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gracemichael
06-17-2010, 07:17 AM
I am looking at a very new Christian publisher. They have only sold 1 title released June 1st which I do find on B&N.com (listed as shipping within 24 hours) and on Amazon (listed as 'sold out' currently).

They are a traditional publisher. No fees to their authors and they do pay royalties. They cover all costs of publication and distribution. They distribute through Ingram and are working on distribution through Baker & Taylor. They set up book signings and attempt to get the author's book reviewed by author's local newspaper.

I know the biggest drawback of a new publisher is obviously the lack of a track record. Also, I can't find anything (pro or con) about them and they aren't listed on the Bewares board. Is there a benefit though to signing with a new publisher? Any advice would be appreciated!!

Cyia
06-17-2010, 07:20 AM
I'm not sure what you mean by they've "sold" one title. Publishers generally BUY books.

Do they place books in any stores or are all sales done through on-line channels? What's their name?

veinglory
06-17-2010, 07:23 AM
A small publisher with one book released (when?) is generally a self-publisher--ergo they deliver little more, and possibly somewhat less, than you could do on your own.

Unimportant
06-17-2010, 07:23 AM
Is the author of their one-and-only title also the owner of the publishing company?

Have you seen this book available for purchase in the places where you and your friends would normally buy books of this genre?

gracemichael
06-17-2010, 07:26 AM
Oops, my fault .. it is way too late here .. they have published one title. (Looking at too many 'agent' posts lately!! :))

One Body Press is their name. I don't know if they have their titles in stores yet or just online; I plan to visit Lifeway tomorrow to see if their title is there. Their 2nd release is set for the end of the summer.

scope
06-17-2010, 07:30 AM
The above comments pretty much say it all. However, I think we could all be more helpful if you decided to let us know who the publisher is. There's a wealth of knowledge to be found on these boards when presented with the proper info.

gracemichael
06-17-2010, 07:34 AM
Is the author of their one-and-only title also the owner of the publishing company?

No, it is completely different although I suppose it could be a pen name.

scope
06-17-2010, 07:35 AM
I posted while you were posting. I can't find anything on Google. I'll try a bunch of other info sources and will let you know if I find anything.

DreamWeaver
06-17-2010, 07:39 AM
I think this is the link:

http://www.onebodypress.org/

gracemichael
06-17-2010, 07:39 AM
I posted while you were posting. I can't find anything on Google. I'll try a bunch of other info sources and will let you know if I find anything.

Thanks!

gracemichael
06-17-2010, 07:40 AM
I think this is the link:

http://www.onebodypress.org/

Yup, that's the one.

Cyia
06-17-2010, 07:47 AM
Q: What kind of Royalties do you give?

R: Royalties are negotiated on a per contract basis. We cannot disclose the amount of royalties paid from one author to the next, but we do go by the industry average. Our royalties are paid on the gross price vice net price of the book (ie, royalties are calculated from the retail price of the book).


Not a good sign when they don't have a standard royalty rate.

MickRooney
06-17-2010, 02:47 PM
Q: What kind of Royalties do you give?

R: Royalties are negotiated on a per contract basis. We cannot disclose the amount of royalties paid from one author to the next, but we do go by the industry average. Our royalties are paid on the gross price vice net price of the book (ie, royalties are calculated from the retail price of the book).

What the f*** is 'gross price vice net price of the book'!!

It's either gross or net. If royalties are calculated on the retail price, then it should be enough for a publisher simply to state that, indicating the specific percentage given.

Christine N.
06-17-2010, 03:59 PM
Yeah, I don't think I've ever heard of a publisher that negotiates royalty rates. Advances, sure. Number of free copies, yes. But the actual royalty rate? Weird.

And while not well expressed, at least they would be giving those royalties based on the retail price of the book and not the price the vendor paid.

veinglory
06-17-2010, 04:17 PM
I see that they recommend this forum in their website--so perhaps they are a member and can clarify?

brianm
06-17-2010, 04:25 PM
Opened March 2010. The one author (http://michaelstinsen.com/index_files/Page328.htm) is an AW member or at least reads AW because he links to AW on his website. Perhaps he will see this thread and provide more information.

~brianm~

Marian Perera
06-17-2010, 04:26 PM
The cover (http://www.onebodypress.org/index_files/Page6438.htm) of the one book they have released doesn't look impressive. The picture and title are in the upper half of the cover, leaving about half of it blank. Why didn't they make the title larger? It's not easy even to read off the screen, let alone at a distance.

Terie
06-17-2010, 04:27 PM
What the f*** is 'gross price vice net price of the book'!!

