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Blue Moon Publishers

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Editing for authors: because every writer needs a good editor.

tiakall

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No info on who owns it. They state their focus is children's and YA (and some women's literary), but their books out appear to be all romance or travel guides (save one MG novel).

Submission guidelines ask for sample chapters up front (which don't need to be consecutive) and asks for the full if requested to be in PDF form. I... huh. Is that normal? Though, on their blog they recommend sending "the first few chapters instead of a sporadic selection" and also seem keen on the idea of author-led promo.
 

Shunter

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I, too, would like to know about them. I can't find a street address, but I got a favorite from them during Pit2Pub today and would like more information before assembling everything they're asking for in a submission. If anyone knows anything, I would appreciate it.
 

brainstorm77

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One of my biggest pet peeves is not being able to find out who is behind the publisher.
 

Filigree

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Not to be too snarky, but why the heck would anyone assemble *any* materials for a publisher who did nothing more than gatecrash twitter pitches? If you don't know anything about them, that's generally a signal to stop and find out before any other consideration. I'm glad that's what you're doing, because I see a lot of newer writers who just blindly send out material to anyone who asks.
 

Channy

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Has anyone heard of them?

From what I gather, they're a Boutique Publisher in Ontario, CA. They have about... 7 novels? On their website, and might be looking to acquire more? Maybe? Enough question marks?

I had 2 tweet favs from them during #Pit2Pub and after checking their twitter, quite a few others have multiple favs from them... but do they mean anything? Is this company very reputable? When googling, there's other companies such as Blue Moon Books and Blue Moon Publishing, which makes it hard to find direct results.

Thoughts?
 

Laura S

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I Googled Blue Moon Publishers Canada, and the top 8 hits were for that company. They have Twitter, Facebook, a web site, and 86 books on Goodreads.
 

Bicyclefish

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I may have located relevant information.

On LinkedIn the editorial and marketing assistant lists 6 months of publisher internships and says she works for "Blue Moon Publishers and their affiliate company, DigiWriting".

I checked out the latter, which "[grew] out of a small publisher, Blue Moon Publishers" and is registered to a Heidi Sander. Heidi's LinkedIn lists herself as "Publisher and Editor" for a "Name to be Announced Soon" publisher since 2006, and this blog thanks her for publishing their book. She also uses the pseudonym Katherine Jacob to write her travel book, some of which are published by Blue Moon.
 
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Shunter

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Checking back in. I have been able to find little information on this company despite my best google-fu. A couple books, an editor. Certainly plenty of twitter posts. They seem to be a real company, with at least one women's fiction and a middle grade title out. Due to their blog's stance on author promotion, I don't intend to submit my manuscript to them, but I wish anyone who does so the best of luck.
 

Channy

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Looks like there's a thread already. I'm sure a mod will be around to merge.

Sheesh, and only a day earlier. I'd used the search function on the forum and didn't find it, but I should have checked the first and second pages of the Bewares forum, lol.

Looks like as a whole we haven't been able to find anything about them. =/
 

Anna204

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I got a like from them today on Pit2Pub. I've read through this thread and checked out their website, but it looks like they are still a relative unknown.

Maybe I've never noticed this before when I've submitted elsewhere, but they are asking for an outline of every chapter in their guidelines. As well as a synopsis. I have never seen that before.

I don't intend to submit, but it seems a bit strange.
 

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Got a favorite from them today too. Be very interested to know if anyone has worked with them before at all.

Quick edit: Outline of every chapter is odd. That's normally only for works of fiction and I don't think they deal in fiction. I also notice that some of the books are up on Kindle for free.

Looks like they are also doing LOTS of favorites today.
 
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authorMAF

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They liked my #Pit2Pub pitch, but I'd like to talk to people who have (recently) published with this press can share their experiences?

Thanks :)
 

authorMAF

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Got a favorite from them today too. Be very interested to know if anyone has worked with them before at all.

Quick edit: Outline of every chapter is odd. That's normally only for works of fiction and I don't think they deal in fiction. I also notice that some of the books are up on Kindle for free.

Looks like they are also doing LOTS of favorites today.

