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According to NCP at least.

I got this e-mail from an NCP author:

A couple of NCP authors conveyed Sydney Somer’s blog post to the NCP public loop (one in response to a reader, who wanted to know if her latest book was authorized or not). A reader then asked on NCP’s public loop why Sydney Somers had been placed on moderation. NCP responded simply:

“As stated on the front page of the group: PUBLISHER BASHING; OR BOOK TRASHING IS NOT ALLOWED NOR WILL IT BE TOLERATED”

These people are complete morons. One has to wonder how they ever became as successful as they are/were.

Apparently, a couple of hours later, NCP then post the following on the loop:

“The loudest complainers, on any publisher’s loop, are the complete failures in the publishing business. This is WHY they are complaining, because they’d like to blame everyone else for their failure instead of actually working to become a success.

Professional much?

Authors focused on building a career in the publishing industry should take note of their irrational/unprofessional behavior and make certain that they do not model their behavior after the failures in the industry.

You should also study their ‘offerings’ to the public and their writing style to learn what NOT to write and what elements are least desirable to readers. These books are perfect examples of what does not market well and will not make sales for you–which a savvy author can utilize to their advantage.

Oh wow, that’s just low. Mind you, they signed her in the first place, so does that not say more about their poor judgement, rather than Somers’ purported inability to write a book that markets well?

These authors are a perfect example of people who will NEVER find success because they’re too focused on running thier mouths and not nearly focused enough on actually writing and improving their work.

That being said, this author loop was set up to be used solely for networking with your fellow NCP authors and gathering marketing tips–working together to promote one another, etc.

Talk about showing their knickers in public.

The loops are the property of NCP, and you can use private messages or other boards to complain–like those who’ve been doing so all along, but it won’t be allowed on the NCP reader loop–which was designed for you, the author’s sole benefit to market your work to
readers. If you cannot respect that, having a place to market your NCP books, then we will be forced to delete the loop, and you will have no place to promote yourself other than other people’s loops. I hope it won’t come to this. It’s a shame to make everyone suffer because of a few.

The READERS loop was set up specifically to give you authors a place to promote your NCP books–Not as a COMPLAINT department–and NOT as a place to promote books with other publishers.”

God, I hope they go bust soon. The lunatics running the NCP asylum seriously need to be caged.

Thanks to you-know-who for the heads up.

31 Comments »

  • Yeah, SS is such an example of “what not to do” in fiction they swipe her unedited partial and base an entire “round robin” on it *laugh*.

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  • The only question is how they seem to stay in orbit of the drain without every quite going down it.

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  • See, this is why writers tend to be afraid to complain about their publishers.

    “Oh, you’re just giving us sour grapes because you aren’t selling anything.” The publisher can use that and because the author doesn’t know how well anyone else is selling, she is stuck.

    Can NCP just go now please?

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  • Can NCP just go now please? — I echo this.

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  • To borrow heavily from Dr. Seuss, “You can go by bus, you can go by cow. NCP, will you please go now?”

    Honestly, how are these people still in business?

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  • Marianne LaCroix
    July 27
    9:52 am

    This is an example of how Madris writes to her authors on the inner loop and in private emails. Completely insulting and unprofessional.

    Not only are they putting authors on moderation, they are deleting posts. I just quit that public loop….but not before I expressed my opinion. Yeah, the authors are unprofessional….uh huh….RIIIIGHT.

    “The only question is how they seem to stay in orbit of the drain without every quite going down it.”

    Damn it, I wish I knew. It is coming. I mean, the new books coming out are primarily the owners. New authors on the “round robin anthology”? Yeah right. Ten dollars those are more pen name of the owners. It is obvious when these people are no where online other than magically debuting at NCP. I’d say desperation for material is driving them as they have to use a partial and violate someone’s copyright just to get a book.

    In short, I hope they finally take a trip down the drain and keep on going down to the place in hell where they belong.

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  • Marianne LaCroix
    July 27
    10:43 am

    If you are a member of the Authors’ Guild and are having problems with NCP, please contact them with your complaints/requests for help. If you are not a member, consider joining at http://authorsguild.org/ They do have a legal staff to help members in need.

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  • Nora Roberts
    July 27
    2:54 pm

    Well, God, that’s just horrible on every possible level.

    And odd. If SS is such a crappy writer, ito, why are they using her work in this round robin thing?

    Much sympathy to SS, once again.

