When Life Gets in the Way of Writing

By Veronica Helen Hart

After a health crisis this week, I failed to meet two writing deadlines. The health issue appears to be resolved after a trip to the hospital, consults with three doctors, and loving care by my husband.

Things happen in the writing vineyard that can send us into a hole of depression or spark us into a flurry of furious writing. At the moment, I choose the middle road. Finish the book, Young Mothers’ Voices – an Anthology on which I’ve been working with fellow author Michael Pyle (White Sugar-Brown Sugar). The book is a collection of poems, essays and stories by the young mothers of The Chiles Academy in Daytona Beach, Florida.

From the introduction:

This anthology is a collection of voices that belie many faulty societal representations of pregnant and parenting teens. The young mothers at The Chiles Academy are proving daily that stereotypes of teenage mothers do not define them. Discovering who they are, is for them, as it is for all of us, a work in progress.

It has been an honor and a privilege to work with them these past six months or more. We solicited, and received, a grant from The Florida Writers Foundation to help print the books which will be distributed to the young women at their graduation at the end of May. They will be available for purchase after May 20.

This afternoon, with the help of Chris Holmes, graphic artist at whiterabbitgraphix.com, I hope to submit the thoroughly edited, completed manuscript for printing and distribution.

Then, back to deadlines on the two novels I’m hoping to complete before the end of June, Talk to the Knife, a paranormal murder mystery/romance, and Midnight in Mongolia, a Blenders Novel.

Veronica Helen Hart is the author of seven published novels, four of them by Champagne Book Group.

You can see her work at either: www.veronicahhart.com, or DaytonaAreaWriters.com.



A Warning for Writers

By Judith Lawrence

Just wanted to give a heads up to our group to ask to see the publisher’s contract for whomever is doing their print and distribution.

I have a writer friend who just broke off a 5 year good relationship with her publisher. Her 1st print book did well, and her second print book did better. Her publisher placed the first book with Bookmate, as an e-book a while ago. He was about to place the 2nd book as an e-book on Bookmate as well when she found out. I thought it strange that the Publisher was doing this so soon, as her book was released less than six months ago, and sales were coming in daily. it’s one of those books that will one day be a classic.

Bookmate is a Russian owned e-book free distribution site where for $5 a month, you can read any of the approximately 500,000 books they advertise in multiple languages. It appears that many publishers are sending their print books for e-publishing.

My friend was not aware that the 1st book was on Bookmate, and has not received any royalties through her publisher or Bookmate. When she complained to Bookmate that she had not agreed to having her e-book listed, they advised her to take it up with Ingram book distributors, who have not replied to her. Her publisher refused to have it removed due to contractual obligations, so she pulled her 2nd book from his publishing company.

Some info below that I gathered about Bookmate.

Bookmate started in a Russian market where piracy was so rampant that publishers had nothing to lose by signing with Bookmate, and it pays publishers from a pool that consists of 50% of its revenues. Safari Online has used a similar model for over a decade, and it does okay.

With 500,000 titles from publishers around the globe, Bookmate now has over 1.5 million subscribers, about 7% of which pay around $5 a month for the service. The fee is collected by Bookmate’s partner telecoms.

Bookmate has also developed reading apps for feature phones. This has let them partner with MVNOs including pay-as-you go companies similar to Tracfone here in the US. In some cases, Bookmate’s partners charge on an incremental day-by-day model, not a monthly fee.

On another subject I found this site about publishers and distributors online that might prove useful. It lists a few to avoid. http://pred-ed.com/peba.ht