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I was just over at Erecsite, on the Whiskey Creek Press post, (they do so have interesting stuff over there) when this comment by Pepper Espinoza caught my eye:

“Liquid Silver has a sales requirement *and* a length requirement. They also flat out said that authors with a “good relationship” with the publisher will have priority for print, all else being equal. They claim that everything that meets those requirements will be moving into print at some point, but I have no idea when that’ll happen.”

I was a little gob-smacked. Does this mean that if an author doesn’t make nice with the publisher, that their books take much longer to go to print?

I always wondered if this was the case with Elloras Cave. There always used to be certain authors who’s books were slated for print really quickly, whilst other author’s books were left and left. (Actually, now that I think back, certain authors used to have a book out every two minutes, whilst others had to wait, and wait, and wait.)

I like Liquid Silver, but if what Pepper says is true, then what a crappy way to conduct business. They’re basically saying, if the author behaves well, then they get priority over the problem authors. Hmmm… not impressed by that at all. I kinda understand it, but it just seems….. wrong, somehow.

I wonder how many e-pubs make their printing decisions this way?


  • Pepper Espinoza
    December 28
    3:09 am

    Well, I don’t know if you have to kiss their asses. I think they just meant that the authors who work with them and develop a long-term relationship will get priority for print right now all other things being equal, because they are very slowly and carefully introducing that aspect to the business model (the smart way, unlike certain other publishers who did not expand intelligently and now no longer exist). The number of books sold and the size of the book are the first and most important considerations in the equation. But something has to be the tie breaker, because everything they publish is not going to print right now. They’re still primarily an e-publisher.

    I didn’t mean for my offhand comment to paint an unpleasant and inaccurate picture. I certainly didn’t mean that “good relationship” equals “attach lips and tongue to ass.” That couldn’t be farther from how Mike and Raven operate.


  • Michele Lee
    December 28
    4:54 am

    I don’t see anything wrong with a publisher leaning harder on a writer that’s proven they can meet deadlines and consistently deliver quality product. If the requirement is kissing up… that’s different.


  • Anonymous
    December 28
    1:19 pm

    I’m unsure how other e-publishers prioritize their print books, but I must praise Amber Quill Press (or Amber Allure, their GBLT imprint) for being the ONLY e-pub company I found (during the hunting stage) who puts ALL of their novel-length titles into paperback SIMULTANEOUSLY! No stupid quotas, no months and months of waiting, and NO FEES and NO SALES QUOTAS! And NO RELATIONSHIPS! I mean, they don’t know me (or any other new authors) from a hole in the wall, yet every single new novel is automatically released in all e-versions and trade paperback version within one or two weeks (not months, or years!) of each other, which means those e-book sale quotas are unnecessary and silly. You certainly can’t beat that!


  • M.
    December 28
    2:05 pm

    That is all fine and dandy, but each business operates differently. What you said only means that Amber Quill is solvent and can afford to do so. So far everything that I’ve seen criticized are simply measures that each of the two critized publishers have in place to avoid being dragged down for lack of business acumen… can we say Triskelion Publishing? By doing that all they are saying is “we can’t fully go to print”. People seem to be reading too much between the lines.

    If these epubs that are being criticized were fly by night operations or run by crooks, I would keep my mouth shut. But LSB has been around for over five years, and in those five years, I’ve read few complains about them. WCP has been around for about four years. They’ve had their share of struggles and changes, but they are still there and all that their policies on print are saying to me is “we are first and foremost an epub and we have to be careful with print. This is what we can do for you at the moment”.

    As a reader, I see both authors and publishers POVs. And frankly, I can’t criticize WCP or LSB or any other epub for trying to establish certain safeguards to avoid the potential for serious problems in the future for trying to do too much.


  • Jade James
    December 28
    2:27 pm

    Getting back to this sentence:

    They also flat out said that authors with a “good relationship” with the publisher will have priority for print, all else being equal.

    I personally don’t think that’s right at all. What’s that to say of authors who work at LSB, voice their opinions, and don’t agree with the owners? LSB’s comment reads that if there “isn’t a good relationship” then the author will have to wait forever to get into print. That is a truly unfair way to behave.


  • Mike Feury
    December 28
    10:51 pm

    I posted some clarification over at ErecSite.

    “Relationship” in our print criteria context means “business relationship,” not what’s been interpreted here. The relevant passage in our criteria states:

    The more books you have with us, the longer you’ve been with us, the more we’re willing to invest in you. If you’re fairly new with one book, and we don’t see much of you in SiN or SEx, then you won’t score well on this. Develop a relationship with us, it helps.
    [SiN and SEx are our forum and blog]

    Developing good relationships with customers, suppliers, contractors etc is something all businesses benefit from, incl. publishing.



  • Emily Veinglory
    December 28
    11:20 pm

    Delayed release of print such as at Samhain can actually be a huge advantage if they use to to send review copies and work for store placement. There is more to getting a print book distributed than just having a book in print.


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