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Thread: VerbalEyze Press

  1. #1
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    VerbalEyze Press

    Hello, everyone. Long time reader first time poster.

    http://verbaleyze.org/press/

    Found something called Verbaleyze through a promotional post on tumblr, which was the first thing that made me pause. Second thing was that they exclusively publish authors aged 13 - 22 which ouch, not that intentions are necessarily bad but potential for exploiting the young and hopeful much? The beginning of its post, 'The publishing industry can look impenetrable to a young writer, but with VerbalEyze it doesn’t have to be,' was also close enough to make me frown to the old 'unpublished authors are DOOMED but not with us!' spiel that vanities and author mills love. It's already definitively off my list due to a quick look their books revealing very poor sales (also mostly poetry and anthologies despite their call saying they also take novels and other assorted forms, hmmmm). But, I'm curious to ask still what other people here may think of this?

    The Verbaleyze facebook says it was founded 2006 as an not-for-profit organisation to supply resources to young writers, with the press side a more recent addition by the looks of it (earliest book seems to be from May 2013). That's new to me, a publisher as a not-for-profit organisation (which conveniently guarantees that, since it can require next to no initial investment to e-publish a book nowadays, they have little to none motivation to sell your book, yay). There's also just the main concept of exclusively publishing young authors--I mean there's certainly under 22 year olds with publishable manuscripts, even maybe some 13 year old prodigies, but would it be enough to build an entire press on?

    So, what do you guys think? A well intentioned but unfortunately unfeasible venture? A mill preying on the young ones (ugh, and I tell you I would have totally fallen for it at the age of 16 or god forbid, 13, before I found this forum and its ilk)? Or just another micropress without the means to actually promotes its books?
    Last edited by Sylvir; 03-26-2016 at 11:58 AM.

  2. #2
    Christine Tripp ctripp's Avatar
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    I tried to figure this one out, usually it's simple to see from a web site that something is a legit press or a vanity/scam. The covers are pretty bad, but the kids have probably done their own and since the main source of sales will be to family and friends, I suppose it doesn't really matter. I really can't tell if they intend to charge a fee to the parents to publish (the parents of the younger ones would have to sign the contracts) or if they are honestly think they are doing something positive for kids. I imagine they (the owners) are making their money from the sales to the young peoples family and 50% of that is paid out in a royalty, in the form of scholarships from what I can gather, to the young Writers.

  3. #3
    pinkbowvintage's Avatar
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    For any new writer, the workings of publishing industry can appear complicated and confusing. The goal of VerbalEyze Press is to take young writers through the commercial publishing process in away that educates them on all the details and maximizes the benefits they receive.
    Manipulative language; I feel I'm being sold something here. And I think there should be a *the before the word publishing.

    We promote your book through all our promotional and marketing channels. You receive a marketing guide with sample templates for promoting the anthology to your friends and family through social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Reddit, Pinterest, etc.
    That doesn't sound very promising.

    I appreciate the concept here of trying to help young writers, but I question whether or not this is the right place for young writers to be published. I'm not seeing any benefit to going with this press, or anything that makes them a better fit for a young writer than a large publishing house or a well-established indie press.
    My YA debut BURRO HILLS is coming from Diversion Books in 2018!

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  4. #4
    Now with more stubble VeryBigBeard's Avatar
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    Their submission guidelines take me to a 404 page.

    It's not even a good 404 page.

    Pass.

