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An E-Publisher Behaving Badly tale? It sure feels like old times.

Anyway, does anybody know much about Decadent Publishing? Do any of you guys write for them? Buy their books, even? Never heard of them myself, until now at least.

According to this rather disgruntled reviewer, DP (I’m trying not to smirk like a two year old at those initials) have allegedly been looking for the reviewer’s personal details as revenge for writing a less-than-glowing review of a book written by one of their authors, a Miss Graylin Fox.

The reviewer writes:

The stupidity of some authors who can’t take a review *ahem* Graylin Fox *ahem*, and must prove, ‘oh, I’m so great’ by running to Twitter and sniping at us has never failed to astound us. You are not the first. We highly doubt you will be the last. We chalk up your attitude to being a newbie and not being able to take criticism.

So it seems we have another Jamaica Layne on our hands eh?

Apparently, Ms Fox’s publisher, Decadent Publishing, called the reviewer from The End Is Not The Final Word, (sorry, but that’s just a shit name for a review site) pirates, even though they apparently bought the books legitimately at a third party site. It turns out that this particular review site isn’t on Decadent’s reviewers list, which, according to the publisher, must mean that they are pirates. Ok then.

In order to try to prove the illegitimacy of the reviewer, somebody at Decadent Publishing, allegedly then went to the trouble of going through the author’s (Graylin Fox) sales records, trying to match up names. DP apparently couldn’t find any of the reviewers’ names to match, and informed Miss Graylin of this fact.

Here at KKB, we have no idea why a publisher would do such a thing. The reviewer rightly calls them out on their unprofessional conduct:

Decadent Publishing is to blame for this. Period and point blank. They gave information to their author that was none of her business. That they tried to match us up to names in their sales records only shows the immaturity of the owner/s of this company.

Miss Fox also owns blame. We have tried to cut her some slack because we truly believe she should have had a stronger editor on Coming Home. Unfortunately, and this is readily apparent, she obviously can’t take criticism, and because her ego wouldn’t allow her to let go she dragged her publisher into this. This is also unheard of. Here’s a clue – eventually you will get a poor review. It’s the nature of the publishing industry.

An author taking a review rather badly, and losing her mind is standard procedure, but I wouldn’t have thought that many disgruntled authors would go to the lengths of getting their publisher to go through their sales records looking for evidence of piracy just because a reviewer didn’t like their book? Now that’s special.

The reviewer continues:

It boils down to this. The Enders purchase books. We purchase not only from the publisher’s site but third party distributors. Yes! Yes, we do use pseudonyms. This incident can surely show everybody why.

This bit made me laugh out loud:

Reviewers beware – Decadent Publishing will call you a pirate if you don’t give their author praise or you didn’t receive their extra-special ‘water-marked’ copy.

Publishers and Reviewers beware – Graylin Fox is as unprofessional as it comes. She’s proven she can’t work and play well with others.

My theory? Graylin Fox owns Decadent Publishing, which is why she was so willing to go through sales records on behalf of an “author”. Women who start e-publishing companies just so that they can publish their own work are a dime a dozen after all.

This comment by somebody posting under the name “Decadent Publishing”, doesn’t make me doubt my theory:

Would you like out of your contract with Decadent Publishing since you don’t seem to respect either them or their authors?

“Decadent Publishing” goes on to add:

This blog is not about doing legitimate reviews. This is a platform for ambushing an author for personal reasons. One of the owners of this blog is actually under contract with Decadent Publishing at this very moment. I’ve got to ask “why” would she ever submit to us if she thinks so little of our authors/company and has made public statement of the fact? Is that something a rational human being would do? For real?

In an interesting twist, it seems that the publisher found out the real name of the reviewer, and has been giving it out to any Tom, Dick and Harry. In a separate post, the reviewer writes:

We thought this was a dead issue, but **sigh** — no. Decadent Publishing has sunk to an all time low. They spent yesterday harassing one of their authors who also happens to be an Ender. As you can see by their rebuttal to our original post, they have stupidly assumed there is only one Ender….

