Publish America - The best thing to EVER happen to unknown authors

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

bstevens

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I cannot believe the comments on here because I have had the most wonderful experience with PA inspite of all the negative crap on here. I knew about it before I signed and that is why I made sure to:

Edit my manuscript 3 times before submitting. I knew that a young, new company would not have the resources or finances to devote time to an UNKNOWN with no proven track record of sales. Especially when they didn't ask me for ONE CENT up front.

I knew that they would expect me to take responsibility for most of the promotion. Ask any well known author and they will tell you that promotion is mainly up to them. The publishers don't give much assistance.

I also knew that POD meant that my books will not be on a bookshelf. The fact that Amazon and other major PODs would sell for me online (an unknown author) just blew me away with gratitude.

If you have faith in your product you should invest some money in your own work(promotion, books, etc.). Just spend what you can afford. Realistically an unknown cannot expect to make huge amounts of money writing.

I think that anyone who has NOT SPENT A DIME and got their book published should be overflowing with gratitude to PA. Your contract did not stipulate that you had to buy some of your own products. Not only that they were good enough to give you 2 copies free!

My God people if NO MONEY has exchanged hands their is no scam!

Traditional publishers are upset with PA. A company like PA has a major effect on the volume of manuscripts they receive. They like to have everyone's good work sent to them to glance at and discard and send out a rejection letter. I am sure PA has beat them out of more than a few good manuscripts.

If I could I would kiss the hands of everyone at PA for rescuing poor unknown authors from the hellish rejection cycles of traditional publishers and the vanity publishers who ask you for thousands of dollars UP FRONT!!!
 

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Publish America

kimmi 57 said:
I don't know this PA...but all these people can't be wrong. And these people on this board are intelligent.
Thats like telling my daughter, a model to pay for modeling school to become a model...uh nope I don't think so. They pay you...you don't pay them.
Duh!

I agreed with everything they said about the little bit of editing and little bit of promotion. They're right.

WHY THE HECK SHOULD A COMPANY YOU'RE NOT PAYING A CENT DO EVERYTHING FOR YOU, FOR THE NOTHING YOU AGREED TO PAY THEM????
 

bstevens

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Publish America - The best thing to EVER happen to unknown authors
I cannot believe the comments on here because I have had the most wonderful experience with PA inspite of all the negative crap on here. I knew about it before I signed and that is why I made sure to:

Edit my manuscript 3 times before submitting. I knew that a young, new company would not have the resources or finances to devote time to an UNKNOWN with no proven track record of sales. Especially when they didn't ask me for ONE CENT up front.

I knew that they would expect me to take responsibility for most of the promotion. Ask any well known author and they will tell you that promotion is mainly up to them. The publishers don't give much assistance.

I also knew that POD meant that my books will not be on a bookshelf. The fact that Amazon and other major PODs would sell for me online (an unknown author) just blew me away with gratitude.

If you have faith in your product you should invest some money in your own work(promotion, books, etc.). Just spend what you can afford. Realistically an unknown cannot expect to make huge amounts of money writing.

I think that anyone who has NOT SPENT A DIME and got their book published should be overflowing with gratitude to PA. Your contract did not stipulate that you had to buy some of your own products. Not only that they were good enough to give you 2 copies free!

My God people if NO MONEY has exchanged hands their is no scam!

Traditional publishers are upset with PA. A company like PA has a major effect on the volume of manuscripts they receive. They like to have everyone's good work sent to them to glance at and discard and send out a rejection letter. I am sure PA has beat them out of more than a few good manuscripts.

If I could I would kiss the hands of everyone at PA for rescuing poor unknown authors from the hellish rejection cycles of traditional publishers and the vanity publishers who ask you for thousands of dollars UP FRONT!!!
 

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bstevens said:
Publish America - The best thing to EVER happen to unknown authors
I cannot believe the comments on here because I have had the most wonderful experience with PA inspite of all the negative crap on here.

Oh, my. Somebody drank the Kool-Aid.
 

bstevens

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SC Harrison said:
Good luck. You're going to need it.

By the way...how long has your book been out?