  5. #5
    Christine Tripp ctripp's Avatar
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    >I'm not seeing any benefit to going with this press, or anything that makes them a better fit for a young writer than a large publishing house or a well-established indie press.<

    I think the "benefit" is that they CAN get "published" by this org and they would never get published by a commercial house.
    Most 14 year olds, even the most talented of them, are NOT going to find a trade publisher interested in their poetry. What is the age of majority in the US for contract signing? Here in my part of Canada it's 18 but if in the US it's 21, that could be why they publish young people UP TO that age. This way the parents must sign and likely commit to buying x number of their child's book (which of course they would, if a publisher had just approved their child's submission) I can't think of how else this "publisher" makes money, it has to be parents, family and
    perhaps the child's school associations?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinkbowvintage View Post
    I'm not seeing any benefit to going with this press, or anything that makes them a better fit for a young writer than a large publishing house or a well-established indie press.
    Same as what ctripp said above, I'm not familiar with the legality issues but it's suspiciously similar to the "most presses don't tak a chance on first time authors but we do" angle. In that case it's blatant misinformation, making it sound like they're doing the writer a favour so you ought to be nice and overlook any other red flags.

    In this case it's probably true that young writers would have trouble finding another publishing house, but it would be due to quality not any kind of prejudice (it's not like you have to write your age on a query). Then again, there's an awful lot of terrible stuff written by adults in some of the micropresses so maybe they do deserve a chance?

    Maybe it's not a bad choice for teenagers who want to get a little experience with the publishing industry, just not for ones expecting this to be a serious start of a career. I wonder how a past book with these guys would look on the credits of a query.

  7. #7
    practical experience, FTW Dhewco's Avatar
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    When I was 15, I submitted to a poetry (Christian, no less) anthology called American Arts Association and was 'approved'. Then, I learned that the only way to see it in print was to pay the 15 dollars for the book. (this was '88, mind you...15 dollars was a lot of money for my poor family). I remember paying it, but we never got the book. Letters never got answered and I couldn't find a 1800 number for them.

    My point is this. People will take advantage of anyone of any age, especially in the literary field.

    David

  8. #8
    Just visiting Samsonet's Avatar
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    For any teen authors who may be worrying about prejudice against young writers: it's not age, it's newness. There are certain problems most new writers have, whether they start at age 14 or 34. Don't worry about it. Just keep writing and improving. Writing is a field where you have literally your entire lifetime to succeed. (Not that it'll take a lifetime, necessarily. )
    i see you,
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  9. #9
    pinkbowvintage's Avatar
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    Well, the thing is, I don't think young writers should rush to get published anyway if they are only aiming quite low. Like Samsonet said, it's more about newness than age, and writing is a craft that takes years and years to develop. I think it's better to be published by a well-respected press or publisher later in life than get a bunch of books that no one buys or looks at published by a POD or even scammy press as a teen.

    I also think that the Big 5 and mid-sized houses do take on younger writers and wouldn't discriminate if someone at age 15 wrote an amazing piece of work.
    My YA debut BURRO HILLS is coming from Diversion Books in 2018!

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  10. #10
    Christine Tripp ctripp's Avatar
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    I had to google to see who some of the youngest Authors were. Ended up on a site that listed "the 10 youngest Authors in History". Very interesting, the first Authors listed really did sell to legit, known Publishers. Going further down the list, the circumstances are more about illness and issues of the child Author and their being brought to the worlds attention on shows like Oprah and Ellen. Even further down, though the list promised to only be listing children published with traditional publishers, a young boy of 6 actually ended up being published by a pay to play press, not traditional. Still, it was interesting to learn there are a few really, truly published teens. http://www.toptenz.net/10-youngest-authors-history.php

  11. #11
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Quote Originally Posted by ctripp View Post
    I had to google to see who some of the youngest Authors were. Ended up on a site that listed "the 10 youngest Authors in History". Very interesting, the first Authors listed really did sell to legit, known Publishers. Going further down the list, the circumstances are more about illness and issues of the child Author and their being brought to the worlds attention on shows like Oprah and Ellen. Even further down, though the list promised to only be listing children published with traditional publishers, a young boy of 6 actually ended up being published by a pay to play press, not traditional. Still, it was interesting to learn there are a few really, truly published teens. http://www.toptenz.net/10-youngest-authors-history.php
    Thanks for the link, very interesting. Especially the full length fictional novels are impressive (for me anyway, who still struggles to get ideas in order for any kind of length). Goes to prove then that you really don't need some special young people publisher to sell a manuscript if it reallt deserves it.

