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Living Dead Press / Open Casket Press (Anthony Giangregorio)

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

Old Hack

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Wow.

One of the unwritten rules of working as an editor is that you don't make any changes to a writer's work without first ensuring that you have their approval to make those changes.

I'm horrified by this.
 

TumbleHome

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I actually felt a little quesy reading through the blogs. How unprofessional it all came off with was bad enough, but secretly editing and adding entire plot points and character development then telling the author they should be happy about it because it's an improvment? I don't usually actively wish for people to fail at their ventures... but I got a REAL problem with disrespect like that. The WOMEN OF LIVING DEAD anthology on my kindle feels dirty now.
 

eternalised

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That's terrible.

I'm glad the original blog post got a lot of attention though and that it's "exploding" in the blogosphere. Issues like this need to be addressed.
 

JL_Benet

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Yes, it looks like they've shut down their Facebook page in light of all of the recent attention. Keep an eye out for a new imprint.
 

HapiSofi

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This is awful:
The anthology was released under the name of a different publisher, Undead Press, and my story was no longer my story. It had been butchered. I sat in my living room with one of the 6 copies I had purchased, flipping through the pages, eager to see my words in print... only they weren't my words. It wasn't even my TITLE. Parts of my story had been cut out, names and details had been changed, things I was never made aware of and had never agreed to. I sat there in numb shock. Here was my name, attached to a story I no longer felt connected to. People were going to read this, it might be their first, possibly only, exposure to my work and what they were going to find were the words the editor had ascribed to me, which were very different from my own. My heart sank. I threw the book at the wall. What the hell was I going to do?

In the end... I did nothing. I bit my tongue and kept silent about my interactions with Anthony Giangregorio and Undead Press/Open Casket. I was afraid that he, as a publisher, would somehow blackball me within the industry if I spoke up or opened my mouth in any way. So I didn't say a word to anyone other than my close friends and family.
This isn't the first time I've heard an appalling story about a newbie writer being abused by some marginal creep, but not talking about it because they're afraid that if they say anything, the guy will badmouth them throughout the industry.

The explosion of PODs and self-publishing and ebooks is making the publishing world a much bigger place, and its marginal areas are a getting to be a lot more marginal. There've always been occasional predators who've hung out at the edge of the herd to stalk newbies, but in my opinion the creeps are getting creepier. I suppose we should be grateful that so few of these interactions take place in person.

Still, I wish there were some way we could have warned Alyndayofthedead that Anthony Giangregorio is nobody in the industry. The only thing he's ever going to be known for is pulling this crap on writers.
 

James D. Macdonald

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There is no one who can blackball you throughout publishing. No one has that power.

Nor will publishers look up your history and say, "Ooooh! He complained about [name of tiny unprofessional press and/or known scam]! Bet he'll complain about us! Pass!"
 

allenparker

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There is no one who can blackball you throughout publishing. No one has that power.

Nor will publishers look up your history and say, "Ooooh! He complained about [name of tiny unprofessional press and/or known scam]! Bet he'll complain about us! Pass!"


This is true, but there are exceptions. Some publishers are so well known for their ills that the mention of them on a query gets you placed in the circular file. Oddly enough, if you complain about them, it helps.
 

wickerkat

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Just wanted to add in a little bit of my experience with LDP. A friend of mine, Christopher Dwyer, and I presented to Tony an anthology of vampire tales (Eternal Night: A Vampire Anthology) all of them with twists, not your typical vampire stories. That was the angle. We had it done, it was edited, all set, in great shape, and he took it on. Later, when it came out, we learned that he not only cut out authors that didn't get their contracts in soon enough (ASAP, was the only request) but he also added in about 10 of his pals to the collection. These stories were NOT atypical or twists, just your standard vampire stories, and they were not very good. He also changed the titles of stories at will, and other edits. Also, the cover art was low-resolution and looked terrible.

AVOID Tony G at all costs. He's a real jerk.
 

Polenth

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Asha Leu

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From the Facebook conversation, it seems Giangregorio and the writer live quite close to each other. Given that manuscripts generally have the writer's address on them, and that Anthony Giangregorio doesn't appear to be most, uh, well-balanced of individuals, you have to wonder how much of an idle threat this is.
 
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Asha Leu

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Not completely sure if this has been posted already, but another writer has come forward about his experiences with Giangregorio. Not only was the writer's book (a whole novel, not a short story) butchered during the "editing" process, but it seems Giangregorio has also been rather creative with his payment of royaltes.

http://www.theworldofhorror.com/#/victims-of-a-rogue-publisher/4564468485

If you want an idea of what some of the changes and editorial decisions entailed (such as the cover art and blurb), this is the Amazon page for the book being discussed in the link above:

http://www.amazon.com/The-Unnatural-Dead-Zombie-Novel/dp/1611990149/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1337232889&sr=8-1

Sure sounds like a wonderful publisher to work with...
 

absitinvidia

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Slightly OT, but for the love of all that's holy, why do people keep using white text on a black background? I literally cannot read those sites without becoming sick.
 

michael_b

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Slightly OT, but for the love of all that's holy, why do people keep using white text on a black background? I literally cannot read those sites without becoming sick.

For some reason that escapes me, a lot of horror/vampire authors do this. I find it difficult to read, but not nearly as bad as some of the sites I've seen done in a myriad of colored text.

I actually recall one from back in the early 2000s that had brown backgrounds and yellow text. Talk about difficult to read! Yikes.
 

michael_b

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Just my own 2 cents here, but let's hope this fiasco is the final nail in the coffin of this publisher. I certainly hope so. There are a lot of great horror publishers out there, like Necro as an example off the top of my head. I know about them since some of my favorite small press authors--Charlee Jacob, John Everson, Daniel Hoarner--publish through them. I used to publish all these fine folks way back when I had my goth horror print zine, evernight.
 

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