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Writer Beware: "Two Thumbs Down" Publisher List

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Momento Mori

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BookWhirl.com:
Another way to verify your publisher is to log on to Better Business Bureau or bbb.org.

I agree with Uncle Jim that this is not a good resource.

However, you can check with the Association of Authors' Representatives (in the US), Association of Authors' Agents (in the UK) or the Australian Literary Agents' Association (in Australia - obviously!) to see if an agent or agency is registered with them. These are trade bodies with criteria for membership and while it's not impossible for a rogue agent to be included, it's more likely to be a good basis for searching for reputable agencies than the BBB.

MM
 

CaoPaux

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And for publishers, walk into your nearest bookstore and check out the logos on the spines (assuming, of course, you want a publisher which can put books on shelves).

For e-pubs, who publishes the books you read? That your friends and family read?
 

victoriastrauss

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How fascinating that Bookwhirl.com should attempt to promote itself by posting to this thread, in this forum.

Bookwhirl is a "marketing" service that is the focus of numerous complaints and a good deal of negative online discussion. Here's an example. Here's another.

BookWhirl is infamous for its prolific phone and email solicitations. It maintains US addresses, but appears to be based in Asia.

Writer Beware, indeed.

- Victoria
 

Joan J.

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Rejecting a Contract

I have received a contract from a small publisher for my 85,000-word paranormal mystery. I don't mind small, no advance, minimal royalty, or paperback, BUT... They want to buy my copyright outright, want to tie up any subsequent work on the same theme, want me to edit down to 55,000 words to be better for ebooks. I checked a writer who just published with them. They printed 500 paperbacks and the print and ebook versions are available only on the publishers web site. No retail distribution of any sort. I'm turning down the contract. I think I'm doing the right thing. Anyone want to tell me I'm nuts?
 

AC Crispin

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Name them, please.

Taking away a writer's copyright is totally outside the pale.

The one that springs to mind is Royal Fireworks, and you'd have to be crazy, desperate, and/or totally clueless to publish with them.

-Ann C. Crispin
Chair, Writer Beware
www.writerbeware.com
 
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Very interesting ideed, thanks! I don't know anything about American or British publishers and since I'd like to publish my current project, this is very helpful!

There is this German publisher who's also stooping down to a new low: Now you have to upload your work to their e-book website and have visitors rate and review it instead of the staff themselves. Whatever the reviewers rated best, gets a fighting chance. Meaning, if you create something awful but 500 friends and family and facebook contact gave you 5 stars, you get published....
 

JoyceD

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This is a very interesting thread, and I am grateful for all of the information!
 

kathleea

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Anyone know anything about Tell-Tale Publishing? They are having a contest and I wondered if they are legit or not. Couldn't find anything on P&E or here about them one way or the other. Thanks.
 

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Kath, it's probably best to start a new thread on TellTale.
 

mysterymantis

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Nice list. Anyone that knows anyone that is about to "publish" through any of those clowns needs to give them the heads up. I wish I could have stopped one of my friends mom's from going through PA with her book. It was very good, but needed a professionals touch to refine it. Unfortunately she passed away shortly after getting "published" through PA, so if she'd gone through traditional channels, she might never have seen her book in published format. Not that I'm encouraging this...

A friend recommended me to PA recently on my facebook page. She knew someone that dealt with them. It's sad really, how people are pulled into their BS. A simple google search told me that I wanted nothing to do with them.

My advice to people that want to publish, is this...

Never be so anxious to get your work out there that you settle for something that is obviously a scam. And if it's not so obvious? Then you likely have access to the same internet that helped you find them, to find out about them.
 

Deb

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What about thumbs up publishers?

I see the thumbs down publishers and the two major publishers I'm considering are not listed.

But does anyone have a Thumbs up Publishers list?

That would really be a boon, especially to us newbies.

BTW
I'm not sure this is being posted where I meant it to be posted. I treid to respond to the post about thumps down and received a message that I did not have permission.

Thanks, again.

Deb
 

JulieB

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There's no "Thumbs Up" list because the right publisher for you may not be the right publisher for me, even though they both may be reputable.

Start with the Index. Any publishers grayed-out are no longer in business.

Also, visit publisher web sites and read their guidelines thoroughly and take the time to see what kind of books they publish. That will help you target your submission more than anything else.

Good luck!
 

Dee Miller

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Okay, everyone, I did the "stupid thing" with PA not once but they have 3 of my books since 12/2110. I am in REAL serious trouble because 2 of my books are in a series (sequels) and the 3rd one is a mysterysuspense. Now that wouldn't be so bad ... but I have finished the 4th book (also a M/S) and Strategic Book Marketing/Strategic Book Publishing is trying to approach me trying to get me to publish with them. What are they like? Anyone out there know (?) or how I can get rid of PA with my covers (my daughter does mine) etc. still in my name without losing it all for the next 7 years. Where were all of you when I was young and stupid???????????????

Dee Miller
 

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Strategic Book Marketing/Strategic Book Publishing is trying to approach me trying to get me to publish with them. What are they like?
They are a notorious vanity press. The owner, Robert Fletcher, keeps re-inventing himself and his companies every time he loses a lawsuit. Stay far, far, far away from this lot.

Where were all of you when I was young and stupid???????????????
Absolute Write has been warning writers against PublishAmerica since at least 2003.
 

AC Crispin

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For information about how to tell whether a publishing company or agent is legit, read the articles on Writer Beware's site. The information is THERE. Read it, and then you'll be able to spot the phonies for yourself.

-Ann C. Crispin
Chair, Writer Beware
www.writerbeware.com

A.C. Crispin
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