The official release will be January 15 but, already my friends who bought my book said they arrived beautifully packaged and within 5 days. PA just got their own printing press. They were contracting out before.

The book's cover is beautiful and the books are very nicely bound. I have my son selling for me in chicago. We got 55% off so we expect to make $10/copy at least.

I am doing my own promotion to a targeted list of bookclubs.

www.barbarastevensbooks.com
 

bstevens

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CatSlave said:
Oh, my. Somebody drank the Kool-Aid.

I figure that even if they don't sell a single book for me and they continue to give me a good discount, I'll make a good part time income.

Some tips I received from another PA writer below:
1. Book sells through Amazon and you get standard royalties. Let’s say 10%. – $2
2. You buy the book and save 30%, therefore you earn $6.
3. You put the book in stores on consignment at 50% and you get 15%, still better than the basic royalty, an earning of $3.
4. You convince a store to purchase books on your behalf and you pay them a 5% fee for being the buyer. They get a 40% discount. You give them their 5%, get your 10% royalties and sell your books for an additional 35%, making 45% on the cover price. We’re up to $9.
5. You could put that book on consignment at 50/50 and split the 35% discount with Joe blow (which is 17.5%). Add the original 10% that you keep, and you’re still up to 27.5%.

The worst percentage you are going to get on your book is the royalty cheque you’ll receive.

The question isn’t who gets what for nothing; the question is how will you increase the amount paid to you on every sale?

I wanted to post a little bit about my own experience with consignment. Currently in the last 2 weeks I have gotten my book into 5 bookstores this way. These are all local bookstores.
 

LeslieB

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Oh. Oh dear.

You don't really think that when pro writers talk about contributing to the promotion of their book, they are talking about selling books out of their car trunks? Or pestering their local bookstores to carry their book? Or having to buy their own books for book signings? Do you?
 

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bstevens said:
I agreed with everything they said about the little bit of editing and little bit of promotion. They're right.

WHY THE HECK SHOULD A COMPANY YOU'RE NOT PAYING A CENT DO EVERYTHING FOR YOU, FOR THE NOTHING YOU AGREED TO PAY THEM????

Because they expect to recoup their outlay, and more, on the back-end by selling books straight to the author after the author has exhausted every method known to find an outlet willing to stock his/her book, and finds all doors firmly closed.

The book may well be a masterpiece, but PA has no interest in selling books through bookstores. Their business model is designed to encourage/force the author to buy from the company.

That said, good luck with your book.
 

bstevens

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LeslieB said:
Oh. Oh dear.

You don't really think that when pro writers talk about contributing to the promotion of their book, they are talking about selling books out of their car trunks? Or pestering their local bookstores to carry their book? Or having to buy their own books for book signings? Do you?

No, but MANY MANY professional writers started out with vanity publishers and had to shell out thousands of dollars to get their books printed and then had to sell so many out of cars, bookfairs, etc., before the REAL traditional publishers would give them the time of day. PA is giving you the opportunity to prove yourself without YOU SHELLING out a cent.

They are a Godsend to good writers who are willing to work.
 

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bstevens said:
I figure that even if they don't sell a single book for me and they continue to give me a good discount, I'll make a good part time income.

All sarcastic remarks aside (which are aimed at the PA business practices, not you personally), I admire your persistence and positive attitude.

I wish you well with your book, and hope you spend some time considering the different points of view you will encounter in this forum. You're in the company of a lot of writing pros, and they will not steer you wrong. You might not like what you hear, but in time you may see things a bit differently.

Best wishes to you.
 

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You can stand on your podium and shout all night, but it won't change any opinion that I have about PA as any kind of legitimate publisher. Perhaps you didn't expect enough from your own writing and were willing to settle for what you could. Maybe you didn't go to school for two years to take writing courses and find an agent you thought would represent you legitimately either: or work two jobs as a single parent to see that your child had a college education with little or no help from his father. Sure, you don't pay PA a cent, you just get taken for every penny you have in order to purchase copies of your own work and then stand on street corners and sell what you can. Doesn't matter, because once you try and send your work to another publisher and put on your letter that you have a book with PA, they will most likely toss it in the trash without ever giving it a moments consideration. Call a few publishers and ask them their feelings on PA. While your at it, ask them what types of promotions they do with their authors as opposed to PA. Ask book stores why they will not put PA books on their shelves. Then buzz over to http://www.anotherealm.com/prededitors/pealn.htm, click on book publishers, scroll down to PA and read the many many posts there, including a letter from Barnes and Noble to one author.

