Recently Answered Questions:



Q –

I’ve published four other books under a pen name with another publisher, (name removed), and they never charge an annual fee to keep my books current with the printer or their system. Why do some publishers charge an annual fee while others don’t, especially since they’re all using Ingram for distribution?


A –

The annual fee you are referring to is Ingram’s “Channel Distribution” fee, which must be paid if a publisher wants to keep a book in Ingram’s system. Different publishers call this fee a variety of different names.

BookLocker.com charges $18 per year, per title to keep a book active on our site, and in the printer’s and Ingram’s systems. Some firms charge upwards of $75 or more per year for the exact same fee, meaning they’re jacking up the price quite a bit! Some publishers get a price break on the fees from Ingram, based on the number of active titles they have in Ingram’s system.

But, what about those firms charging no fees at all? Well, to figure out how they get away with it, you need only look at their extremely high setup fees. You’ll likely discover that dozens of years of annual fees are built in, and that authors are required to pay those fees up front when they pay those ridiculous setup fees.

For a paperback/ebook combo, your other publisher charges $999.

With BookLocker’s discount code, the fee for the same service is only $695.

The difference: $304.

If you divide that by BookLocker’s $18/year annual fee, that’s 17 years of annual fees that they collect up front. It looks like their building several years of those fees into their up-front costs to authors, which is not unusual now in the industry. They also know that it’s unlikely your book will remain on the market, or that you will remain their author, for 17 years.

And, since so many publishers are going out of business (http://writersweekly.com/angela-desk/booklocker-remained-profitable) these days, authors who are forced to pre-pay these fees through higher setup fees might end up losing everything they paid anyway.

At BookLocker.com, we never force authors to pre-pay something for years when the author would prefer to pay it annually, as long as they’re interested in keeping their book on the market. And, of course, any incoming royalties offset those fees so authors who have sold books don’t receive annual invoices. They can login and check their author account 24 hours/day and they can also request we terminate their book at any time, thus saving them the cost of future hosting fees if their book is no longer selling or if they’ve retired from writing and book promotion.

Always read the fine print (and ALWAYS compare prices (http://writersweekly.com/compare)!) before you choose a publisher.

Also, please read How BookLocker Has Remained Profitable for 17 Years…when so many others have failed (http://writersweekly.com/angela-desk/booklocker-remained-profitable).

 

RELATED:

How Much Do Some POD Publishers Profit from Ingram’s “Channel Distribution” Fees? Plenty!

Abuzz Press – This Hybrid Publisher Charges No Setup Fees!

POD SECRETS REVEALED Series

COMPLAINTS ABOUT SPECIFIC PUBLISHERS

Print on Demand

More Q&A with Angela!



The Do-It-Yourselfer's Guide to Self-Syndication


Practical resource outlining the self-syndication process, step-by-step. Packed with detailed information and useful tips for writers looking to gain readership, name recognition, publication and self-syndication for their column or articles.

http://writersweekly.com/books/4693.html



 



Yes, online book promoting can be EASY and FUN! Let us show you how, from Day 1 through Day 90…and beyond!



 

QI’m having a book digitized to be ready to print in the next month and a half. It will be 10″ x 12″ with many colour pictures, about 200 pages and a cover design. I want to do print-on-demand. Can I do this through BookLocker.com?

– C.


A – At BookLocker.com, we use the largest Print on Demand printer in the world and they do not offer that size. It’s a good idea to check out publishers and printers before deciding on a size for your book.

And, I implore you to also decide on a publisher before you pay someone to design your book. You must have the printer’s specs before you begin the design process. Many authors make this mistake, and end up needing to pay the designers all over again to fix their files later. Unfortunately, some designers don’t warn authors about this…knowing they can bill the author double later.

Please see:
DON’T Hire a Designer BEFORE Choosing a Publisher!

RELATED:



The Do-It-Yourselfer's Guide to Self-Syndication


Practical resource outlining the self-syndication process, step-by-step. Packed with detailed information and useful tips for writers looking to gain readership, name recognition, publication and self-syndication for their column or articles.

http://writersweekly.com/books/4693.html



 



Yes, online book promoting can be EASY and FUN! Let us show you how, from Day 1 through Day 90…and beyond!



