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Bon Chance Press

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SaraC

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Their FAQ's look a little different that the ones posted on this forum. The following make think they are not a vanity press:
"How much will it cost me to publish my book with BCP?
Nothing! You may choose, on your own, to pay for additional marketing/branding/promoting services, and it’s honestly not a bad idea. The more work you put into marketing your book, the better the chances it will sell well. But the bottom line is, you will not pay one penny out of pocket for our services
Will I get an advance if you make an offer to publish my book?
At this time, no. Like all other indie publishers, BCP does not offer advances at this time.
What percentage of my book sales will I actually get to keep?
Okay, this is called royalties. And at this time, BCP is offering 20% royalties on print/paperback novel sales and 40% royalties on e-book/digital book sales. We believe this is a very competitive royalty structure and when BCP was founded, we decided up front that we wanted to offer our authors a royalty amount they could be happy with and be proud of.
Will I receive copies of my book(s) to take to book fairs, festivals, and author signings?
Yes and no. Currently, BCP sends every author one copy of their book, with a special message from the BCP team included, for you as a keepsake! Just our own little personal “thank you” for joining our family. We also pass along our discount from the distributor to you so you can order copies of your book at a lower rate (exact rate depends on the number of books ordered). We don't make a profit off of these books."

However, I have not submited to them even though they've liked my tweets in several pitch contents. They no books for sale on their website, and they have a view counter visible at the bottom with a kind of low number of views. The home page is geared towards authors, not readers. I'd be afraid my book would never get published.
 

Marlys

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Their FAQ's look a little different that the ones posted on this forum. The following make think they are not a vanity press:
Pretty sure this is a different press. For one thing, the name is "Bon Chance" instead of "Bonne Chance." The website is dated 2017, so I'm guessing this is a new company.

"How much will it cost me to publish my book with BCP?
Nothing! You may choose, on your own, to pay for additional marketing/branding/promoting services, and it’s honestly not a bad idea. The more work you put into marketing your book, the better the chances it will sell well. But the bottom line is, you will not pay one penny out of pocket for our services Red flag. Do they offer these services for a fee?

Will I get an advance if you make an offer to publish my book?
At this time, no. Like all other indie publishers, BCP does not offer advances at this time. Totally untrue. Many small publishers offer advances.

However, I have not submited to them even though they've liked my tweets in several pitch contents. They no books for sale on their website, and they have a view counter visible at the bottom with a kind of low number of views. The home page is geared towards authors, not readers. I'd be afraid my book would never get published. Another red flag. A search on Amazon for this publisher brings up zero books as well. I wouldn't submit at present. If they are legit, give them a few years to prove themselves.
 

mrsmig

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None of the principals on the company's About Us page have listed any experience in trade publishing. Experience self-publishing one's own books, being a NaNo Municipal Liasion or a full-time blogger are not qualifications for publishing others' work.

They don't appear to have published anything yet. They have a Christmas anthology in the works, from which a portion of the proceeds will go to a designated charity, but there's no mention of what portion of the proceeds the authors will receive (they are also accepting story "ideas," which the "winning" writers will then be expected to finish on deadline - rather odd).

Their emphasis seems to be on HEA Romance, although their Submissions page states that they pretty much accept all fiction except erotica. Yes, they've listed their royalty split, but I would be curious what this split is based on: cover price, or some variation on the common "net royalties" business model by which many small publishers attempt to recoup the costs of production.

Overall their company strikes me as your typical undercapitalized start-up helmed by a group of well-meaning amateurs with no discernible experience.
 
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SaraC

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Pretty sure this is a different press. For one thing, the name is "Bon Chance" instead of "Bonne Chance." The website is dated 2017, so I'm guessing this is a new company.

I didn't notice the spelling difference, but you are right. Neither really seems like a good place to publish anyway.
 

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Overall their company strikes me as your typical undercapitalized start-up helmed by a group of well-meaning amateurs with no discernible experience.