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  • Ellen F.
    July 27
    3:48 pm

    A few readers were complaining about NCP’s treatment of authors and readers on NCP’s public Yahoogroup last night. This morning, NCP seems to have dealt with the problem by deleting the group entirely. The group had over 1700 members.

    Presumably, avoiding the problem is easier than trying to fix it.

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  • Ohmygosh! It’s true. The New Concepts reader loop has been deleted, but the author loop is still there.

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  • Marianne LaCroix
    July 27
    4:14 pm

    I know I commented on there before I quit….and the group was there early this morning. Hmmm…I identified the commenter as Madris and told her to go and delete my comment if she didn’t like it. LOL Guess she got pissed when she saw I had quit the list.

    Ahh us bad apples…

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  • This smacks of the Trisk debacle. We can only hope that what happened to them will happen to NCP too.

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  • NCP’s version of “taking your ball and going home”: “eliminating the sandbox and sticking (their) tongue out at the kids who were playing there”

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  • Something that has always amused me in this industry – a lack of accountability and the constant bandying about of the word ‘unprofessional’. To quote Inigo Montoya: “You keep saying that word…I do not think it means what you think it means.”

    It’s one thing to have storms kick you offline, servers to misbehave and for mistakes to be made. The books are electronic, but we are human.

    The difference lies in accountability. If a pub screws up, the response shouldn’t be “It’s not us, it’s you, and you’re unprofessional for daring to question our authority. Now shut up and sell your damned books.”

    The response should be “Oh crap, my bad, this is why that happened.” or ” This is why that happened, but I see why that upset you.” followed by “This is what I will do to correct it, or at least clarify it for you so you’re more comfortable.”

    The attitude a lot of pubs have is that authors are too quick to assume the worst, and have no trust, hence the defensiveness. That brings us back to the lack of accountability, and a simple question those who carry that opinion never want to answer:

    WHO MADE THEM THAT WAY?

    When I first started in this industry five years ago, epubs were happy places, a haven for those ignored by the NY pub houses and a way to write the books they loved in a nurturing environment. Now the attitude is one of fear and distrust, because of the inappropriate and yes, unprofessional behavior of some epubs.

    Part of the issue is that they’re not built using any logical business model – bang the website up, add a cart, whip the books through and sell sell sell. Some don’t even use their real names on the website contact information. No foundation, no strength, and worst of all, no legal protection for the authors involved.

    In short (too late!), the industry as a whole needs to can the bullshit and know when to say ‘I screwed up and I’m sorry’ instead of leaping to blame the author.

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  • All I can do at this point is sigh, shake my head in disbelief and hope NCP gets their collective act together.

    It appears rather unlikely anymore. But – on to better news – a bit of vindictiveness on my part. I have several books written by the owners of NCP. If you can’t fight them on their level – take it to another. I’ll be reviewing them this week.

    Anybody who would like to borrow a copy for review – just let me know.

    This could be very interesting.

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  • Annmarie
    July 27
    9:00 pm

    Ok… I’m an author with NCP and I just tried to post on the NCP author loop and it wouldn’t let me. Is it just me or are all authors banned from posting? Or is it a Yahoo glitch?

    Just wonderin’

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  • Troubles at one publishing house invariably ripple through the industry. I hate that another group is being torn apart by internal strife.

    Who the hell knows why one book sells and another doesn’t? I’ve seen variable sales with my work and with that of others. The market is a petulant mistress.

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  • Hey Annemarie – this isn’t a Yahoo glitch. All my other groups are still working. Did you go directly to Yahoo groups and try it from there?

    Can’t figure out this move — at all.

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  • Ellen F.
    July 27
    10:04 pm

    “Ok… I’m an author with NCP and I just tried to post on the NCP author loop and it wouldn’t let me. Is it just me or are all authors banned from posting? Or is it a Yahoo glitch?”

    Last I checked, I had been banned from the author list(or “moderated,” perhaps, but either way, my very polite posts aren’t getting through), but some authors were still able to post there. I suspect those of us who are being banned have been tagged as bad apples, for whatever reason. Welcome to bad appledom:-).

    “Troubles at one publishing house invariably ripple through the industry.”

    I hope not. People need to try to remember that this is ONE publisher. I’m still very happy with my other pubs, and wouldn’t warn people away from e-publishing in general. The fact that one company jumps the rails shouldn’t reflect poorly on other pubs.

