Today, I need to step up on my soapbox once again.
I do not offer consulting services – fee-based or otherwise. Authors and freelance writers offer to pay me for my advice all of the time. I either give them brief advice via email for free, or I point them toward a book I’ve written on the topic. If I can’t help them, I point them to a link or two that can. I’m polite and I truly want to help people. NICE people.
Like most folks, I can’t STAND rude people. Entitled, demanding, whiny people are a huge burr under my saddle and I simply refuse to work with them. Period.
If you’re an expert in any industry, why give away advice for free when you can profit from it? And, when you’re an expert in an industry, it’s easy to figure out what to include in books you can write and sell later. It’s the information you’ve been sharing with people over and over again before you wrote those books!
For example, if a writer doesn’t know what a query letter is, or how to write one, I simply give him or her the link for Query Letters That Worked: Real Queries That Landed $2K+ Writing Assignments – SECOND EDITION.
If an author wants to know how to write his or her memoirs, or if he or she wants to interview someone, and write that person’s biography, or ghostwrite an autobiography for someone else, I send them THIS LINK.
If someone needs advice on setting up a website, an email newsletter, or any number of creative ways to promote themselves, their writing business, or their book(s), I send them THIS LINK.
Now, there’s a big difference between someone who sends you a friendly email with a question or two, and an email from someone who demands you jump through hoops for them just because….they’re them.
This week, I received an email from a woman who I will (of course!) call Karen. She claimed to know one of our authors. She went on to explain that she wanted to get a literary agent and a traditional publishing contract. Okay. I get those types of emails all the time.
But then (get this!), she wrote, “You need to call me right now. I need this information TODAY! Call me RIGHT NOW! My number is (removed). If I don’t answer leave your number and I will call you back when I can. Answer your phone when I call you!”
You can imagine the verbal response she received (but could not hear) when I read that email. I try really hard not to use profanity but it just shot right out of my mouth. Brian looked over from his laptop, uttering a low whistle.
Talk about ENTITLED!
My first instinct was to simply delete her email. But, she’d been referred by one of our authors (who she named in her email). I wanted our author to know how disrespectful she was, and also that I had not ignored the woman. I rubbed my palms together, cracked my knuckles, and pounded this onto my keyboard:
The one-on-one advice you seek is only available from someone who has spent years in the publishing industry. After 25 years of hard work and ongoing education, including owning my own successful publishing company, I am extremely well-versed in literary agents, traditional publishing, self-publishing, publishing contracts, rights, and much, much more.
My time is extremely valuable. I have thousands of authors, many employees and contractors, and a family who deserves every minute of my free time. I am stunned that you are demanding I give you information for free. And, I am shocked that you are DEMANDING a phone call from me – on YOUR schedule.
Who do you think you are?!
Even if you offered to pay me right now for my expertise, I wouldn’t talk to you. Per my website, I “don’t work with jerks.” If you’d done even five minutes of research on my website, you’d have seen this book:
BOOK PROPOSALS THAT WORKED! Real Book Proposals That Landed $10K – $100K Publishing Contracts – SECOND EDITION
It provides all of the advice you need.
Do not contact me again.
And, she did not.
From now on, when people send me rude emails, demanding free services or worse (phone calls!), I will simply send them the link to this article.
I feel all better now. I’ll step off my soapbox now.
MORE SOAPBOX POSTS BY ANGELA
- Convicted Felons Need Not Apply By Angela Hoy
- Is Your Client Feigning Ignorance? Don’t Be a Dummy!!
- World’s Worst “Query Letter!”
- A Scum Term Paper Mill Owes You Money? Now, Really… What Did You Expect? By Angela Hoy
- SOUR GRAPES FROM COMPETING BLOGGERS! Can You Believe This?!
- Disturbing Allegations In The New Author Solutions Lawsuit! By Angela Hoy
Got questions about Print On Demand and Self-publishing? Ask Angela Hoy.
About The Author
Angela Hoy is the publisher of WritersWeekly.com, the author of 19 books, and the co-owner of BookLocker.com (one of the original POD publishers that still gets books to market in less than a month), PubPreppers.com (print and ebook design for authors who truly want to self-publish), and Abuzz Press (the publishing co-op that charges no setup fees).
Angela has lived and traveled across the U.S. with her kids in an RV, settled in a river-side home in Bradenton, FL, and lived on a 52 ft Irwin sailboat. Angela now resides on a mountaintop in Northwest Georgia, where she plans to spend the rest of her days bird watching, gardening, hiking, and taking in all of the amazing sunrises.
WritersWeekly.com - the free marketing ezine for writers, which features new paying markets and freelance job listings every Wednesday.
BookLocker.com - According to attorney Mark Levine, author of The Fine Print, BookLocker is: "As close to perfection as you're going to find in the world of ebook and POD publishing. The ebook royalties are the highest I've ever seen, and the print royalties are better than average. BookLocker understands what new authors experience, and have put together a package that is the best in the business. You can't go wrong here. Plus, they're selective and won't publish any manuscript just because it's accompanied by a check. Also, the web site is well trafficked. If you can find a POD or epublisher with as much integrity and dedication to selling authors' books, but with lower POD publishing fees, please let me know."
Abuzz Press offers FAST and FREE book publication, but only accepts a small percentage of submissions, and only works with U.S. authors.
