On the second Wednesday of the month I always participate in Indie Life, a group dedicated to sharing/discussing all things Indie. I'm truly amazed at how many options there are out there for the Indie writer today; from freelance editors to formatters, cover designers, and on and on it goes. We in the indie world literally have access to the same tools that the big houses do, but for us we have the freedom for creativity. Does it get any better?
I don't think so.
But for some of us, this indie road has been a nightmare. I want to take a minute today to vent about one of my major gripes: Vanity Presses. Every time I go to a book signing, every time, someone comes up to me and goes on and on about how they've written a book too, and they've had it published. It only cost them...you fill in the number. I cannot believe how many people out there are ready to cash in on someone else's dreams. Now, I'm not talking about the contracted professionals listed in the paragraph above. I'm talking about those bottom dwellers who are sucking up people's retirement accounts in order to sell them boxes of their books that will line their garage walls for the rest of their lives. Shame on them. When those poor souls come up to me, with stars still in their puffed-up eyes, despite their drained accounts, I tell them about Amazon, and Kobo. I tell them about Ibooks, and give them a list of the professionals listed above. I invite them to my writing club. I hope and pray they tell as many people as possible. That's what I plan on doing. Even so, it's probably inevitable. Where people are willing to spend money, there will always be someone there to take it.
Have you ever had a run-in with an Vanity Press?