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Sterling & Ross / Cambridge House Press / Metropol Literary (Drew Nederpelt)

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overeasy

Hi -

Does anyone have info on Cambridge House Books? I was referred to them by someone I think I can trust, but ya' never know. They appear to be a publisher that demands an investment from the author (bells go off for me!) but they claim not to be a vanity press...

I am new hear and did check the "storm warnings" list and didn't seem them.

Thanks!

Overeasy
 

Tilly

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If the investment is a financial one on the part of the author, then listen to your internal alarm bells :).

Do you have a website for them? I haven't found one (google hates me, so that doesn't mean one doesn't exist).

And welcome!:welcome:
 
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CaoPaux

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Packager. Avoid.

At Cambridge House, we can ‘crash’ a book in as little as 30 days, though our average is 4 months. While that time savings generates directly into cost savings versus the major imprints, producing and publishing a book with Cambridge House is not inexpensive; Author's costs range from $8,000 and upward, depending on the amount of work involved. However, that investment is repaid from first-proceeds and the royalties are 4-5 times what the standard publishers pay. With some financial risk comes increased financial reward- it's only fair. See #11 below regarding a more detailed breakdown of royalties.
 

Tilly

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Thanks Overeasy :).

What CaoPaux said.

Are they really a normal book packager? I didn't think those charged authors.
 
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CaoPaux

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Tilly said:
Are they really a normal book packager? I didn't think those charged authors.
They are New & Improved, of course. Here's their full "For Writers" spiel:

The Opportunity

Whether you’re a previously published author or a first time writer, Cambridge House has the ability to bring your project to market unlike any other entity. If your project is of superior value, Cambridge House might be your choice for success in the challenging realm of commercial publishing.

We can take your project from any point and partner with you in actually publishing the finished product into the marketplace and beyond. Unlike other packagers, Cambridge House not only produces books but also publishes, distributes and markets them. We're not a printing company, we're a full-fledged publishing company- and we can be your partner in bringing your project to market succesfully.

Publishing, Not Printing

Cambridge House produces saleable, commercial trade books and publishes, sells, distributes and markets them into the marketplace. We are not a printer. We are not a print-on-demand or vanity publisher. We do everything Simon & Schuster does, and more. If you’re looking to spend $500 to print 10 copies of your book, there are many companies that provide that service. Cambridge House is not one of them.

The books that we develop are professionally designed, edited, printed, sold and marketed just like the major publishers demand and the major booksellers require. We don’t publish books that are not up to market standards. We’re not in the business of producing books with writers, we’re in the business of selling books with authors.

The Requirements

1. A valuable project.

It doesn’t matter if you have an idea or an entire manuscript edited and ready to go, in order to be considered by Cambridge House you must have a compelling and commercial project.

2. Enthusiasm.

As you already know, writing is tough. Re-writing is even tougher. As a result, if you’re not enthusiastic about your project, you will soon find better things to do with your time. Enthusiasm translates into sales, and Cambridge House is looking for books that sell and authors that are enthusiastic.

3. Resources.

Making a book is not a cheap undertaking (keep in mind that Print-On-Demand is printing, not publishing, and several worlds apart from what Cambridge House does). Mainstream publishing companies like Simon & Schuster and Random House spend more than $100,000 in labor and overhead to develop a single book (not including the actual printing of the books and marketing). Since these mainstream publishers typically take 18 months to prepare a book, that timing is reflected in that six-figure cost.

At Cambridge House, we can ‘crash’ a book in as little as 30 days, though our average is 4 months. While that time savings generates directly into cost savings versus the major imprints, producing and publishing a book with Cambridge House is not inexpensive; Author's costs range from $8,000 and upward, depending on the amount of work involved. However, that investment is repaid from first-proceeds and the royalties are 4-5 times what the standard publishers pay. With some financial risk comes increased financial reward- it's only fair. See #11 below regarding a more detailed breakdown of royalties.

The 12-steps of Book Production and Publishing:

1. Evaluation
You send us your project and our editors, sales and design team determine suitability for the commercial market and whether Cambridge House feels able to invest in the success of the work. This process generally takes one week. Hardcopy is preferred but electronic submissions are accepted as well. We only take on a few projects each month since the financial and time investment is considerable.

2. Contract
If your project is deemed commercial enough for our investment by Cambridge House, a contract will be submitted to you for review and discussion.

3. Writing (optional)
Depending on the status of your manuscript and genre, Cambridge House can help with original writing.

4. Editing
Cambridge House will edit your project for content, style, context, tense, continuity, grammar and spelling. This may take from two to six weeks, depending on genre and length. Cambridge House also handles permissions as well.