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  • Friday I commented on the NCP chat loop about Sydney Somers’ experience. Today, that email address is unusable, and it wouldn’t let me in.
    Any guesses as to who reported me to yahoo for abuse? I thought I was polite enough, I certainly didn’t abuse anyone.

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  • Marianne LaCroix
    July 28
    2:51 am

    Lynne you were turned in to Yahoo??

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  • I was one of the reader/customer, who had in the past express my displeasure with their business practices and customer service. When I saw the second post fron SS stating that another one of her partials had be used, I went on the site asking questions. I am one of those, whose posr got deleted. It just makes you wonder, how they have stayed in the business for so long.

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  • Shara
    July 28
    12:13 pm

    The NCP readers group has definitely gone. It’s still listed on the main site but has been removed from yahoo.

    Lynne I can’t understand why someone would report you to yahoo, that’s nuts. So much for free speech, eh!

    I hope for the authors concerned that this mess gets sorted out soon and doesn’t continue.

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  • Ellen F.
    July 28
    1:24 pm

    Audrey, thank you for asking those questions. You rock:-).

    I’m just curious as to how NCP intends to advertise now. They used that loop for promoting their new releases every week. Are they just going to put up new releases on the NCP site and hope people notice? It does seem like a strange move on their part.

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  • Anon76
    July 28
    3:22 pm

    Hmm, seems like NCP is using the old “divide and conquer” technique. They figure if they can silence everyone long enough, the problem will go away.

    However, since they created the problem and it is ongoing, that’s not going to work, unless…all the disgruntled authors get fed up, decide to cut their losses and go silent. Which after a long drawn-out period of time would be understandable. Seething fury is a great mood to be in when writing battle scenes, but not so much when writing all the other aspects of a book.

    I hope you all keep hounding them, cuz you are the “Draino” that just might clean the pipes. I hate to see publishers fail, but not if it is of their own doing.

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  • I worked with Sydney on the Watchtower series over at Triskelion. She ended up doing three of the four books because other authors dropped out for various reasons. All the stories were solid, well-written pieces. It’s a shame they are blaming her poor sales on the quality of her writing.

    Lucynda

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  • Ellen F.
    July 28
    4:18 pm

    An answer to my question: NCP is starting up an announcement only group for readers (all messages must be moderated, and there is no interaction with readers). They just asked authors to invite their readers to join the new group:-).

    “It’s a shame they are blaming her poor sales on the quality of her writing.”

    Of course her writing isn’t really the issue, or, as Jody pointed out, they wouldn’t have bothered expanding her partials. But no writer should be publicly derided by a publisher for the quality of her writing, anyway. That’s beyond insulting.

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  • Lynne you were turned in to Yahoo??

    Yes, I was. I talked to yahoo this morning about it. Absolutely nuts. I can’t blame yahoo, they did what they said they’d do when complaints are made, they suspended the account. I was perfectly polite, since Sydney couldn’t respond herself, I did it for her and put the link up to her blog. But I wasn’t the only one. Wonder if they got reported, too?

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  • I’ve only belonged to one of the NCP groups, the authorpromotion one. This week I submitted one post, and this to tell them I couldn’t open the link with their regularly scheduled file on “policies”. This post did not show up on the group. I was subsequently alerted by others that no one’s posts, except those of the group owner/moderators, are being allowed through. Perhaps it is my own perception (so I won’t swear to it as fact) but it does feel to me these messages the owner/moderator are sending out now are rather bullying in tone. As I do not post messages from private groups, I cannot here; but I will say I am dismayed by such behavior. One publisher is in no position to speak for the intentions, ethics, ambitions, talents or successes of any group of people. If NCP takes the initiative to build upon round-robins or any unauthorized manuscripts they cannot realistically expect people to keep mute. To act the mute “good egg” might make the publisher happy; but most of us prefer to come to our own conclusions and to use our right to express our opinions. There are some things in life much more important than getting brownie points.

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  • Karen, I’ll give you a free copy of every book I write for the rest of my life if you won’t use that graphic ever again. Seriously. I went through too much effort hiding that KitKat from my kids, finding a private place to eat it, and then burying the wrapper deep in the garbage to risk losing it now.

    *gag*

    I’ve been told (conflictingly) that group readers are a small percentage of buyers and yet sales seem to correspond to the size of the reader group but, either way, deleting it’s a bad move. What a mess.

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  • Keep teling the world. I have dear friends with works contracted at NCP. I wish they had forewarning before they ever subbed there. Warn the aspiring authors.

    BEWARE!

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