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Old 09-05-2004, 12:01 AM   #1976
KW
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book sales

How about Mali? They don't have one and Meiners book is about them. They have his book listed on their embassies page.

www.embassyworld.com/embassy/mali.htm
 
Old 09-05-2004, 04:09 AM   #1977
AnneMarble
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Re: PA's response to no royalties on "special offer&amp

Quote:
I find it rather humorous that one of the longest posts to date is from one of the authors who was one of PA's biggest supporters a few weeks ago - guess the scales fell off her eyes darned fast when she got that check, eh?
I missed the thread. Was it an author who had visited this board, by any chance?

I feel sorry for these authors (well except for he who must not be named). Whatever happens with PA, they are the ones who get hurt. g
 
Old 09-05-2004, 04:44 AM   #1978
lastr
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All quiet on PA MB

I feel sorry for the PA authors who started this week with high hopes and dreams only to be dashed by the reality of a .96 royalty check. So many of them posted they could not understand what was going on and asking for help. The only help they received off the PA MB was to see their posts disappear before their eyes.

The others are quiet today, too shell shocked or scared perhaps to post? Whatever they do, they should not blame themselves for what is going on, or huddle together making excuses for PA and promising each other that next year will be better. That is too much like going home to Tara, they've already pulled the drapes down to make dresses, Tara is pretty threadbare right now.

I hope some of them are reading this board and realize there is a life after PA, and more books to be written and sold. If they are, then I just want to say "Welcome, glad to have you here."
 
Old 09-05-2004, 06:49 AM   #1979
DaveKuzminski
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House of the Rising Sun

Kind of makes you wonder just how long it will be until PA goes to a once a year royalty payment.
 
Old 09-05-2004, 06:53 AM   #1980
FM St George
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Re: One more questioning where the sales all went

"I missed the thread."

she hasn't been here, or if she is she's lurking. I just recall seeing her ranting on the PA boards that she was going to send her husband's "friends" after an Amazon reviewer who left a bad review - it was probably one of the jerks who put up bogus reviews, but her insistence that she could have her husband use his "cop buddies" to beat down this person was rather bizarre to watch. Of course, her posts have been pulled and I somehow doubt her belief in PA has withstood this reality check.

of course, now over on Mindsight her husband has posted his claim that he's been taken by a music scammer as well - a sad reminder that these sort exist in all types of media and all over the world, not just limited to a townhouse.

tres sad.
 
Old 09-05-2004, 06:56 AM   #1981
DeePower
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Re: PA Royalties

Other than posting to boards, anybody have an idea of how to reach PA authors who think there might be a descrepancy with their royalty checks?

Dee Power
www.BrianHillAndDeePower.com
 
Old 09-05-2004, 09:43 AM   #1982
arainsb123
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100 Pages!!

Wow! This thread has grown to 100 pages! And I'm posting the first message on the 100th page. :p arty :snoopy :jump

Just think of all the authors (myself included) who have escaped PA's clutches because of this thread. That should get you celebrating!
 
Old 09-05-2004, 08:52 PM   #1983
AnneMarble
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Re: 100 Pages!!

arainsb123, your post made me :ha Lets have a party!

By the way, why are there ads for Tickle Matchmaking at the top of the page in this thread?! :huh Is there something about Meiner we don't know?
 
Old 09-05-2004, 08:57 PM   #1984
AnneMarble
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Re: One more questioning where the sales all went

Quote:
she hasn't been here, or if she is she's lurking. I just recall seeing her ranting on the PA boards that she was going to send her husband's "friends" after an Amazon reviewer who left a bad review - it was probably one of the jerks who put up bogus reviews, but her insistence that she could have her husband use his "cop buddies" to beat down this person was rather bizarre to watch.
Oh, yes. I think I remember her. She was the one I was wondering about. It was a true crime book, I think. (One that actually sounded interesting to me.)

Wasn't there speculation upthread that PA authors who were really busting hump to sell their books and had a chance to sell a lot of copies tended to be the ones who were smeared by the nasty bogus reviews? Hmmm

Quote:
Of course, her posts have been pulled and I somehow doubt her belief in PA has withstood this reality check.
I don't imagine it would.
 
Old 09-05-2004, 09:38 PM   #1985
DaveKuzminski
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Coincidence?

Interestingly enough, the review smears tend to happen only to PA books that are taking off in sales. However, everyone knows that the Amazon, B&N, and other rankings online are woefully inadequate for determining just how many books have been sold, especially since PA books in those venues tend to be well below the one million mark in placement. Hardly a threat to any other authors, that tends to remove one motive.

