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  1. #1
    Al Gale
    Guest

    What exactly IS vanity press?

    Personally, I hate the term “vanity press”. To me it is meant to be deliberately derogatory, implying that an author thinks their work is so good, they are willing to pay to get it published.

    So ask yourself this: How many authors can you envisage who think their work is rubbish, but they submit it to all those publishers and agents anyway, paying the copying costs and postage, waiting hopefully by their letterbox day after day?

    We all think our work is good, and after hours, weeks, months or even years of spending time at it, we are rightly proud to have produced something that we consider other people will want to read.

    However, after the rejection slips start pouring in (standard ones mostly, from companies who have not even read your synopsis, let alone your full manuscript) – you have to start asking yourself the all important question:

    Why did I write this book?

    Your answer will be one of the following:

    A. Because I wanted to write it
    B. Because I want people to read it
    C. Because I would like to have it published
    D. Because I want to make money from it

    The people who answer A will have no rejection slips, as they have achieved their goal already.

    The people who answer B might have one or two rejection slips, and will now be considering creating a cheap/free Web site where people can read their story – objection achieved.

    Category C, I would say, is more popular than category D. It is also more complex, so I will come back to it in a moment.

    For those of you in category D, I wish you all the very best of luck. Really I do! It`s like winning the lottery in a way – someone has to do it. You get what you dream for, and you are happy doing it. BUT – if you are not successful in achieving YOUR ambition, don`t knock those in category C, just because they achieve theirs! Sour grapes and all that!

    So, back to category C. I was (am) in this category. I took 2 years to write my book, and after over 40 rejection slips, it got put to one side. I eventually found out about a “vanity press” service called Minerva Press. They took almost £4000 that I got from leaving the army, lied to me for months, and then went bust. My book was out of print almost as soon as it was published.

    So, what do you do: Moan, cry how unfair it is, try to sue a company that is already in liquidation? Or do you re-visit the reasons you wrote the book in the first place?

    I chose the latter. I also decided that what I would do this time is find a publisher I could trust – me!

    I launched Ubdegub Publishing (www.Ubdegub.co.uk). This is probably vanity at its greatest as far as category D people are concerned. However, due to my realistic approach, coupled with my bitter experience, I can now offer other category C authors the chance to have their work assigned and ISBN, and to be published and available to buy in WEEKS - for just £495!

    Those of you already devising a nasty worded response (category D, I will bet money on it) – please save your talents for writing something that will get read.

    Category C authors – see you at www.ubdegub.co.uk
    Category D authors – bring on the insults
    (Category A and B authors have probably stopped reading by now)

    Al Gale
    Author (published) of Tooth And Nail



  2. #2
    Ryan Bruner
    Guest

    Re: What exactly IS vanity press?

    Something to consider...those who prefer Category D are not entering a lottery game...but are working VERY HARD to achieve that goal. They have taken the time and effort to not only write a good story, but weigh it's marketability and persevere in the attempt to find a publisher.

    If you resort to Category C, you will never know, for certain, if you really have what it takes to be a publishable author...you only have what it takes to write a story. If you go through the work of Category D and find no success, then you likely shouldn't bother with being a Category C writer. :-)

    Just some additional thoughts.

    Of course, this thread is nothing more than an advertisement masquering as a post.

  3. #3
    Al Gale
    Guest

    Re: What exactly IS vanity press?

    Something to also consider - do you think someone who spends 2 years writing a book, who`s ambition is to see it published, works LESS hard than someone who spends the same amount of time, but just wants to make money?

    Yes, I am trying to promote my services. I could also have just published my own book again (visit amazon.co.uk and search for AL GALR if you think this is all one big scam). However, being a category C person myself, I thought I would try to help others out too.

    When Ryan Air launched their budget air travel service, many people thought “great, cheap air travel, I`ll use that”. No doubt others thought it was a scam.

  4. #4
    Ryan Bruner
    Guest

    Re: What exactly IS vanity press?

    I really have no issue with those who wish to do this. My point is that Category D people work very hard to get to that point. Do Category C people work less hard? In many cases, yes. In some cases, no...but many of those Category C people might be working hard at something that they shouldn't be. A person who wants to be a professional singer might work far harder than someone is IS a professional singer...but they may never be good enough to make it professionally. Does it seem reasonable, then, for that person to PAY to be heard by others?

    I will concede, however, that there are a small subset of Category C people who truly write great stuff that just doesn't meet the market conditions at that time. I would say, however, that it is a VERY VERY small subset.

  5. #5
    CarolO
    Guest

    Re: What exactly IS vanity press?

    Okay...you want your book published, but not read? I'm afraid that I don't follow your logic, Al.

  6. #6
    Al Gale
    Guest

    Re: What exactly IS vanity press?

    That is very gracious of you – you must have read THOUSANDS of books, both published by small companies, and by “vanity press” ones, to have come up with such accurate stats as “a VERY VERY small subset”.

    I really fail to understand why some people get so pear-shaped about this issue – unless of course, they are just bitter and twisted.

    Lets put it in terms of football (even though I despise football). One guy loves to play football. He is good, and wants to be Beckham – like all of them do I suppose.

    However, he loves to play so much, he is willing to play for his local pub, and pays his weekly subs of, say £1. Is that vain?

    Should he sit at home and refuse to play unless he is paid? Would he be working harder then?

    Always remember, far better authors than yourself (or me, that`s for sure) have ALREADY either self-published or have paid, and have subsequently been “discovered” (i.e. the big publishers realised what they were missing out on). A little research on the net will show that.

  7. #7
    Al Gale
    Guest

    Re: What exactly IS vanity press?

    Publishing a book, is the act of making it available to be read by the general public - as in publish a Web site.

    Try giving people a stack of a4 papers and telling them that is your "book". I bet only your mum will read it.

    By "publishing", I meant (even though it is not correct as per the dictionary definition), having an ISBN assigned, issuing a copy to the Legal Deposit Office, assigning a bar code and price – the lack of any can have your book dismissed by bookstores. Not a bad service for £495, surely? I paid thousands, and I have heard it can cost up to £20,000!

  8. #8
    CarolO
    Guest

    Re: What exactly IS vanity press?

    Here's a place that will do it for $200. <http://www.booklocker.com/getpublished/published.html>

  9. #9
    Ryan Bruner
    Guest

    Re: What exactly IS vanity press?

    Yes, and you can lose 150 lbs following the X-weight-loss-program*.

    Your football example is not Category C, it is Category A...a person pays to play football because they like to play, NOT because they want others to watch them play. Now, that example might work if that player pays to play in a game that he knows there are scouts looking at. In that case, he isn't paying for others to see him...but one particular person to see him.

    In writing, if I pay to publish my book, I'm doing so to in hopes to get noticed so that I can convert over to Category D. That is, of course, assuming that agents/publishers are looking at those Category C people anyhow, which isn't likely due to the high amount of submissions that they deal with already.

    But, I won't knock it, truly. If someone wants to go that route, there is no reason not to. For them, there is you. :-)

    * Results not typical.

  10. #10
    CarolO
    Guest

    Re: What exactly IS vanity press?

    And here's one that will do it for free. <http://www.lulu.com/static/on-demand-books1.php>

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