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Friday, January 18, 2013

Do we really need another kind of publishing


We have:
  1. traditional publishing
  2. trade publishing
  3. commercial publishing
  4. special sales publishing
  5. vanity publishing
  6. subsidy publishing
  7. subsidized publishing
  8. independent publishing
  9. self-publishing
  10. artisanal publishing
  11. independent self-publishing (what I do)
  12. indie publishing
  13. supported-self-publishing
  14. academic publishing
  15. assisted-self-publishing
  16. co-publishing
  17. paid publishing
  18. web publishing
  19. instant publishing
  20. free publishing
  21. e-publishing
  22. online publishing
  23. POD publishing
  24. PQN publishing
  25. joint-venture publishing
  26. Christian publishing
  27. and God-knows-how-many-other-kinds-of publishing

Apparently those are not enough choices for Laredo Publishing. The company wants you to try Co-edition. Strangely, the multiple-personality company also refers to "co-editing" and "co-publishing."

Laredo says:

"Co-edition is NOT self-publishing. Co-edition is a partnership between an author and a publisher who lends an author its prestige and experience by backing a book project with a good potential. Most of self-published books are printed without editing, therefore with typographical errors, inconsistent grammar and poor literary quality, not to mention a copyright protection or an ISBN.

Co-edition means that a publishing house publishes your book with its logo; it means that the image and reputation of the publisher are at stake. Therefore, we do not publish all book projects that are submitted for co-publishing. Our Editorial Department evaluates and selects only those projects with a level of quality that merit publication. Book projects with poor quality are turned down. High quality is paramount. 

The publishing process is faster

Most publishers work within a time frame of 18 months to 2 years to publish your book. Many authors do not want to wait this long to get published. When co-editing with us, the publishing process takes 3 to 6 months.

You participate in the publishing process 
As a partner in co-edition, you will be actively involved in the publishing process, by reviewing and approving every stage of producing the book until the files are sent to press. The editor assigned to you will suggest the necessary editorial changes to enhance the literary quality and readability of your book. You will work closely with a designer in the process of designing and illustrating your book, from sketches to final art. This is a dynamic, personalized and interactive process that allows you to maintain control of your work.

The rights belongs to you 
By assuming all the publishing costs, traditional publishers gain almost all the rights to your work. They make all the decisions about its printing, design, illustrations, stock, binding, and can decide not to reprint the book. In our co-edition partnership, the rights to your work belong to you. Your book can be re-printed as many times as you wish. By assuming all the publishing costs, traditional publishers gain almost all the rights to your work. They make all the decisions about its printing, design, illustrations, stock, binding, and can decide not to reprint the book. When co-publishing with us, you make your own decisions. 

Higher Profits
When co-publishing with us, you receive 25% of the net profit from the books we sell. With a traditional publisher you usually receive five to ten percent of the royalties. When a publisher covers all the publishing costs, you do not risk anything, but you do not gain much either.

We set up your book for distribution with online retailers 
Your title will be set up for distribution with major online retailers such as Amazon and Barnes& Noble as well as in our Web Bookstores to fulfill all the orders we receive. Your title will have worldwide visibility." 


- - - - - -
WELL, this sounds just like what a dozen or more other pay-to-publish companies offer, and may be worse.


  • Selectivity may be meaningless. Who knows how crappy a book must be to be rejected. Vantage Press tried to be selective and went bust.
  • "Prestige" is bullshit. A Laredo Logo is not as good as a Simon & Schuster or Random House logo. Besides, many readers don't notice or care about the name of the publisher.
  • The "25% of the net profit" promise may be as empty as the "percentage of the net" deals offered by Hollywood studios to naive actors. There may be NO net profit to get a percentage of. How can an author know if a book is profitable to Laredo? 
  • The statement that "Most of self-published books are printed without editing, therefore with typographical errors, inconsistent grammar and poor literary quality, not to mention a copyright protection or an ISBN" shows both poor sentence structure and ignorance of the publishing business.
  • The company brags about its high standards and the experience and knowledge of its staff, but its website is FILLED with errors in grammar and typography (e.g.: "harbound," "Higfher Profits," children books"). A word processor's spell checker should have caught most of the errors. A word is missing in the section about proofreading! If Laredo's own website is this terrible, don't assume a Laredo book will be properly edited.
  • The company says, "We are highly familiar with the HIspanic [sic] Market."  Sadly, much of the website seems to have been written by someone who learned English as a second language -- and did not do well in the course.
  • Many Laredo books are terribly overpriced. One 206-page paperback is priced at $19.95. After more than two years it has no reviews (and maybe no sales) on Amazon. Another $19.95 book shows the same dismal results after more than three years on Amazon.
  • The notion of "partnership" implies that Laredo is investing some of its own money in your book. However, there are no prices on the Laredo website that would let a prospective customer compare the Laredo deal to the offerings of competitors.
  • Some Laredo books are not available on Amazon.com or the B&N website.
  • A lot of the company's book covers are uninspired or just plain terrible -- no better than what an amateur could have produced with a template.

I can't see any reason to do business with Laredo.


2 comments:

  1. I've been doing a lot of research recently when it comes to royalties and I noticed there are a few sites that offer to sell it on barnes and noble's website, itunes, amazon, and ect...
    They offer about 25%-30%, but when I went to each site separately I noticed I could do it directly through their own site and get 40%-60% royalties. By doing a little extra work I can get more advantages.

    ReplyDelete
  2. CoverrMe is a crowdfunding site like GoFundMe, but without the fees. There are no deadlines and it is free to start a campaign. You can do anything (and more) on CoverrMe that you can do on GoFundMe, but at 0% fees!

    ReplyDelete