It's either gross or net. If royalties are calculated on the retail price, then it should be enough for a publisher simply to state that, indicating the specific percentage given.

I think they mean 'vs' instead of 'vice'...that is, they were making a comparison of what they do (retail price) vs an alternative (net). The parenthetical sentence following clarifies that it's retail price.

Round Two
06-17-2010, 05:38 PM
Yeah, I don't think I've ever heard of a publisher that negotiates royalty rates. Advances, sure. Number of free copies, yes. But the actual royalty rate? Weird.

I've never known that to be uncommon. Royalty rates, like advances, subsidiary rights, author copies, are all part of the moving machinery of a book contract. Some authors take lower advances in exchange for a higher royalty rate, electing to get paid more, faster, on the back end.

DreamWeaver
06-17-2010, 05:50 PM
I think they mean 'vs' instead of 'vice'...Using vice instead of vs or versus is very common in the military. Always sounded wrong to me, but there it's standard.

Most dictionaries show "instead, in place of" as a third or fourth subsidiary meaning for vice, so it's correct even if it sounds a bit jargony. Someone who knows law better than I could probably say if it's standard legalese.

This aside has been brought to you by Conan the Grammarian.

priceless1
06-17-2010, 06:25 PM
They distribute through Ingram and are working on distribution through Baker & Taylor. They set up book signings and attempt to get the author's book reviewed by author's local newspaper.

Grace, this is warehouse distribution. Having this arrangement only means that the books are listed in their database so bookstores or libraries can easily place an order. This does not get books into the bookstores.

For that, most indie presses establish relationships with distributors like IPG, Consortium, NBN, Partners - folks who have sales teams who actively pitch their catalog to genre buyers. That is what gets books on the shelves.

gracemichael
06-17-2010, 06:55 PM
Grace, this is warehouse distribution. Having this arrangement only means that the books are listed in their database so bookstores or libraries can easily place an order. This does not get books into the bookstores.

Their website mentions that their first title will be in bookstores in July. Is there a way to check to see if this is true short of going to all the Christian bookstores in town?

CaoPaux
06-17-2010, 07:09 PM
If they get a distributor and not just a wholesaler, one could trust they'll have physical stock on shelves somewhere -- although in how many stores would still be the question, given the nature of POD.

Founder Todd Uebele (http://www.todduebele.com/) is AW member kappapi99 (call for subs to OBP (http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=182449) here). No publishing experience beyond Lulu.

kappapi99
06-17-2010, 09:12 PM
I am the owner of One Body Press. We have two authors currently, and have just received a proposal from a third. We are BRAND NEW, thus the lack of information out on the net.

The decision not to post royalty rates on our website was mine. My partner disagreed, but I personally, I feel the contract between the author and our company is private.

If you disagree, that's fine. We have just started this venture, so I would ask that you do not judge us prematurely. As was stated in the OP, we handle all the costs of printing and distribution. Yes, we do get books into brick and mortar stores.

KP

brainstorm77
06-17-2010, 09:15 PM
How do you get them in stores?

kappapi99
06-17-2010, 09:19 PM
How do you get them in stores?

I work with the retailers directly. The big retailers have departments that deal with small publishers. The only roadblock I have found so far was with Christianbook.com, they won't even talk to me unless I join the Christian Business Association. Most other retailers have responded and told me how to get books in their stores, however.

KP

kappapi99
06-17-2010, 09:23 PM
I see that they recommend this forum in their website--so perhaps they are a member and can clarify?

This forum saved my hide twice.

There were two agents who wanted to take on my scifi book, but wanted to charge lots of fees. I saw them in this specific sub forum.

And of course, the neverending Publish America thread. I almost used them to publish my devotional book, but after reading all the horror stories, went with lulu instead.

I was quite active on here back in 2006, but then I was recalled to active duty. I was release earlier this year and decided to create my own Christian publishing company.

KP

M.R.J. Le Blanc
06-17-2010, 09:44 PM
Does anyone on your staff have any publishing experience?

priceless1
06-17-2010, 11:05 PM
I work with the retailers directly. The big retailers have departments that deal with small publishers. The only roadblock I have found so far was with Christianbook.com, they won't even talk to me unless I join the Christian Business Association. Most other retailers have responded and told me how to get books in their stores, however.

KP
Working directly with the retailers is achingly hard to do because you can only reach a very small share of bookstores. The conglomerates have their Small Press division in New York, where all the small publishers who don't have distribution go to apply to have their books carried.

The books go through a "review process" which is akin to some intern taking a look at the book and deciding whether it's worth bothering their boss about. Most of the time they pass and simply list it in their online database.

