HomeWritersLiterary AgentsEditorsPublishersResourcesDiscussion
Forum Login | Join the discussion
+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 9 1 2 3 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 90
  1. #1
    Frederick A. Babb

    What is the deal with negative PublishAmerica?

    I have read on here more negative remarks than positive about PublishAmerica. I cannot vouch for what has happened to others, rather only what has happened for me. PublishAmerica published my latest novel, "Torn" and did a very professional job at it. You can see the end result on my webpage at www.frederickbabb.com. If someone can enlighten me on why all the negative press, I would love to know.


    Frederick A. Babb

  2. #2
    Sheryl Nantus

    Re: What is the deal with negative PublishAmerica?

    well, I'm unhappy with them 'cause they misrepresented themselves from the start - I cannot get my book into bookstores because of the no-return policy (which I was never notified about); it's overpriced (which they refused to lower) and they've banned me from their boards for asking questions about these very things.

    when you have to BUY books (at a low discount) from PA to resell them out of the back of your car because no one will carry it, there's a problem.

    let's put it this way - aside from the buck that you and I got from PA, how much support have you really gotten? How many bookstores have ordered your book? How many offers have you gotten from PA offering "great" deals if you purchase books? How much have YOU spent in publicity that a real publisher would do to make your book a success?

    yes, authors do need to do promotion - but the majority of PA books are badly written; overpriced and impossible to promote outside of your immediate area - and that's only with hassling bookstore managers to carry non-returnable books or offering them on consignment; which means you LOSE money most of the time since PA offers such low discounts to the authors in the first place.

    THAT'S why a lot of us have walked away from PA. Heck, they sent me an email asking me to come to the convention this month but haven't responded to my inquiries as to why I've been banned from their boards. Tells me a lot about their priorities.

    and it's NOT the author.

  3. #3

    Re: What is the deal with negative PublishAmerica?

    I would like to mention that Publish America authors are more than welcome to visit us over at the chat!


  4. #4
    Gary Kessler

    Re: What is the deal with negative PublishAmerica?

    *Sigh* The point of publishing is not producing books; it's selling books. PA purposely hypes itself to appeal to the hopes and dreams of writers who haven't done a lick of research to find out what really needs to happen to get to their writing goals--and most of whom haven't put a lick of effort in learning how to write a truly publishable book either. It's the old flim flam game to serve those looking for the easy way to fame and riches. Those who specialize in self-denial and never want to wake up from the dream can enjoy their PA experience for just as long as they are willing to keeping just "oh well" slicing back on their original expectations.

    On the flip side, those who have done their research and know that the goal for the work in question is only to have it in book form, without the need for external edit, for a very limited audience that can be touched directly, and with no expectations of having the book as a publishing credit in the eyes of the selective segment of the publishing industry, might as well try to get PA to foot the production/distribution bill as paying for production and distribution themselves.

  5. #5

    Re: What is the deal with negative PublishAmerica?

    How exactly do they make money? Is it a poetry.com thing where they expect the author to buy enough copies to pay the staff or do they hope beyond hope that someone from the real (i.e. nonwriting) world buys their books?

  6. #6

    Re: What is the deal with negative PublishAmerica?

    Oh, Gary, you're not being a "snob" are you?

    Kidding! Kidding! No, put down the computer... *Ouch!*

  7. #7
    Gary Kessler

    Re: What is the deal with negative PublishAmerica?

    Steve: They make money on volume. I think it only takes something like 47 book sales for PA to break even. They ask for a much longer list than that of addresses for friends/family of PA authors up front, and usually manage to sell more than enough to break even with a little profit off this list alone.

    If anyone beyond this knows about the book at all, it's because either they went to the PA Web site and browsed (which happens far less than the hypers say) or the author promoted the book him/herself.

  8. #8

    Re: What is the deal with negative PublishAmerica?

    *puts bag over head*

    I was published by PA in early 2002 and when I first got the contract I searched the net for information and could only find a few other elated individuals who also had books out or coming out by these monsters. I also had interest from what I now know as a major publisher, and I turned them down on the hunch that PA would be a much better choice. It is a decision that will haunt me for the rest of my life.

    I made the mistake of buying 250 books myself. The book retails at high 20s. Even with the "discount" you can guess how much it cost. After about four months of breaking my back to sell the book I began to search anew for information on the net, and I was surprised, saddened, and all-around throttled at what I found.

    I was and am defeated. I only had one book in me. PA misrepresented themselves about who they are and what they do, and they killed its only chance at success.

    In the end it's not the POD publishing model I'm upset with. It's not even their misleading contract that states they use offset printing when they don't. It's these things:

    1) The tell people they're a traditional, royalty-paying publisher. They are not

    2) They tell people their books are in bookstores. That's only true if the author herself asks the bookstore manager. I went into Barnes and Noble last week and counted over 140 books published by the publisher I had turned down, and that was just in the romance section. PA had none.

    3) THey price their books too high. I learned all about Lightning Source, and I know how much they pay. They make almost double profits on each book sale than other lightning source customers.

    4) They do that because they know if a book costs 4 dollars or 30 dollars doesn't matter if they don't plan on selling it in a bookstore. The author's friends and family don't care how much it costs.

    5) This is the one that really got to me. PA's "author support team" is really mean and nasty to people who complain. They are the most unprofessional company I've ever dealt with.

    I could go on about what this has done to me emotionally. Let's just leave it at I don't think I'm ever going to write a book again. I'm Christian. Still, I find myself hoping that everyone at PA rots in hell.

  9. #9
    Gary Kessler

    Re: What is the deal with negative PublishAmerica?

    The PA contract says they will use offset printing for the book under contract? If so and they don't, that's a breach of contract. (But I suspect it's only worded to help the authors fool themselves into thinking it says that.)

    Sorry, but PublishAmerica is a traditional, royalty-paying publisher. They just are a very stinky one. Part of getting educated on publishing is being careful in learning the foundational definitions. Traditional publisher does not ipso facto mean "good" and vanity press does not ipso facto mean "bad." There are uses for all types of publishers and there are good guys and stinkers in all forms of publishing. You start getting yourself into trouble when you use false, extremist, and/or black/white definitions.

  10. #10
    Richard Fulgham

    Re: What is the deal with negative PublishAmerica?

    Dear You-are-not-defeated,
    Please listen to a more experienced writer without getting sore or bitter or resentful. I felt a familiar knife in my chest when I read your post -- that same knife that used to stab me every few months when a magazine article or book was rejected -- or, as in your case, taken from me without due compensation. Honey, have heart. That's what I want to say to you -- have heart. You DO have more than one book in you. If you did one, you can do twenty. Also, the contract you signed is for seven years and that is not forever. It will pass and you can market your "seller" again. Just don't mention that it was published before -- just be sure to change the title. This is not a pep talk -- it's a sincere effort to get you to stand back up and slug it out with fate! If you had a good press interested in your book, then you've got the talent and you've got the stories and you've got the moxie -- TO WRITE BOOKS. I know what I'm talking about -- I am the defeated -- I've been there -- I gbvot to my feet and fought again and again -- I was knocked down again and again -- I fought again -- I'm still fighting. God bless you, my unknown friend. You will make it as a writer. I can tell by what you said. You got conned -- now get over it and get back to work.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts