Under the catagory of WTH…

Submitted for your recommendation – the latest info on Blu Phi’er Publishing.

Seems that the owner sent out a mass mailing to all the authors detailing their royalties, if any, and how much they OWE the company. Courtesy of The Rusty Nail.

I don’t even KNOW where to begin to discuss about how totally wrong this is. First, and this is just from a gut reaction, how the heck do you feel about having your royalties shared with everyone else on that list? Sure, it’s nice to know how the other authors in your company are doing, but… that’s just wrong. On so many levels that it’s mindboggling.

Next, the amount owed. Now I’m assuming that the authors won’t actually be BILLED for this but it’s still… wrong. As I’ve said many times before – you may not get into writing to get rich, but you sure don’t get into it to go into debt!

However, as this post on Absolute Write points out, this is all perfectly legal due to the contract that the authors signed. Yep, all laid out there in black and white and they signed off on it – so technically they don’t have a legal leg to stand on.

Victoria Strauss of Writer Beware clarifies right here exactly how wrong it is. But, again, if the authors signed off on it…

I guess the moral of the story is to READ the contract before you SIGN off on it and make sure to get every little point clarified. I know that all too well although I’m luckier than these poor stiffs. Not to mention the impoliteness of having your personal finances tossed through the internet in a mass mailing. Tres gauche.

As Uncle Jim has said many times – it’s better to NOT be published than to be published BADLY. Think this sort of illustrates that.



Books, Books, Books…

Well, it’s been a great year for movies AND books in my opinion – sure we got a FABOO Iron Man (insert RDJ fangirl swoon here) and looking forward to more excellent comic-based movies but there’s some great books out there for those of you looking for something a bit different.

Cry Wolf by Patricia Briggs is set in the Mercy Thompson world – and if you haven’t met her then you’re missing out on a wonderfully crafted world of shapeshifting, werewolves and magic. I just finished this one, the first spin-off so to speak, and I can’t wait for more. If you’re looking for a great way to spend some time in a different reality plus some hot sexy werewolf men… well, drop by the garage!

And I’m about to start on the newest Julie Kenner book, Deja Demon – her fourth in a series that started off with Carpe Demon. Imagine what would or could happen if Buffy, our favorite vampire slayer, decided to retire and get married and have a normal life. Except, as usual, things don’t always go to plan. With excellent characterization and dialogue that just won’t stop I’m dying to get into this newest book! And anyone who’s a Kim Possible fan and mentions it in her books, well… that clinches the deal for me!

I’m still slogging through The World is Flat by Thomas L. Friedman, but that’s because it’s non-fiction and a bit hard to digest quickly. Although the audiobook is a godsend during my Wii Fit step sessions and I can focus in better on the concepts. Still highly recommend this if you’re looking for the future wrapped up in an easily understandable package.

Nothing more to report on the Blu Phi’er Publishing problems, other than a discussion on how the best of intentions can often turn a small press into a nightmare for the authors. It’s sad to see how many people get taken in by sweet words about how good their book is and how the publisher is right behind them… and then it turns out to be a horrible contract; lies about distribution and the like and the author is left holding the bag. 

The saddest thing is, to me, that these people aren’t evil. But they know little if anything about publishing and figure that because they can run a computer or a business in another field that it all translates over – and that’s just not true. Publishing is a full-time job with a whole lot of dedication needed and skills that can be only acquired through research and experience – andanyone who says otherwise is tooting smoke, IMO. Publishing companies have been started by housewives, computer programmers and disgruntled authors with no idea of how the system works or how they can make it work for them. And in the end so many of them fail that it’s sad. 

Again – check out your micropresses. Some of them may be honest, hardworking souls who really care about getting your book to the public. But there are those, and plenty of them on the Absolute Write boards, who don’t know what they’re doing and just want to play at being a publisher. Why give them YOUR book to play with?