Some POD Publishers: “Buy a Manuscript Evaluation So We Can Upsell You on Our Editing Services!”

Last week, I received an email from an author who was perturbed that we didn’t offer something similar to what he received via email (spam!) from another POD publisher. What was it? A $199 manuscript evaluation. If you paid and then decided to use that POD publisher later, you could deduct $199 from your setup fees. They could (probably do!) then upsell you on their expensive editing services that their manuscript evaluation very likely will say you need. Now, come on. Do you really think they’re going to tell you your manuscript is perfect? No way…

First, if I see problems in your manuscript, I’m going to tell you your manuscript has problems. I’m not going to charge you $199 to do so.

Second, charging an author $199 just to tell them if and why they need an editor or not is ridiculous. I can usually tell in the first chapter (sometimes on the first page!) if an author needs an editor or not.

Third, we don’t upsell authors on editing services. If an author needs an editor, they need to hire a professional editor. Some POD publishers charge authors for manuscript evaluations and then further upsell them on editing services. We don’t do business that way.

What I want to know is why anybody would pay a company to tell them why they need to pay the company more money. Helloooooo???

Anyway, I then pointed out to the author that the “other company” would not only charge him $199 for the evaluation plus $752.50 to edit his book (at 2 cents/word) but that he’s also then need to pay them $1800-$4500 to publish his book.

At BookLocker.com, he only paid $492 and I sent him a list of freelance editors free of charge.

Next week, we’ll talk about all the so-called professional freelance editors who are offering their services online now. You have NO idea how many authors have contacted me regarding “professional editors” who actually made their book worse, not better!

Angela Hoy is the publisher of WritersWeekly.com and BookLocker.com.