 

Q –

My publisher is trying to sell me a trifecta review service. Specifically, this consists of three reviews, by Kirkus, Clarion and Blue Ink. It’s pretty pricey but I want to sell books. Is this a good idea?

– CR


A –

I checked this out and, in my opinion, this is a TOTAL RIP-OFF! They are going to charge you almost $4,000 for this service. Let’s get real here. Do you REALLY think you’re going to earn back that much in royalties as a result of those three fee-based book reviews? Unless you’re already a celebrity, or you land some major press (which will be a result of YOUR marketing activities, not book reviews), it is EXTREMELY unlikely that you’ll earn back that $4,000 back as the direct result of those reviews.

Incidentally, if you ordered those reviews yourself, instead of allowing your publisher to be the middle-man, you’d spend:

Kikus Indie Reviews: $425
Clarion + Blue Ink (they have a partnership): $695
TOTAL: $1120

So, your publisher was going to pocket $2700 of your money.

It took me literally three minutes of Googling to figure out how badly your publisher is scalping its authors. And, yours is not the only publisher selling this service at such a ridiculous price.

Authors, please don’t fall for the snake oil!

You should NEVER pay for book reviews. Read why HERE.

And, do yourself and your wallet a favor by reading this:

How To EASILY Get Awesome and Honest Book Reviews That REALLY Carry Weight With Readers!

RELATED:

Outrageous Upselling by POD Publishers!

Throwing Away Your Money on Review Copies?

Can You Republish Amazon Reviews? Maybe, or Maybe Not…

WHO ARE THE REAL STARVING WRITERS? Book Reviewers!

KARMA! Man Who Sold Book Reviews Is Shamed Online

More Q&A with Angela!

 



The Do-It-Yourselfer's Guide to Self-Syndication


Practical resource outlining the self-syndication process, step-by-step. Packed with detailed information and useful tips for writers looking to gain readership, name recognition, publication and self-syndication for their column or articles.

http://writersweekly.com/books/4693.html



 



Yes, online book promoting can be EASY and FUN! Let us show you how, from Day 1 through Day 90…and beyond!



 

Q –

Hi Angela,

Just wondering what you know about FastPencil? Infinity just aligned with it and I can’t determine if it is a good thing.

Thanks,

-B.


A –

I researched FastPencil.

TheIndependentPublishingMagazine.com  gives them only 6.7 out of 10.

An author on there was complaining that shipping 1 book (paperback) cost her $14 in shipping costs alone. You can read more complaints about them in the comments under that article.

I also found this on RipOffReport:

FastPencil Inc. Fastpencil preys off of budding writers, steals royalties, refuses refunds

FastPencil has a C- rating at the Better Business Bureau.

There are 3 reviews of FastPencil on Amazon and all of them give the firm only 1 star.

And, you might want to avoid Infinity Publishing, too. They have an F rating at the Better Business Bureau. Read more complaints about Infinity Publishing HERE .

RELATED:

Self-publishing? Here’s a price comparison!

Considering self-publishing? How Many Book Sales Needed to Recoup Your Investment?

BookLocker Has a Fantastic Offer for Victims of Defunct Tate Publishing (and other firms)! Move to BookLocker for as little as $78! (And, get your book back on the market in as little as 2 weeks.)

Complaints about specific publishers

Self-publishing advice

More Q&A with Angela!

 



The Do-It-Yourselfer's Guide to Self-Syndication


Practical resource outlining the self-syndication process, step-by-step. Packed with detailed information and useful tips for writers looking to gain readership, name recognition, publication and self-syndication for their column or articles.

http://writersweekly.com/books/4693.html





Yes, online book promoting can be EASY and FUN! Let us show you how, from Day 1 through Day 90…and beyond!



 

Q –

I really am confused on exactly what to do. I have no files or anything from Tate. The only thing I have is some versions of two of my books. I had a lifetime contract with them to  publish as many books in my series as I could write. They did all – editing, illustrations, printing. I am a writer, but no artist, and would not know how to begin to illustrate my books.

I look forward to hearing back from you as I have more books in the series written with no one to help me with them.

– B.


