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AALBC.com's Thumper's Corner Discussion Board » Thumper's Corner - Archive 2006 » April McDonald Sues Amazon and vanity press for 8.5 million « Previous Next »

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Kem
First Time Poster
Username: Kem

Post Number: 1
Registered: 09-2006

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Posted on Wednesday, September 13, 2006 - 11:28 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Yes, that is correct April McDonald is suing Amazon for 10.5 million dollars and its vanity press, Book Surge, claiming that the book was full of typos and other errors.

"This was part of a take-off to a writing career that could have been destroyed, in my opinion," McDonald said. "It took immense amounts of work, and I'm very disappointed with my experience. I have had problems with unreported sales. Delayed shipment and continuous issues with royalties (breach of contract).

Until she releases her next book,(not through Booksurge) she has requested that her book entitled Sex, Lies and Consequences removed from all sale portals to save her writing career.
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Emanuel
"Cyniquian" Level Poster
Username: Emanuel

Post Number: 246
Registered: 03-2004

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Posted on Thursday, September 14, 2006 - 09:19 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

That's not a surprise. AuthorHouse just lost a libel lawsuit because they claimed in the contract they weren't responsible for the untruths an author wrote in a book they published. (http://leegoldberg.typepad.com/a_writers_life/2006/05/romance_author_.html)

Vanity/POD publishers better start getting better lawyers because they stand to lose millions with their untraditional way of publishing books. I haven't seen a BookSurge contract but subsidy publishers usually protect themselves pretty well when it comes to who is responsible for editing unless the author pays for this service.

Check out an earlier post on this forum about subsidy publishers called "The Truth Behind Subsidy and Vanity Publishers."

Authors are much better off when they publish the books themselves (buy ISBN #s, hire cover designers, pay a printer, etc.) versus when they use a vanity publisher.
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Abm
"Cyniquian" Level Poster
Username: Abm

Post Number: 6537
Registered: 04-2004

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Posted on Thursday, September 14, 2006 - 11:39 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Kam,

Is this an issue of basic incompetency? Of did Book Surge INTENTIONALLY distribute such a horribly unfinished, unedited work?

If the latter is true, why?

Do they think April's readers would WANT to buy/read such dreck?
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Cynique
"Cyniquian" Level Poster
Username: Cynique

Post Number: 5183
Registered: 01-2004

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Posted on Thursday, September 14, 2006 - 04:46 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

They don't call em vanity publisheres for nothin. It's easy to swindle an ego-tripper who thinks he's written the great American novel.
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Kem
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Username: Kem

Post Number: 2
Registered: 09-2006

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Posted on Friday, September 15, 2006 - 05:14 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Cynique,

I don't think is is a matter of an ego trip but I do feel that April wanted quality, especially since it is her name on the book.

Abm,

With this type of publishing companies they don't care about quality but quantity, so a lot of times this is why they find themselves in lawsuits.
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Cynique
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Username: Cynique

Post Number: 5194
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Posted on Friday, September 15, 2006 - 08:19 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I know, Kam. I was just being flippant, or - "cynical", if you will. But to be honest, vanity publishers have become ennablers to anyone hooked on the idea of writing a book. And this urge seems to have reached epidemic proportions. If a person's work is full of errors and typos and in need of editing, then the author's presumption about being a writer would seem to be a tad ego-driven. And the dream of becoming a best-selling author via of making a guest appearance on Oprah's show is probably every writer's secret fantasy, a fantasy that can render people vulnerable to shady deals. Anyway, Emanuel's advice about being your own self-publisher and being in control of your project is a good test of one's ability and talent, and I agree with what he says.
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Cynique
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Username: Cynique

Post Number: 5195
Registered: 01-2004

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Posted on Friday, September 15, 2006 - 10:37 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Kem. Hummm. I thought you were Kam. You are not Kam. Right? You're Kem. Someone else.
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Chrishayden
"Cyniquian" Level Poster
Username: Chrishayden

