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Living Dead Press / Open Casket Press (Anthony Giangregorio)

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brainstorm77

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I'm trying to encourage people to be considerate, and not to run around calling people clueless and, etc. etc.

This will help them to grow as people

If this is true, poor way of going about it.


I was up until 3:00 am, and honestly, I don't recall everything I wrote. All I know is, I've been very upset that a good man's reputation is being trashed.

You don't recall everything you wrote? I suggest you go back and re-read that post to Stacia.




Indeed!


My... unprofessional behavior? I honestly don't know what you're talking about.

I believe I've been quite professional. Is the problem that my opinions differ from yours?

Charlie

Yeah you do. Ranting is unprofessional. And on a forum of over 20,000 members, not including all those that lurk, you've just reached a hella of a large audience. Bravo!

My opinion is my own. Your first post stated your opinion. I respected that. The rest... No further comment.
 

brainstorm77

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Has he done something to another writer?

I don't know that Janet Evanovich hasn't done something to a writer either, but I'm not going to say unkind things about her because she might, in some hypothetical world, have done something to a writer.

I don't see anyone here posting and saying, "I sent him my story and he did XYZ that ruined me." So what I'm saying is based on the evidence, or lack of evidence, that he's done anything to harm anyone.

I mean, sure it's hypothetically possible he did, and it's hypothetically possible that we're living in the Matrix and this discussion is an hallucination.


Charlie

Exactly. You are making assumptions that everyone has been happy with him. You cannot possible know that, nor can I. That was my whole point.

It's not evidence, it's your experience. One person, you.

And what does Janet Evanovich have to do with this?
 
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brainstorm77

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Yes, but I'm the only one here with direct experience with the man.

You can have an opinion about New Jersey, but if you've never been there, wouldn't you think that someone there would have a more informed opinion?

Point being, your word is not law. You are one person. I'd like to hear from others. I'm not saying this publisher is bad or otherwise. But you don't seem to get that.
 

Crzywritergrl

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You know what would be really funny at this point would be that CharlesV ended up being Tony undercover to save his reputation. *LOL*

Sorry. The writer within sniffed out a plot line and hysterically started laughing up a storm.
 

brainstorm77

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The point is that you can't just make up things. There's as much evidence that Tony hurt someone here as there is evidence that Janet Evanovich hurt someone here.

Charlie

Who is making up things? Where is the proof that stuff is being made up? In fact how do we even know you are who you say you are, or even a writer with this press?
 

brainstorm77

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In logic, we call that the "straw man argument." It's a distortion of what I said. As is the "I am law" thing.

Nope. It's what you have implied. That we should just take your word. Why should we?
 

brainstorm77

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I'm a very open person. You want my Facebook link? PM me. I'll give you my home phone number if you want, you can call me up and we can talk nice. If you live in the New Jersey area, I can invite you over to dinner. Naturally, I'm taking a risk by doing so, but if that's what I need to do to prove the point, I'll do it.

What was made up is the idea that Tony hurt someone here.

Charlie

Mmmm no thanks. But you can easily post what antho you are in. The titles of your stories in there.
 

veinglory

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Charles, this isn't about whether a person is nice, it is about whether a publisher can provide authors with a platform (lots o' readers) and/or money. Everything else is just a sideshow. Do you know how many copies of the anthology sold? Did you make any money? That's really all I want to know.
 

DreamWeaver

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At this point, I don't really care anymore about trying to help you find a publisher that will be career enhancing. You're happy; that's great for you. However, it bothers me that someone who actually wants a paying career might see your comments and think LDP is a good deal for a writer who wants to be a professional. So, here are a couple of your quotes from higher on this page, with the reasons I think they are unhelpful to a writer who'd like to get paid for writing:
He runs a good business, he's treated me well, and I respect him as a businessman.
It's a good business when he doesn't pay his writers? Strange definition. May work for you, but not good for someone who wants to write professionally.
You know what I didn't see though? One person who actually had experience with Tony or LDP.
I expect the main reason is because most people who post here want to work with publishers who pay, and avoid submitting to non-paying markets.

Your writing flows better and is more polished than the vast majority of newbies who come to this board. That's one reason everyone is trying to help you see you have better options. You're happy; that's your choice, just don't expect many people to think it's a good choice and to congratulate you on it, or to recommend it to others.
 
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Momento Mori

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Hi, Charles, and welcome to AW.

