now available from Fiery Seas Publishing: Amazon Barnes & Noble iBooks Kobo
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  3. #3
    Preparing for winter VeryBigBeard's Avatar
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    I cannot help seeing OGHMA as the acronym of some small-town minor hockey league. Apparently it's a Celtic goddess, but same difference really.

    They do seem to be up front on their site about what they take, but they call themselves a traditional publisher and the OP says fees are involved so them's bad signs right there.

    *shoots puck over glass*

  4. #4
    practical experience, FTW wonderactivist's Avatar
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    Thanks for the link mrsmig, and Beard is right: The site says traditional but these folks charge very hefty fees for cover, editing, books, and publicity. One friend paid them over $3000 for the "complete publishing package." Makes me sick to think of it.

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  5. #5
    Heckuva good sport frimble3's Avatar
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    And, for what it's worth, there's a fair bit of overlap between their authors and their staff. Which may or may not mean anything, but there are only so many hours in the day...

  6. #6
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    In the for-what-it's-worth department; I have one novel published with Oghma, and a second due out in a month, and I have had nothing but positive experiences with them. No fees required, nothing, and everything has been completely above-board. (And for the record - I'm not an Oghma employee.)

    I believe Oghma started out as a for-pay author marketing firm -- NOT as a publisher. Is this the source of the confusion? Because none of the authors I've talked to who have dealt with Oghma as a publisher have been charged anything. So something doesn't jibe, here.

  7. #7
    Write. Write. Writey Write Write. mrsmig's Avatar
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    Perhaps things have changed in the months that have passed between the original post and now.

    I'm glad you've had a good experience with them, jaggy227, but there are still things about the website that I find troubling. For example, no staff is mentioned in the "staff" section, and there's this (bolding mine):

    We pay royalties—a percentage of sales after production costs. Our royalty split is 60/40 (60% for Oghma, 40% for the author) across the board for all formats: e-book, hardcopy, etc.
    This is an all-too-familiar business model for new publishers: the author, who has done the most work on the book, is the last to receive payment.

    I'm also concerned that the company, using this same royalty model, wants a number of other rights, including film, audio, serial and translation. I don't see any indicators that they're actually using those rights.

    Perhaps you can expand on your experience with Oghma. Have you been happy with your sales? Do they pay on time? How has the marketing been?
    KINGLET: Now available from Fiery Seas Publishing: Amazon Barnes & Noble iBooks Kobo
    FISKUR: Now available from Fiery Seas Publishing: Amazon Barnes & Noble iBooks Kobo
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  8. #8
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    I can tell you that Oghma just signed a contract for the first film rights for an Oghma-published book this week -- and the film profits are also a 60/40 split, so as far as I can tell, it's being handled fairly. I don't know that author personally, but that's my understanding.

    My sales have been pretty good -- to be fair, I may not be the best indicator, because I suck at marketing. Their end of the marketing has been good -- the promotional materials are sharp-looking and all deadlines were met on time. (The media kit put together for me for my first book was very professional, according to the owner of a bookstore I did a signing at.) The book itself is really nice-looking; the cover design and layout is stunning.

    However, to be fair, as someone relatively new to the published-author world, I don't have a lot to compare to. But like I said, I haven't had any problems at all.

  9. #9
    practical experience, FTW wonderactivist's Avatar
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    I find it interesting, Jaggy, that your post count is 2, both posts in this thread. You seem to have joined for the purpose of saying this, but do not give a name or link to your book. Sorry, but considering their track record. I'll need a heck of a lot more to establish credibility. We're talking a lot of money that has disappeared.
    Last edited by wonderactivist; 10-23-2015 at 05:46 AM.

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  10. #10
    Preparing for winter VeryBigBeard's Avatar
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    Lots of people register here to review a company in BR&BC, sometimes the reviews are positive and sometimes not. It's what makes this forum so useful.

    It's worth remembering, as I think jaggy kind of alludes to, that one person's situation won't always be indicative of how a house does business. It's also not uncommon to have a honeymoon period where everything goes swimmingly only to encounter or realize underlying problems later. Hearing about that--good and bad--is how we learn about this stuff. And in the end, everyone has to do his or her own research and make his or her own judgment. It really is different for every book.

