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  1. #1
    Joan Spence
    Guest

    Author House scam

    I have been stupid enough to have a book self published by Author House. Don't get me wrong they produced a lovely book, first class and were ever so helpful. That is until they get your money. Not being good at marketing the book myself I paid over 400 for the booksellers return programme - sell or return basis that they would do for me. I have just received my first royalty cheque for 2.60 for five books sold when I know I have sold more but can I get my query answered by Author House - no I can't. I was so desperate to get my book into print but I wish I had researched more. By the way I am a pensioner and did not need to waste over 1000. People who have read my book including the local Central Library think it is very good. Although the booksellers return programme means someone approaching bookshops asking them to stock it on a sale or return basis I have had no feedback on how this is going. I think once they have your money they don't care anymore. Don't get me wrong if you are full of self confidence and can self market your book go for them as they produce a beautiful book but if not steer clear. There are loads of self publishing firms that don't cost as much. I have had two books published since then with Lulu at a mere fraction of the cost 20 plus for five copies. I am using these to send to Traditional Publishers in the hopes that one day someone will take me seriously. Maybe they will if we get out of the credit crunch. Anyway this is just a warning to be aware of companies like Author



  2. #2
    Robert Wilson
    Guest

    Re: Author House scam

    Sorry you got taken.

    Lots of folks on WN have known about AH for quite sometime.

    RW

  3. #3
    Lorelei Armstrong
    Guest

    Re: Author House scam

    Stop self-publishing your books if you are interested in commercial publication. If you are using up your first publication rights, no agent or publisher will be interested in your work, no matter how good it is. Write another book, then write a query letter. Try to get an agent.

  4. #4
    Gary Kessler
    Guest

    Re: Author House scam

    Agree with Lorelei. I don't know any "submission" finding its way to an agent's/publisher's trashcan faster than a book printed by lulu.

  5. #5
    Joan Spence
    Guest

    Re: Author House scam

    I didnb't realise that I was using up my first publication rights with Lulu. I just got it printed for my own personal use. Surely the copyright is mine if I don't put on their website. Or am I being naive?

  6. #6
    Lorelei Armstrong
    Guest

    Re: Author House scam

    It is certainly possible that you didn't with Lulu and all you did was get it physically bound. Did you receive an ISBN number?

  7. #7
    Gary Kessler
    Guest

    Re: Author House scam

    The copyright is always yours. Copyright and use are two different things. This also has nothing to do with having an ISBN number.

    An agent/publisher will likely just toss away a lulu copy sent as a submission for all sorts of reasons. First, submission format is fairly standard--and it's in the interest of the writer to come close to the standard, because that's the format the agent/publisher is accustomed to reading and anything off standard with distract them from considering what you really want them to be considering. Second, they aren't clairvoyant or likely to expend any energy to become so. A bound book will hit them as something already tried out on the public and therefore denying them sales points. Third, it shows a fundamental naivete in the writer on how the process works and will engrain in the agent/publisher's mind that the writer probably isn't any better about writing than they are about presenting/submitting. Fourth, it signals and raises red flags that the writer is likely going to be trying to muck around in the realm where the publisher jealously guards control--book design and marketing planning.

    All of these are negatives hitting the agent/publisher all at once, and so, if there's anything else at all on offer that doesn't hit them so negatively from the start, they are likely to turn to that.

    Why would you want to start off behind the eight ball with them?

  8. #8
    Joan Spence
    Guest

    Re: Author House scam

    Thanks a lot for your useful comments. I have in face only sent one copy of the book I had printed from Lulu to a publisher and you were right they didn't even look at it I could tell. I have sent loads of submissions off to publishers in the proper way with three chapters, a synopsis and a covering letter with a SAE. So thanks I will continue to do it right in future and keep plodding on. I did have a book published through Author House which I asked one publisher if they wanted to have a look at it. They did but sent it back with a very nice letter saying that they had all enjoyed reading it and would keep my details on file as they were concentrating on their present authors and would probably be in touch in March 2011. Long way off I know but at least it wasn't an out and out rejection. Anyway thanks a lot to yourself and all others that have helped me.

  9. #9
    Joan Spence
    Guest

    Re: Author House scam

    Thanks for this. I will continue to send in my submissions to mainstream publishers in the right way. Yes I just got my book printed and bound by Lulu and it doesn't have an ISBN number.

  10. #10
    Christine Deutsche
    Guest

    Re: Author House scam


    I'm sorry it happened to you. But I don't think getting 'ripped off' by self-publishing companies doesn't always apply to everyone. Just to be fair though. There are authors out there who started out with self-publishing and gained publishing success. I think what's important here is to understand how publishing really works and which publishing option works for them. Not all traditionally published authors become successful the same way not all self-published authors get ripped off. Just my two cents worth.

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