CharlesV:
While I admit, I'm not being paid, I don't get the impression that he's getting rich off my work. I rather get the impression that he works his butt off preparing and editing and doing his own writing, and, I hope for his sake that he does make a little money, as I'm sure he has bills just as we all do. If I found out he made a million dollars from a book I contributed to, I'd be upset, but I highly doubt it. The impression I get is more like, he does a little better than breaking even.

A publisher working that hard and not making money after being in operation for a year is sadly not uncommon. Plenty of people start up publishing companies when they have little or no previous publishing experience and when you have no real capital or finance behind you and lack the experience to get out there and sell your product, then you're going to find it tough going.

Sadly, this is why so many start-ups fold within 3 years of their opening for submissions and when that happens, the authors find themselves mired in a complex situation where the rights to their work are trapped with the insolvency practitioner (in the ideal situation) or just disappeared into limbo (which is more likely if a publisher was never duly incorporated).

The point though is that someone should be making money from your work and that someone should be you. You produced it, you worked hard on it, you deserve to get something for it.

CharlesV:
I understand that some new writers either get paid poorly or not at all, so I accepted that when I signed the contract.

I agree, but then I think that those writers tend to be the ones who submit their work without having done any research before hand or who lack confidence. Consequently, they tend to start at the bottom of the list rather than at the top.

CharlesV:
Next, may be I'll look at the low-paying venues. I don't think I'm going to be in anything big like Asmov's or Ellery Queen magazine or Science Fiction and Fantasy any time soon. They look for people who are well established. How do you become established? By starting small, and building your confidence. That's my theory.

Why not start with Asimov's? Think how confident you'll be if you're accepted there? I understand if you're not at a stage where you feel happy to submit to an outfit like that (although I still think you're better off doing so).

You know, if you check out Duotrope, then you can find loads of other markets for your work - including those that only pay a token sum. My first short story sale was to a token paying ezine and I still get a kick out of the humble tenner I got for it.

CharlesV:
At least now, if someone asks if I'm a published author, I can say, "Yeah, I have four stories published." That might motivate the low-paying publisher take a closer look, and if they like and publish me, then after a few of those, maybe a moderate-paying publisher will take a closer look, and then, after a few of those... you get the idea.

That's a nice idea and I wish it did work that way but it doesn't. While it can help to mention short-story credits on a query letter (I included mine when I subbed to agents), in truth agents don't care about it unless they've actually heard of the publication in question. (I got that straight from my agent when she took me on).

CharlesV:
If you're looking for the opportunity to get a story in print, to get your name and your story out there, actually, yeah, he does.

How does he get your name and story out there? What kind of distribution does he do? Does he take books to conventions to sell?

I ask because I'd never heard of this company before this thread, so if I hadn't heard of the company, why would I hear of its authors?

CharlesV:
He's just starting out as a publisher, I'm just starting out as an author. Seems like a good match to me.

Well, he's been in business for over a year so he's not that new and he's certainly been around long enough to have got his distribution and marketing more organised than it seems to be.

CharlesV:
before I started posting, what I saw was mostly trash talk about Tony

Well wherever you saw that, it wasn't on this thread - unless you count "trash talk" as comprising of watchdog querying whether anyone had any information on LDP because the only information s/he had found was on another website which seemed to be v. negative.

If you can't distinguish between something being said on a blog wholly independent from and separate to this page that you're actually commenting on then I feel sorry for you. But that doesn't give you the right to accuse people here of trashing a man you happen to like when there is not one quote in this thread where a poster is making such negative comments about him as an individual human being - we're talking about him and his company in the context of publishing and whether it's good for authors.

If you're that upset about what you read on the blog that actually trashes him, I suggest you take your feelings there rather than wrongly ascribing them to people here who are confining their comments to LDP.

CharlesV:
It's linked in by one of the early posts in this thread.

A couple posts later, he was tagged as a clueless know-nothing, not-ready for prime time... etc.