That is a little strange (about the chapter thing) - isn't that only for non-fiction manuscript? o_O Free books on kindle.......

and yes, they did seem to favorite a lot today - trying to build their clients?
 

slbynum3

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I got a like from them on twitter yesterday too. I actually got one for both of the novels I pitched. For one of the novels, I sent them the info they request on their website (I just sent sample chapters and a synopsis, I don't think they mean an actual chapter-by-chapter outline). An hour later, they responded and said they wanted to see the full manuscript.

Is it suspicious that they responded so fast? Are they really interested or are they just desperate?
 

FluffBunny

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I did some searching as well, also with no luck. Their website's hosted through a media company (Gizmo Farm) and I seem incapable of navigating the oddness (no offense intended, Canadian neighbors!) of the Canadian government business search sites. In fact, they don't seem to have an analog to most US states' Departments of Revenue/Secretary of States business look-up sites.

If you go to their "About Us" page, the submission form is topped by a Google map showing two locations: one in Toronto and one in Stratford. The Google "pins" appear to merely mark the city centers of those two locations, unless BMP also goes by TEK at the Toronto location. The only contact is either via their online form or by submitting a manuscript, also only doable online.

As for Ms. Sander, it appears she's done some teaching for Wilfrid Laurier University and a partial CV (and partial list of her works) can be found here - http://archivesfa.library.yorku.ca/fonds/ON00370-f0000499.htm Other than that? I got nothin'.
 

Thedrellum

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It's really disturbing to me that they have author testimonials for Blue Moon Publishers on their site, which definitely implies that the outfit is pay-to-play. The website seems geared towards attracting new authors rather than luring in readers to buy books. I would be wary.
 

VeryBigBeard

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SEDAR's closest to what it sounds like you're looking for, FluffBunny. It's rather arcane. I used to even know how it worked, but alas that's slipped away. One of the things the US Gov does well is access, especially online. Canada tends to post more stuff, but you're never going to actually find it.

Wilfrid Laurier is a legit university. Very good reputation. You don't teach there without some cred somewhere.

Toronto is the New York of Canadian publishing. In general, Canadian publishing is smaller, lots of boutique publishers with strong local ties in various regions and many of these accept unagented manuscripts. Like any small publisher, if they know what they're doing they can make some pretty decent sales in Canadian standards. ETA: We also have divisions of the big players, literary agents, that stuff. We don't publish from igloos. Usually. :greenie

None of this in any way should validate this publisher. Just wanted to provide the Canadian search resource and some very limited background. There are some differences between the US and Canadian industries, but the same basic rules apply: be careful what you're getting into.

Had a glance at a couple of their YA titles. Neither is an amazing seller on Amazon, and there are no blurbs from the major Canadian book media (which tends to trend hard for literary but still, I'd expect more than just blog reviews, ideally).
 
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FluffBunny

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Much appreciated, VBB! I meant no disrespect--I've had great success finding other records for genealogy and so forth from Canada online. And not all US states are forthcoming with info. Some like to make it available, but only at a certain price.
 

VeryBigBeard

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Much appreciated, VBB! I meant no disrespect--I've had great success finding other records for genealogy and so forth from Canada online. And not all US states are forthcoming with info. Some like to make it available, but only at a certain price.

I didn't read any disrespect :). Just figured people might not be familiar with the specific places like WLU.
 

ansky

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All my compiled info

They liked my pitches and I sent them a query with sample chapters and synopsis. A few hours later they requested the full manuscript. Next day I exchange several emails with them about it. Day after I get a call with the offer, and the contract in my email.

From all the information I got, it is a legitimate a boutique publisher from Canada. They do extensive marketing in order to ensure an effective launch for each book, including setting up interviews, appearances, and signings. They are not just epub or PoD. The books are printed and distributed into bookstores. The time frame seems to be 12-18 months from sign to launch.

The contract seems pretty standard with things you would expect to see, including author copyright retainment, royalties are of list price, free copies, arbitration, and no fees. Royalties seem a bit low for a smaller pub, but might be negotiable.

I have also privately spoken to two people who are currently signed with them. One is getting ready for a first launch, and says she has been impressed with the publisher's editors on how they made her book polished, and that they did do a lot of marketing to prepare for the launch. The second has a series published through them, and told me she is very happy with them, that their marketing has really helped her exposure as an author, and her books are indeed on shelves.