But if those don't provide a motive, then what does since this seems to happen mostly to PA books that are showing respectable sales? Also, who's in a position to know that those books are selling? The authors might know if they're buying their own books, but that doesn't appear to be the case in these instances. Besides, why would the authors want to sabotage their own efforts? I think we can safely eliminate them as suspects, too.

So, who would know the true sales numbers? Only two places know how many PA books are selling well. Lightning Source and PA. Let's examine both.

Lightning Source knows how many of each book is being sold because they print the books. Posting bad reviews, by anyone associated with Lightning Source, would harm their business since they want to print more and make more sales because that's the only way they can generate income. Therefore, it's safe to eliminate them.

Obviously, PA knows how many of their books are selling. They also know which are being bought by their own authors and represent little chance of becoming a success and which are selling to outsiders, meaning those individuals who were not on the friends and relatives list provided by the author, and therefore stand a chance of becoming runaway successes. Sales to outsiders, meaning the general public, represent a threat to their current ordering process because meeting public demand could force them into a negative cash flow situation where they couldn't insist on payment up front for all orders. It could also mean dealing with bookstores using a discount and a returns policy that are more in line with what is generally used within the industry. Unlike real "traditional" publishers, PA doesn't take any real risks since doing so could mean losing money. They want the sure thing and the only way to do that is to control the market in which they're selling even if it means selling only a hundred copies at an inflated price. It further poses a threat because other PA authors might then want the same opportunities because rightfully they would be entitled to those since PA claims that it treats all of its authors equally.

Like it or not, it's a motive worth considering when it comes to PA. After all, if a book sells only a few to a few hundred copies, PA can claim to those authors that PA gave them a chance and that it wasn't PA's fault that they failed to make the big time.
 
Old 09-05-2004, 10:32 PM   #1986
Ed Williams 3
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Since this thread is now one hundred pages...

....y'all think that maybe I should print it out, and send it to PA for consideration?

:snoopy
 
Old 09-06-2004, 03:29 AM   #1987
NancyMehl
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Bad PA Reviews

I don't know who is writing the negative reviews for PA authors now, but at one time, it was the work of a PA author who also has written hundreds of positive reviews for her line of poorly written romance books. She was easy to spot, because most of the time, she would first write a good review, trying to build herself up as an Amazon reviewer, then she would hit with a negative review. Also, the woman can't spell, so tracking her was extremely simple - and she used the same catch phrases over and over. She also builds thousands (yes, I said thousands) of lists and hooks on to other books (even PA) that are outselling hers, trying to get attention.
Of course, PA authors who know her were complaining about the bad reviews, but had no idea she was writing them!

She has been found out by other authors. In fact, I recently ran across two more (not PA) who figured out who she was. Someone contacted them and told them that this woman had admitted to writing negative reviews in a chat room and had mentioned their names. They contacted her and asked her to stop, but this only made her angry and she doubled her efforts with negative reviews and goofy threats.

Hopefully, after many complaints by many authors to Amazon, their recent changes in posting reviews will bring at least some of her activity to an end.

Two years ago, someone told her that I suspected her of this behavior. My goodness, talk about a nasty letter threatening me with legal action and boils!!!! Of course, she has no lawyer (unless he's another imaginary friend - she has created quite a few) and I wasn't the least bit worried.

Now that other authors have figured her out without my two cents, I feel somewhat relieved. Some people thought I was blowing smoke out of my lower regions...now other people have found her out. One book reviewer who calls herself "Mrs. Giggles" has written a few scathing columns about her.

This is not to say that some of the negative reviews are not coming from PA as Dave suggests, but at one time, a lot of them were originating from this particular woman.

Nancy
 
Old 09-06-2004, 06:26 AM   #1988
FM St George
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Well, here's someone who's got it...

www.publishamerica.com/cg...e/5801.htm

michellet



9/05/2004
18:44:10
Subject: PA Author tells world he's "self-published"


Message:
Would any of you tell people that you are self-published and that PublishAmerica is a printing press that simply published his book on demand?

Well, according to what I read in a magazine today, one PA author did just that.

If you want the details, email me. I will not post the details here. It's embarassing for all of us, and a slap in the face to PA, who published his book.

michelleailenetrue@yahoo.com



bikrpreacher

9/05/2004
18:56:33
RE: PA Author tells world he's "self-published"


Message:
I emailed you for a copy.
Apparently this person has no idea what he's talking about...how embarrassing for him!
Good Grief!

Chris Bartholomew
Child of an Alcoholic to Daughter of the King!
****************

I'm curious as to what magazine - usually you can't get anyone to confess to being PA - it's not The Writer or Writer's Digest, as I subscribe to both and don't recall seeing anyone in either being interviewed...

but at least someone understands what they're doing - even if it's with PublishAmerica...
 
Old 09-06-2004, 06:40 AM   #1989
Sher2
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Re: Well, here's someone who's got it...