The Tony Sucks blog is linked to in the first post. All your ranting about people slagging him off is presumably your ranting about comments on that blog. That blog is nothing to do with AW. After some confusion as to what LDP was, smcc360 then said this:

smcc360:
Based on his shaky grasp of copyright law, I don't know if this is a guy I'd be comfortable submitting original work to, watchdog.

and HapiSofi said:

QUOTE]HapiSofi:
A clueless no-distribution not-ready-for-prime-time press is bad enough. But a clueless no-distribution not-ready-for-prime-time press that's playing fast and loose with copyrights in ways that could get them tied up in court for years? Run away, very fast.[/QUOTE]

These are not comments bashing Tony. They are comments about how a publisher who appears to not have any distribution in place at the time it is accepting submissions is not a good one to go to. That's not rocket science and it's the type of comment that will get made about any start-up that appears to lack distribution and which was (presumably) at the time posting incorrect things about copyright.

If you don't like that then it's your problem. It does not amount to bashing an individual.

CharlesV:
Technically, that makes me the best expert authority here on that subject, the subject of actually having experience with him.

Mazel tov. The problem is that we've already established (and you already admit) that you don't have any experience with other publishers. The people posting here do.

Again, if you don't want to hear where there are possible problems with your publisher then that's your affair. Don't accuse us of bashing though just because we're pointing out potential issues.

CharlesV:
I'm sorry that my unvarnished opinion, you find rude, when I'm soley thinking of what will benefit writers and allow them to grow... not only as writers, but also as responsible people, who don't need to bash the reputation of a man who's done them no wrong.

Well again, let's look at the fact that no one here is bashing the reputation of this man that you are so staunchly defending.

Then let's consider the fact that we're making comments about issues with a publisher that are relevant to any writer considering submitting to them.

And finally let's dwell on the irony of your calling some people here "mean-spirited" for exactly the type of behaviour that you have demonstrated on this thread.

CharlesV:
I'm trying to encourage people to be considerate, and not to run around calling people clueless and, etc. etc.

This will help them to grow as people

That's very sweet of you but you're not my dad. You don't get to tell me how I should or should not behave.

CharlesV:
All I know is, I've been very upset that a good man's reputation is being trashed.

Except for where it isn't.

Really, the only person here talking about Tony's reputation is you and honestly, you're not helping it right now.

MM
 

CaoPaux

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Easy, folks.

Charles, if you're still uncertain on the credits issue, I suggest dropping down to the Ask the Agent and Ask the Editor forums, where this has been discussed frequently.
 

Momento Mori

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CharlesV:
What was made up is the idea that Tony hurt someone here.

Okay, which post on this thread actually said that Tony has hurt, harmed or done anything to any poster on this thread?

MM
 

M.R.J. Le Blanc

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Okay look Charles, here's the thing. A press doesn't have to be intentionally out to hurt writers to be a Very Bad Idea. Someone who doesn't know a thing about publishing will unintentionally do just as much damage to a writer as someone who's out to screw them. Tony may be a nice guy, he may have good business sense. But running a publisher is not like running the average business. Being a nice guy and having good business sense just isn't enough. You really do have to know what you're doing, and learning off the backs of other peoples' works just doesn't cut it. I don't know if Tony's a nice guy or not, but really I don't care. All I care about as a writer is if he can run a successful press. The experience of the professionals who take their time to be here (that people like me learned from) doesn't require them to actually have experience with small presses to know whether they're likely to be a good move or not; they know what to look for. You don't have to put your hand on a hot burner on a stove to know it's hot right? When the owner of a small press has no experience, we know where that road goes. We've seen it before around here. And we've seen authors who get tangled up in the mess and lose their stories because of it. No one here flings around things like 'clueless' without cause. If they're saying it, they're saying it for a reason. Just because you don't like it doesn't mean it's probably not justified.

Seriously, go look through the index and take a look at all the other well-meaning but inexperienced publishers. You're not likely to find any that aren't linked in grey.
 

Momento Mori

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Seeing as how no one here has done a run through look of LDP's website, I've taken the liberty of dropping by here: http://www.livingdeadpress.com/ldp_007.htm and taking a look.

LDP Website:
And finally, LDP believes that words a writer puts on the page is sacrosanct. We will never try to change a writer's words unless they are fully on board. We believe what a writer creates is a work of art and should be treated as such.

This is not a good sign. Everyone needs editing - even Stephen King and J K Rowling have editors for a reason - their words are not sacrosanct.

Lack of editing is more usually a sign that the publisher doesn't have the ability or capability to edit properly.

LDP Website:
If disagreeing people had been allowed to change Vincent Van Gogh's paintings, then his creations would be worth nothing, and certainly not valued in the millions that they are now.

If painting was the same as writing then this might actually have a point to it.