A –

It’s our understanding that Tate Publishing, whose owners have been charged with felonies, is no longer responding to authors. I recommend first sending them a certified letter, demanding copies of your production files. They may or may not comply. Some authors have reported success in getting their files without paying the $50 fee.

If they don’t respond within a month, unfortunately, you’ll probably need to start all over.

If you have printed copies of your books with the edits intact, I recommend hiring a college student or jltyping.com to retype your manuscripts into a word processing program.

If you have 300 dpi versions of the illustrations, those can be used. If you have printed copies of your books, you might be able to have those scanned at 300 dpi (at a place like Office Depot) to see how the quality comes out. Worst case scenario is hiring an artist to recreate those for you. I do have a list of freelance artists and illustrators if you need it.

Angela

RELATED:

BookLocker Has a Fantastic Offer for Victims of Defunct Tate Publishing (and other firms)! Move to BookLocker for as little as $78! (And, get your book back on the market in as little as 2 weeks.)

Self-publishing? Here’s a price comparison!

Can’t Get Your Book Files from Your Defunct Publisher? Here’s what you can do…

Why Hasn’t Anybody Filed a Class-action Lawsuit Against Tate Publishing? Here’s the Likely Answer…

Victim of defunct Tate Publishing doesn’t want to pay Tate’s (unfair) $50 for her production files. Can she just use the files they sent her for approval before the book was published?

Considering self-publishing? How Many Book Sales Needed to Recoup Your Investment?

More Q&A with Angela!

 

 



The Do-It-Yourselfer's Guide to Self-Syndication


Practical resource outlining the self-syndication process, step-by-step. Packed with detailed information and useful tips for writers looking to gain readership, name recognition, publication and self-syndication for their column or articles.

http://writersweekly.com/books/4693.html



 



Yes, online book promoting can be EASY and FUN! Let us show you how, from Day 1 through Day 90…and beyond!



 

 

Q –

I’ve written an art book – 12 x 14 with many color pictures, about 200 pages. My designer has already designed my files and my cover. I’m now looking for a publisher. I won’t need to pay any design fees because the files are already ready to print. I can’t make any changes to my files because my designer will charge for that. I want my book to be print on demand so I won’t need to keep them in storage, and ship them in batches to Amazon.

– Jeannine


A –

We use the largest print on demand printer in the world and they do not offer that size – not even close. I hate to break the bad news to you but you did the process backwards. And, your designer may have known all along that he or she would be able to squeeze more money out of you later because the book size you chose is so unusual.

Authors should always choose a publisher first. If they then want their own designer to design the book, at least they’ll have the correct specs before beginning the job.

For more information, please see:
DON’T Hire a Designer BEFORE Choosing a Publisher!

RELATED:

BookLocker’s Cover Designer is a Rock Star!
BookLocker’s Cover Designer Knocks It Out Of The Park Again!
Did You Include “Work-For-Hire” In Your Contract? No? You May NOT Own All Rights!
Print on Demand Secrets Revealed
Print on Demand Facts

 

Read More Ask The Expert

 

 



7.625 STRATEGIES IN EVERY BEST-SELLER - Revised and Expanded Edition


Acquisition Editor Tam Mossman shares seven essentials every book needs to stay in print, and sell!

Read more here:
http://writersweekly.com/books/5635.html





 

 

Q –

I am in the process of self publishing on CreateSpace. After reading all of the complaints, there must be some recourse to take for people to get their money back.

For me, I was told one pricing list on the phone, then got an email with a $224 discrepancy. When I reported it, I was told  it was a mistake and they would give me 5 complimentary books as a thank you. I decided to wait. A month later, I decided to go ahead, only cutting the editing portion, saving $500.

Again, when I received the invoice, and paid for them to begin, the price was increased by $108 with only one complimentary book.

I have not received any more communication about the discrepancy, but I have received communication about completing my file.

There should be laws concerning this. Please advise. What is the recourse for being compensated for over-payment or unacceptable book quality.

C.W.


A –

Disclaimer: BookLocker.com, a firm that competes with CreateSpace (and many others), is the parent company of this publication. Many authors who are unhappy with other publishers have submitted their manuscripts to BookLocker for consideration. However, BookLocker.com vets manuscripts for quality and salability, and rejects a large number of manuscripts per year. When we do, we must refer those authors to different P.O.D. publishers. Unfortunately, we can NOT refer authors to CreateSpace.

