If you spend any time at all researching publishers, you will find some publishing horror stories. The more time you spend, the more stories you will discover.
You’ll read about authors handing over thousands of dollars and getting little in return. You’ll hear about contracts from hell and broken promises. You’ll learn of failure and shame, disappointment and major losses. But only a percentage of the companies you read about are scammers. And the sad thing is, they remain in business because authors keep engaging them.
What if every author took the time to research the world of publishing before getting involved? What if they all studied any contracts presented and hired a publishing attorney before signing one? Do you know what would happen? The out and out scammers and those charging exorbitant amounts of money for services they do not perform, for example, will be run out of town. Those that are trying to fool unsuspecting authors with fancy footwork, will be forced to either quit or start flying right. And those good guys among the many publishers will flourish.
Please, if you are ready to choose a publisher,
1: Study the publishing industry, how it works, your options and your responsibilities as a published author.
2: Research the type of publishing option you are considering.
3: Do a thorough investigation of the company you choose (and I’m talking traditional publisher as well as pay-to-publish services).
4: Make sure you thoroughly understand any contract presented. If you don’t, hire a publishing attorney.
How do you research publishing companies? Here’s what you don’t do—you don’t rely on their website and their press releases to give you the information you need about their reputation. You do a Google search using keywords, “publisher name” + “warning” or “complaint” or “scam,” for example. And you also might speak with some of the company’s authors.
Again, here are a few warning site for authors:
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Because of the increase in interviews, presentations and general promotion I’ll be involved in over the next month or so, I’m going to renege on my commitment to blog every day. For at least a while, my blogs will be posted less often—perhaps only three times per week. I will do my best to bring you something fresh more often, but I can’t commit to it with all that is currently crossing my desk.