The contact address for the publisher is [email protected], which I tend to view as a bad sign. If you're going to have a website for your business, tie in the email addresses to it. Using a yahoo or gmail account always looks unprofessional.

I got this from the submission solicitation page for one of its anthologies:

LDP Website: (BOLDING MINE)
What rights do we want?

First print and electronic rights to your story for 1-year after publication date, that's exclusive rights, too. After that year you can resell it. But we do have the right to use the story for as long as there is demand for the book.
But if you need your story back earlier, let us know, it shouldn't be a problem.

This is something I would immediately want to clarify in relation to the print rights to the story. If for example, LDP are doing a one-off print run of, e.g. 500 books which they will sell over the course of the year or beyond, then giving LDP 1 year exclusive print rights is perfectly legitimate. If however they are printing via POD, then strictly speaking their rights to print your story should expire after that year is up and they should cease any further printing or publication. The words in bold however could suggest that they want the right to continue POD printing books with that story after the one year is up, effectively giving them perpetual rights to print and sell. That is no acceptable.

LDP Website:
What you get:

Nothing but the fun of being in the book.
Yeah, yeah, I know, but what do you want for a 1,000 words, gold bars?

Well for starters I'd want a certain number of copies of the book as payment. Some print publishers also give authors a royalty payment on copies sold.

There are ways of paying people for their work without giving a one-off cash sum.

Again, I'd point people to Duotrope where people can get an idea of those other markets that do give proper remuneration (and without the shitty attitude that they're doing you some kind of favour into the bargain).

LDP Website:
When to send it by:

Get writin'. When we have enough for a great anthology, we'll go to print. So there is no actual deadline.

Again, not a sign of professionaism. I'd expect a publisher to know how many stories they're looking to get into the anthology and to have a cut off date for submissions so that they have adequate time to go through and sort them out.

An additional concern for me here would be to check contract terms for the period of exclusivity and how it's triggered - e.g. if it's triggered from date of signature (in which case you're protected if they take longer than 12 months to get a book out) or whether the drafting gives them exclusivity from the date of signature but the expiry period doesn't kick in until after the year of publication. The latter is a worse deal for writers because it means their rights are tied in until the publisher gets itself organised to actually put the book out (and that could be never).

If you check out the bookstore page of the website, the first page and a half of books on offer are all written or co-written by Anthony Giagregorio. That's not a great sign for other authors. In fact, most of the books on sale have been penned by him. In case there was any doubt, this therefore suggests that LDP was a self-publishing entity that decided to take in others.

While I have no problem with people self-publishing their books, it doesn't mean that they're qualified to do other peoples.

The cover art seems to have some production values, although it's a bit generic.

All in all though my impression of the website is that the company seems to be there to publish and promote Anthony Giagregorio first and other people second.

MM
 

IceCreamEmpress

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Charles, please understand that credits from Living Dead Press are not professional credits, and are not going to build your reputation as a writer. It's not like you can use them in a query letter to Asimov's as professional credits, because (from your own testimony) Living Dead Press is not a paying market.

Now, again, if you're doing this as a hobby and don't want to get paid (which is what "hobby writing" and "hobby publishing" mean) that's fine and we wish you all the best. If you and Mr. Giangregorio are both having a good time, hooray for you.

But if you think that by publishing with Living Dead Press you are creating a stepping-stone that you can use to break into paying markets, you are mistaken.

As for the whole "Tony Sucks" website--what does that have to do with this board? Yes, how unfortunate that someone has a beef with Mr. Giangregorio and thought that was the best way to resolve it. What on Earth does that have to do with us?

Pointing out that a market is not a paying market is not being mean or nasty, it's simply acknowledging a fact.
 

M.R.J. Le Blanc

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The only other point I want to make real quick (no late nights tonight) is that this thread seems to have changed from a thread about whether or not Tony is an honest or reputable person, to whether or not an aspiring writer should deal with any smaller, low- or non-paying independant publishers.

Obviously, there are some here who feel very strongly that small, independent publishers who are low- or non-paying are a bad choice for new writers. That really has nothing to do with the discussion of whether or not LDP is honest or reputable.

Um, not really.

What people are saying is that publishers run by people with no publishing experience are a bad choice for new writers. No one's accusing Tony of being out to screw authors over. What people in this thread are saying (which you don't seem to want to admit) is that his lack of experience isn't likely to help serious authors in their careers. A small publisher run by someone with experience can be just as good a choice as a large press. Many here have gone with medium and small presses. No one here is against them. What folks don't want to see is writers who get hurt by the fallout of a small press that folds because the owner didn't know how to keep it afloat.
 

