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David Robert Typesetting

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Old Hack

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David Robert Typesetting, a typesetter I've not heard of, is now offering various publishing services, some of which are rather odd:

You have your book written and the next step is to get your book typeset and send a message to the publishers - let them know you are serious and mean business and you want to get your book published!
Yep. Don't do that. Publishers and agents don't want PDFs or typeset files, they just want clean copy in Word format.

We design and typeset your book, supply you with a PDF, and then you send off to the many publishers out their.
Out their what?

Push the boat out!

As package 1 and 2 but with the following extras:

This also included a front cover, front inside cover, back inside cover and back cover.

Complete and professional: a message to the publishers.
Sending book covers and typeset files to publishers only shows them you don't know how publishing works. Seriously, don't do this.

Want to get published, but maybe do not have too much money to spend. David Robert can offer this special package.
All the benefits of package 1: but cheaper, 25 per cent cheaper.

Basically, we design and typeset your book, as package 1, but then if you get your book published, David Robert will own 25 per cent of the book.
DO NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES TAKE THIS OPTION.

Even if that final option weren't such a bad idea, I'm still not convinced.

And from this page,

Not heard of David Robert before? This is because in the past David Robert has set books for other typesetters and book publishing professionals, so lots of books designed and typeset by David Robert have actually had other typesetters details on the imprint page. All work is UK based, with a UK workforce.

WHO HAS DAVID ROBERT TYPESET FOR?

Penguin, Puffin, Bloomsbury, Hodder and Stoughton, Constable and Robinson, Little Brown, Verso, Oxford University Press...to name but a few! We could carry on and name all the companies and all the authors we have worked with, but I am sure you get the idea...
The site is full of spelling errors, misused hyphens, punctuation problems and clunky constructions.

I wouldn't use them for typesetting: I certainly wouldn't use them to produce typeset PDFs to send out to agents and publishers because that is not what publishers want: and a company which has worked for so many of them should know that.

I'd avoid.
 

aliceshortcake

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Ken

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lol
This one takes the cake. Seemingly knows nothing about the biz. Maybe if he offered this service for those planning to self-pub --
Even then, caveat emptor.
 
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He does, Ken. Look at the website. He offers "self publishing" packages.

Gah.
 

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Typesetting is still typesetting. E-books are formatted, print books are typeset. Two very different skills.
 

Ken

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Had a look. Self publishing too, as you say.

This doesn't quite add up:

WHO HAS DAVID ROBERT TYPESET FOR?

Penguin, Puffin, Bloomsbury, Hodder and Stoughton, Constable and Robinson, Little Brown, Verso, Oxford University Press...to name but a few! We could carry on and name all the companies and all the authors we have worked with, but I am sure you get the idea...

(Specifics would be interesting.)
 

frimble3

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Had a look. Self publishing too, as you say.

This doesn't quite add up:



(Specifics would be interesting.)
Yeah, wouldn't one or two of those big outfits provide a typesetter with steady work? Unless it's all one-offs and small side-jobs that they can't be bothered to do in-house?
 

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I thought everything was electronic these days. Thanks for clarifying.

Typesetting is done electronically: there's no lead type any more unless you work for a very specialist press. It's all carried out on computers. But it's still a very different skill to formatting for electronic editions. Print editions are fixed on the page and so every line and every space has to be considered; electronic editions flow and change, as the reader has control over font and size and spacing.

Yeah, wouldn't one or two of those big outfits provide a typesetter with steady work? Unless it's all one-offs and small side-jobs that they can't be bothered to do in-house?

I think this part is telling:

Not heard of David Robert before? This is because in the past David Robert has set books for other typesetters and book publishing professionals, so lots of books designed and typeset by David Robert have actually had other typesetters details on the imprint page.

What they're saying there is that other typesetters subcontract work to them. So if a publisher were to say they'd not heard of them, David Robert Typesetting could easily say that of course they haven't, they've not worked for them directly.
 

aliceshortcake

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This is exactly what clueless newbies with a poor grasp of spelling and grammar really need - a typesetter with a poor grasp of spelling and grammar.

I can just imagine some poor souls buying Mr Robert's services and ending up with a neatly-typeset PDF file littered with errors he didn't notice, plus a lot more he introduced. I can also imagine said PDF file being instantly deleted by publishers because on their websites they specifically ask for submissions in Word document form.

Oh, and here's a photo of the lad himself. Or is it?

http://www.davidrobert.co.uk/#!publishers/c1vw1

If you run your cursor over it you'll see the caption 'designer in studio'. A quick Google Images search reveals that it's a stock image - in some versions the word 'Millennials' appears on the t-shirt.
 
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aliceshortcake

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COMING SOON!
Sell your book directly on this site and earn money without getting a contract from the publishers. The best way to see if the people love your book!
http://www.davidrobert.co.uk/

Yes, by all means sell your book on a typesetter's website, especially if you bought Package 2 and gave Mr Robert 25% of the profits.

ETA: An e-mail to David Robert was answered by David Jackson, an Edinburgh-based typesetter who currently works at Hewer Text UK Ltd and was formerly employed by Palimpsest Book Production. Thanks to Helix who pointed out that the names of both companies appear when you click the page info thingy on DRT's 'Get Published' page.
 
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gingerwoman

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He does, Ken. Look at the website. He offers "self publishing" packages.

Gah.


From what I've seen those offering legitimate self publishing services tend to offer an "a la carte" menu where a customer can choose to buy as little as they actually need, not "packages."
 
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gingerwoman

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Typesetting is still typesetting. E-books are formatted, print books are typeset. Two very different skills.

So offering a PDF is not in fact, anything to do with typesetting.
 

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Only if the typeset file is saved as a PDF. Which it wouldn't be.
 

aliceshortcake

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Oh, God. I somehow managed to overlook this:

David Robert will send your fully designed and typeset book to contacts built-up over the years. We will send to publishers who publish your style of book.

Although this does not guarantee you getting published, its a step on the ladder, and who knows, maybe a step up to the top of the ladder.
http://www.davidrobert.co.uk/#!get-your-book-published/c20r9

So Mr Robert/Jackson also thinks he's qualified to act as an agent...
 

aliceshortcake

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My goodness, someone has been busy. The most amusing typos have vanished from the site, as has the stock photo purporting to show Mr Robert in his office, and the metadata of the Get Published page has been edited to remove references to Hewer Text and Palimpsest Book Production. I've also been the lucky recipient of a laughable legal threat via Facebook!

The moral of this little story is that if you want to set up a business in competition with your employer and sell useless services to naieve new writers, don't leave your virtual fingerprints all over the internet. It doesn't take a Sherlock Holmes to follow the trail.
 

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I can't find them on Facebook. A shame. I'd be interested in learning more about them there.
 

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