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Crumps Barn Studio

writera

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Small UK press, possibly a stealth vanity/hybrid publisher. They describe themselves as:
Crumps Barn Studio is a book publisher based in Cirencester at the heart of the Cotswolds in Gloucestershire, England. We publish non-fiction and memoir, accessible literary fiction, original poetry and children’s books.

Website: https://www.crumpsbarnstudio.co.uk

Some of the book covers are decent. They have their own little shop. They promise distribution to UK bookshops. (Although I'm dubious of the latter. They claim on another page that "All our books are available from high street and online retailers". But are books actually stocked in bookshops or just available for order? Do they manage to get some books into bookshops, but not most?)

Website arguably geared more towards prospective authors. Some of the other book covers aren't great (are some AI generated?). Spelling mistakes/typos on the website ("prefered" instead of "preferred", "indi" instead of "indie"). And some concerning wording on this page: https://www.crumpsbarnstudio.co.uk/why-collaborative-publishing-is-good (This is what ultimately made me decide to post about this publisher here.)

It seems they might be a vanity press but hiding it behind language of "collaborative publishing"? They also discuss self publishing - and "indi-authors" (sic) - and what they call mainstream publishing...

Here is what they have to say about "collaborative publishing":

Collaborative Publishing​

Collaborative publishing is our prefered [sic] route into print. We have experience of all three options, and at Crumps Barn Studio we like to bring the best qualities of each route to our authors. We believe that done properly, collaborative publishing can take all of the positives from the mainstream route such as professional editing and automatic access to the distribution network that supplies UK bookshops, but with some new qualities too such as speed and the room to feel empowered by the choices your are making about your work.

Our approach is true collaborative publishing. We give plenty of marketing support and we take our work very personally. We’re also quite unusual because our authors receive a number of books for their own use, and we also pay generous royalties.

We treat every single one of our titles as the unique work it deserves to be. Our authors like the fact that collaborative publishing gives us the room to take a flexible approach to perfectly reflect their wishes. Our authors tend to be very committed, but are also looking for the support and confidence that we can give them.

If they are a vanity publisher (and given the above quote, they must be?), they seem to be hiding it and hide it fairly well (apart from the page on "Collaborative Publishing"). I'm just guessing here - but I imagine once an author reaches out to them/submits, they find out later on in the process (possibly after being "accepted" ala Austin Macauley) that they have to pay to publish. I might be wrong about this (I'm still looking into them) but I think they're vanity. That page set off a lot of flags. Thoughts?
 
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Maryn

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Nope. Hard nope.

Most of the things you say could mean they're legitimate seem to me to be deliberately vague or fully misleading language needed to make them seem legitimate. "Available at bookstores" means they can order it--if you pre-pay. "Collaborative publishing" is code-talk for Authors Pay costs and from what they pay, we pay freelancers. The biggie: No good publisher needs to explain why their business model is good. And spelling mistakes on the website? Inexcusable.

I get that business isn't easy for a small press, but this one has way too many red flags for me to consider. The only good thing about Cotswald and publishing is my Cotswald sheep avatar.

Maryn, who may change it some day
 

writera

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Most of the things you say could mean they're legitimate seem to me to be deliberately vague or fully misleading language needed to make them seem legitimate.
Yes, well said. This is the vibe I get too. They're hiding their vanity status, but the language used is definitely deceptive/misleading. I think the most concerning vanity publishers are the ones that try to hide what they are.
 
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Helix

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i read an article about universal publishers inc,
https://[link removed]. are they vanity too?

You know what would look less spammy? Linking directly to the publisher in question, not directing the question through your site to raise advertising revenue.
 
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frimble3

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"We’re also quite unusual because our authors receive a number of books for their own use, and we also pay generous royalties."
Aside from a copy for themselves and their mothers, what's an author to do with this 'number of books' except try to sell them on their own? Shouldn't that be handled on an as-need basis for signings and events?
 

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You know what would look less spammy? Linking directly to the publisher in question, not directing the question through your site to raise advertising revenue.
no it wasn't for advertising revenue at all. but i appreciate the advice.
 

Helix

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no it wasn't for advertising revenue at all. but i appreciate the advice.

Then why not post the link to the publisher that you'd like to discuss? Also you'll need to put it in a new thread (if there isn't an existing thread), otherwise things get a bit confusing.
 

writera

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i read an article about universal publishers inc,
https://www.alphapublisher.com/post/universal-publishers-inc-reviews. are they vanity too?
What does Universal Publishers (who I'm guessing might be one of your competitors?) have to do with Crumps Barn Studio? I'm failing to see the correlation. Are you trying to say they're connected because I can't find a connection when I search? Or are you, more likely, just picking a random thread to post spam links to your own site on?

Crumps Barn Studio does not seem like a legit publisher, and perhaps Universal Publishers aren't either (whoever they are - I haven't looked into them beyond checking to see if they're connected to Crumps), but neither does Alpha Book Publishers. This feels like some weird battle of the vanity publishers akin to streaming wars!
 
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