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DiskUs Publishing

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

BlackCrowesChick

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Hi everybody. I'm new here & I just said hello in the newbie forum. This is my second post.

I'm almost ready to submit some of my work (a short novel) for the first time to a publisher. I don't have an agent. I'm just doing this on my own so far. I found out about the Diskus Publishing Company and I'm thinking of sending my ms to them first. I went to their website and they take complete mss by email. It didn't say how long it takes for them to respond. So, I was wondering if anyone here has had any experience with this company? Are they legit? How long does it take for them to respond? Any information you can give would be appreciated. I'm new to the publishing world.

Thank you!
 

Maryn

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At Preditors and Editors (which is at http://www.anotherealm.com/prededitors/pebd.htm --bookmark that, because you'll want it) they're listed as "Recommended" and "Electronic book publisher."

If an ebook is your goal, they might be fine. Be aware that in all likelihood you won't see sales approaching even modest numbers for a print edition from a legitimate publisher. Me, I'm aiming for print, but your goals are yours to determine and people here will support them unless your dream is to be ripped off by a POD.

And hey, welcome to Absolute Write. You've already met Uncle Jim--listen to him closely, since he knows whereof he speaks. (And pay me little attention--I'm just a friendly nebbish.)

Maryn, offering you a cookie--yes, still warm!
 
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Saanen

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I just overhauled a very old manuscript and I'm looking at epublishers for it. P&E has DiskUs Publishing still listed as recommended, but in looking at their sample contract I find this weird little section:

To prove the work is registered to the author, author must provide DiskUs Publishing with a copy of your copyright certificate.
They also want authors to put a "(c) 2007 by" phrase on the title page of submissions. Now, I've always understood that copyrighting a manuscript is unnecessary and putting a copyright notice on the submission is amateurish. Any suggestions on what DiskUs is getting at?

I'm also not impressed with their website or covers. Does anyone have personal experience with this publisher? The recommended listing from P&E counts for a lot, but I'd like to know some details before I submit anything. Thanks!

Edit: Hmm, I'm seeing the same phrase on a few other sample contracts for ebook publishers. Is this an ordinary requirement in book publishers, then?
 
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BarbaraSheridan

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Edit: Hmm, I'm seeing the same phrase on a few other sample contracts for ebook publishers. Is this an ordinary requirement in book publishers, then?

The reasoning many e-publishers tend to give is that "it's the author's book and they can't file the copyright". I've said it before and I'll say it again--B***S***.

I say if a NY publisher can file the paperwork for the author any publisher <i>can</i> with the author's consent via contract. A small e-publisher did it for me years ago and I have the certificates to prove it.

I feel it's a money issue as e-publishers release more books and have less capital socked away than big firms. There's nothing wrong with that but I wish some companies would just come out and say, "We can't afford to do it for the number of authors we publish."

I'm sure someone will correct me if I'm wrong.
 

Chicken Warrior

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DiskUs doesn't claim they can't, they just don't state why they don't.

When we're talking about DiskUs, let me tell you some things I know:

They have a strong following of happy authors and have been around perhaps longer than any other epub currently in the business (as you can tell, they've never changed their website). Their site is definetly a downpoint since they now seem to use it as their primary (only?) marketing tool. They USED to sell at Fictionwise and other ebook vendors and they still seem to at author's requests, but I'm not sure if the publisher actually does the leg work, or if they pay on net in that situation. At any rate, I can't for the life of me understand why you would dump fictionwise distribution after establishing the required status.

However I've also heard very good things. Authors I have personally contacted regarding DiskUs have reported excellent editing and author relations. Also, the covers you see are often just the ebook versions. If you click on 'buy print' you'll often find they have much nicer covers hidden away. I'm not sure if these are just for print copies, but since they're presumably paying someone to make them, I'm not sure why they don't use them for primary advertising. One other thing to think about is the price for print books with these POD companies. Although DiskUs does some of this through Cafepress, many of their titles are distributed through their own website and offered at very reasonable prices. Also, free shipping to US (and Canada, believe it or not) is a major bonus. Shipping is one of the things that really discourages me from buying books from Lulu or similar sites, but I've already picked out a few DiskUs titles to try out and it'll cost me less than $20.

My own personal experience with this company is as a member of the media. Then, response times were excellent and my contact was very informative.

As an author, however, I submitted a short children's story for their review. This was more than five months ago, and I haven't heard a peep. I queried by email a week ago or more and still have heard nothing. They're still pumping out new books, but I haven't seen a new author in a long time. I think I'll try a different email addy, but I'm not holding my breath.

In closing, aside from the authors that have stuck with this company as 'their publisher' through dozens (hundreds?) of publications, there are (or were) also ex and future NY authors working under their roof, which might just say something.
 

Saanen

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Thanks for the really excellent information! I'll keep Diskus on my possible list. One of the big drawbacks for me is their awful website--it's so amateurish, difficult to navigate, and all-around offputting that I'd be embarrassed to refer potential readers there.
 

Chicken Warrior

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I have a children's story that's just too short for most publishers and just too long for most magazines, so I think it would be perfectly suited to Diskus's QuickPicks line, but I can't get through for the life of me.

Not a single email address on their site works. They all appear to be linked to the publisher's own email address which apperantly isn't functional. Where to go from here? I guess I'll look for a phone number...?
 

veinglory

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A lot of epublishers don't file copyright, but that phrasing seems to require the author too. I generally don't bother as not being American and not writing contentious stuff my odds of ever suing for damages in the US are slim to none, and $45 buys a lot of lattes.
 

Chicken Warrior

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It is sort of a strange requirement.

BTW, Can't find a phone #, or even a current author contact (none of them have their own sites), so unless I use snail mail, I guess I'm not ever going to know if they got my sub.
 

Chicken Warrior

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Finally established contact with a current author. Positive appraisal. Apperantly they're overwhelmed with subs, and their main editor has broken her wrist, so things are chaotic.

Authors subbing can expect no response in the case of a rejection. So I guess I'm rejected.

UPDATE: Just wanted to say that all their titles are going on Fictionwise, again, and several of them are currently featured on the fictionwise homepage. So I guess they're still using othe retailers, after all.
 
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KyraDune

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I already searched this publisher on the search thing and the most recent post I see is from 2007. Has anybody had more recent dealings with DiskUs? I know they're closed to submissions right now, but I'm going through my list trying to pick publishers to keep and ones to dump. Thanks.
 

IceCreamEmpress

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Piers Anthony's site linked to this page, which made me laugh so hard I spilled a delicious iced coffee.

(In case the page changes later, here is the current {as of August 10, 2011, 7:25 p.m. EDT} text, in its entirety, of DiskUs Publishing's ultra-professional page entitled "Submission Status":

Due to the large amount of emails having to deal with this page we have decided to discontinue it. We receive thousands of submissions both electronically and via postal mail and don't have the time to answer questions on how to use this page.

Your submission may take up to a year depending on if it was sent to an editor. If you included enough postage for your manuscript to be returned then it will be returned if it isn't accepted. If you didn't add any postage for the return of your manuscript or you didn't add enough then it will be destroyed if not accepted. Sorry for any inconvenience.


 

ShyWriter

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Your submission may take up to a year depending on if it was sent to an editor. If you included enough postage for your manuscript to be returned then it will be returned if it isn't accepted. If you didn't add any postage for the return of your manuscript or you didn't add enough then it will be destroyed if not accepted. Sorry for any inconvenience.


holy hell - a year?
 

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