I agree with you here, except for this line from their website: "Like all other indie publishers, BCP does not offer advances at this time." This is so egregiously false that it is hard for me to believe that they are well-meaning. All other indie presses? Not 'most' or 'many', but 'all'. Even amateurs know that plenty of independent presses pay advances. It is along the lines of 'the Big 5 never publish debut authors'. It reminds me of the lies we see from vanity presses aimed at folks who know nothing about the business. I don't know the people involved and I can't assume their motivations but that sounds terrible.

I also find this more than worrisome: "we WILL contact the local booksellers in your hometown (including Barnes & Noble), on your behalf, and help you try to negotiate a deal so you can see your book sitting on a pretty little shelf!"

The wording of this is squirrely at best and I don't understand what they mean. Authors shouldn't 'try to negotiate a deal' with a bookstore while the publisher helps. Either the publisher has distribution or they don't. Either they have a wholesale presence via Ingram et al or they don't. Otherwise they leave it to their authors to buy copies of their own books to offer on consignment through stores. If the last is true, then maybe they should say so.

I hope it is just a case of sloppy wording, but there are lots of red flags all around. And if the website doesn't begin to aim at readers rather than authors ASAP, I think this won't end well.
 

Clairels

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Bon Chance is not only grammatically incorrect, it's kind of a terrible name for a publishing company.

"Good luck marketing your book, because we'll be doing nothing to help you get it onto shelves!"

"Good luck getting decent editing, because our amateur-hour editors don't know the difference between 'your' and 'you're!"

"Good luck getting your royalty check, because our severely undercapitalized publishing house will be bankrupt in six months, at which point everyone involved will disappear!"

Not saying that any of these apply in this situation, of course.
 
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author_timgabrielle

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I'm an author who was just recently signed with Bon Chance and I can say from personal experience that they are fantastic. They are a newer press so obviously their site is geared more towards attracting potential authors as opposed to readers, but this will change as their growing roster continues to expand. I get the sense that a lot of people commenting on this thread think BCP is a vanity press. I can vouch that this is not the case.
 

mrsmig

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No one said Bon Chance was a vanity press. A vanity press is one where the authors pay up front to get their books published.

What was said is that Bon Chance looks like an undercapitalized start-up with inexperienced principals. Since you've chosen to publish with them, I wonder if you'd be willing to answer a few questions:

1) Will your royalties be based on gross income, cover price or net income? If it's the latter, can you define "net" insofar as what deductions are taken from those royalties?

2) Have you been assigned an editor? If so, how many editing passes can you expect before your book is released?

3) What kind of marketing and promotion will Bon Chance provide?
 
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AllyHayes

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Hi! I too am a signed author with Bon Chance Press and so far have been very impressed with the attention I and my novel have been given. I have two novellas published with The Wild Rose Press and two self-published and found Bon Chance's offerings to match those of WRP and the majority of indie presses.
I signed in May and already have a fabulous cover (for which I was able to suggest themes, colors, fonts - everything and a chance to make changes), am in first of three rounds of edits with my editor, am working with the marketing director and even given input for an upcoming book trailer. Not only that, my publisher is very involved in every step of the process and values my opinion. I was given a release date and schedule of expected deadlines right away and could not be happier with the way the process is going.

Happy Holiday Weekend!

Ally Hayes ~ Author

Facebook / Twitter / Amazon / Blog
 

mrsmig

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Oh, dear - here we go. It never fails that when a spankin' new publisher is listed in the BR&BC subforum, and is even lightly disparaged, suddenly we have brand-new members who appear to have joined simply to defend the publisher. Why do you suppose that is? How do you suppose they both suddenly discovered this thread on the very same day? Anyone? Anyone?

author_timgabrielle and AllyHayes - I wish you and your books well. I'm sure your experiences with this publisher have been delightful thus far. I invite both of you to return to this thread six months after your books are published and give us a report on your sales.

