Pitfalls and Predators


Every industry has a downside …  Indie Publishing is no exception.

With the huge inroads Independent Publishing has made in publishing industry has come the arrival of predators to feed on the naïve and the gullible…. I well remember my old dad telling me that ‘A fool and their money are easily parted.’

Unfortunately today you don’t need to be a fool….indie authors are being preyed upon by the unscrupulous. With the growth of indie publishing has come a similar growth of ancillary industries. Editors, publicists, e-publishers, artists, book cover designers, formatters … the list goes on.

While the vast majority of these people are honest and offer a good service to authors … there are the unscrupulous out to milk the unsuspecting.

Being an independent publisher means an author also has to acquire other skills besides writing a great story.  Indies are exhorted to produce a professional product to sell to the public.

Most authors don’t have the necessary skills or, as in most cases, are too close to their work to view it with an unbiased eye…enter editors.  A writer will often need a development editor and then a copy editor to ensure they produce a product that is free from continuity, grammatical and spelling errors…and then once past this stage, then there is the cover art and the formatting to make the work accessible to readers. All of these stages in producing a book were once done by the publisher …. now these tasks fall squarely on the shoulders of the Indie author.

And the skill set doesn’t end there…

Once the book has gone through these stages it then faces the critical hurdle … being visible in a crowded market place.

An Indie Publisher then becomes responsible for marketing their book.


On each step on this path for every person who can give the author legitimate help … there are rip off artists ready and willing to prey on an author’s unwitting ignorance or naivety. So how can you prevent being ripped off.

  • Do your research… join an author’s loops…ask for advice
  • Before you sign any contract with a small Independent press … visit www.editorsandpreditors they will give you the skinny on every publisher on the planet.
  • Ask for recommendations from other authors for services you need to hire out…again fellow authors are ready and willing to recommend reliable, trustworthy practitioners.  
  • And last but no means least…if anyone asks for a large sum of money to publish your book … run far, far away…



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Published on Thursday, August 29th, 2013, under Latest News

6 Responses to “Pitfalls and Predators”

  1. Nick Ritchie says:

    I appreciate the tips on pitfalls and predators of the indie publishing industry – I’ve written 18,000 words for my new book so far, and once it’s done, will be good to know the ins and outs of getting the paperback copy released..

    • Shirley says:

      Thanks for stopping by. There is a wealth of information available on Indie Publishing, I would suggest you get a copy of The Naked Truth About self-publishing. It is a great resource.

  2. Rob says:

    I am going to send this to my niece.. she just graduated college in May and is looking to start publishing and or writing. I suggested she start a blog and start showcasing her writing.

    • Shirley says:

      Thanks for stopping by. The most important piece of advice for anyone contemplating writing as a career is to start a blog… before even writing a single book. Being found in the market place is the hardest part of writing, by far. I would suggest she get a copy of The Naked Truth About Self-Publishing.

  3. Krystle says:

    Nice post Shirley. Very informative information you have here. Will be sharing this information. Thanks!

    • Shirley says:


      Thanks for stopping by. As with all industries…fringe service industries spring up to cater to the needs…and self publishing is no exception. It is amazing how many big name editors of traditional publishing houses are now hiring themselves out as free lance editors…or have gone to work for agencies or set up their own agencies… it is surely an industry experiencing huge change.

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