The ultimate deciding factor is whether the author has a current readership or a good platform. They may order twenty or so units - or nothing at all. And don't forget, you're competing against those who do have proper distribution.

I've heard that selling to the Christian bookstores is near impossible unless you have all the right t's crossed and the lower case j's dotted. [sorry, I'm having a Wayne's World flashback]

It sounds as though you're still feeling your way through this whole process - and that's great. But you'll find that without an amazing product, verifiable demand, and proper distribution, getting your books stocked is very, very hard. Been there, done that. So glad I no longer own the t-shirt.

Deb Kinnard
06-20-2010, 04:33 AM
"Hard" is putting it mildly. You'd do better to say "practically impossible." I'm with a growing Christian (not CBA -- I don't use that term no more) publisher. Went into the local Family Christian Store, since we don't have Lifeway around here. Talked to the manager. He was like, "Um, well, um, yanno, we order directly from the publisher, out of our home office in another state..."

Funny. Some years ago this same guy told me they order through Spring Arbor. My current pub distributes through Spring Arbor. Now all of a sudden they can't get books through their distributor?

Methinks I smell something dodgy. I doubt if their ordering practices have changed that much in five years. More likely, they did the Get Rid of the Author Dance.

My publisher for the book at the left was told several large brick-and-mortar chains would order my book, probably in late May. Here it is mid-June and I haven't spotted it in the stores yet. Neither have my minions in other parts of the US.

Sorry if this sounds like a rant, but it is amazingly difficult to get Christian titles into the stores unless your name is LaHaye or Jenkins. Even when the stores claim they want your book(s), they may or may not get them.

Back to my normal optimistic mode now.

MickRooney
06-20-2010, 04:56 AM
Sorry if this sounds like a rant, but it is amazingly difficult to get Christian titles into the stores unless your name is LaHaye or Jenkins. Even when the stores claim they want your book(s), they may or may not get them.

Deb,

Lack of distribution and gaining shelf space is not something specific to Christian books - it's sadly more general than that. Many small publishers like Sheaf and Desert Breeze find it impossible to get shelf space even when they invest and fork out money to contract a distributor with a sales team. Though, one thing I have noticed is that books in the genre of Christian, Spiritual, Mind/Body, Health and Alternative Living often do best when the publisher entrusts the distribution with a specialized company, rather than relying on larger companies like Ingram or Baker & Taylor.

mljoshua
07-10-2010, 03:40 AM
I am the owner of One Body Press. We have two authors currently, and have just received a proposal from a third. We are BRAND NEW, thus the lack of information out on the net.

The decision not to post royalty rates on our website was mine. My partner disagreed, but I personally, I feel the contract between the author and our company is private.

If you disagree, that's fine. We have just started this venture, so I would ask that you do not judge us prematurely. As was stated in the OP, we handle all the costs of printing and distribution. Yes, we do get books into brick and mortar stores.

KP

I just called Barnes and Noble locally and was told that the first release by Michael Stinsen is a POD. I called Lifeway and was told that it does not come up in their database by title, author name or either of the two ISBNs listed on amazon.com. Northwestern Bookstore (a local bookstore) could NOT confirm it is a POD, their system stated that the book is "not yet available." Amazon.com shows "in stock" at the present time.

I do not want to judge you prematurely. But let me tell you what I see - and I will openly admit I am unpublished and relatively new to the industry.



I believe mine is the third proposal and I received your request for a full ms and exclusive consideration in today's mail.

The reasons I did not jump in the car and send a manuscript off by return mail:

1) The letter is not on letterhead - Letterhead is very inexpensive, you can even design your own logo and print it as you need it on quality paper.

2) The statement where you state "If you have any questions, you may e-mail me at" is incomplete. There is no email address.

3) The envelope - again, no letterhead - one label for my address and one label for yours.

Now although these might seem minor to you, these are not minor issues to me. In sending proposals or queries to agents and publishers, we are expected to present a professional appearance. Your letter lacks the most basic professional presentation.

I don't mean to pick on you since you have just started your business, but I have owned and managed several businesses in my career - and one of the first things I did was order letterhead and business cards. It's a very inexpensive way to look good.

So, are you a traditional publisher? Do you print books or merely fulfill orders as a POD?

How do you plan to get them into brick and mortar stores? By calling the chains one at a time - or do you have a network contact that can help you?

I don't want to blow a chance to get my book published, but I don't want to sign a contract to watch it languish away in no man's land.

Do you have a distribution/marketing plan? Or is all that left up to the author?

Thanks for your prompt response.

