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[Publisher] Month9Books

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A.P.M.

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Has anyone who's submitted heard anything in a while? My submission is coming up on the 4-month mark.
 

tbrosz

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I submitted my book on May 1, and didn't get a response until almost the end of August. But it was a positive one. Never give up!

pm_2015-10-05.jpg
 

MysteryMavin

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FYI: Month9Books just announced they are closed to submissions through March 2016.
 

K.L Hallam

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LOL, Vandal, appears that way to me too. :) I'm hunting you down and adding you to my lists. Congratulations! Your book sounds amazing, and somewhat creepy, and very cool. Good luck with your submissions, everyone!
 

truantoranje

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My sub is still showing In-Progress nearly a year later. I'm leery of querying because historically every time I do, the response is invariably a rejection. Guess the waiting game goes on.
 

Krista G.

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For what it's worth, I'm a firm believer in the follow-up. I know it seems like follow-ups always result in rejections, but that's because most submissions result in rejections. They engaged with you when they asked to see your manuscript, so you deserve an answer. It's a professional courtesy, and far too many agents and/or publishers are allowed to get away with never responding to their requests.
 

CathieArms

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Hey everybody! I don't post often, but I lurk a lot. I'm here to ask y'all for any new updates on Swoon Romance Publishing. I received an offer this morning for my YA manuscript, and am looking for those with experience with this publisher. On paper they look truly fantastic; and I was impressed with the offer letter. But I'm cautious by nature and have learned from experience to give all things full consideration.

Can y'all share with me the positive and negatives? If you're not comfortable doing it publicly, I'd be happy with an inbox message. Please know that I would keep your comments confidential.

Thanks!
 

truantoranje

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For what it's worth, I'm a firm believer in the follow-up. I know it seems like follow-ups always result in rejections, but that's because most submissions result in rejections. They engaged with you when they asked to see your manuscript, so you deserve an answer. It's a professional courtesy, and far too many agents and/or publishers are allowed to get away with never responding to their requests.

I followed up, heard nothing for another 3 months, then received a one-line form rejection. History always repeats. *sigh*
 

RG Sarsparilla

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What follows is my very honest opinion of, and warning about, Month9Books. I (and MANY OTHERS) have wanted to speak up about Month9 for some time, but I have felt too intimidated/fearful for my writing career to do so. However, I see so many happy new authors signing on with Month9 that I feel duty-bound to share my experiences, and hopefully save others a great deal of heartache and frustration. This has been a heartbreaking experience, and I can’t begin to explain how much I hate that things have turned out this way.

Without saying too much (I don’t want to out myself), I have been with Month9 for a long time. When I signed, I was thrilled. Georgia McBride was approachable and enthusiastic. She made me feel as though I was a partner in publication, from cover design to marketing, and she was a true supporter of my book. But over the months (and now over the few years she’s been in business), there have been countless broken promises, and worst of all, questionable royalty statements and an utter lack of payment.

As Month9Books expanded (Swoon, Tantrum, etc.), Georgia began to throw up communication barriers. I signed on to a small publisher where we were all a team, but Georgia slowly ascended to a position where she was no longer approachable. But we all understood, and even sympathized; the company was growing in leaps and bounds, and she couldn’t cater to all of us like she had in the past. There just wasn’t the time.

But Month9 became increasingly problematic. The marketing plan as promised never materialized. Book trailers that were never made (some authors did get them), promotional materials I wound up having to pay for myself, ARCs that were promised but never printed…the list goes on and on.

Things have continued to go downhill at an alarming rate. Many of our contracts are in breach due to undelivered royalty statements along with a host of other issues, and many authors have never been paid (over a period of several years). The reporting of royalties is dubious, at best, and there has been ZERO accounting for Kindle Unlimited, which pays for page reads. Where is that money going? We have no idea. When questioned about even the smallest of things, Georgia’s answer is to name-call, threaten, and often, revert rights.

It would seem the ship is sinking fast. Dozens upon dozens of authors are getting dropped in a desperate attempt to save the company (presented as restructuring), yet she has clearly stated she intends to continue signing new authors despite this turn of events. She owes money to the vast majority of her authors, perhaps even all of us. To reiterate, many haven’t been paid in YEARS.

Please, please use an abundance of caution if considering Month9Books as a publisher. It is in an extremely tenuous position, and may not be around much longer. Even if Georgia does manage to keep afloat, you will not be paid. You will not be supported. Your work will not get the marketing and exposure it deserves.
 

andiwrite

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I just lost my book deal with Swoon today. :( And the future deal for my sequel.

There's a lot I could say, but I'm hesitant to say anything just yet. I do really like Georgia as a person, and I wish or think nothing negative towards her at all. But the above post is indeed concerning.

I'm actually glad this is happening. I don't think I can handle dealing with all the craziness that goes on at publishing companies. Officially on the path to becoming a self-published author as of today.
 
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AuburnAssassin

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I am pleased to be getting my rights back. A YA ebook format only was not a wise move on my part to begin with.