"Would any of you tell people that you are self-published and that PublishAmerica is a printing press that simply published his book on demand?"


I don't know what magazine that came from, either. If these folks would allow themselves to objectively examine just some of the voluminous amount of information available about PA, they'd realize that self-publishing is exactly what they've all done.
 
Old 09-06-2004, 07:17 AM   #1990
lastr
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Re: book sales

From the same thread

Message:
Here is the article, I have scanned it. The magazine is Writer's Digest's "Self-Publishing Essentials" - the October 2004 issue (I picked it up yesterday at Borders).

www.michelleailenetrue.com/the-article.jpg
 
Old 09-06-2004, 07:47 AM   #1991
FM St George
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Re: Well, here's someone who's got it...

and already the bashers are out for blood...

folks, this is the FIRST PA author I've ever SEEN in Writer's Digest - he must have done something notable to get their attention and it sure wasn't due to PublishAmerica's great "publicity department"...

sad thing is that they'll now be rushing his website with pitchforks and torches while not getting the point - he figured it out and is making it work... at least until PA pulls his contract when he sells too many books...
 
Old 09-06-2004, 07:58 AM   #1992
lastr
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Self published admission

The book is a nominee for the Mystery Writer's of America Edgar Award, best first novel - now that is something to be proud of. I hope the rest realize he is quite a triumph for PA; rather then witch hunting they should be showering him with praise.
 
Old 09-06-2004, 08:08 AM   #1993
Molly Brent
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letter

Here is a copy of my letter going out to anybody with initials......FBI, fraud division. IRS, FTC, AG, BBB and so on.....my girlfriend just told me I forgot the NAACP, AARP and AAA but I ain't done yet.....

To Whom It May Concern:


This letter is to formally lodge a complaint against PUBLISHAMERICA, INC. of Frederick, Maryland, and Lighting Source, listed below... and to request an investigation into possible criminal activity and Internet fraud on their part. My reasons for the complaint are listed below, but I need to give you some background information before detailing my current complaints.



I contracted with PublishAmerica in 2002 for publication of my book, THERE AIN’T ENOUGH FRONT PORCHES (ISBN# 1-4137-0098-5) based on misleading claims published at that time on their website that they are not a print-on-demand (POD) publisher when, in fact, all their books are printed by LIGHTNING SOURCE using digital technology, known as print-on-demand in the publishing industry.



PublishAmerica also claims on their site that their books are available in “brick and mortar” bookstores. While this in and of itself is true only for a infinitesimally number of PublishAmerica books because of their non-standard discount schedule, return policy and non-competitive book prices, the following statement purported by them is completely false: “Now PublishAmerica can make your next book available in all bookstores nationwide.” (This claim can be found at www.publishamerica.com/benefits.htm) Books-A-Million has a corporate policy that prohibits PublishAmerica books from being stocked, shipped to, or sold on consignment in any of their stores.



PublishAmerica’s editing claim found at www.publishamerica.com/facts/index.htm “We assign an editor who goes through the text line by line. We edit for spelling, mechanics, grammar, typos, and trust us, that's a vital and time consuming job. Together, our editing staff makes more than 35,000 (!) corrections, each day, to the books they work on that day. We then send a book back to the author, up to three times, to ensure that it looks exactly as the author wants it to look.”


A comparison of the original MSWord file of my manuscript that was sent to PublishAmerica and the first set of proofs I received after it had gone through PublishAmerica’s editing process (I have copies of both) clearly shows that no corrections whatsoever were made to it. From the spelling errors alone, it is obvious that Spell Check had not even been run on the file. As a result, I had to hire my own editor to make all the necessary corrections, and although my editor sent PublishAmerica the 95 pages of corrections they made or missed.. my book was still printed with my name spelled incorrectly in the running header. When I called this to PublishAmerica’s attention, they admitted it was their error but refused to replace the misprinted books with corrected ones.



PublishAmerica claims on their website: “PublishAmerica has a full-time, full-fledged marketing department whose sole mission is the growth of the company. PublishAmerica sends review copies and book release announcements, gratis, to reviewers, sponsors and attends seminars, industry trade shows, works on direct mailing campaigns for each individual book, and sends out 10-15 press releases about our new authors each day.” The only thing PublishAmerica did for me was send out order forms to my friends and family, and they incorrectly called me “Mr. Brent” in that letter. Consequently, I hired a public relations firm for promotion of my book. This PR firm took out ads and sent several thousand press releases to independent book stores and media services on my behalf. I received numerous responses from my paid efforts, but upon learning of PublishAmerica’s non-standard policies, all promotional offers were withdrawn.