Michael

kappapi99
07-11-2010, 01:02 AM
I just called Barnes and Noble locally and was told that the first release by Michael Stinsen is a POD. I called Lifeway and was told that it does not come up in their database by title, author name or either of the two ISBNs listed on amazon.com. Northwestern Bookstore (a local bookstore) could NOT confirm it is a POD, their system stated that the book is "not yet available." Amazon.com shows "in stock" at the present time.



As I stated previously, we have submitted our book to Barnes and Noble, but have not heard back yet. We have not submitted the title to Lifeway just yet.




So, are you a traditional publisher? Do you print books or merely fulfill orders as a POD?



We are a traditional publisher. We use Lightning Source as our printer which does both POD and offset. Unfortunately all books are list as POD from them. However we do sell to distibutors and we do accept returns.



How do you plan to get them into brick and mortar stores? By calling the chains one at a time - or do you have a network contact that can help you?


I have contacts with PMG Intl, B&T, and Barnes and Noble, I am working them, the ones I know, first and then we will start looking at others.



Do you have a distribution/marketing plan? Or is all that left up to the author?


Yes, we do have a marketing plan and we do the promotion for the books we publish.





I believe mine is the third proposal and I received your request for a full ms and exclusive consideration in today's mail. Your letter lacks the most basic professional presentation.

I don't mean to pick on you since you have just started your business, but I have owned and managed several businesses in my career - and one of the first things I did was order letterhead and business cards. It's a very inexpensive way to look good.




Yours was the fifth proposal we have received. The third manuscript we requested. I am sorry that you do not feel we are up to your standards and wish you the best of luck in getting your work published.

KP

mljoshua
07-11-2010, 07:05 PM
KP, per your request in PM and to my email address, I have removed your name from the above post.

I am at a loss as to why you would state that I "do not feel you are up to my standards" or why you would feel that anonymity would add to your credibility.

I believe that my questions were valid and not meant to be accusatory at all. But as a new entrant into the publishing industry, and all that you learned from this forum, surely you understand why I would ask them.

I'm sure others would be interested in your marketing plan and how you intend to promote books which you publish.

Michael Joshua

priceless1
07-11-2010, 07:50 PM
As I stated previously, we have submitted our book to Barnes and Noble, but have not heard back yet.
It sounds as though you submitted your title(s) to B&N Small Press division, which is a clearing house for small presses and/or PODs who don't have a distributor and want get their books listed in B&N's database - or hopefully, get a PO for an order.

Going through the Small Press division is the only way these publishers can get into the B&N database. Without that, individual stores won't order the books should there be demand. In cases where a publisher provides a big promotion/marketing plan, the Small Press division may choose to actually order a small number of units to disperse to various stores.

If memory serves, the process was often laborious since books and paperwork were often lost, or someone keypunched in a wrong ISBN, so your book(s) wouldn't show up in their databases. The small press division is a lot of white noise which can age a publisher faster than heavy drinking.

We are a traditional publisher. We use Lightning Source as our printer which does both POD and offset. Unfortunately all books are list as POD from them. However we do sell to distibutors and we do accept returns.
Nearly every good printer nowadays does both offset and digital. Most PODs and small presses use LSI to get their titles listed with Ingram and the online databases. LSI charges more for those services.

I know of a few publishers who use LSI to handle their backlist, and those aren't listed as POD. POD companies' books, OTOH, are listed as POD with the bookstore databases unless the publisher dispels LSI of the notion that they're POD.

Would you mind expanding on what you mean by "We are a traditional publisher"? I ask because all too often we hear new publishers say this, and their interpretation of "traditional" may differ greatly from the going consensus.

For example, a mainstream publisher has distributors who do the footwork of selling your catalog to the national accounts and to the warehouse distributors. Or they have their own sales teams who accomplish the same thing - which means that you're pubbing at least five titles per season in order to get an appointment with genre buyers. It doesn't sound like you've gotten to that point yet, so the big question I'm sure that's running through author's minds is how are those books getting to market?

I have contacts with PMG Intl, B&T, and Barnes and Noble, I am working them, the ones I know, first and then we will start looking at others.
It is very, very, very hard to get their attention because you are one of hundreds of small presses who are vying for shelf space. The problem is that you're competing against many other publishers who have sales teams selling directly to the genre buyers. These publishers have large print runs sitting in the warehouse, ready to shoot out the door.

In general, small presses lacking distribution or sales teams usually establish contacts with individual bookstores and get their stock placed there. It's not perfect, but it's a start up a very big hill.

CaoPaux
12-04-2013, 10:34 PM
Hasn't published anything since '12, and that was a PB edition of a '11 book.

ETA: One more book in '14, with a Spanish edition in '15.

ETA2: another in '16.