  12. #12
    Christine Tripp ctripp's Avatar
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    >Goes to prove then that you really don't need some special young people publisher to sell a manuscript if it reallt deserves it<

    I was definitely surprised to see that Sylvir and now I have to eat my words from my earlier post
    Obviously it's not common but there are some young people that do have fiction published by a reputable publisher, without being a teen celeb or having a cause or issue related to the book and it's deal.

  13. #13
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    Hi, guys! We saw your posts and wanted to address a few of your comments and hopefully clear up any questions you might have.

    We wanted to get involved with the writing community on Tumblr because that’s where we’ve seen a lot of young talent get its start lately, whether it’s fanfiction or in depth analysis about the writing process and what young writers expect from the media they consume. While it’s true that writers under 23 are still developing their craft (you are at any age), that doesn’t mean you won’t find good writers or that young writers don’t have anything to say. Often, some of the best authors in that age bracket aren’t looking for publishing opportunities because of this idea our society developed that you have to reach a certain age to be taken seriously as a writer. That’s not a standard we hold other artists to (e.g. the many artists producing professional-level artwork under 23).

    Tumblr’s also a community with a lot to say about writing. It has some of the best resources on the web, and we wanted to share those resources with our audience.

    Is publishing authors under 23 enough to build a press on? Definitely. When we think of the publishing industry, it’s easy to get blinded by giants like Harper Lee and Scholastic. But there are thousands of smaller presses with loyal followings (Torquere Press is one of the top of my head)-- not to mention that there’s been a huge boom lately in self-publishing because authors are finding ways to market themselves and make a profit. When it comes to ebooks, authors with a successful niche and effective marketing can easily pull in between $300-$1000/month. It’s all about finding books there’s a demand for that aren’t being written.

    When we say the publishing industry can look impenetrable, we don’t just mean for young authors*. There’s a lot to learn: query letters, where to find places to submit your work, how to market it, royalties, copyright and licensing. It’s pretty overwhelming— especially when you’re unfamiliar with how the publishing industry works, constantly getting rejections, or finally get published and then it seems like no one is reading your book. The reality is that the days of securing a publishing contract, sitting back, and letting the publisher do all marketing and sales are over. A huge part of the hands-on training we provide is how to build your platform and market your book. Having those tools in your kit will be essential when you venture out to sell yourself as an author to the broader publishing world.

    VerbalEyze Press is meant to function as a learning experience as much as a publishing opportunity. That way, authors don’t have to go into the publishing industry fumbling to learn how it works and run into a lot of the very issues you pointed out like exploitation. As you can see from our press page, one major aspect we cover is understanding the licensing agreement and how it benefits or obliges authors which includes copyright and royalties. Because you’re right: As an author – especially a young author – it’s very easy to fall prey to publishing schemes like vanity anthologies. (Remember Poetry.com back in the early 2000s when they would publish authors in order to pressure them into buying the anthology, membership into poets’ society, or get them to attend poetry conferences?) That’s a key reason why VerbalEyze Press implements a traditional publishing model: there are no fees for submitting manuscripts, and if you are offered a publishing contract, there are no fees for any part of the publishing process.

    As you’ve already noticed, we didn’t begin as a publisher. We began to supply creative writing resources to young writers (which includes one-on-one support like free writer’s workshops which we’re in the process of extending to adults) and also to promote creative writing as an intervention method to young people in high-risk environments. VerbalEyze Press has become one of the many tools we’re using to help writers develop their entrepreneurial skills and earn royalties and scholarships.

    As for sales, our sales currently come from offline and sales through Amazon and BarnesandNobel.com. Each year at the Decatur Book Festival, our authors sell out of books they're promoting, and we’ve just re-modeled and relaunched our website (less than a month ago – thus the broken link you encountered) to begin selling directly from it as well as revamping our processes for obtaining online sales. For example, over the course of last month we were restructuring our pages and doing keyword research to help not only our website but our authors’ books be found. We also began providing a hosting platform to young authors completely free of charge and offering mentoring so they can start learning to promote themselves professionally through social media.