5. Design
Our in-house designers will design your dust-jacket (hardcover), trade paper, or mass market cover.

6. Typesetting
The book will be laid out after all the editing and writing has been completed. This takes about one week.

7. Galley Printing
The book is printed in galley form (also known as ARC- Advanced Review Copy) for distribution to the media, advanced reviewers and long-lead magazines.

8. Sales
The Cambridge House sales team calls on all book outlets across the country to pitch the project to the buyers at the bricks and mortar stores (Wal-Mart, Barnes & Noble, Borders, Hudson News, B. Dalton, Walden Books, WH Smith, Books-A-Million, etc.), the distributors (Anderson Merchandising, Baker & Taylor, Ingram, American Wholesale, AMS, Levy, Follett, Bookazine, etc.) and all online sales entities (amazon, bn.com, borders.com, etc.). If the project is a good fit, it will be pitched to specific book clubs as well.

9. Printing
Based on initial sales estimates and advanced media, Cambridge House will print books and begin distribution.

10. Marketing
With a publicist assigned to your project, Cambridge House arranges author appearances and media to support the launch and continued promotion of the book. An outside agency may also be involved in promoting the project.

11. Income
As a partial underwriter for the initial expense of developing and publishing the book, the Author is paid 60% of all income until the initial investment has been recouped. After the Author has recouped the initial expense, the Author and Cambridge House share in the proceeds at 50% each for the remainder of the life of the book. We're only successful if you're successful.

12. Subsidiary Rights
If applicable and desirable, Cambridge House sells subsidiary rights to the project, including first and second serialization, syndication, book club, film, television, radio, dramatic, audio, video, reprint, foreign translation, abridgement, excerpt, anthology, textbook, electronic publication and e-book. All proceeds from these sales are distributed evenly between Author and Cambridge House.

More information is available in the Publishing Contract that will be supplied should Cambridge House choose to partner with the Author in the publication of the work.
 

overeasy

Thanks for everyone's input.

Funny, but does it really have to be this hard :)

Easy
 

SneezeGuard

Let's get some perspective

Firstly, packagers charge publishers for their services. Did you think they were charities? The most famous packaged books are the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew series. This packager happens to do the same type of thing, but also includes authors, if they pass some type of scrutiny, or so your post says.

Secondly, if you can get a deal at a regular publisher or get an agent, you don't need this kind of company. And from what I've read on their site, this is pitched as a resort for those who have exhausted all other means. So let's cut all the hand-wrining and woe-is-me and keep things in perspective-- no one is putting a gun to your head. Simply move on, get a copy of Writer's Market, and start quering publishers yourself. No muss, no fuss.

And frankly EasyOver, not to be catty, but I doubt any publisher, regardless of niche, is going to be interested in a writer who knows not the difference between "hear" and "here." The sooner everyone faces facts that getting published is bloody hard, the better off everyone will be. Not everyone deserves to be published, regardless of what the IBM ad says.
 

Tilly

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SneezeGuard said:
Firstly, packagers charge publishers for their services. Did you think they were charities?
::blinks::

Huh?

Do packagers normally charge the author? Do many vanity presses charge eight grand? They may not be charities, but commercial publishers pay authors.

The most famous packaged books are the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew series. This packager happens to do the same type of thing, but also includes authors, if they pass some type of scrutiny, or so your post says.
Includes the authors, as in charging them?

Secondly, if you can get a deal at a regular publisher or get an agent, you don't need this kind of company. And from what I've read on their site, this is pitched as a resort for those who have exhausted all other means.
But it's useful for writers to have the information on this thread, so that those who are interested in commercial publishing don't get confused by the 'we are not a vanity press' nonsense.


So let's cut all the hand-wrining and woe-is-me and keep things in perspective-- no one is putting a gun to your head. Simply move on, get a copy of Writer's Market, and start quering publishers yourself. No muss, no fuss.
Why on earth are you so bothered about us discussing this subject?

And frankly EasyOver, not to be catty, but I doubt any publisher, regardless of niche, is going to be interested in a writer who knows not the difference between "hear" and "here."
Well, that was catty. Adding 'not to be' before 'catty' doesn't stop it being catty. I've also seen published writers on this and other forums make minor typos and errors. They're human.

The sooner everyone faces facts that getting published is bloody hard, the better off everyone will be.
How does that have anything to do with pointing out Cambridge is a vanity press?

Not everyone deserves to be published, regardless of what the IBM ad says.
I agree, in the sense that not every writer who submits is publishable, and publishers serve readers rather than writers. And yet your only post on here is to defend a vanity press.

Odd.

Welcome to Absolute Write.:)
 
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UrsusMinor

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SneezeGuard said:
And frankly EasyOver, not to be catty, but I doubt any publisher, regardless of niche, is going to be interested in a writer who knows not the difference between "hear" and "here."

