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Old 23rd Jun 2007, 10:33   #21
BiNS
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Default Re: Worst self published books

Hi Col, Yes I do but that's not why I posted (far be it from me to advertise on the Palimp!!). No, it's an incredibly well thought out book and really well produced. I can send you a copy if you like, as long as you can pass it on to anyone else who wants a look...

I have to put my hands up and admit I haven't read it all, but I know two people who have and they both rate it highly. I'll get round to it soon and will be more than happy to eat my words if it turns out to be from the SW School of 'creative' writing.
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Old 23rd Jun 2007, 13:07   #22
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Default Re: Worst self published books

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Who's this 'JS' bloke?
Sorry, JM
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Old 27th Jun 2007, 22:11   #23
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There's a self published book around at the moment which I think puts most, probably all, of the others to shame. Take a look at the effort the guy has put into the website alone. The book is not perfect, but better than 95% of the tat that 'mainstream' publishers foist on young readers in the vain hope of trousering a few million when the great unwashed discover their new JKR. The author has been published (successfully) before but took the decision to self publish this one because he feared the heavy hand of an editor may spoil some of the clues hidden in the text.
...
Thanks to BiNS, I've had a chance to read this book today and agree that whilst it's not perfect (there was a comment about cannibals in Lesotho that made me cringe, let alone some of the descriptions of Justin's brain going into overdrive and such) it is a very entertaining read, and for once the cliched characters are actually amusing. I'll find some time tomorrow to do a quick review. Meantime, my eleven yr old is stuck into it.
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Old 28th Jun 2007, 16:13   #24
wshaw
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Default Re: Worst self published books

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Originally Posted by Hekaterine View Post
If you set up your own imprint, it's self-publishing whereas if you pay two grand or whatever to a 'publisher', it's vanity publishing. If I recollect the Yearbook are strongly against vanity publishing but not self-publishing.

Can't think why - as you say Kim, there seems to be little distinction as they are both routes for people who have not been accepted by anyone who actually wants to pay them for their writings.
You're absolutely right, of course. And I speak as someone guilty on whichever count you wish to charge me.

All the same, publishing has entered a new phase. Publishers are taking fewer risks and publishing a lot less at the moment as they consolidate their lists dramatically. Go to any gathering of writers these days and they're always grumbling about how few new titles are published.

The fact is, books that were published ten years ago and expected to sell two or three thousand copies won't see the light of day now. And yet we live in the era of "the long tail", where it's theoretically possible for smaller imprints to make a profit out of selling small numbers of books. (I hope, anyway.) So you're bound to get more imprints. And some of these will be, ah, author-led. OK, vanity publishing by another name.

So this will be an increasingly common phenomenon. And the only problemis a lot of it's crap. But some of it might be quite good. After all, do people mind it when pop stars like Julian Cope put out their own records?
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Old 28th Jun 2007, 16:44   #25
Hekaterine
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Default Re: Worst self published books

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So you're bound to get more imprints. And some of these will be, ah, author-led. OK, vanity publishing by another name.
Personally, I don't have a problem with self-publishing - i.e. setting up your own imprint.

I do have a problem with companies who will charge someone to publish and print their work, leaving them with 2000 copies of 'Travels with me Nan' or whatever, in their garage and an empty bank account.
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Old 28th Jun 2007, 17:57   #26
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Default Re: Worst self published books

I have no problem with self publishing or vanity publishing. If someone wants to fill their garage with 2000 copies of Travels with Nan then there are plenty of more damaging ways to spend your money. Do they really get 2000 copies - I thought people tended to go for around the 50 mark?

And by the same token, if someone wants to set up their own business to publish their own work, fair enough.

I do have a problem, though, with writers of either type who then make false or misleading claims that indicate external validation of their work.
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Old 29th Jun 2007, 22:28   #27
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Default Re: Worst self published books

I may have been exaggerating slightly with the 2000 copies :)

I think the thing I dislike about 'vanity' publishers is my perception that they are fleecing some poor unsuspecting sucker and letting them think that their work is better than it is.

There's a great bit in one of the Adrian Mole books by Sue Townsend (I think it might be Adrian Mole from Major to Minor) where Adrian gets a letter from Vanity Publishers Inc (or some such) praising his novel Lo the Flat Hills of my Homeland to the skies and then dropping in the price they would charge him to publish it. Adrian does consider it but (if I remember correctly) has insufficient funds in his Alliance and Leicester savings account. I know this is fiction (no, no, Adrian's real, REAL I tell you) but this is the kind of thing which I suspect happens a lot.
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Old 1st Jul 2007, 0:40   #28
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Default Re: Worst self published books

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Originally Posted by wshaw View Post
The fact is, books that were published ten years ago and expected to sell two or three thousand copies won't see the light of day now. And yet we live in the era of "the long tail", where it's theoretically possible for smaller imprints to make a profit out of selling small numbers of books. (I hope, anyway.)
The long tail is profitable for the booksellers who maintain long lists of inventory, not the publisher.

Online booksellers do not take risks on publishing new titles, like what publishers do!
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Old 2nd Jul 2007, 14:27   #29
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Default Re: Worst self published books

My book on computer adventures was self-published, and we did better than break even, despite the rather small audience for the book. We printed 4000 copies and it worked out at about 80p per copy, against a 7.99 price tag - i.e. 900% profit, so we only had to sell 400 to break even, which we did almost immediately. Since then, we still sell the odd copy. Last time I looked, Amazon rated it more saleable than SW's offerings, and we didn't even have to tell lies or submit fake reviews. Whenever we could be bothered to take the book to a bookshop, we generally sold a few copies.

Nowadays, there are internet-based printers who can produce a short run of a book on request with a short lead time, enabling a self-publisher to dodge the up-front costs that used to accompany having something printed.
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Old 23rd Nov 2007, 11:41   #30
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Default Re: Worst self published books

I have a request for a swap on ReadItSwapIt this morning, and had a giggle at what the swapper said about one of the books on offer.

User's description: utter rubbish - his dad must be a publisher
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