JulieB

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What M.R.J. LeBlanc said.

And please, go look at the list of publishers in the sticky at the top of the page. A lot of those names that are greyed out are companies who went into business with the best of intentions but couldn't keep going for one reason or another.

Some publishers went under taking the rights to books with them.

I'm glad you had a good experience with these folks, and I hope you continue to do so. That's one positive data point. However, that's not enough to convince me to submit. Please don't take that the wrong way. I have this need to pay the bills.
 

brainstorm77

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brainstorm challenged this, saying, how do you know that he did nobody here any harm?

Challenge? Asking a question is not a challenge. And again, how do you know?

My point isn't that somebody made up that Tony hurt them.

Yet, you repeat that over and over throughout your posts. Go back and read them. And if someone does claim it, how can you refute them, without knowing their story?





(I must admit though, it's become quite flustering that I must back up and explain my every word with lengthy, multi-post answers, as my posts seem to be getting spliced and every word analyzed.

It happens. Members will question what you post.



I would have thought that my statement that Tony hasn't hurt anyone here would be a simple statement, not something I'd have to spend many paragraphs and posts defending and explaining.)

Again, how do you know this. Only Tony himself, would know this.





The only other point I want to make real quick (no super-late nights tonight) is that this thread seems to have changed from a thread about whether or not Tony is an honest or reputable person, to whether or not an aspiring writer should deal with any smaller, low- or non-paying independent publishers.

Not true, there are many respectable small publishers out there. As for payment, that's totally up to the writer.


Obviously, there are some here who feel very strongly that small, independent publishers who are low- or non-paying are a bad choice for new writers. That really has nothing to do with the discussion of whether or not Tony and LDP is an honest or reputable business.

There is a whole section on AW dedicated to publishers who do not pay. The 'some' that do feel strongly are entitled to their opinion.


If you think that writers shouldn't go to small, independent publishers, then the question of whether anyone has had dealings with Tony or LDP or considers them reputable is irrelevant.

So we should stop posting and stay out of the thread?





PS. One more response, if I'm honest regarding being "professional," I don't think most professionals spend much time on forums like these. In the course of the discussion

Thank you, for insulting the other members of AW. But I assure you, they are professionals. Many have multiple books deals with both big and small publishers. If you explored the site a bit more you would have known that, before making that broad statement.
 
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Jamiekswriter

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You said, "I don't think most professionals spend much time on forums like these."

Maybe not most. But there are some. And some professionals, weighed in on this discussion. I'll point out Stacia Kane's footer for proof. And if you looked in on the background others who posted you may find out that there are more professionals in this discussion than not.

Stephen King and Dean Koontz and the others you mentioned are block buster bestsellers -- that's not the sole definition of "professional". But Stephen King *did* write a great book called "On writing" that is excellent for new writers. I had read his "Danse Macabre" back in the 80's and that helped me along the path to writing. He had some great writing advice in there too.

None of that advice was "give your work away". Although I did it. I wanted the exposure. I have over 30 stories in small press and ezines. I've gotten paid for five of them. I even won first place in story contests. Let me ask you, Charlie -- Have you heard of me? Nope. Look at my footer now. I'm sending out novels to agents. Do you think my 30 stories are moving them to accept my queries and fulls? Nope.

But I'll tell you. My first (and only) royalty check for my anthology that I had a short story in (not unlike the one LDP puts out) was for $14.00. It could have been for a million dollars. That's how happy it made me. Was it going to pay any of my bills? No. It bought a great bottle of wine. But what if I had submitted to paying markets instead of "For the love" got $10 for each of my 30 stories? $300 would have paid my gas bill last month.

LDP isn't willing to do that for its authors. Why wouldn't he share his profits with the people who helped him sell the book? There are small presses out there that split the royalties so their costs are covered *and* their authors get paid. Otherwise, you're just donating your work. And if that's what you want to do, great. Sometimes I'll still give away a story because I like to ego google my name and see it on the world wide web. But that's not helping my career. It's not hurting it either. But I couldn't recommend doing that to another writer. It's not exposure if no one knows where to look.