And Andi, your book deserved so much more attention and hoopla than it seemed to get. Do find a way to publish the sequel. I will certainly buy and read it.
 

andiwrite

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Thank you. I'm going to re-brand Edge and the sequel with new covers and self-publish within the next year or so. I'm trying to view this as a learning experience, but I admit it's pretty hard to work for years on a book, finally get your book deal, feel on top of the world, get a SECOND deal for the sequel, and then lose it all. :(

Things happen for a reason though. I've been getting an itching feeling that self-publishing was the better path for me for some time now. I'm a very anxiety ridden person and I don't do well knowing an entire company is counting on me to sell books. The one thing I wasn't prepared for with publishing was how extremely difficult selling books was. I'd rather just self-publish, sell whatever I sell, and not worry about it. I hated feeling like I was letting Georgia down the whole time I wasn't selling. :(
 

Miss Java

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I got my rights back from Month9 several months ago. BEST thing that ever happened to me. I re-published with a new title and cover, and in the first week, I made more than I made 10 months with Month9. Technically, one day of self-publishing made more for me than Month9 since I have yet to get anything fro-- ahem. That is another story. :)

What I'm saying is... you don't NEED a publisher to be successful. I think a lot of authors think they need a publisher name attached to their book to count as published. But royalties are MUCH bigger on your own (70% ebook). And I make tons with Kindle Unlimited. (2/3 of my earnings are from those free reads; I get paid per page read). Since I published on April 1st, I've made close to $5,000. And each month I will get a check because Amazon is good for their money.

AND I have ALL say in my title and my cover, or if I want to make a sale day. It is all MINE. No having my release date pushed back multiple times. I set the date. I set my own pace. And if I'm ambitious and want to publish 10 books in a year (not that I will), I CAN because it is on my time frame and I call the shots. There is no one else that is lined up in front of me. My publishing interests take center stage. And each book published adds to your income. Some of the self-publishers on the kindle form earn 5 figures a month.

There are expenses to self-publishing. Cover. Editing. Etc. But the freedom is so worth the expense. And I've made back my expense in a short amount of time. Not that EVERYONE does that, but it happened for me. Self-publishing is a good thing. It has a learning curve, but worth it. Oh, and I am able to publish overseas. Because I was with Month9, they held my rights and my ebooks weren't available overseas. I've done very well in other countries, especially Austrailia and Japan. It was a market I couldn't tap before because my rights weren't my own.

I've also got an audio book in production, with a narrator I got to choose on my own. Very fun process to choose my artist, choose my narrator. Best thing I've done.
 

andiwrite

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I feel so much hope now. :) Thank you guys for reaching out and explaining what's happened for you since separating from Month9. It has really made this blow easier to take, and I feel insanely excited for my future as a self-published author now, especially after that wonderfully positive post from Miss Java! THANK YOU SO MUCH!
 

M. H. Lee

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Logged on here to see if anyone had access to the full PW article here: http://lunch.publishersmarketplace....antrum-books-pares-back-list-health-problems/

I'd seen her FB post about health issues and trimming books, but hadn't heard anything about potential non-payment issues before now. Twitter source seemed to indicate the article above talks about non-payment, but I can't access it.

Unfortunately, I had a friend with offers from two companies a couple years ago and told her there was nothing on AW that showed any red flags for Month9 and that's who she went with. Sorry to see this happening. If anyone has info/advice I can pass on to her, would appreciate a PM.
 

amergina

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I have a PM account, but I can't post the whole thing, obviously.

Basically, that money bit says that there are reports of authors complaining about late of absent royalty payments. Here's a quote from the article about the supposed causes:

...which McBride attributes to firing an "unresponsive" and "pretty damaging" accountant, losing the company's counsel (whose husband died), and "substantial growing pains, mostly in the past 6-9 months," that went along with their "amazing growth."

The article also quotes her as saying:

"If you owed [sic] a payment of any kind (advance or royalties), I will be in touch regarding when you or your agent or attorney as to when you will be paid."

Apparently, there was an email on Thursday to authors that contained all this?
 

andiwrite

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Yes, she sent out a big email to everyone followed immediately by private emails to those of us being dropped.

Also, I have no idea how to know if I'm owed money if I was never told how many books I sold. To this day, I do not know. :( And that has really, really sucked. I spent so much on advertising and have no clue if it was effective or not.

I can't wait to be self-published. I never want to feel this confused, out of control, and upset again. I am just done with the trade publishing world forever.
 
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amergina

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...you haven't gotten a royalty statement??? :Jaw:That's some BS right there! Totally understand why you're going the SP route!

FWIW, most trades aren't like that. I'm published w/ Penguin Random House, and while they're on a 6 month royalty period, they *also* have an author portal where I can see my weekly US sales (and monthly overall, because some numbers come to them differently), so I at least have a decent idea of how things are going.

My smaller pubs pay/report monthly.

It's absolutely shitty that you don't *know*. Your books been out a while, as I recall!