    We mostly publish anthologies and poetry because those are the materials we receive most frequently (it’s far less overwhelming – especially to an author who’s struggling with the idea that they’re not good enough to be published at their age — to finish and edit a shorter piece). We have two novel manuscripts under consideration, and we want to broaden our genre publishing to graphic novels. The bottom line is that we work with what young authors submit. (And they do get a say in the cover.)

    Hope that cleared some things up and if you have any questions, feel free to send them our way. We’re happy to answer even if they’re not about VerbalEyze specifically. And it’s been wonderful just reading through the questions and criticisms you guys had so that we can do a better job of addressing them in the future.

    *One of the reasons we specifically mention young authors is to signal to search engines that’s who we’re addressing through search engine optimization, which is another aspect of marketing we educate young authors on.
    Last edited by verbaleyze; 04-03-2016 at 08:31 AM.

  14. #14
    pinkbowvintage's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by verbaleyze View Post
    Is publishing authors under 23 enough to build a press on? Definitely. When we think of the publishing industry, it’s easy to get blinded by giants like Harper Lee and Scholastic.
    Hello! Thanks for coming on here to answer questions. Did you mean HarperCollins and Scholastic? HarperCollins Publishers is certainly a big dog and part of the Big 5, but Scholastic is a mid-sized publisher. While its true they aren't the only way to go for a publishing contract, a deal with them is certainly something worth aiming for, especially for a debut author.

    I don't think anyone here is saying that authors under 23 can't and shouldn't be published, but that they shouldn't necessarily rush to be published either if their books or writing style aren't quite ready. Some are ready before 23, some aren't.

    It sounds like your company has good intentions, and I like the idea of creating a community for young writers. Is this something one could join and benefit from without being signed to the press? What specifically do you offer in the ways of marketing, publicity, and editing that HarperCollins and Scholastic don't? It sounds like you are trying to market your company as something quite different from the Big 5 or a mid-sized publisher, but what would be the benefit in going with your company over say, another small press like Entangled? Do you sell to brick and mortar stores, or do you just sell POD copies?
    My YA debut BURRO HILLS is coming from Diversion Books in 2018!

    YA LGBT Contemporary/Thriller - On submission
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  15. #15
    Now with more stubble VeryBigBeard's Avatar
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    Hi Verbaleyze.

    I agree that there are young writers who can write well enough to be published. But since you're a publisher, it's your sole job to publish them well. All the other stuff doesn't really matter--it's good to teach where possible, but that actually puts an extra onus on your house to teach the right stuff: that is, the fundamentals of how publishing works, its different options, and their legitimate risks.

    Much of what you have in your post is... misinformed. I think it's well-meaning, but the focus on SEO, some of your numbers, and the idea that promotion is entirely the author's responsibility are red flags.

    If a young writer is interested in this professionally, that's where publishing come in. As a professional partner. That publisher should, as in ALL cases, bring something to the table for those royalties it takes. That means distribution on bookstore shelves, because people don't search out books they don't know about and they don't find out about books through social media. Selling out at cons doesn't mean much if you're not selling out print runs. How do you print? Are you using volunteer editors as your site kind of makes me wonder? Who in the company has experience in publishing to know and, more than that, teach this stuff?

    Anyone can publish young writers, but what most young writers need isn't publishing. To accept them--and by extension the rights to their work--is exploitative. When they are good enough--and some certainly are--they deserve to be published well.

    I've got real questions about this company still. Not fatal ones, and I'm only one person, sure, but I do have first-hand experience working with young writers. This sort of thing worries me, because I know eager writers, including some on this board, who might go for this when those writers mostly need to slow down, read, and learn from mentors who know writing and publishing. That you reference Torquere Press--currently having trouble paying its writers--as a model worries me. That you repeat a lot of Konrath-esque myths about sales and promotion worries me.