And I further invite both of you to respond to the questions I posted to author_timgabrielle above. Or, you can ask one of the company's principals to respond on their own behalf, since I feel certain they're well aware of this thread.
 

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So much to say. Ok, here goes...

Mrs. Mig -- It is possible that a highly classified conspiracy from the highest levels of government caused us Bon Chance Press writers to join this forum. But I'd ask you to consider that maybe one of us stumbled across this thread, informed the others in the BCP family, and we made a decision to join the forum to set the record straight. (Commence gasping and pearl-clutching). I'll leave it to the reader to decide which case is more likely.

Now, on to your questions, as far as what was described to me when I signed with BCP and what has been my experience:

1) Editors -- Every novel gets assigned to work with an editor one-on-one and we get at least two passes of editing. BUT the publisher has also made clear to me that there will be additional editing if necessary.

2) Marketing -- This is a huge reason I signed with BCP instead of somewhere else or self-publishing. Every author gets book trailers, blog tours, cover reveals, etc (that BCP pays for). They have pledged to continue to promote us and our books before, during and after release. Most importantly, for me, my focus has always been on writing and not the marketing side of things. The marketing director has already reached out to me and we are working together to build the platform (or, more accurately, they are teaching me how to do it!)

3) Royalties -- I am not going to discuss specifics on a public forum, but I did my research and they offer equal if not better realities than other indies. If you still have more questions, there is a Contact Us page on the BCP website.

So, to circle back to the initial issue...I can only speak from my personal experience as a newly signed writer, but I am really thrilled with the progress that has been made on my book in the span of time since I signed. So...as I've been experiencing a company that's showering me with resources...and at the same time reading online that the company must be ill-funded and inexperienced, I felt the need to jump in and correct the story.

I will take your benevolent wishes for Ally and Tim as authentic and I really do wish the same for you. Let us all sell millions of books!!
Authors supporting other authors...isn't that what these forums are all about??

Jillian
 

Filigree

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Thanks for sharing your experience, Jillian! With all the new presses starting up, it can be confusing for new writers trying to pick a publisher.

What comes across as typical AW paranoia, is really explained by all the grayed-out publishers on the AW publishers list. Those are the ones who flamed out, sometimes with spectacular and heartbreaking results for authors. It's why many of us wait a couple of years to see if a new press survives its first hurdles.

I will take a chance on a new small press now and then, but only after the publisher proves their street cred. That means knowing they have a business plan and previous *applicable* publishing experience. As for author platform, that is different from marketing. An author can effectively maximize their platform presence to gain eyeballs...but marketing is the publisher's job. If they can't reach more people than one single author, they might not be a good partner.

I wish the best for Bon Chance, and hope to see it around.
 
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mrsmig

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BookWriter, thanks for replying. Your level of snark matched mine, so we're even, and I apologize for mine. But as Filigree says, we at AW have seen any number of well-meaning new publishers start up and then shut down within a few years, often taking their authors' books with them. It's in everyone's best interests for a new publisher's business plan to be as transparent as possible, and when we see red flags on the website, we point them out.

I genuinely wish Bon Chance and its authors all the best. That said, if your royalties are being calculated on ANY form of "net," I hope you asked for and received an exact accounting of what "net" entails before you signed anything.

Before I signed with my current publisher, I received offers from two other small, new companies. Both used the "net" business plan. One of them did not pay an advance, and royalties were only paid out after ALL the publishers' costs of production were recouped. In other words, under this plan the writer was the very last person to be paid. That publisher curled up and died two years later, leaving their clients' books in limbo. The second offer I got was from a publisher which offered a modest advance, but under their "net" plan they did not pay out royalties until after they'd recouped not only the advance, but their offset printing costs - an amount estimated somewhere in the $3k+ range. Essentially, unless my book was a huge bestseller, all I would receive from its sales would be the initial advance. Neither publisher had a distribution plan in place when I received their offers; both were relying on the same channels available to self-publishers (e.g. Amazon) to get their books in readers' hands.