If by "professional" you mean a writer who got paid for their work, there are tons on this board. They love to help new writers build their career. If by "professional" you mean a writer who has books in Barnes and Noble and got paid an advance, they're here in droves too. If you are only seeing a professional writer as one of Stephen King/J.K. Rowlings stature, then you're limiting yourself. A lot of writers who publish commercially still have day jobs and they are professional writers.
 
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Terie

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I don't think most professionals spend much time on forums like these.

Wow. In three days, with 20 posts, you've been able to discern the professional status of almost 30,000 AW members? Just wow.

I guess you've sussed that out because, of course, as we all know, professional writers never do anything except sit in their garrets writing. They never cook meals, or do any gardening, or walk their dogs, or watch TV, or do needlework, or build model airplanes, or collect stamps, or go to the pub with friends, or go out dancing, or play sports. And goddess KNOWS professional writers NEVER mess about on the Internet; they don't have blogs, they pay someone else to maintain their websites, they avoid listservs, and they wouldn't be caught dead on a forum like AW.

For the record, I support myself entirely on my writing, including having a house whose mortgage is nearly paid off, with no other form of support (such as a spouse or partner) or independent wealth. Everything I have I've earned from my writing. That is....I'm a professional writer.

So are a whole lot of other AW members.

Sighs. This is a straw man.

The only one I've noticed building straw men in this thread is you, Charles.

You're the one who has repeatedly attributed sentiments expressed on someone's blog to people who have posted in this thread. 'Everyone is being mean to Tony' is a classic example of a straw man argument in the discussion of a publisher's business practices.

You're the one who has remarked that we're not publishing professionals here and therefore aren't in a position to comment on the business practices of a publisher.

If I read your posts more carefully, I could probably find a few more.
 
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Momento Mori

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CharlesV:
The lack of evidence that Tony has hurt anyone here, is evidence that he hasn't, because, in all probability, they would have spoken up about it by now. This makes it extremely probable that he has never hurt anyone here, and makes my assertion quite reasonable, that Tony never hurt anyone here.

And all this is a fruitless diversion. What matters isn't whether LDP is hurting anyone, it's whether giving it your book is a benefit to an author.

I suggest that it isn't. You feel otherwise.

Moving on.

CharlesV:
If you think that writers shouldn't go to small, independent publishers, then the question of whether anyone has had dealings with Tony or LDP or considers them reputable is irrelevant. Only when you've decided that you are willing to consider a small, independent publisher do questions about Tony or LDP become relevant.

This suggests that all small, independent publishers are the same. They are not.

A small independent publisher that is run by individuals with experience in the publishing industry, is paying a fairly decent advance (i.e. not a nominal sum) and that gets its books out there is one that I would have no hesitation in supporting, e.g. PS Publishing, Tartarus Press etc.

However, a company that starts out as a self-publishing venture or is running predominantly as a self-publishing venture (which LDP definitely seems to be) is not in that league.

CharlesV:
One more response, if I'm honest regarding being "professional," I don't think most professionals spend much time on forums like these. In the course of the discussion, I threw around some names of some professional writers: Dean Koontz, Stephen King, Clive Cussler, Mary Higgens Clark.

How do you know? J K Rowling frequently used to visit her fan sites under a pseudonym so that she could mingle with her fans and see what they were talking about. Sir Terry Pratchett was a frequent internet user who used to participate in message boards.

Being a professional writer doesn't mean you switch off the internet and go to sleep. Nor does it mean that if you are on the internet then you have to use your own name.

On this site there are a number of professional writers who participate - including Jim McDonald, Victoria Strauss and Jenna Glatzer who all moderate the boards. Then there's Gill Houghly, Stacia Kane, Ryan David Jahn and a host of other writers (who I hope will accept my apology for taking their name in vain) who participate in different forums.

What you choose to do when you become a professional writer is, of course, up to you. However suggesting that it isn't professional to participate on boards like this is a rather dim argument.

CharlesV:
to the original thread topic, for those who do consider small, independent publishers where compensation is minimal, a place they'd consider submitting, yes, I'd say, from experience, that Tony and LDP are acceptable. For those who do not consider small publishers worthy of them, who have experience and would never consider turning to a small publisher, LDP is probably not the place for you, nor is any small publisher, and, if there's not already a thread debating the merits and demerits of small, independent publishers in general, I think it's a very worthy topic for a new thread, because that appears to be the direction this thread has gone astray toward, and really has nothing to do with the original topic, which is, whether or not LDP and Tony are good or reputable as small, independent publishers go.