    I could be wrong, but I'd want to know specifics. Contract length and rights. Reversions. Editing and editors. This stuff's important, and the very high likelihood is that the writers you work with won't know how to evaluate it for themselves.

    There's a lot you're doing that I really like, too. The teaching materials on your site look genuinely interesting, and I note there's a lot of proven teaching experience on the staff. That's really cool and I don't doubt your workshops are effective, though I should note that there are a lot of not-so-great publishers that offer workshops as a perk of acceptance so I have to remain sceptical, too.

    We only ask these questions in this forum because AW is a place for those who don't know how to evaluate publishers to learn how to do it. AW has helped me learn how to look at this, and it helped me run away from a publisher with a very similar model to VerbalEyze. We only ask these questions because when well-meaning publishers fail, authors usually lose the most of anyone. For someone just getting into writing as a passion, that's something I'd like to see them avoid.

  16. #16
    Now with more stubble VeryBigBeard's Avatar
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    Some things to think about:

    -On Amazon, you're using the same blurb across different books. That's an Issue.

    -I haven't found a sales rank above 3 million yet.

    -The covers are probably not helping with the sales rank, shall we say. Some of them I cannot actually read the author's name, even when zoomed in. In thumbnail, I also can't read the title of the book. There are some bizarre design choices.

    -I'm finding gratuitous editing problems that suggest, at best, proofreading never happened. But these are things a copy-editor would also likely find, suggesting whatever editing is being done isn't being done competently.

    -One book on Amazon has no cover image. This is also one of the best sales ranks I found. It has a five-star review written by someone with the same initials as the author. Its blurb is also identical to all the others, including mentioning the wrong author for the book.

    -On your company's Books page, I'm having a really hard time figuring out what the books are before I click. If I'm looking for poetry I'm likely to click a chapbook. If I'm looking for a chapbook I'm likely to click an essay collection. I can't find novels at all. The covers don't distinguish, there's no tagging actually displayed before I click, etc.

    (In general, VerbalEyze's brand isn't strong beyond the young authors thing. If I'm looking to buy a book, I get almost no idea of specialization or niche--both critical for a small pub because that's why most people find small pubs. It seems, now I've looked through everything, like VerbalEyze has a really strong poetry/literary bent which raises some more questions I'm not really knowledgeable enough to answer, but my main point is I wouldn't know this without digging through your collection and I should know it almost immediately.)

    -VerbalEyze backcover copy also appears to be identical across most of its books, and is basically just brand promo. This looks like what you'd find on an Oxford University Press teaching copy, not a book being sold commercially.

    -Whatever SEO you are doing isn't working because I can't find anything about your authors on search. I go looking for a website or social media to follow--I do occasionally follow interesting authors (read: those who do not self-promote their book at every opportunity)--and find nothing but retailer sites.
    Last edited by VeryBigBeard; 06-17-2016 at 08:44 AM.

  17. #17
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    If you don't mind me asking, you were at Decatur Book Festival last year? Where was your booth - were you under the Verbaleyez name? Trying to see if I recall browsing your booth as I took a poke in most of them.
    Twitter: @tiakall

  18. #18
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Thanks for catching the omitted "the". To clarify, we never make the claim that we are the best place for a young writer to be published. We only make two claims: 1) We exclusively publish authors between the ages of thirteen and twenty-two; so a young author who contacts us has our undivided attention; and 2) our primary guiding purpose in our interactions with young writers is to make everything a positive educational experience, even things like understanding a licensing agreement.