I don't know about everyone here as far as their own personal experience with PA, but I know mine and I know for a fact that I am much better off without PA. I didn't know about PA's policies when I signed their really inane contract. That one is on me. I wouldn't, however, recommend PA to my worst enemy based on my experience with them.

There are over 75 different threads here about PA. Why, I ask you, would we all focus on just one publisher if there wasn't something completely wrong about them? If you have had a good experience with PA, then I commend you. If all you expected of your work was to just see it in book form and sell what you could when you could afford to buy more copies of it, I again, commend you. Just please, don't try and convince me, knowing absolutely nothing about my personal writing goals, or anticipations, that my book having been published with PA was ever a good idea. You'd be barking up the wrong tree.

My apologies if this offends anyone, but that post just struck a nerve. A still very touchy one.
 

bstevens

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CatSlave said:
All sarcastic remarks aside (which are aimed at the PA business practices, not you personally), I admire your persistence and positive attitude.

I wish you well with your book, and hope you spend some time considering the different points of view you will encounter in this forum. You're in the company of a lot of writing pros, and they will not steer you wrong. You might not like what you hear, but in time you may see things a bit differently.

Best wishes to you.

Yes, I hear you but believe me after I read all of this stuff BEFORE I signed my contract I agonized over the decision night and day. So far I'm quite happy with everything - order fulfillment, etc.

Unknown authors must remember that they are the competition to these professional writers and taking money out of their pockets, just like all the reality shows with regular people are taking jobs from professional actors. I love this new era of the common man being given a chance.
 

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Traditional publishers are upset with PA. A company like PA has a major effect on the volume of manuscripts they receive. They like to have everyone's good work sent to them to glance at and discard and send out a rejection letter. I am sure PA has beat them out of more than a few good manuscripts.

Missed that bit. Had to respond before I put my head down for the night.

You seem to be contradicting yourself. You first claim that publishers (PA invented the term 'traditional publishers'; before PA there was only 'publishers') are upset with PA because they have had a major effect on the volume of manuscripts they receive. You then go on to imply that publishers operate on the twisted logic that they like to have everyone's good work sent to them so that they can have a quick glance at it before sending out a standard rejection slip. This conjures to mind an office filled with demented employees attempting to see how fast they can force the company down the tubes.

You're defeating your own argument right there. Aside from the fact that publishers don't give a toss about PA, what makes you think that they have a vested interest in bankruptcy?

It's most likely true that PA has indeed beat publishers out of a few good manuscripts, but PA also prints out the slush pile other publishers wouldn't touch, not unless they really do want to end up destitute.

And as for the good books that they did hoover up with their 'accept anything' policy, I think you'll find that the authors of these books realise their mistake, and eventually find their way over here in an effort to find other like-minded and talented authors who are also trying to ditch PA. Some of them have since freed themselves from PA's clutches and gone on to better things with real publishers.

Any good manuscript suffering the misfortune of falling into PA's hands will sink without trace, condemned to 7 years in the publishing wilderness.
 

LeslieB

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bstevens said:
No, but MANY MANY professional writers started out with vanity publishers and had to shell out thousands of dollars to get their books printed and then had to sell so many out of cars, bookfairs, etc., before the REAL traditional publishers would give them the time of day. PA is giving you the opportunity to prove yourself without YOU SHELLING out a cent.

They are a Godsend to good writers who are willing to work.

No, they didn't. And no, PA isn't.

I am really and truly sorry that you didn't discover this board before going with PA. Because then you would have encountered many writers who found good agents, who then found them good publishers, and who never went anywhere near a vanity publisher. You would also have read the accounts of other PA writers who struggled to get the legal rights to their books back after realizing that PA was nothing like what they were promised. And you would have learned a great deal about the way the publishing industry actually works.