I am not an attorney and this is not legal advice. Please contact your attorney with specific legal questions.

~~~~~~~~~~~

In my opinion, when a company lures you in with one price, and then changes it later on, that’s false advertising – a classic bait and switch.

And, if they’re offering you 5 “complimentary” books for an extra $224…they are NOT complimentary. That adds up to $44.90 per book!!

For the second price change you reported, you’re getting 1 complimentary book for an exta $108? What a joke!!

If you truly believe you’ve been bamboozled, I encourage you to report them to the Washington State Attorney General. Specific information on how to do that is HERE.

Under CreateSpace’s contract, if you or anyone chooses to sue, it must be done through Washington State. Oh, and CreateSpace’s contract prohibits their authors from filing a class-action lawsuit. Again, in my opinion, if that doesn’t serve as a warning sign to new authors, I don’t know what does.

It states:
“You or we may bring suit in court on an individual basis only, and not in a class, consolidated or representative action, to apply for injunctive remedies. You may bring any such suit for injunctive remedies only in the courts of the State of Washington, USA.”

There are tons of complaints about CreateSpace posted online and we always recommend authors avoid them.

RELATED:

Employees (Allegedly) Reveal Behind-the-Scenes Info. about CreateSpace, Xlibris, Author Solutions, Infinity Publishing, Lulu, and Outskirts Press
CREATESPACE COMPLAINTS – PART IV
MORE CREATESPACE COMPLAINTS (Part III)
CREATESPACE COMPLAINTS – Part II
UH OH – PART II! What are Employees of CreateSpace and Lulu Saying About Those Companies?
More Q&A with Angela!



The Do-It-Yourselfer's Guide to Self-Syndication


Practical resource outlining the self-syndication process, step-by-step. Packed with detailed information and useful tips for writers looking to gain readership, name recognition, publication and self-syndication for their column or articles.

http://writersweekly.com/books/4693.html



 



Yes, online book promoting can be EASY and FUN! Let us show you how, from Day 1 through Day 90…and beyond!



 

Q –

Hi Angela,

Did you pay the freelance writers who contributed their query letters to your book, “QUERY LETTERS THAT WORKED! Real Queries That Landed $2K+ Writing Assignments?” Or, did they simply give them to you?

Did they retain the rights, or transfer them to you? I ask because I am planning an anthology, using articles from other writers.

Best Regards,

– R.


A –

Hi Roy,

I paid each contributor $50 each and I also gave each one a copy of the finished print edition of the book. And, I only asked for non-exclusive rights. That means I can continue to sell the book containing their contributions but they can use/sell their work elsewhere as well.

If any of them wants to buy a copies to re-sell, they can do so at the author discount we offer to BookLocker authors. I do not earn any royalties when they do that but that’s okay because, without them, the book would not exist.

Here’s how I did it (this includes a sample contract):
HOW TO COMPILE AND PUBLISH AN ANTHOLOGY

RELATED



The Do-It-Yourselfer's Guide to Self-Syndication


Practical resource outlining the self-syndication process, step-by-step. Packed with detailed information and useful tips for writers looking to gain readership, name recognition, publication and self-syndication for their column or articles.

http://writersweekly.com/books/4693.html



 



Yes, online book promoting can be EASY and FUN! Let us show you how, from Day 1 through Day 90…and beyond!



 

Q –

On a stock photo website, I found a photo that I’d really like to use on my book cover. It says “royalty-free” but they want to charge me for the photo. Doesn’t royalty-free mean anybody can use the photo for anything…for free??

-L.V.


A –

No, and that’s a common misconception. Royalty-free means you can use the photo, but only after purchasing it. After that, you do not need to then pay the copyright holder for royalties after-the-fact.

For example, a photographer might require a down-payment for a photo, and then a share of the royalties from future book sales. Some allow authors to pay to use the photo for a specific number of copies printed. Then, the author must pay more later if they print, say, more than 500 copies.

If a photographer, artist, or stock photo agency sells you a royalty-free graphic, that means you can pay one time, and use the photo on your cover forever. But, be sure to read the fine print in case the item is incorrectly listed as “royalty-free,” or in case there are special limitations involved with the sale or use of the image.

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HowMaster: The Writer's Guide to Beautiful Word Crafting


