How to Avoid Being Scammed by a Publisher
Posted on 09/13/2016 Evan Swensen
There are lots of ways to get your book published. Unfortunately, there are nearly just as many ways to get scammed getting your book published. New and unseasoned authors don’t always understand the ins and outs of the publishing world, leaving you vulnerable to publishers only in it to make a buck from publishing your efforts. Here, we’ll talk about some of the most common book publishing scams so you can avoid them.
Publishing houses should not charge you to read your manuscript. Even if the reading fee is minimal, reputable publishing houses want to read your manuscripts – for free. If a publishing house really wants to sell your book, they will get paid when your book does just that: sells.
Fees for Setting Up Free Technology
Unfortunately, scammers prey on authors who aren’t tech-savvy. That means they’ll charge money to set up social media and marketing websites that are simple and free for all users. For example, some presses charge authors to set up Amazon book pages, even though setting up a book page is free and easy. Others charge authors to create social media pages on Facebook and Twitter even though those, too, are free for everyone.
Unethical Literary Agents
Literary agents read your book and try to sell it to a publishing house that believes in its potential. A literary agent you want to work with shouldn’t charge you a reading fee nor should they charge additional fees. Instead, a reputable literary agent will instead take a 10- to 20-percent cut of your book’s selling fee. If you want to find a literary agent, you should look for someone who is a member of The Association of Authors’ Representatives, a highly-ethical organization.
Self-publishing companies let you do as much work on your own, and only provide the consulting services you request. Vanity presses, alternately, nickel and dime you for every service provided, from the cover design to the marketing. They also are constantly trying to upsell you, meaning they suggest unnecessary alternates that they say will make your book more likely to be read.
How to Make Sure You’re Working With a Respectable Publishing House
If you’re considering working with a particular publishing house, the best way to discover its reputation is by seeing how other authors responded. To do this, type in the name of the publishing house followed by the word “scam” or “legal” into Google. If you’re working with an ethical publisher, you won’t have anything negative turn up in your searches. If the publishers has a dirty history, however, bad reviews or even a lawsuit history will show up.
You can also read up on publishing companies by going to Preditors & Editors <http://pred-ed.com>. (Yes, Preditors is spelled correctly.) This database provides information about publishers, agents, and others in the publishing business.
Publication Consultants gives you control over the book publishing process. With five different publishing programs, you can choose the program that fits your project the best. We can serve in a consulting capacity, being involved as little or as much as you want. Alternately, we can share publishing expenses with you or buy your manuscript outright and deal with all aspects of publishing, marketing, and selling ourselves. Read more about our publishing options in our Bringing Your Book to Market  eBook.
Whichever plan you choose, we always emphasize integrity. Our authors are extremely satisfied  with our services. For example, Sarkis Atamian, author of The Bears of Manley says, “No publisher I’ve had is up to the level of Publication Consultants. Evan Swensen is a hard-working perfectionist. He keeps in constant touch and makes it easy to work with him. Best of all, he has a great capacity for patience and will stand by his responsibilities. Publication Consultants has integrity and is a first-class operation.”