    We want to help the next generation of young authors make their start. If we are working with a young author in our Cooperative program who has a goal of becoming published with a different publishing house, we do what we can to help make that happen such as fine-tuning manuscripts, crafting query letters, etc. (note - We are not an agency.) However, we have been in this business long enough to know that unsolicited manuscript submissions from an unpublished author just beginning to build a platform is a long-shot with most publishing houses. We established VerbalEyze Press to provide an alternative publishing channel.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by tiakall View Post
    If you don't mind me asking, you were at Decatur Book Festival last year? Where was your booth - were you under the Verbaleyez name? Trying to see if I recall browsing your booth as I took a poke in most of them.
    We were. Last year we were just across from the Starbucks on Ponce St. We also had authors participating in the DBF youth open mic that occurred on Sunday afternoon.
    Last edited by verbaleyze; 04-04-2016 at 11:09 PM.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sylvir View Post
    ...it's suspiciously similar to the "most presses don't tak a chance on first time authors but we do" angle. In that case it's blatant misinformation....
    Can you tell me where you found that statement in our material? I've looked through it and couldn't find a statement like that. That is not a claim we make. As I stated in another response, we have no problem working with young writers for the explicit purpose of helping them get published by a third-party publishing house if that is their goal.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by ctripp View Post
    >I can't think of how else this "publisher" makes money, it has to be parents, family and perhaps the child's school associations?
    That's a fair question, and to be honest, that is a question that trips up most people when they are first learning about us. A common assumption in our society is that "It must be about the money." Full transparency: we are a 501(c)3 literary arts and education non-profit. Every single editor, mentor, team member who works with us (including myself) does it as an unpaid volunteer. Every single one of us has a single shared passion to want to help young writers in every way we can. What revenue we receive from book sales that is not paid out in royalties goes to keeping-the-lights-on expenses that allows us to do what we do.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinkbowvintage View Post
    Is this something one could join and benefit from without being signed to the press? What specifically do you offer in the ways of marketing, publicity, and editing that HarperCollins and Scholastic don't? It sounds like you are trying to market your company as something quite different from the Big 5 or a mid-sized publisher, but what would be the benefit in going with your company over say, another small press like Entangled? Do you sell to brick and mortar stores, or do you just sell POD copies?
    Yes, young writers have and do join and benefit from VerbalEyze without being signed to VerbalEyze Press. We work with and mentor young writers at all stages of the creative writing process. We also have no illusions about how we compare with large and mid-size for-profit publishing houses. We do not have large marketing budgets to offer (I mentioned in another response that we are an all-volunteer literary arts and education nonprofit). We do not have a paid sales staff working to place titles on the shelves of national chain bookstores. However we never require any of our authors to buy a single copy of their book, and we never charge our authors a single dollar for any of the publishing expenses.

    Our goal is that once a young writer is producing publishing quality work (and yes, that is a very subjective standard), they have the opportunity to experience the totality of the publishing process, both the exciting bits and the hard, heavy-lifting bits. We’re not saying that promotion is entirely the author’s responsibility. We’re saying that an author can no longer solely rely on a publisher to do his or her marketing and sales. At the end of the day, the majority of social media marketing is going to fall in the author's lap, and helping our authors learn how to promote themselves effectively is part of what we want them to take away from their experience with us.

  23. #23
    Such a nasty woman SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by verbaleyze View Post
    That's a fair question, and to be honest, that is a question that trips up most people when they are first learning about us. A common assumption in our society is that "It must be about the money." Full transparency: we are a 501(c)3 literary arts and education non-profit. Every single editor, mentor, team member who works with us (including myself) does it as an unpaid volunteer. Every single one of us has a single shared passion to want to help young writers in every way we can. What revenue we receive from book sales that is not paid out in royalties goes to keeping-the-lights-on expenses that allows us to do what we do.
    What professional publishing experience do your volunteers have? What training have they received? Because while it's nice that you're doing this for young writers, if you don't have any proper experience you're going to be teaching them things you think are true, rather than things which actually ARE true: and that is not going to be helpful at all. And I (with my thirty-plus years of publishing experience) can see quite a few suggestions in your posts here which indicate that might well be happening.

