Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Guest blog from Jade James

When Emily Veinglory asked that I be guest on her blog, I frankly jumped at the chance. You see, I’ve been where the Ocean’s Mist Press authors are at now.

Let me begin by saying, I was approached by Noemi to write a story for her new company. I was a new author, still learning the ropes and truthfully I jumped at the chance to showcase my writings. What a horrible mistake I made. At the time of OMP’s shadiness, my husband was out of work. So every dollar, I could get from writing would be used to pay bills. It all began with Noemi making up her own ISBN numbers and listing them on her OMP website. She claimed she was cheated by the company she bought the ISBN numbers. I emailed that company directly, and they said it was impossible. (I also have that email to prove it.) In the year, I was published with OMP, I saw two payments. Then payments stopped. Unfortunately, at that time I wasn’t the only author not being paid. I have emails from authors stating this, but none of them would go public. But that wasn’t going to stop me.

I emailed Noemi numerous times, and some of my emails would go ignored. And when she felt she had time to answer them, she would email rants, change the contract payment terms on her own without notifying OMP authors.

To read more on it, visit my blog archives at jadestruthordare.blogspot.com

Public Communication, Based On Evidence
As I wrote on another blog, I took my fight public, because I couldn’t afford a lawyer. But one of the reasons why I chose this route, is because I already had numerous amounts of written evidence from Noemi that payment was going to be made. It never arrived. So I made it a point to visit yahoo groups/discussions/blogs and let everyone know about Noemi’s lying, cheating ways. I would post updates on my blog and even on the author group. I remember one author (who shall remained unnamed) told me that this shouldn’t be posted on the author group. I didn’t care. I didn’t give up until Noemi was forced to listen to me. (FYI: that same author emailed me asking for advice on how to handle OMP, and pulled her books a couple of months later for nonpayment).

Around June of 2006, I was mailed a money order, with no return address. Brilliant Noemi had even chosen not to fill it out. My books were taken down from her website two days later.

There were rumors also flowing abut with Silk’s Vault. But at least with Silk’s Vault Publishing, the same week I requested my books to be taken down and payment, the owner (Sarah) obliged immediately. I know other authors weren’t so lucky.

If a publisher is trying to shaft you, don’t keep it quiet! If you have the evidence, show it to the world. I did. No one can call you a liar, if the written proof is in their faces. My advice to authors who choose the public route, make sure you keep all emails and communication between publisher and yourself. And if you do choose this way, know that you would be helping a writer choose an honest company for themselves.

What has OMP taught me about choosing publishers? It is my number one rule to not submit to newbie companies. Yes, newbie companies will say that’s unfair. Well, they haven’t been in my shoes.

I now choose companies that have been in the public eye for a while, and that have proven that they are well established author friendly epublishers.

Ask the publisher questions. You have the right. Sit down and think of everything you want to ask them and submit those to them, to see what answers they come up with. It’s also important to talk to other authors within publisher’s company and see if there happy with how the publisher is treating them. View their marketing plan, google their name. Do what you can to find out anything you need to know, to make you a satisfied publisher.

And I’ll end it here. Thanks to Emily for posting this.

Jade James

6 comments:

Emily Veinglory said...

Thanks for sharing your experiences, Jade :)

Mary Winter said...

Thanks for sharing your experiences. One of the things I do is google the people involved in the company. Sadly, I, too, had to learn that lesson the hard way. Thank you for not being afraid to speak out!

Jade James said...

I think we all as writers make mistakes, but it's what we choose to do with what we learned, that's important.

December/Stacia said...

Hi Jade, I'm glad to see you were finally vindicated. I remember we discussed this when it was happened (don't know if you recall) and I hoped everything would work out for you.

Thanks so much for sharing your experience.

Jade James said...

I remember December our discussion. Thanks for lending you're ear/advice. :-)

FYI: Been following your career. Congrats on your success!


Jade

Jill N. Noble said...

On ISBNs...as far as I know, there's only one place to buy them. You send your money, they send you your ISBNs. It's pretty cut and dried. ;-)

>>It is my number one rule to not submit to newbie companies.<<

Unfortunately, but understandably, this attitude is shared by a lot of authors. New ePubs have to earn their good reputation, and offer incentives for authors to take a chance with them.

Thanks for sharing your story, Jade.

Jill