I also hope your contract has a solid rights reversion clause in the event the publisher fails. If you don't know what that means, please ask. Small publishers are usually run by a very few people. If there are medical or family crises, financial problems or other issues, the company can go bankrupt, and if there's no reversion clause in place, their authors' books are considered corporate assets, and can go down in flames with the company. In addition, some small publishers will charge their authors for the rights reversion - something to be avoided at all costs.

If any of these terms are unfamiliar to you and your fellow authors, please ask for clarification. If you don't believe these worst-case scenarios are real, please ask and we can point you to examples - not just one, but many. This is why we look at new publishers with a skeptical - and in my case, often jaded - eye.
 
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eqb

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3) Royalties -- I am not going to discuss specifics on a public forum, but I did my research and they offer equal if not better realities than other indies. If you still have more questions, there is a Contact Us page on the BCP website.

What everyone else here said about wishing you (and all authors) the best of luck. No one wants a publisher to fail, because if they do, they take down authors with them.

My only question is how Bon Chance calculates royalties. That is, I don't want or need to know the percentage, but do they base the percentage on cover price or net? And if net, how is that determined?

Thanks in advance.
 

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I'm an author who was just recently signed with Bon Chance and I can say from personal experience that they are fantastic. They are a newer press so obviously their site is geared more towards attracting potential authors as opposed to readers, but this will change as their growing roster continues to expand. I get the sense that a lot of people commenting on this thread think BCP is a vanity press. I can vouch that this is not the case.

I don't think they're necessarily a vanity press, but I'm not sure they're a good publisher either. That doesn't mean I think they have bad intentions: just that I'm not entirely convinced that they know what they're doing.

As they don't seem to have published anyone yet, we can't ask you how it's going. I do hope your experiences are positive but do please come and tell us how it's all gone for you once your book has been out for six months or so. It would be interesting to know.

I signed in May and already have a fabulous cover (for which I was able to suggest themes, colors, fonts - everything and a chance to make changes),

It's very nice of them to give you such control. But unless you're experienced in jacket design, and understand what makes a jacket sell books, this is not a point in their favour.

am in first of three rounds of edits with my editor,

I have never known how many rounds of edits a book will need before I do the work. I'm not sure this is a good or a bad thing. Also, can you tell us how experienced your editor is? What books have they worked on? How successful have those books been?

am working with the marketing director and even given input for an upcoming book trailer. Not only that, my publisher is very involved in every step of the process and values my opinion. I was given a release date and schedule of expected deadlines right away and could not be happier with the way the process is going.

I have never bought a book because it had a good trailer. And again, unless you're experienced in producing these things, your input is not necessarily useful.

Being given a release date and a production schedule is reasonable.

1) Editors -- Every novel gets assigned to work with an editor one-on-one and we get at least two passes of editing. BUT the publisher has also made clear to me that there will be additional editing if necessary.

That's a good thing. Assuming their editors are experienced, and appropriately managed. Where did their editors train? What experience do they have? What books have they edited?

2) Marketing -- This is a huge reason I signed with BCP instead of somewhere else or self-publishing. Every author gets book trailers, blog tours, cover reveals, etc (that BCP pays for). They have pledged to continue to promote us and our books before, during and after release. Most importantly, for me, my focus has always been on writing and not the marketing side of things. The marketing director has already reached out to me and we are working together to build the platform (or, more accurately, they are teaching me how to do it!)

That's good. It's definitely more than many tiny publishers offer. However, helping authors develop their platforms on social media (which I assume is what you're talking about) is not the same thing as having an established platform.

"Platform", in trade publishing, isn't really about social media (unless you're talking about hundreds of thousands of followers). Nor is it really appropriate for writers of fiction: it's a non-fiction requirement. It means means being an expert in your field, having a solid reputation, and having enough authority to ensure your sales will be good.