Except that LDP doesn't seem to be paying any compensation for stories under 1,500 words (which I get from its own website) and is only giving a free copy for other participation in its anthologies - and that is not really compensation.

CharlesV:
I know I'm not anybody's father here. But I believe that all people can learn from each other. I strongly believe in supporting what you believe in, and I do my best to do that, and I encourage others to do it as well. I believe that all people should do what they can to help each other grow. May be it's the moralist in me. We might not be father-and-son, but we are metaphorical brothers and sisters on this vast and wonderful globe circling the sun. We are all very much related, even literally and genetically so. One of the remarkable things I've thought of when considering the nature of humanity is that, the two opposing thoughts of human kind: creationism and evolutionism, share one thing in common. Both believe that we are all related. Creationist think it's through Adam and Eve, Evolutionists think it's through primate ancestors, but virtually everyone agrees that we're all related, we're all linked. There's no offense intended. Only another human being, one who you'd actually think is pretty nice if you met him, trying his best to do and say what's right, to the best of his ability. I may be imperfect, but I'm certainly not a bad or mean-intentioned person, and I'm only trying to be helpful, and to back up someone that I respect.

I understand that your intentions are honourable, but if there's one netiquette rule it's that you don't get to tell people how to behave. Just because you don't like the way a poster is expressing themselves or indeed, the message that they are giving, does not mean that you get to tell them how they should speak to you.

AW works on the basis that you respect your fellow writer. That means I don't make personal attacks on you along the lines that you're a mean poopy head. It doesn't mean that you get to dictate to me what I can and cannot say about LDP or how I say it.

CharlesV:
What I think I meant was, and I admit when I post it's often rather like thinking and typing, I don't exactly plan and craft my posts as one would, well, professional writing, is that (1) message board posting isn't professional writing.

Who said that it was?

CharlesV:
I have any objection to Tony because I think he's struggling to establish himself and I don't think he's making much money, and because I knew from the get-go that I wasn't going to be paid more than token payment (such as contributer's copy.)

But don't you see what a warning sign that is? This is a man who is running a publishing company that is allegedly not making money. How long can the company continue to do that if it is struggling to break even? Who is cash subsidising it? What happens to the authors and their stories if it goes under?

These are all key concerns that any author should be concerned about and it's the reason why "small indepdent publishers" are not all the same.

CharlesV:
We've all done it, since posting on "Absolute Write" is giving away your writing. If we were to never, ever give our writing away, we wouldn't be here since nobody's getting paid to post here. People write letters to the editors of newspapers, people write for their companies newsletters and various clubs and organizations, all without getting paid. You admit that you've written in small press and ezines. Would you erase that, if you had a time machine to go back and stop yourself from doing it? Also, when you've written for those small press and ezines, did you lose all rights to your writing? My LDP contracts give me the right to resell after six months. So if my story appears in a LDP book and six months later, I'm able to sell it, I've lost nothing.

You're comparing apples and oranges.

AW is a message board. People aren't creating stories for it, AW is not offering to publish stories to the wider public. People come here for fun, to exchange ideas about writing, to get the answers to various problems and sometimes to run query letters and opening chapters past people to get a second opinion.

A small press or an ezine to which you submit an article or a story, is taking the first publishing rights to that article or story. You are therefore losing your chance to place it with a better paying market.

Sure, you might be able to place republishing rights with another publisher once the rights revert to you, but that's difficult to do and usually only comes about because the story is particularly good or has gained a certain amount of attention - look at any best of year short story collection, for example.

However, losing first publication rights on a short story is nowhere near as awful as losing first publication rights on a novel. If you give your novel away to a publisher that doesn't get you book out there and doesn't get sales, then you stand a snowball's chance of hell of getting anyone else to pick it up.

CharlesV:
there are sources that suggest including non-paying credits on query letters. I'll give an example--and, since last time my source was questioned, this time I'll point out that the author of this quote, Camy Tang, is an award-winning author who writes romance with a kick of wasabi. Her books include Sushi for One, Only Uni, and Single Sashimi published by Zondervan, and Deadly Intent published by Steeple Hill.

You're better off researching actual agent and publisher blogs, because they will tell you what type of publishing credit they want to see in a query letter and what will have some sway with them.

