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Renaissance E Books, Inc.

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condor221

Just a general warning about Renaissance e-books. The publisher broke off contact with me, ignores e-mails, ignored two registered letters, has failed to send latest sales figures for last quarter, and has failed to send royalties. Publisher has refused cancellation of contract by maintianing my book on her website without compensation. Contract states that all disputes must be met with binding arbitration....arbitration costs $350, way more then made on the book. Would NOT recommend this publisher to anyone.
 

Carmy

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Eeek! Thanks for the warning. Sorry to hear what's happening.
 

Popeyesays

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Just a general warning about Renaissance e-books. The publisher broke off contact with me, ignores e-mails, ignored two registered letters, has failed to send latest sales figures for last quarter, and has failed to send royalties. Publisher has refused cancellation of contract by maintianing my book on her website without compensation. Contract states that all disputes must be met with binding arbitration....arbitration costs $350, way more then made on the book. Would NOT recommend this publisher to anyone.

Send them a "Cease and Desist" letter, you can find the forms on-line.
Then check in the state where arbitration can occur for pro bono arts lawyers.

See if a lawyer would take up a law suit based on the notion that they have already made the contract null and void and that includes the 'no litigation' clause,

Regards,
Scott
 

Mac H.

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See if a lawyer would take up a law suit based on the notion that they have already made the contract null and void and that includes the 'no litigation' clause,
Would that really work?

After all, surely a contract can agree to limit disputes to any forum the parties agree to ... you could even specify the Quaker Church Elders if you want. Then any court would simply point out that they don't have jurisdiction.

(Of course, if there is criminal acts involved etc, that changes things)

The other query would be what would be in it for the lawyer. If you achieve your aim and win ... then the contract is null and void. That means that there is no obligation for the publisher to pay you a cent.

So the lawyer would have to be paid by you - for no real benefit even if you win.

Just send them a termination letter. They are just being lazy by not keeping their website up-to-date.

If you want to get money out of them, get a friend to order your e-book from them. Since they don't have the rights any more, they'll be breaking copyright if they deliver the e-book.

As long as you've registered copyright in the USA, there is a minimum payment per offence and guaranteed legal fees for you and your lawyer.

Of course, if they are in dire straits (which they may be) you'll just be trying to get blood out of a stone ... so it may still not be worth the bother. If the company folds before you get money, you'll still end up with no money.

Good luck,

Mac
 

James D. Macdonald

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I'm not a lawyer, but it sure sounds like they've abandoned the contract.

So, go to arbitration. Part of what the arbiter rules may well be that they pay for your cost of bringing the arbitration.
 

CaoPaux

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Argh, I conflated links. I'll edit, thanks.

ETA: And if the OP would please indicate which is the Renaissance in question, it would be Most Appreciated.
 
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janrafrank

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I know this is old, but I thought I would add something to it as I'm one of their biggest authors.

Since the death of Richard O'Connor two and a half years ago, there has been a steady decline in the promptness given to author questions, issuing of contracts, and promotion.

Last summer, royalties were three months late as were payments to their copy-editors. Several very good people on their staff quit as a result of not getting paid on time.

Jean Marie does not appear to be managing matters as well as they were when Richard was in control of the company.

I am very concerned about this matter.
 

Khazarkhum

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Poor Jean. She's always lead a rather --complicated-- life.
 

janrafrank

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It has come to my attention that some of Jean Marie's authors have never been paid. In particular, Mark Orr. I know my own sales figures for the period that Mark's book was out, and his book was outselling mine to judge by it's placement on the Fictionwise Dark Fantasy Best Seller list. My guestimate based upon my own figures from that period are that he sold at least 500 copies.

http://therustynail.wordpress.com/2008/08/04/belated-birthday-present/#comments

It's comment #34.
 

Khazarkhum

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Not too surprising, really--the situation has been deteriorating for some time now.
 

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RP looks to be a different entity, with a lot more focus on print books (through Lulu).

Footnote: Renaissance-ebooks.com is gone.
 

Khazarkhum

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That's the one run by Jean-Marie Stine, and it's the one that hasn't been paying authors.
 

janrafrank

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In 2001, I had to sick the SFWA grievance committee on her. While working for the original owner, she simply handed them an anthology she had edited for Longmeadow. It contained one of my stories. The committee contacted her and I recieved $100 from her. She does not own the subrights to the stories in that book. I don't know if the committee was able to locate all of the other writers in the book or not. I remember they were having some problems with some of them.