It's good that BCP is organising trailers, blog tours, etc. But the things you list are things you can do for yourself. The sort of marketing and promotion publishers should do is far more than this. It's more focused on booksellers, trade press, that sort of thing. How are they ensuring your book reaches the attention of great booksellers? How are they getting your books into libraries, how are they getting your books reviewed by people you don't have access to?

So, to circle back to the initial issue...I can only speak from my personal experience as a newly signed writer, but I am really thrilled with the progress that has been made on my book in the span of time since I signed. So...as I've been experiencing a company that's showering me with resources...and at the same time reading online that the company must be ill-funded and inexperienced, I felt the need to jump in and correct the story.

They ARE inexperienced, though. I don't see any real experience in trade publishing here. I don't see any indication that they can afford to print a decent number of your books, or that they have sufficient funding to publish your books well.

And as your book isn't yet published, I fear your thrills are premature. Come back once your book has been out for a few months. Let us know how it's been. Because right now you're still in the honeymoon period and although I really don't want to rain on your parade, you are bound to be happy right now.
 

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I've been trying to find out if the people behind BCP have any experience in publishing. Because without experience of working in trade publishing it's very difficult to run a successful trade publisher of your own.

Christy Broaddus is listed on the BCP site as the owner/publisher of BCP. On her Twitter page I found this interview with her, in which I learned she writes under the name Christina Morgan. In this interview she reveals that she works as a paralegal, while also writing her own books and running BCP. She's a busy woman, and I applaud that: but publishing other writers' books is not usually something you can do part-time.

And yet she also has time to run a query/synopsis critique service from her website.

Query, Synopsis, & Sample Chapter Critques [sic]

Services Provided:

For a small fee, I will review, edit, and critique your query, synopsis, and/or sample chapter(s). I have an extremely fast turnaround time and I'm always honest but nice. No sense in being nasty, right? Your package will include THREE revisions and my honest but kind UNLIMITED feedback until we come up with a version you love! I've written many successful queries throughout my career and I've helped many of my peers come up with successful queries as well. I work in Word using track changes and comments and will correspond using email, FB messenger, or Twitter chat.

Fees:

Query Critique - $25.oo [sic]
Synopsis Critique - $25.00
Sample Chapter Critique - $35.0o each [sic] (up to 20 pp)
Query + Synopsis + Chapter Critique = $60

Is it three revisions, or is it unlimited? I am confused.

I'd like to know more about the successful queries she's written.

I would have more faith in her critique services if the above-quoted text were more error-free, but she doesn't say anywhere that she's a copyeditor, so perhaps I could forgive her this. However, in the interview I linked to above she says,

What is your least favorite part of the publishing / writing process?
I honestly love it all, but if I had to pick one thing, it would be writing synopses. I can write the heck out of a novel, a query letter, even a blurb. But for some reason, synopses knock me on my butt every time.

I wonder how she can charge money to critique synopses when she has stated that she can't write them, but there you go.

I remain unconvinced.
 

H. M. Browning

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I was an 'unpaid' employee. I'll probably burn a bridge by posting but this is what was sent out to us by Christy.
 
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Cassie Knight

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No kidding and how sad for the orphaned authors! I do hope she did the right thing and gave everyone back their rights.

Any BCP author looking for a new home, I'd be happy to review your submissions. Just go to my website (don't judge me by that site <grin>. I'm the new owner and will be launching a lovely new site this fall) and submit but please mention you were with BCP and you'll be given top priority. I'm so sorry this happened to you. Whatever you all choose to do, I wish you the very best. Definitely check out what AW has to offer in the way of advice, guidance and even tools.
 

mrsmig

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Sigh.

I sincerely hope the authors who visited AW to defend this company are getting their rights back without delay.
 

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I'm just seeing this now. That's very kind of you. I can't speak for the rest of the BCP authors but I signed someplace else a couple months after. Took some time to pout but came out better than before!
 

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