I wish you all the best, in any case.
 

bstevens

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tlblack said:
You can stand on your podium and shout all night, but it won't change any opinion that I have about PA as any kind of legitimate publisher. Perhaps you didn't expect enough from your own writing and were willing to settle for what you could. Maybe you didn't go to school for two years to take writing courses and find an agent you thought would represent you legitimately either: or work two jobs as a single parent to see that your child had a college education with little or no help from his father. Sure, you don't pay PA a cent, you just get taken for every penny you have in order to purchase copies of your own work and then stand on street corners and sell what you can. Doesn't matter, because once you try and send your work to another publisher and put on your letter that you have a book with PA, they will most likely toss it in the trash without ever giving it a moments consideration. Call a few publishers and ask them their feelings on PA. While your at it, ask them what types of promotions they do with their authors as opposed to PA. Ask book stores why they will not put PA books on their shelves. Then buzz over to http://www.anotherealm.com/prededitors/pealn.htm, click on book publishers, scroll down to PA and read the many many posts there, including a letter from Barnes and Noble to one author.

I don't know about everyone here as far as their own personal experience with PA, but I know mine and I know for a fact that I am much better off without PA. I didn't know about PA's policies when I signed their really inane contract. That one is on me. I wouldn't, however, recommend PA to my worst enemy based on my experience with them.

There are over 75 different threads here about PA. Why, I ask you, would we all focus on just one publisher if there wasn't something completely wrong about them? If you have had a good experience with PA, then I commend you. If all you expected of your work was to just see it in book form and sell what you could when you could afford to buy more copies of it, I again, commend you. Just please, don't try and convince me, knowing absolutely nothing about my personal writing goals, or anticipations, that my book having been published with PA was ever a good idea. You'd be barking up the wrong tree.

My apologies if this offends anyone, but that post just struck a nerve. A still very touchy one.

I went through all this negative crap when I tried to get some good advice the last time I moved about moving companies. What I found out is that any idiot can say any idiotic thing on this internet and not be held accountable.

There is no doubt that some people have had problems BUT I have to look at the expectations of the people. I didn't go in and think that I would get so much for so little. No one knows me. PA doesn't know if I will buy or sell a single copy and they worked for me and TRUSTED me. I love them for that.

You also have to look at the other options of an UNKNOWN UNPROVEN author. No traditional publisher will trust you UNTIL YOU PROVE YOU HAVE AN AUDIENCE. PA is giving you the opportunity to prove yourself.
 

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That's a good question right now.
No, but MANY MANY professional writers started out with vanity publishers

No, they didn't.

and had to shell out thousands of dollars to get their books printed and then had to sell so many out of cars, bookfairs, etc.,

Not true.

before the REAL traditional publishers would give them the time of day.

Again, untrue.

Unknown authors must remember that they are the competition to these professional writers

I understand your perspective on this, but it's really a lot more complicated than that. Most writing sinks or swims on its own and not in comparison to what others have submitted. Fortunately, there are lots of readers out there who will read more than one book a year. It also assumes that all professional writers are manipulative bastards with no sense of moral decency. Not only isn't that true, it's insulting.

Look around these boards and not just the PA section. You will find writers helping writers every day.
 

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Moderator's Note to bstevens:

First off, welcome to Absolute Write. I hope you'll avail yourself of the many helpful and fun forums and threads we have here. We welcome all writers. Please read the Newbies Guide when you can, it will help you avoid some basic pitfalls here.

I've moved and merged your threads. The Watercooler Announcements forum is for announcements about the Watercooler. The Self Promotion forum is for announcements about your book. All other Publish America topics belong in this forum which is why I moved one of your threads and then merged it with the other one in here.
 

bstevens

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By the way, you can sell/promote your own work at book fairs, book clubs, on the internet, and through word of mouth. I have planned to use all of my vacation at book/literary events.

I'm not expecting to sit in my easy chair and money just falls in my lap.
 

bstevens

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Birol said:
No, they didn't.



Not true.



Again, untrue.