I would classify that not just as catty, but downright snide.

Personally, I make some allowance for spelling/homonyms in e-mails.
 

Roger J Carlson

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SneezeGuard said:
Secondly, if you can get a deal at a regular publisher or get an agent, you don't need this kind of company. And from what I've read on their site, this is pitched as a resort for those who have exhausted all other means. So let's cut all the hand-wrining and woe-is-me and keep things in perspective-- no one is putting a gun to your head. Simply move on, get a copy of Writer's Market, and start quering publishers yourself. No muss, no fuss.

And frankly EasyOver, not to be catty, but I doubt any publisher, regardless of niche, is going to be interested in a writer who knows not the difference between "hear" and "here." The sooner everyone faces facts that getting published is bloody hard, the better off everyone will be. Not everyone deserves to be published, regardless of what the IBM ad says.
Then it's not catty for me to point out "hand-wrining" and "quering". Everybody makes typos and spelling errors on forums.
 

Roger J Carlson

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Hmmm. Tried to Google them. Can't find them on the first few pages when searching:
Cambridge House
Cambridge House books
Cambridge House publishing

They don't have much of a web presence for a successful book packager. Their own site doesn't even come up.
 

Popeyesays

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I would point out that they act as an agent for subsidiary rights but charge A WHOPPING HUGE 50%!

An agent charges 15% as a standard, 20% for foreign rights which are split with the agent in the foreign country who handles the book there.

This place is no publisher in the common sense.

Legitimate book packagers usually do the concept work themselves and then acquire the individual authors who write the book most often on a "for hire" basis. Those individual authors don't put a dime into it and are usually paid a flat rate.

Publishers pay authors. Book packagers pay authors. Book packagers pitch their projects to publishers, not to individual authors.

"And that's the way it was . . . ."

Regards,
Scott
 

MartyKay

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Sockpuppet said:
Firstly, packagers charge publishers for their services. Did you think WE were charities? The most famous packaged books are the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew series. WE happen to do the same type of thing, but also take money from authors, if they pass some type of scrutiny i.e. have money

Secondly, if you can get a deal at a regular publisher or get an agent, you don't need us. And from what I've read on our site, this is pitched as a resort for those who have exhausted all other means. So let's cut all the hand-wrining and woe-is-me and keep things in perspective-- no one is putting a gun to your head. Simply move on, get a copy of Writer's Market, and start quering publishers yourself. No muss, no fuss. No money for us

And frankly EasyOver, not to be catty, but I doubt any publisher, regardless of niche, is going to be interested in a writer who knows not the difference between "hear" and "here." or "hand-wrining" or "quering"*The sooner everyone faces facts that getting published is bloody hard, the better off everyone will be. Not everyone deserves to be published, regardless of what the IBM ad says.

... ;)
* credit to Roger
 
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soloset

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I'm not sure I understand the fuss; Cambridge House is a subsidy publisher, right? At least that's what I picked up from their website -- they go into great detail about "partnership" and what services they provide.

Do I know what kinds of distribution outlets they have? No, I don't, and I'd sure want to know before using their services if I were contemplating doing so. I'd also want to see a sample of their work if I were purchasing their services.

"Vanity Press" does not automatically equal "evil scam". Sometimes a person who has written a book chooses to go this route (for whatever reason) and that's okay as long as they aren't being lied to and defrauded.

Oh, and by the way, a poster really needs to have made an appearance as someone else prior to creating the new persona to be a true sockpuppet. Otherwise, if they have a clear bias, they're probably a shill or a mouthpiece; still suspect -- and in this case, rather unpleasant -- but not necessarily a sockpuppet. =D
 

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soloset said:
"Vanity Press" does not automatically equal "evil scam". Sometimes a person who has written a book chooses to go this route (for whatever reason) and that's okay as long as they aren't being lied to and defrauded.
I don't see anywhere that they were called an evil scam. The original poster asked if anybody had information on them since they asked for an investment from the writer but claimed to not be a vanity press. The concensus is that they are a vanity press. This constitutes a lie as far as I am concerned.
 

soloset

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I didn't intend to say that anyone had called this company an evil scam; I was simply making a general statement that prefaced my next point. I apologize if my meaning wasn't clear.
 

John Menkes

Cambridge House Press

Actually, there appear to be two such presses, one in the UK, and the other in NYC. The former publishes old maps, or like rare books, the latter is the scam or near scam that has contacted me.

The problem with going with them is the lack of publicity. Are they going to find reviewers? Do they advertise? Their website is uninspiring.