HowMaster is a wise choice for the writer who wants to weave words around the reader’s heart.


Author Linda M. Gigliotti
shows how effective
writing happens.





Author Linda M. Gigliotti draws from years of practice as a private
writing tutor in the guidebook that teaches writers how to format visceral
writing that pulls readers into their book. She explains with instruction
and samples of published works how to craft writing that come to life in the reader's mind.

Read more here:
http://booklocker.com/books/2304.html





The Do-It-Yourselfer's Guide to Self-Syndication


Practical resource outlining the self-syndication process, step-by-step. Packed with detailed information and useful tips for writers looking to gain readership, name recognition, publication and self-syndication for their column or articles.

http://writersweekly.com/books/4693.html





So, You Wanna Be a Ghostwriter - How To Make Money Writing Without a Byline


Many freelance writers find it difficult to break into the publishing world. What they don't know, however, is that there's a faster and easier way to see their words in print. It's called ghostwriting, and it's an extremely lucrative, fun, and challenging career.

But how do you get started as a ghostwriter? How do you find new clients who will pay you to write their material? How do you charge? And what kind of contracts do you need to succeed? All these questions and more are answered in So, You Wanna Be a Ghostwriter...How to Make Money Writing Without a Byline.

Read more here:
http://writersweekly.com/books/49.html





Q –

I put up my book on Amazon’s Kindle last year for almost a year but not a single copy was sold. Did I do something wrong, or miss out on something I needed to do? Now, my second novel is ready but I can’t find a publisher to print it. What should I do?

– A.K.


A –

It’s a common misconception that putting a newly published book (print or electronic) up on Amazon will mean automatic sales. Nothing could be further from the truth. Amazon’s inventory is far too large. Hoping for people to stumble upon your book, and immediately buy it, is unrealistic. To sell copies, you must consistently and aggressively promote your book.

Please see:
90+ DAYS OF PROMOTING YOUR BOOK ONLINE: Your Book’s Daily Marketing Plan

Also, if your book isn’t available in print, some readers may not consider your book a “real” book. After all, if the author didn’t care enough about the book to have it published in print format, perhaps the author didn’t think the quality of the book was worth any financial investment on their part.

Books that are available in print AND electronic formats tend to sell far better than ones that are only available as ebooks. Remember that ebook sales have been dipping the last few years, and print book sales are making a comeback. It’s best to offer both options to your readers for maximum sales.

Regarding your new book – If you have a previous book on the market with no sales, traditional publishers are very unlikely to want to publish your new book. You might want to consider self-publishing. Yes, you’ll need to invest money but you won’t need to wait for months (or years) to land an agent, and a traditional publisher. (You’d then need to wait even longer for the book to be published, and put on the market.) Note: BookLocker gets books on the market in only one month.

Most authors who approach agents and/or traditional publishers do NOT get contracts, and then choose self-publishing if they want to get read, and if they want to make money on their book(s).

Also, keep in mind that self-published authors with impressive sales, have a MUCH higher chance of landing a traditional publishing contract later.

Please see:

The Cold, Hard, Ugly Facts about Traditional Publishing…and Why You Might Want to Avoid It Altogether

and

7 BENEFITS of Self-Publishing! (And, reasons you may want to avoid the traditional route)

Angela

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HowMaster: The Writer's Guide to Beautiful Word Crafting


HowMaster is a wise choice for the writer who wants to weave words around the reader’s heart.


Author Linda M. Gigliotti
shows how effective
writing happens.





Author Linda M. Gigliotti draws from years of practice as a private
writing tutor in the guidebook that teaches writers how to format visceral
writing that pulls readers into their book. She explains with instruction
and samples of published works how to craft writing that come to life in the reader's mind.

Read more here:
http://booklocker.com/books/2304.html









The Art and Craft of Writing and Editing


Writing is a constant dialogue between author and reader.

Read more here:
http://writersweekly.com/books/6712.html





 

Ask The Expert Archives