I’m still catching up on all the things that happened while I was away on vacation and today I ran across a post on Dear Author about **yet another e-publisher, Highland Press.  Seems there are red flags flying everywhere about this publisher, but the thing that really caught my attention was the part about author Deborah Anne MacGillivray, who is with HP–and Kensington and Dorchester, also.  I’d heard some shady rumblings about this author’s cagy dealings regarding reviews on Amazon over the last couple of weeks…and wondered how much of it was true.

Apparently, every bit of it.  And if the rumors about HP aren’t enough to warn authors away, I hope Ms. MacGillivray’s behavior will send aspiring authors–and readers–screaming for the hills.

It’s too long to go into here, but it’s very interesting reading.  If you have a couple of hours–seriously, there’s over 300 comments to this post–and want to see a real case of an “Author Behaving Badly”, it can be found on Dear Author.

My favorite comment came from someone named B in response to a letter by Ms. MacGillivray which was posted in another comment (the part in italics is from a letter Ms. MacGillivray wrote to a reader):

Holy poor English, Batman!!!

I am think you skimmed the book, sitting in an auto place, worry about big bad men sniggering, and didn’t bother to see why the characters did things, just took surface reactions.

That’s a writer!? A published writer!?!?! WTF???

I’m not sure what boggles my mind more…what she’s saying or the fact that she can’t write in English to save her life. Why, why, WHY do these people get published? Why???

Thanks, B, the Batman line gave me a good laugh and I’ve often wondered the same thing about why and how some author gets published, especially after reading some of the cooments they make on the various blogs in Romanceland…but that’s another story!

Also on Karen Scott’s blog, there’s news that Kristi Studts, the owner of the infamous Triskelion Publishing is out and about and posing as a cover artist for another e-publisher, Mystic Moon Press, under the name of Magickal Media.  This is the woman who cheated numerous authors out of their royalties and finally ended up filing bankruptcy, tying the rights to their works up for a long, long time.  Although there’s nothing being reported about MMP, I have to say, the presence of Ms. Studts is enough to make me keep my distance from them–don’t want to take a chance that she’s in deeper than we know.  Still, this is something that each individual author has to judge for her/himself.  I just hope any aspiring authors out there are reading these blogs and paying attention.

Here’s the link if you’d like to read about it; Karen Knows Best.

At present, I don’t have any plans to submit anything to an e-publisher and after reading all the shit that’s been going on the past couple of weeks, I don’t think I ever will again.  I have at least five completed manuscripts and beyond the one I submitted earlier this year to an e-publisher, I think I’ll just hold on to them for a while–or submit them to L&L Dreamspell, the small press I’m with now, or maybe another small press after I do some very thorough research. 

The thing is…between the many e-pubs that have gone down and the many who have been reported lately as “iffy at best”, it’s all just too scary for me.

And that sucks big time.  When I first got up the courage to submit one of my books to a publisher, I decided e-publishing was for me.  I really liked the idea of being able to promote and sell my books from the comfort of my home.  No face-to-face meetings, no book signings, no actual interaction with real, live, breathing people–it seemed perfect for me because, well, I’m a loner at heart and don’t like people very much.  I just wanted to write my stories and sell them without all that public crap.  I enjoyed meeting people in cyber-space and promoting my work on the Internet, but I’m literally terrified at the thought of what’s going to happen when my first print book comes out later this year. 

Hmm…wonder if I could hire some outgoing person to pose as me and go out and promote my book?

Or would that be too much like what Kristi Studts is doing?  

**Emily Veinglory kindly pointed out on her EREC blog that Highland Press is not just an e-publisher, in fact less than half their books are e-books.  Sorry, my mistake!  No excuse except stupidity and laziness–I should have checked out Highland Press before I posted this!