CharlesV:
I've also read the opposite advice, but I don't think that the inclusion or exclusion of such credits is a decided matter that has a "right" and authoritative answer on which all experts agree. The most important thing is that your fiction submission itself to your paying source is of the best quality and fits with what that publication is looking for.

The right and authoritative answer that you're looking for comes from the agents and publishers that you're thinking of submitting to. If you submit a novel to an agent who's on the record as saying that the only publishing credits that they want to see are short story sales to magazines like Asimov's or Cemetary Dance and you're listing LDP in your query letter, then you're going to be regarded as someone who didn't research the agent before hand. That doesn't mean that they won't read your work, it might mean that you go a little lower down in the pile though.

CharlesV:
Still, I think it's a different subject, whether or not one should publish their works with any such publisher, and whether one should publish with this publisher.

I think that's exactly what I have been doing in my posts, but you don't seem to have the time or inclination to respond to the points that I've raised.

CharlesV:
If one is willing to publish for free or token payment, LDP is, in my view, a good choice, despite some negative things said earlier in this thread about him.

That's your view and you're entitled to it. I've already said why I think it's incorrect and I've given you a resource you can go to to find alternative publishers that will give you more for your work.

MM
 

Giant Baby

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My point isn't that somebody made up that Tony hurt them. My point is that, with no evidence to suggest that he has hurt someone, you just can't make up that he has, and it's reasonable to assert that he hasn't, just as (I even recall giving this as an example) it's also reasonable to assert that Janet Evanovich never hurt anyone here, in the absence of evidence that she has hurt anyone here. Sure, it's hypothetically possible, it's possible that Tony murdered someone's grandmother, but such a thing (yes, I made up the idea of Tony murdering someone's grandmother) is such a far-out claim, it's so unlikely that anyone here has some secret experience that they haven't talked about here (such as Tony murdering their grandmother) that mine was a reasonable assertion. I said that Tony never hurt anyone here. I think that's a reasonable conclusion in the lack of people here standing up listing the harm that Tony has done them. I can't just make up that Tony has hurt someone, just because I don't know every experience that every person here ever had. Thus, the challenge to my claim, "How do I know he hasn't hurt anyone?" was answered with, "Well, we can't just make up that he hurt someone."

Here's the thing. I'd never heard of the guy before you poked a sleeping thread to post your experiences with LDP and its publisher. There's absolutely nothing wrong with doing so- on the contrary, we strongly encourage it here and are grateful for the information. But your continued complaints about others "accusing Tony of harming them" just got so thick I finally clicked on the damn link in the OP -- which you keep directing readers to -- to find out what autrocities "Tony" was being charged with. It was a straw man that led me there, true. But, you built him.

You know what? It isn't good. The link itself points to a silly site that was most definitely set up by someone with a grudge against the man, but the information contained within is documented, and the Amazon reviews kerfuffle is self-evident on Amazon -- not the silly site -- and looks to me like one big clusterfuck. Why on Earth would you want to keep bringing it up, knowing what's there? I swear, there have been times in this conversation when I've wondered if you were actually the owner of the site against him, trying to ramp up curiosity, rather than one of his friends/authors.

No one's accusing "Tony" of murdering anyone's grandmother. That's a silly suggestion, even as a hypothesis. What he's been accused of is trying to sell fanfic based on the copyrighted material of others as his own (Russet Moon, anyone?), pitching fits in various forums, and a whole lot of hijinks in the Amazon reviews of LDP books. There's more than enough there (on impartial sites, far beyond the OP's link) to satisfy me that this is a publisher to strongly warn people off. I'm confused by your intentions here, though. What do you hope to gain by continually repeating that others are claiming "Tony" has "harmed" them, when a couple of clicks makes it pretty clear that if "Tony" is "harming" anything, it's his own reputation, and by association, his authors'.
 
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JulieB

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Posting here on AW is giving away your writing?

Allow me to tell you a story. Back when I was looking for my first pro publication I was given some outstanding advice by pro writers. This was in the days before we had hot and cold running broadband. Heck it was in the days when you had to have a military or college account to do anything useful online. I learned some valuable lessons from those pro authors.

I call this paying it forward. This is one reason I belong to a literary non-profit that runs a genre convention every year. Many writers show up to this event help other writers - and learn a thing or two themselves.

Giving back is part of how the writing community works. I like to get paid, yes. But the more paying markets that are out there and thriving, the better it is for ALL of us.
 

Elizabeth George's book Write Away