    I don't really know enough about rights and marketing to critique here. I do wonder if the 60/40 on film profits is more than a bit low--my understanding from other threads I've read is that the author usually gets more with subsidiary rights. But I could be wrong. With the marketing, a media kit is good but publishers are often much more effective in marketing a book in trade publications so book sellers see what they can order directly. How is OGMHA's catalogue? Do they distribute in places where people buy books or is the author responsible for getting stores to stock the books on consignment? A lot of small presses leave promotion largely to the author, but it's a good sign if they have some sort of distribution to back that promotion up, and a bad sign if they don't.

    Hopefully some of the more experienced folks in this forum can chime in because they know way more than I do.

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  11. #11
    practical experience, FTW wonderactivist's Avatar
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    Good points, Beard.

    Jaggy, welcome. I understand if you are not comfortable sharing your book with us. Maybe you can just let us know about the royalty checks you have received. Were they on time and for the correct amount? Have you spoken with them recently?

    If you can answer: Have they mentioned why there are no longer staff names on the site? And why do they need 14 imprints when only 16 books are listed? And finally, why can't they be reached by phone, email or certified letter? I have one friend still trying to reach them.

    And PS: I wish you the best with your book and hope/pray you have a better experience.

    Thanks,

    Lucie
    Last edited by wonderactivist; 10-23-2015 at 08:01 AM. Reason: added PS

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  12. #12
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    I have no problem with posting my name & book -- I'm Gordon Bonnet, my book is called "Kill Switch." You can check it on Amazon; 24 reviews & counting.

    I have no idea why they wouldn't respond to emails; I'm in touch with the owner and my editor regularly via email, and have never had any problems. Royalties paid fully & on time.

    Like I said; I'm not claiming that there haven't been problems, just that I haven't had any. I really don't have a dog in this race. I joined this site a couple of years ago (check my profile), so the claim that I joined to troll on Oghma's behalf is simply wrong. I always tend to lurk on websites like this -- shy by nature, and don't like to get into debates with people I don't know. I usually end up regretting it.

  13. #13
    practical experience, FTW wonderactivist's Avatar
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    Thanks Gordon. I appreciate your sharing.

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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by jaggy227 View Post
    I have no problem with posting my name & book -- I'm Gordon Bonnet, my book is called "Kill Switch." You can check it on Amazon; 24 reviews & counting.

    I have no idea why they wouldn't respond to emails; I'm in touch with the owner and my editor regularly via email, and have never had any problems. Royalties paid fully & on time.

    Like I said; I'm not claiming that there haven't been problems, just that I haven't had any. I really don't have a dog in this race. I joined this site a couple of years ago (check my profile), so the claim that I joined to troll on Oghma's behalf is simply wrong. I always tend to lurk on websites like this -- shy by nature, and don't like to get into debates with people I don't know. I usually end up regretting it.
    Confused. You're listed as Publishing Director on their site so you are an employee and you have 10 or so books out with them.

  15. #15
    Such a nasty woman SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jaggy227 View Post
    I have no problem with posting my name & book -- I'm Gordon Bonnet, my book is called "Kill Switch." You can check it on Amazon; 24 reviews & counting.

    I have no idea why they wouldn't respond to emails; I'm in touch with the owner and my editor regularly via email, and have never had any problems. Royalties paid fully & on time.

    Like I said; I'm not claiming that there haven't been problems, just that I haven't had any. I really don't have a dog in this race. I joined this site a couple of years ago (check my profile), so the claim that I joined to troll on Oghma's behalf is simply wrong. I always tend to lurk on websites like this -- shy by nature, and don't like to get into debates with people I don't know. I usually end up regretting it.
    Quote Originally Posted by EoisM View Post
    Confused. You're listed as Publishing Director on their site so you are an employee and you have 10 or so books out with them.
    Good catch, EoisM.