I allowed my membership to lapse, and am now regretting it.

So far as I know, the book is still available from them and the money is going into Jean's pocket and staying there.

Since Jean has stated to me that the records of each royalty period are erased after the royalties are finished, no one will be able to find out how many copies were sold.
 

SirOtter

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That's the one run by Jean-Marie Stine, and it's the one that hasn't been paying authors.

Including me. Howling in the Park has been available since October and I've never seen a sales report or dime one.
 

janrafrank

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I demanded all my rights back from Jean. I included a mention of P&E. I meant it as a threat and she took it as a heads up and thanked me for it. Then she said that she intends to get in touch with Victoria to straighten matters out.

Sigh.
 

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Since Jean has stated to me that the records of each royalty period are erased after the royalties are finished, no one will be able to find out how many copies were sold.
Aren't businesses required by law to keep financial records for X number of years? Paging Mr. Taxman....
 

janrafrank

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Yes they are. That's part of what most disturbs me. A year ago, I had a shot at a deal with a major publisher, but they wanted to see the sales figures for my ebooks. Jean was only able to provide the figures for Fictionwise and not the other distributors she was selling my books through.

The Fictionwise figures were not large enough for them to be taken seriously and reflected only a fraction of what I had sold.

I did not have my own set of figures because of a hard drive crash. They send the sales reports out in email.
 

Khazarkhum

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I demanded all my rights back from Jean. I included a mention of P&E. I meant it as a threat and she took it as a heads up and thanked me for it. Then she said that she intends to get in touch with Victoria to straighten matters out.

Sigh.

Jean's a charmer, but methinks Victoria & Dave will see right through her.
 

janrafrank

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I think that they will, Khazar. There was a time when I believed that no one would ever believe me. I thought that Jean was so charming and persuasive that I held in all back.

Then when James Frenkel took me on as a client for his agency, he straightened me out. Jean had not fooled him a bit.
 

ghostposts

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How many errors?

I sent a novel in to renaissance e books over a year ago, and finally got tired of waiting. I finally pulled it last week, after a friend asked to publish it.

Now I'm wondering if I should pull all my books, since they have made so many errors in the past.

I took back the series I had with them "The Dragon Thing To Do" yet hesitate to pull the electronic rights to a duology called Evas' Son." It's dark fiction and I've had more than a few readers comment about the cover art and the numerous typos in the e books.

I went over my manuscript and didn't find that many, but truthfully, it was not formatted properly when I sent it. For some reason anything I sent that was originally written in word perfect lost its formatting when sent by e mail. After being told this I purchased Word.

Still, the main character was a rather ogerish old male and this novel was far from a romance, yet the cover shows a young man posed as if the book is a bodice ripper. It's misleading, and anyone looking to buy a romance will not be happy with this duology.

I hate to complain, and yet here I am, doing so. Jean has delayed publication of three novels for a period of a little over a year, (one of the reasons I pulled the series). She's put the wrong cover art on all but two of my books. (4 out of 6)

She's been months late with payments and sales reports, and has not even bothered tolist most of my books on her own web site.. My last name is even misspelled on the web site:

"Futures-Past publishes new science fiction, fantasy and horror ebooks by bestselling authors such as Joe Vadalma (the Morgaine series about a modern day Sorceress), Janrae Frank (the Dark Brothers of the Light), Ardath Mayhar (Balrog winner, Nebula nominee, and a slew of other awards and nominations), Stuart J. Byrne (veteran 50s pulpster whose newest novel, Star Quest was the number one sf ebook bestseller at fictionwise.com for five weeks running), J. D. Crayne (the Captain Spycer books), EPPIE finalist Stefan Vucak (the Shadow Gods saga), Jac Eddins (the Minstrel's Song series) plus Matt Kirkby, Susie Haws, Tim Fishers, Michale Swanson (the Evil Heights Quartet), Octavio Ramos Jr. (Startling Science Stories Best Original Fiction Award), and others."

http://shop.renebooks.com/SearchResults.asp?Cat=104

Should I pull the duology, too?

susie hawes
 

Elizabeth George's book Write Away