Post Number: 2757
Registered: 03-2004

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Posted on Saturday, September 16, 2006 - 10:27 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Re: Cynique's last two posts--

Now you all know why the Black people are in the shape they are in--
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Cynique
"Cyniquian" Level Poster
Username: Cynique

Post Number: 5199
Registered: 01-2004

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Posted on Saturday, September 16, 2006 - 11:25 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Don't be coy, chrishayden. Tell us, O Great Grand Poobah, O self-appointed wind bag in charge of designating what black people are. What of do you speak? Words fail you? It figures. Untie your tongue and de-scramble you brain and tell us how my mistaking a poster named "Kem" for another one named "Kam" exonerates you from taking Emanuel's wise advice about self-publishing?
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Chrishayden
"Cyniquian" Level Poster
Username: Chrishayden

Post Number: 2760
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Posted on Saturday, September 16, 2006 - 11:49 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

At least I know Kem from Kam--and shit from shinola which is why my shoes don't smell funny like yours do--
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Cynique
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Username: Cynique

Post Number: 5201
Registered: 01-2004

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Posted on Saturday, September 16, 2006 - 01:03 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Get it right, chrishayden. If you knew shit from shinola, you would'nt be such a dull, unpolished dispenser of pure unadulterated BS.
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Nom_de_plume
Regular Poster
Username: Nom_de_plume

Post Number: 29
Registered: 07-2006

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Posted on Saturday, September 16, 2006 - 06:57 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

They're also better off if they can actually WRITE and spell in the first place!
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Kem
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Username: Kem

Post Number: 4
Registered: 09-2006

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Posted on Monday, September 18, 2006 - 04:16 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

No my name is kem not kam or bam, but KEM. Not sure if I fully comprehend the last message, sort of incomplete. You would be surprised by how many authors can't spell-- If you pay an editor then they should be the ones who know how to spell.
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Cynique
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Username: Cynique

Post Number: 5213
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Posted on Monday, September 18, 2006 - 04:41 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Well, Kem, maybe the fact that a wanna-be author can't spell is one reason why a regular publisher rejects his work. A manuscript riddled with misspellings and typos is unprofessional and is usually an indication of the caliber of the manuscript, itself. Self-published writers are the only ones who have to PAY an editor to shape up their work.
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Mzuri
"Cyniquian" Level Poster
Username: Mzuri

Post Number: 1465
Registered: 01-2006

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Posted on Monday, September 18, 2006 - 07:33 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

There's no valid reason for not being able to spell. Unless you have Alzheimers or English is your second language or something. If you're educated at the high school level, you should be able to spell simple words. Complex words can be researched in the dictionary, and with the internet at our fingertips, there is absolutely NO excuse for producing garbage. Writers must write, spell, and cohesively string together a series of words. And discern between the various homonyms. There is no defense for illiteracy in the writing profession.
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Kem
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Username: Kem

Post Number: 5
Registered: 09-2006

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Posted on Tuesday, September 19, 2006 - 03:23 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I agree, but I am on the authors defense because I own a copy of her book, which I thought was excellent. I didn't notice any misspellings but I did notice that a page skipped, in which that is a printing error. I believe an audio version of this book is coming soon and I too will own that.
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Zane
Newbie Poster
Username: Zane

Post Number: 35
Registered: 11-2004

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Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2006 - 09:15 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

This is why I love these discussion boards. Even though I only get to read the posts once in a blue moon, whenever I come to catch up, I always discover something new. I did not know that Amazon had a Vanity Press. As far as the typos, if their contract states that they are supposed to have the book edited, then they should have done so. I have never heard of the book but did just look it up and I love the cover. It's hot!

As far as the libel suit that Authorhouse lost, I was not aware of that either. But I am not surprised. All nonfiction books should be vetted by the publisher's legal department but unless they were in someone's bedroom, house or a fly on the wall, they can only vet so much. Wow, three books sold? It is a shame that people go to vanity publishers because all of them make money off the crazy prices they charge the authors.
Zane

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