I understand your perspective on this, but it's really a lot more complicated than that. Most writing sinks or swims on its own and not in comparison to what others have submitted. Fortunately, there are lots of readers out there who will read more than one book a year. It also assumes that all professional writers are manipulative bastards with no sense of moral decency. Not only isn't that true, it's insulting.

Look around these boards and not just the PA section. You will find writers helping writers every day.

I'm a black person, speaking about black writers. Some famous ones who sold out of cars are Zane (now that she proved herself she has her own imprint with a major publisher), E. Lynn Harris, etc., and they had to pay thousands for books to be printed UP FRONT.
 

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I'm not interested in PA as a writer. I do have a completed novel but I find I prefer to write short stories more, so that means a traditional magazine or Ezine format.

But really, Bstevens, instead of pushing the PA format so hard why not just hang out and talk about writing in general? Plenty of places here to swap information about the craft.
 

bstevens

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xhouseboy said:
Missed that bit. Had to respond before I put my head down for the night.

You seem to be contradicting yourself. You first claim that publishers (PA invented the term 'traditional publishers'; before PA there was only 'publishers') are upset with PA because they have had a major effect on the volume of manuscripts they receive. You then go on to imply that publishers operate on the twisted logic that they like to have everyone's good work sent to them so that they can have a quick glance at it before sending out a standard rejection slip. This conjures to mind an office filled with demented employees attempting to see how fast they can force the company down the tubes.

You're defeating your own argument right there. Aside from the fact that publishers don't give a toss about PA, what makes you think that they have a vested interest in bankruptcy?

It's most likely true that PA has indeed beat publishers out of a few good manuscripts, but PA also prints out the slush pile other publishers wouldn't touch, not unless they really do want to end up destitute.

And as for the good books that they did hoover up with their 'accept anything' policy, I think you'll find that the authors of these books realise their mistake, and eventually find their way over here in an effort to find other like-minded and talented authors who are also trying to ditch PA. Some of them have since freed themselves from PA's clutches and gone on to better things with real publishers.

Any good manuscript suffering the misfortune of falling into PA's hands will sink without trace, condemned to 7 years in the publishing wilderness.

Traditional publishers are looking for well known names WHO THEY KNOW WILL SELL. They don't know you. If you want to spend all your days quering some SOB over and over and spending money on stamps, envs etc., go ahead. I'm not young enough to wait 4EVER. Not only that, most OF THEM WON'T TOUCH YOU WITHOUT AN AGENT and most agents won't touch you PERIOD. I went through that crap for a whole year. I finally got an agent who said she would represent me BUT SHE WANTED ME TO SEND HER MONEY LOL. No thanks. My best option is PA.

And as far as the bankruptcy question, the REASON THEY won't touch an unknown author even with a good manuscript is because of fear of bankruptcy. That's why they stick with the tried and true, politicians, movie stars, and dinosaur writers.
 

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bstevens said:
Unknown authors must remember that they are the competition to these professional writers and taking money out of their pockets, just like all the reality shows with regular people are taking jobs from professional actors. I love this new era of the common man being given a chance.

If you can derive satisfaction from knowing 50 or 75 people are going to read your book, then I am happy for you. But don't operate under the illusion that each sale will generate more sales, and with a lot of work your book will gain the attention of a lot of people, because it won't. Trust me, I've been there. Your first royalty check will be the biggest, because it's friends and family (mostly), and you will want to believe the second one will be even bigger, but it won't even come close.

As far as promoting and purchasing books, please please please be careful, Barbara. I had three different newspaper articles about my book, and each one only generated a few sales. As far as consignment is concerned, setting up the deal with the bookstore is the easy part. It's not really a sale until a reader carries it to the counter and buys it.

A lot of us here are former PA authors, and every approach to this has already been tried numerous times. As long as you are prepared for the few sales I referenced above, and as long as you refrain from trying any expensive marketing plans, I hope you enjoy the experience.
 

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To quote the great Shirley Temple: "Oh my goodness..." Been a while since we've had one of these, eh kids? Matter of fact, some of us were there once. Just be nice to her, that's all. The stars in her eyes will fade come August.
 

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