    From the Oghma site:

    Gordon BonnetPublishing Director
    “Gordon Bonnet has been writing fiction for decades. Encouraged when his story Crazy Bird Bends His Beak won critical acclaim in Mrs. Moore’s 1st grade class at Central Elementary School in St. Albans, West Virginia, he embarked on a long love affair with the written word. His interest in the paranormal goes back almost that far, although it has always been tempered by Gordon’s scientific training. This has led to a strange duality; his work as a skeptic and debunker on the popular blog Skeptophilia, while simultaneously writing paranormal and speculative novels, novellas, and short stories. He blogs daily, but is never without a piece of fiction in progress—driven to continue, as he puts it, “because I want to find out how the story ends.”
    So when jaggy227 said this, he wasn't being entirely honest with us (my bold):

    Quote Originally Posted by jaggy227 View Post
    In the for-what-it's-worth department; I have one novel published with Oghma, and a second due out in a month, and I have had nothing but positive experiences with them. No fees required, nothing, and everything has been completely above-board. (And for the record - I'm not an Oghma employee.)

    I believe Oghma started out as a for-pay author marketing firm -- NOT as a publisher. Is this the source of the confusion? Because none of the authors I've talked to who have dealt with Oghma as a publisher have been charged anything. So something doesn't jibe, here.
    I've skimmed through the About Us page and see no one there with any experience of working in publishing. Not a company I'd want publishing my books.

  16. #16
    Seen 'em come, seen 'em go Gravity's Avatar
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    But to play devil's advocate, could it be he took the job in the intervening two years since his last post here? Not to say I'd ever consider that house, but it did make me wonder.
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  17. #17
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    As I wrote above, I'm confused. There's that whole "don't confuse malice with..." thing. Maybe he writes so well they gave him a job? He's got 10 books with them. I didn't check all the pub dates and the ones I did check were pubbed after he posted.
    You know, sometimes that "be wise as serpents" thing gets to be lots of work.

  18. #18
    @PeteMC666 PeteMC's Avatar
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    Their site lists a Harold Robins reprint in their catalogue, unless I'm mis-reading something. I'd be surprised if his estate put a reprint with a vanity press.

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  19. #19
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    Oghma expressed interest in one of my manuscripts so I reached out to a few of their authors to try and get a sense of how they view their experiences with them. The thee authors I connected with had very complimentary things to say about Oghma.

    I am still sceptical (that's my nature) and will continue to do some research ...

  20. #20
    Mildly Disturbing Filigree's Avatar
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    Their sales ranks on Amazon are rather lackluster.

    That Robbins book is listed as being from Iridium Press.
    Last edited by Filigree; Yesterday at 09:38 PM.

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  21. #21
    from words to worlds zmethos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Filigree View Post
    That Robbins book is listed as being from Iridium Press.
    Iridium is listed on the OGHMA site as their "Classic Fiction" imprint. Dang, do they have a lot of imprints. I always hesitate when I see something like that because, as my dad always said, "A restaurant that cooks everything does none of it very well."

  22. #22
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    There are many reasons to temper my enthusiasm. The people listed as the workforce behind the company: publishing director, editing director, development, are all writers, and their social media platforms make no mention of their publishing activity.

    But the writers with Oghma I've been in contact with are quite happy with the way they and their work have been treated. I will get one of their books and see for myself the quality of the product.

    Also, I've been led to believe the process is quite slow: about 2 years from signature of contract to book in stores

  23. #23
    Preparing for winter VeryBigBeard's Avatar
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    Be aware that authors currently signed with not-so-great presses often have nice things to say. In some cases, they've only recently signed and they haven't experienced poor sales or marketing yet. And, in a few unfortunate cases, they don't always know any better or may be afraid to say anything negative for fear of reprisal.

    Book publishing is always slow. It should especially be slow with smaller houses, as the team is necessarily smaller and, even focusing on a small number of titles (not OGHMA's thing), it can take awhile to go through the whole process.

    When you go to the bookstore, have a list of OGHMA's newer releases in mind. See if you can find them on shelves. If you can only find them by searching the bookstore database, that's a bad sign. For instance, if I check the Indigo (Canada's B&N) links on their books, I get a "Not available in stores" note, but I can still order them. I could order your grandmother's cookbook through them. Without distribution and shelf placement, nobody will know a book exists.

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