Since the discovery of this Enders real name, Decadent has spent an enormous amount of time, which we personally feel they have way too much of, hunting and pecking for ‘dirt’ on this Ender. They have given her real name to their authors during this search. They have called her a coward, maligned her personal integrity, put her through a nightmare all the sake of a poor review in which she actually gave constructive feedback to the author and publisher.

They have come up with what they consider enough to ‘OUT’ her. She assures us that she has nothing to be ashamed of. Her chosen profession as and author/part-time editor/at-one-time publisher is completely transparent. She has nothing to hide and neither does her daughter whom she writes with. Nor does she let her experiences in the industry tarnish her reviews.

We believe her. Her integrity is not in question.

I’m pretty sure a professional e-publisher (allegedly), going round trying to out reviewers just because they didn’t write a glowing review about one of their books counts as the ultimate in fuckwittery behaviour? I think so.

Yep, I definitely think that Graylin Fox, who apparently needs a decent editor and can’t write for shit and the owner of Decadent Publishing is the same person. You can almost hear how crazed she is about somebody not loving her precious book. I bet she’s been self-harming ever since she read the review in question.

An E-pubbed author/E-publisher behaving like a wanktard? Oh it’s ever so good to be back.

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

22 Comments »

  • Karen, you’ve got such a way with words…

    An E-pubbed author/E-publisher behaving like a wanktard? Oh it’s ever so good to be back.

    So good to see you around…

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  • Pat
    January 13
    7:58 pm

    You are misinformed. And what’s even worse you are quick to jump to conclusions on a nasty event without knowing the publisher’s or contacting a single author. I can share that E-piracy is a serious threat to all epubs, and Decadent isn’t the only the publisher being vigilant about going after these people. The person who has taken this situation viral appears to be part of the same publishing house, and though I can’t say I’ve the owners of Decadent or know them personally, I can say as a buyer that the author in question is not one and the same. I do however, agree with your point that the whole situation is tacky, but it’s disappointing to see your blog (one I frequently read) jumping to conclusions and throwing gasoline on this fire irresponsibly. Since you asked if anyone bought from Decadent, and knew of their authors I felt compelled to come in and leave my thoughts. Carry on.

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  • Oh, Karen’s aware of what a threat epiracy is, Pat. She’s actually helped shut down a few e-pirates, so before you assume she’s misiformed, you might want to take a few minutes and investigate her blog.

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  • I can say as a buyer that the author in question is not one and the same.

    @Pat Now how would a mere “buyer” know something like that, pray tell?

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  • “An author taking a review rather badly, and losing her mind is standard procedure…”

    And it shouldn’t be – and it’s not all authors. My belief it’s the pretentious who get their knickers in a knot over stuff like this. The bottom line it’s just a review for god sake – not a death sentence and all this carry-on? Get a grip. It’s an opinion. If as a writer you can’t hack someone’s opinion then you need to look at another job as many people will not like what you write. I have had some crapacious reviews but I just thank the reviewer for their opinion – good or bad – and move on.

    And I like the word “fuckwittery”…it shall be the word of the day for me

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  • Oh…how funny. I just went to look at this Enders site as I had no idea who they were and they trashed one of my books. Yes, I thanked them…

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  • Pat
    January 13
    10:55 pm

    LOL! Karen,
    I know she isn’t the same person the way you know she ‘is’. Except the difference between you and I is that I actually have read her work and poetry where as you read a twitter post. Hope that answers your question.

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  • Except the difference between you and I is that I actually have read her work and poetry where as you read a twitter post.

    A Twitter post?? Where?

    I’m not sure what difference it makes that you’ve read the author’s work and poetry and I haven’t? This blog post isn’t really about whether her work was a pile of shit or not, somehow you seem to have missed the point altogether?

    I get that you like the author and that you’ve read and obviously appreciate her work, but from where I sit, that just means you’re a biased bystander (allegedly), whereas I don’t have a dog in this fight, which makes me more objective than you.

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  • di
    January 14
    12:53 am

    So it seems we have another Jamaica Layne on our hands eh

    Probably unrelated, but Jamaica has books with Decadent.