Overall, after speaking with Blue Moon and the authors, I do not have any reservations about them being a legitimate publisher. I am currently considering all my options, but I am confident Blue Moon would make a good home to any author.

Hope this helps!
 
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VeryBigBeard

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Couple of things jump out of that, none of which are make or break but they're things you should be aware of:

-The contract offer is fast. Like, worryingly so. Unless your book is very short or their reader both very quick and very not-busy, a day turnaround is impossible. What it also suggests is that there isn't much process going on behind the scenes to pitch the book to a larger staff. Whoever acquired it can either speak for the whole house (not uncommon with small pubs) OR doesn't have to go through any checks and balances, which is more worrying. Given they requested off a pitch it could be they just know they'll like the book, but if they go to contract without discussing how they see that book, or possibly not having read it... that's a worry. It kind of suggests they don't have many other submissions or much else to do... and that's a worry.

-The author with a series is a good contact. Presumably that's someone who's been there awhile? And not related to the publisher or something? That suggests there's some permanence. Check the titles of that series' books on Amazon and Google. Look for press. Look for broad category sales rankings. I glanced at BMP's main series the other day and the sales ranks weren't great. I also didn't see a lot of media but there were lots of reviewer blurbs.

-The new author is less-reliable. There's often a honeymoon period with new authors until the book is out and the first few problems/lower sales/sequel issues/whatever have popped up. With small houses, and especially ones that don't have many authors, take a wait-and-see approach. It's safer than getting your book tied up in a less-than-competent publisher.

None of these are dealbreakers. I just find it odd that a publisher that's successful at getting books stocked and sold in decent quantity has so little presence.

Above all else--and even (especially) if you disagree with everything I've said here--please don't sign that contract without having a literary agent review it first. If you're in possession of a contract, an agent will take you on and you will need an agent to make sure everything with the rights is sorted properly. Do not just go on "looks right".

As always, these are just the things that jump out to me and others may take a different view. Congrats on the interest, ansky, and good luck!
 

VeryBigBeard

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Also, because this pub just kind of intrigues me, I did a little further digging on the Legend of Rhyme series, which along with the travel books, seems to be BMP's main focus.

The first book came out on Dec. 3, 2014. Second book on May 8, 2015. So that's a fast sequel, but it's possible the author had it ready to some extent, maybe? Third one came out on Oct. 19, 2015. She says in this video that she's working on the fourth, and reads a little from #3.

I pulled a quick search for all of these books on Chapter's Indigo (Canada's B&N, starting with my location in Nova Scotia. If I want to buy these in NS, I'm outta luck. So I popped Toronto. Not stocked there, either. The third one doesn't even appear on the Chapters online listings. The first two do.

I tried running some of the travel books but am running up against both the author's name and the book titles being very similar to others on the market. Nothing is popping at all in Chapters for those.

One of the books hit the Atlantic Books Today PEI bestseller list for March 2015. This is supplied by Chapters, so it's possible it was stocked closer to launch. If it was, it's not now, and my experience with Chapters' ordering is not good even when you do know what you're looking for, which I won't in this case.

On her Facebook's about page, the author says the books are only stocked in local PEI stores. PEI's a tiny buy beautiful province overrun with tourists, so this isn't all bad, but we can't say this book is widely distributed to readers and it kinda looks like this publisher doesn't have much sales plan beyond the author herself. From ansky's post, it looks like they're taking a nice cut of royalties for not having distro, too.

I've got nothing against this author. She seems like an imaginative young writer with a fairly interesting fantasy world. My main thing is that I'm having serious, serious deja vu with this stuff for the small pub I used to work at. At the time, I knew much, much less than I know now. That pub was not a good deal for authors, but I thought so at the time mostly because we tried hard. Trying hard isn't enough. If you've put all this time into writing a great book, you've done your work. You deserve someone who can do their job to get it to the public.
 

ansky

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I honestly thought it was too fast too and there was no way they read the whole thing, but upon talking to them about it, they knew specific things only a person who has read it would know. They said there was an editorial meeting to discuss my work and only after did I get to schedule the call. I definitely want to see about having a literary agent looking at the contract before signing, in any case.
 

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