John Hans
 

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soloset said:
"Vanity Press" does not automatically equal "evil scam". Sometimes a person who has written a book chooses to go this route (for whatever reason) and that's okay as long as they aren't being lied to and defrauded.

Of course not (And I know you knew that) but I think it starts to head in the direction of "evil scam" or at least "dishonest" when the web-site mostly is trying to assure the writer that it's not a scam, or a vanity press.

Mostly, TOR's web-site is geared toward readers. Nowhere on their site do I see "We Are Not A Vanity Press!!!! Writers, Send your Book to US!!!!"

Which is not to say that all publishers are TOR (I can see a small publisher, and independent honest-to-god publisher who uses POD technology putting up a small page attached to the submissions page which explains that they aren't a vanity publisher) but at least I think most publishers should gear toward readers on their web-sites.

Victoria posts mysterious comments just to get me interested. It's like seeing To Be Continued... at the end of an episode.
 

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Drew Nederpelt / Sterling & Ross

Let me preface this by saying I have never thought of my writing as fit to be printed.

I am a musician by trade, and have never written before, but I started a small political blog a couple of years ago, just to vent my frustration. I became involved in a blogging community of like-minded folks, and began writing in my blog on a regular basis. Every so often, I would send some article I had written to a radio talk-show host, who would read it on the air.

Last August, after one of my pieces had been read on the air (and my website mentioned), I received an unusual e-mail. It was from someone claiming to be a publisher asking me if I'd be interested in discussing authoring a book on the subject of my article (non-fiction political).

Well, it sounded kind of shady to me. I was waiting for the part that said 'for only $2500, you can be a published author!' But, I figured, okay, I'm a sucker - I'll bite - what does it entail? He said that he had liked what he heard and sent one of his other editors to look at the site and they liked my writing and they were looking for someone to write about that particular subject. He asked me to submit a book proposal.

I Googled him and his company - at the time there wasn't anything negative that I could find, and they were apparently a real company which published real books that sold in real bookstores. He sent me an outline about what a book proposal entails. So I went out and bought a book on how to write a book proposal and wrote one, which they apparently liked, and he offered me a book contract. No advance (which I didn't really expect) but I showed the contract to some writer friends and relatives and they all said it was a standard boilerplate contract.

Now, this is what I figured: someone who approaches someone like me must not be exactly top-tier, but on the other hand, if someone contacts me out of the blue like that, then perhaps my writing is better than I thought - perhaps good enough for a book. Therefore, even if this falls through, the worst that can happen is that I write a book! So I signed the contract and started work on the book.

Recently I re-Googled this guy and his company, and saw that he did not have a good recommendation through P&E. However, he is listed as having actual booksales.

So, my question is, is this a reason to abandon what I'm doing? If this is a scam, how can I tell if what I'm writing is suitable to submit to someone else? I sort of assumed if someone would go to the trouble to solicit me as a writer with no financial incentive asked of me, then I must have at least something marketable about what I do. But, as all you 'real' writers know, it takes a lot of time and sweat and dedication to write anything decent, and as a mother of 3 trying to support a family on 2 musician's salaries, that kind of time would be more than I can afford. If my writing is not really viable, I can't in all conscience take time away from my work and family to pursue it. My feelings would not be hurt because I never considered writing a book until I was asked to. As a musician and a music teacher, I wouldn't encourage someone to quit their day job to be a musician if they didn't have the goods to make a success of it. And lots of people love music, but not everyone's cut out to be a professional.

Does this sound like something that happens often? Should I just write it anyway and see what happens, as long as I'm not hurt financially by it?

This guy's name is Drew Nederpelt, and his company is Sterling & Ross. Has anyone heard of him or his company?

Please pardon the length - I appreciate any information that you all have.

regards, Alicia Morgan
 

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I would drop an email to P&E and find out why Nederpelt and Sterling & Ross aren't recommended.

For what it's worth, the books S&R feature on their web page don't seem to be selling well on Amazon--one that came out last week is below 3 million in ranking, another that came out in November is at about 80,000 (which means it's sold maybe one copy in the past day). A third doesn't show up on Amazon at all, even when you click their own link that's supposed to take you to it. Of course, a lot of books sell better in stores than online, so I'd still try to find out what the specific problems are.

But two things occur to me: first of all, do you have the credentials to write a political book? Not trying to be mean, just realistic--what is it in your background that will make people flock to read your book/trust your opinions?

Second, if you've got the credentials, and have a topic that's hot, you might want to try shopping it to a larger publisher first. Whatever you do, best of luck!
 

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I couldn't help noticing one of their directors seems to be job-hunting (I Googled them). Are they anything to do with Sterling Publishing (very big non-fiction outfit I believe)?

I suspect not, but the name similarity could be extraordinarily confusing;)
 

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