    Quote Originally Posted by verbaleyze View Post
    Yes, young writers have and do join and benefit from VerbalEyze without being signed to VerbalEyze Press. We work with and mentor young writers at all stages of the creative writing process. We also have no illusions about how we compare with large and mid-size for-profit publishing houses. We do not have large marketing budgets to offer (I mentioned in another response that we are an all-volunteer literary arts and education nonprofit). We do not have a paid sales staff working to place titles on the shelves of national chain bookstores. However we never require any of our authors to buy a single copy of their book, and we never charge our authors a single dollar for any of the publishing expenses.
    My bold. You might not require your authors to buy any copies but you know they're going to, right?

    How many copies do your titles sell on average?

    If you don't have sales teams getting nationwide book coverage (and in my experience, this is extremely important for a book's success) then how does what you do for these young authors give them more than they could get for themselves through self publishing?

    Our goal is that once a young writer is producing publishing quality work (and yes, that is a very subjective standard), they have the opportunity to experience the totality of the publishing process, both the exciting bits and the hard, heavy-lifting bits.
    If you're not getting their books into bookshops they are not going to "experience the totality of the publishing process".

    We’re not saying that promotion is entirely the author’s responsibility. We’re saying that an author can no longer solely rely on a publisher to do his or her marketing and sales. At the end of the day, the majority of social media marketing is going to fall in the author's lap, and helping our authors learn how to promote themselves effectively is part of what we want them to take away from their experience with us.
    I've seen this claimed so often, but it's just not true. The people who make this claim tend to be people who work for smaller publishers, people who have no experience of publishing, people who are self-publishing evangelists; but not people who work for established trade publishers, or people who have had books published by those presses.

    I do not see any malice in your posts. Quite the opposite, in fact: it's heartwarming to see people going out of their way to mentor and help young people realise their aspirations. But it's not going to work if you're teaching them things which aren't true, or which rely on faulty information or skewed logic.

    If I were in your position I'd think about how I could put these young writers in touch with established publishing professionals and successful writers, so they could learn first-hand what their options are. Have you considered running workshops, or a series of talks, with literary agents or editors from the bigger imprints? They would be very helpful.

  24. #24
    pinkbowvintage's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old Hack View Post
    If I were in your position I'd think about how I could put these young writers in touch with established publishing professionals and successful writers, so they could learn first-hand what their options are. Have you considered running workshops, or a series of talks, with literary agents or editors from the bigger imprints? They would be very helpful.
    I second that. If your main objective is to help get these young writers trained and ready to get published, almost like a mini-MFA program, if you will, then I'd say focusing on that would be much more important than trying to publish books that won't really sell in the mainstream market, won't make these young writers much money, and won't help them build a name for themselves.

    While I absolutely love your company's objective, if I were a young writer, I'd be interested in seeing sales figures, promotional campaign examples, and distribution. Good small presses do what the bigger houses do, they just do it a bit differently. But good small presses have experienced editors and staff members, a marketing team, and a distribution plan that goes beyond local sales.
    My YA debut BURRO HILLS is coming from Diversion Books in 2018!

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  25. #25
    Christine Tripp ctripp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by verbaleyze View Post
    That's a fair question, and to be honest, that is a question that trips up most people when they are first learning about us. A common assumption in our society is that "It must be about the money." Full transparency: we are a 501(c)3 literary arts and education non-profit. Every single editor, mentor, team member who works with us (including myself) does it as an unpaid volunteer. Every single one of us has a single shared passion to want to help young writers in every way we can. What revenue we receive from book sales that is not paid out in royalties goes to keeping-the-lights-on expenses that allows us to do what we do.
    I really appreciate your posting here and trying to address the questions we all have but unfortunately you highlighted my question but your reply was to something other then my question/statement. If you can answer it, I am still curious, thank you.

    >I can't think of how else this "publisher" makes money, it has to be parents, family and perhaps the child's school associations?

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