PubPreppers.com - "We Prep, You Publish!" Print and ebook design for authors who truly want to self-publish. Offers formatting and design services only, and then provides simple instructions for authors on where to sign up to have the print and ebook editions printed/listed/sold. Cut out the middle man. Keep 100% of what bookstores pay for your book!
Angela's POD Secrets Revealed Series can be found HERE.
Have a POD Book with another publisher? See if BookLocker can give you a better deal. (BookLocker offers "disgruntled author discounts" to those who want to move from other POD services.)
See BookLocker's publishing packages HERE.
ANGELA ON TWITTER https://twitter.com/AngelaHoy
BOOKLOCKER ON FACEBOOK - Provides links to free excerpts!
ANGELA ON FACEBOOK
ANGELA ON LINKEDIN
Angela is the creator of the Original 24-Hour Short Story Contest!
Read More Of Angela's Articles HERE
90+ DAYS OF PROMOTING YOUR BOOK ONLINE: Your Book's Daily Marketing Plan by Angela Hoy and Richard Hoy
Promoting your book online should be considered at least a part-time job. Highly successful authors spend more time promoting a book than they do writing it - a lot more.
We know what you're thinking. You're an author, not a marketer. Not to worry! We have more than a decade of successful online book selling experience under our belts and we're going to teach you how to promote your book effectively online...and almost all of our techniques are FREE!
Online book promotion is not only simple but, if you have a step-by-step, day-to-day marketing plan (this book!), it can also be a very artistic endeavor, which makes it fun for creative folks like you!
Yes, online book promoting can be EASY and FUN! Let us show you how, from Day 1 through Day 90...and beyond!
QUERY LETTERS THAT WORKED! Real Queries That Landed $2K+ Writing Assignments
Peek over the shoulders of highly successful freelance writers to see how they earn thousands per article! The query letter is the key!
In these pages, you'll find real query letters that landed real assignments for national magazines, websites, and corporations.
- Abbi Perrets' form letter that brings in $30,000-$45,000 annually
- Sample phone query from Christine Greeley
- The Six Golden Rules of Queries and Submissions...and How I Broke Them! by Bob Freiday
- Your Rights As a "Freelancer"
- and ANGELA HOY'S SECRET for finding ongoing freelance work from companies that have a stable of freelancers, yet never run ads for them!
BOOK PROPOSALS THAT WORKED! Real Book Proposals That Landed $10K - $100K Publishing Contracts - by Angela Hoy
Peek over the shoulders of highly successful, published authors to see how they landed publishing contracts worth $10,000 to $100,000! An enticing yet professional book proposal is the key!
BONUS! Successful ghostwriter, Anton Marco, shares his secret for landing ghostwriting clients. Don’t miss Anton’s real ghostwriting contract at the end of this book! It provides an example of what he charges and the payment terms he requires from each client.
HOW TO REMEMBER, WRITE AND PUBLISH YOUR LIFE STORY
Angela Hoy's popular online class is now available in book format!
Remember Your Past
Write It and Publish It
in as little as 12 weeks!
Angela Hoy's book will get you started!
- Using Angela's MEMORY TRIGGERS, recall memories that have been dormant for years
- Record those memories in chronological order in your memory notebook
- Using the memory notebook as your outline, write your autobiography!
- Also works for biographies and memoirs!
Read more here:
Pingback: 4 Client Mistakes You MUST Avoid When Freelancing – by Joshua Pantalleresco | WritersWeekly.com
Well done! How many times have I wanted to say that to other people? But the Lord above pulled me back on my silver fork tongue and let that person vanish from my email and phone number. You worked too hard for anyone to treat you as a secondhand human. They are not clearly thinking about the results afterward on the demanding words. Take care and be safe.
Your rant reminded me of an incident from some time ago. We were farmers with our own gas tank for the farm equipment. A man in a business suit ran out of gas one evening and asked to get some from me in order to get to the nearest town. The temperature was below zero and I was 8 months pregnant and home alone. The snow was falling and blowing sideways as only it can across the great plains. I agreed to help him (because I didn’t want to be stuck with him at my house) and he pulled up to the gas pump. As I inserted the nozzle, he crawled back into his heated car. After a short time, I figured he had enough gas to get into town when he rolled down his window and asked me to “just fill it up” because he was running late. And then he asked me if I would wash his windows too. When I declined (after all, too big a baby belly to reach, no rags to wipe the windows, and fingers frozen into claws) he threw up his hands in frustration and squealed away without even saying “thanks” or paying for the gas he had gotten.
I melted snow with my rant on the way back to the house.
What a JERK!!! I know that happened to you awhile back but it sure seems there are far more people like that now. 🙁
The points made in your letter were excellent, and the position you took regarding the very rude demand was polite, firm, and to the point. Congratulations.
Astounding! I want to say “Karen’s” letter doesn’t sound believable, but I’ve heard so many entitled people in my own work that I know it’s real. What a great response!
Yes, per my response to another reader, there are far more Karens in the world now (male and female) and their numbers are increasing daily. 🙁
I love and appreciate those who actually make a statement to correct the rudeness of others and I appreciate that you are not working with jerks. If we all took that stand with jerks and rudeness, even it we lose a sale or two, those rude jerks would maybe get the picture that you get more satisfaction out of kindness then being an *****.
Your company is an inspiration to others
Amen, sister!!! 🙂
Ref: Demanding “jerk”…
Good for you Angie. I’m considering starting a company called “A-Hole Illuminators”….
so I can take my skill set…and go “illuminate” some dark holes……
Peace. Hope your holidays went well. Still doing five meters. Chief