    They also have books from Keta Diablo. Who also has a history of harassing reviewers over “bad” reviews…with the same, “I’m going to see if you are a pirate” threat.

    http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/101982644

    I know that publishers are not their authors, but when I first found out about Decadent, beyond just being a new epublisher (which always makes me hold off) who some of their authors were did give me more of a pause.

    Seeing how the company reacts to a bad review on some blog no one would probably know about, just confirms my original, unfounded opinion.

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  • Dorothy Mantooth
    January 14
    2:52 am

    This isn’t the first incident of this publisher acting like vicious, crazy little children, and they’ve only been open since this summer.

    And I seriously doubt Jamaica Layne’s presence with them is unrelated to their attitude. Consider what kinds of people would have to run the place in order to agree to work with her.

    The sad thing that while they seem to have more than their share of idiots, they have a some really good authors too, good people who deserve better. I hope they go back to their other houses and leave that House of Hideous Behavior soon.

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  • DS
    January 14
    4:15 am

    Check the Absolute Write Water Cooler thread that started back in December 2010– Fun train wreck. http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=198626

    ReplyReply

  • The more things change…

    (And yay! for Karen being back!)

    ReplyReply

  • […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by shiloh walker, shiloh walker, Karen Scott, Stacy ~ and others. Stacy ~ said: I love her (Karen)! RT @shilohwalker: @laurendane karen has weighed in… did you see? http://bit.ly/ek0qQN […]


  • Thanks AL, and you’re so right, nothing ever seems to really change in RomanceLand.

    @DS I noticed that Jamaica Layne was in the thick of things as usual!

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  • 20FeetTall
    January 14
    5:48 pm

    I’ve been observing this debacle for the past week now. Karen you have given me new perspective concerning this company and those affiliated. Not really adding anything here, but I just want to say thank you for this post.

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  • I do not like this. I do not like this at all. I run four book blogs and organize an online conference for book bloggers and publishers. You better believe that this has been added to the list of discussion topics when we meet this March.

    Accuse a site of being pirates? Telling people not to buy and review your book? Saying someone is not a legitimate reviewer? And how much sense does it make for the authors and pubs to decide who is legit? Oh such and such blog is and another is not?

    I talk with more publishers, editors, authors, bloggers, and publicists then average so I hear gossip, I usually-always stay out of the commenting, but this is UNACCEPTABLE. I do not want authors and publishers to ever think it is okay to go after review sites in this way. I would never hold something against other authors from a publisher, but authors mentioned above, I don’t think you want to be contacting me.

    Thanks for the discussion.
    Terry Kate

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  • There has been an update on this situation from the author involved. She posted a response on her blog about it:

    http://graylinfox.wordpress.com/2011/01/15/my-silence-is-broken/

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  • I don’t know what or who to believe in this scenario. It’s beyond bizarre. Neither Decadent nor the Enders come across well in all of this. Could this be a publicity stunt that we’re all buying into? Just a thought.

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  • Anon76
    January 19
    7:52 am

    Dang, Karen, it’s good to see you back in full form. (Not meaning I don’t lubs Aztec Lady, cuz she rocks, too.)

    But seriously, Romancelandia and new epubs provide some of the best entertainment on the net. Could you for even one moment fathom patronizing a brick and mortar establishment (of any type or trade) where the owners go all skizzo.

    Owner: “You are so mean and petty!”
    Customer, consumer advocate: “Huh?”
    Owner: “I know this supplier personally. They are great. What you say is hurtful.”
    Customer: “Um, my brake line blew out within 15 minutes of being installed.”
    Owner: “Soooooooo petty.”

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  • Anon76, not only do I lubs you right back (I do!) but you just made me laugh so hard I choked on the coffee.

    Soooooooooo petty! indeed! *still chuckling*

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  • What’s funny is I was recycling a few of my own blogs while I am on vacation, and I accidentally clicked on a link from one of Karen’s I’d mentioned back in 2008. It was when some other publisher was behaving badly, but it took me right here to the main page and this thread. And there it is… Again… LOL

    I can’t decide if that’s comfortable or sad. *grin*

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  • Randi
    January 28
    9:32 pm

    @KB/KT Grant: That link no longer works! Does anybody have a cached version of it?

    ReplyReply

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