So… what the hell is going on at Venus Press? (Sorry, I can’t bring myself to link to them, but their address is www.venuspress.com) It seems that every time I go onto a blog, there’s an announcement, stating that the blog/web owner has decided to quit the e-publishing company. Authors and admin staff seem to be leaving Venus in droves.
I happened to go onto Jeya Jensen’s website (one of their more popular authors from what I can gather) to see if she could shed any light on the matter, and I found this announcement on her site:
“I am officially handing in my intention to dissolve ties with Venus Press. I will no longer publish through this entity. The 30 day notice to remove _ALL_ my titles has been sent via registered mail. I wish my fellow authors all best, however I have not managed to reach workable terms with the present administration. I was brought into Venus Press by Marianne LaCroix.
Now that she is no longer on staff, certain promises I was made as an author back in December 2004 are not being fulfilled in the terms and manner we agreed on when I agreed to leave my former publisher, Extasy Books, and move all my titles to Venus Press. In short, I have been deceived and misled. Therefore, I am choosing to end my association as an author with Venus Press and Scarlett Chambers/ aka Deborah Taylor. My books will be returning to Extasy Books as soon as possible. This includes print and e-book versions. Keep checking back for details of the rerelease.”
Curiouser and curiouser. What are the management team doing that’s pissing everybody off? Obviously not managing…
Am I surprised that things are falling apart? Not really. You just need to take a look at the website to see what I mean.
I’m guessing that their stories must have a market, but honestly, who can be satisfied by a book that only has 17 pages in it? That’s right, 17 pages. These particular stories are described as shorts, but you would expect a little more for your $3.98 wouldn’t you?
These types of books just play into the hands of those reviewers who like nothing more than to turn their nose up at authors from small press companies. I can almost hear them throwing the books against the walls from here…
I’m sure that some of the authors must be talented, but why would they want their work to be showcased at Venus Press? As far as I can tell, whoever runs the ship there, isn’t doing such a hot job.
My first impressions of their website wasn’t positive, and I have to say, I’ve had no reason to change my mind since.
The website screams ‘unprofessional’ in every way possible. They have a Yahoo group that has perhaps one post every two weeks, so I’m left wondering where their readers are.
I’m fully expecting to hear that the company has dissolved, in the near future. As far as I can see, the owners seem to have totally mismanaged the company, and will probably be paying for their bad handling of the business, for a while yet…
BTW if anybody wants to sue me for libel, I’ll be more than happy to give them the name of my brief…
So, have any of you ever purchased a book from Venus Press, and if so, what did you think of it?
UPDATE: Check this out, this was also on Jeya Jensen’s website: She sent this to the owners of Venus:
“Dear DL Taylor,I am handing over your contracts to the SFWA’s Writer Beware, along with your email about hiding your identity. I am also sending copies of your contracts to Professor Jim Fisher of the Edinboro University in Pennsylvania. Professor Fisher, formerly of the FBI, and the SFWA is committed to an ongoing investigation to shut down fraud publishers and literary agents.
Since your contracts contain errors, including the state you live in and no address, I am sure they will be quite interested to look into this for me. If you look on Amazon, you can find a copy of Professor Fisher’s book, Ten Percent of Nothing.
My name is mentioned several times in the index as one of the investigatory sources Fisher used to bring down several publishers and agents. He might be interested in using this material for his latest book. By the way, author AC Crispin is a good friend of mine and I’m asking her to look into this personally as a rep of Writer Beware. A search will reveal her novels as well.Here are the links for your FYI:
I want my books off your website in 30 days or I will be pursuing action through the BBB and other Writer’s organizations and every other legal venue at my disposal. If you think you have nothing to fear, well, you won’t mind a little legal investigation, will you?
Wow! How gloriously scandalous!!!! (g)