I am 66 years old and now totally disabled, largely as a result of stress brought on by my experience with PublishAmerica, and I would never have contracted with them had it not been for their deliberate misrepresentation, fraudulent omission, and fraudulent inducement. Under threat of a lawsuit, PublishAmerica did release me from my contract in May of this year and returned all rights to publication and sale of my book to me. Therein lies my current complaint.



Although no copies of my book should have been printed or sold by PublishAmerica after May, Ingram Book Company currently reports their stocking of six more copies of my book than they stocked in August, and they also report selling three copies in the past month. Ingram is a wholesale book distributor and purchases only from PublishAmerica. Although PublishAmerica claims they have instructed the online booksellers to remove my book from their databases, the booksellers tell me they have received no such notification and continue to sell my book to this day. When I attempt to contact Lightning Source directly to request that they print no further copies of my book, they refuse to talk to me.



This continued printing and sale of my book is illegal, and PublishAmerica not only refuses to comply with my requests for this to cease, they have instructed me never to contact them again. I have spent in excess of $5000 as a result of my association with PublishAmerica, suffered mental anguish and had my health adversely affected by stress, and now PublishAmerica is selling copies of my book and not even paying me the 8% royalties they are obligated to pay.

I want all sales of my book stopped immediately, I want Lightning Source to give me an accurate, detailed account of how many books they have printed (with dates) and I want PublishAmerica penalized to the fullest extent of the law or corresponding regulations.



Contact info and particulars:



My name and address:



PUBLISHAMERICA, INC.
230 E Patrick St
Frederick, MD 21701

www.publishamerica.com

Original Business Start Date: 9/1/1999
Principal: Willem Meiners, President
Local Phone Number: (240) 529-1031
Fax Number: (301) 631-9073
TOB Classification: Publishers-Book



Lightning Source, Inc.
1246 Heil Quaker Blvd.
La Vergne, TN USA 37086

/www.lightningsource.com



Voice: (615) 213-5815
Fax: (615) 213-4426

Principal: J. Kirby Best, President



Will let you know if I hear anything.

Molly


.
 
Old 09-06-2004, 08:24 AM   #1994
FM St George
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Re: One more questioning where the sales all went

ooh, thread's been pulled already.

of course, we DO have the copies here if the author being defamed and threatened wishes to take a look...

someone's working overtime at PA - too bad he/she's not actually DOING anything in the way of editing, etc...

:P
 
Old 09-06-2004, 08:38 AM   #1995
Sher2
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Re: Self published admission

The book is a nominee for the Mystery Writer's of America Edgar Award, best first novel - now that is something to be proud of. I hope the rest realize he is quite a triumph for PA; rather then witch hunting they should be showering him with praise.


Is this the first PA book to be nominated for an Edgar? The book clearly must be outstanding. Quality notwithstanding, I would love to know what kind of promotion he did to achieve his success. We all know PA didn't do a darn thing to help him.
 
Old 09-06-2004, 08:44 AM   #1996
DaveKuzminski
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Re: letter

Molly, just one suggestion. Add the word small between "infinitesimally number". Otherwise, it looks good.
 
Old 09-06-2004, 08:48 AM   #1997
Sher2
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Re: letter

<Here is a copy of my letter going out to anybody with initials......FBI, fraud division. IRS, FTC, AG, BBB and so on.....my girlfriend just told me I forgot the NAACP, AARP and AAA but I ain't done yet.....>


Good luck to you, Molly! I don't know if it would do any good or not, but you could also copy the Secretary of State of your state and of Maryland.
 
Old 09-06-2004, 09:21 AM   #1998
Molly Brent
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letter

Corrected it Dave.......added Sec of State also, Sher......

I have some other things I will add if they contact me but this should get the ball rolling.

Molly
 
Old 09-06-2004, 10:17 AM   #1999
aka eraser
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Re: Coincidence?

Good luck Molly.
 
Old 09-06-2004, 11:32 AM   #2000
publishorperish
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Molly

Good Letter -btw....May I suggest contacting a lawyer and trying to file a civil suit against PublishAmerica based on unconscionability of the contract and unequal bargaining power. It seems to me and my, admittedly baby legal mind, that you may be able to get an injunction against PA since they continue to offer your book for sale. I mean I don't know, but from what I've read in my two months as a lurker on this and other websites, it seems that the Publish America is inducing naive, star struck individuals with little knowledge of the publishing industry to sign with them. This is unequal bargaining and this is a cause of action. Also, their contract is not standard and detrimental to writers. This may be deemed unconscionable. Umm...one problem I think that may be a hinderance to any action at all is that if writers are considered merchants under the UCC (and it seems as if they could be under the facts at hand), the rules could be entirely different. Anyhow I'm just speculating and such....But I do suggest getting the advice of an attorney and pointing out the bargaining process stuff and the contract stuff. :coffee
 
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