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Red Rose Publishing Having Problems Internally?

Red Rose Publishing is having some issues conducting its regular business activities. Authors are reportedly not getting their work published within a specified time.   If rights are requested to be reverted because of this breach, the publisher is reportedly sending the authors bills for cover art and editing for those books. Notices of editors and cover artists that they are quitting are reportedly being ignored.

Kat Holmes posted a blog post after her non disclosure agreement ran out detailing the publishing course of her book:

My editor had also signed up to do edits for my new publishing house and that made her a target. She’s getting the feeling she’s going to be fired so she lets the publisher have the truth about how upset I am at the early release. To put it bluntly, the you know what hits the fan. I’m done. I officially email her that I am severing ties with her company.

Now remember, I have never heard from her regarding the virus, but she responded to this email like lightning. She removed all my books from the catalogue and pulled me off the author loop. She stripped away everything I had out and all my author rights. So, since she broke her own contract, I sent her an official notice via certified mail that I wanted the rights to all my work returned to me. I also discovered and included in the letter that she had released book 2 in my series called Heart Of The Queen without a contract.

Statements were not being sent out and emails to the publisher went unanswered.   A few authors at Red Rose Publishing, unhappy with non payment, posted their complaints to the readers loop.

In response, Wendi, owner of Red Rose Publishing sent off this email:

This is not intended for the authors who did not go in the readers loop to whine and complain!

I am beyond furious at those who have done it, and lets say I am not pleased and how unprofessional can you get!
Checks were issued for those that had made over $20 and those who made over $20 per the contract.
Yeah, I am behind getting out the statements to those who have not sold $20 because I have been dealing with some serious family issues and for that I am sorry. I apologize for having some serious family issues going on with me.
In addition to that we had a full audit on Red Rose Publishing from the day we opened the doors to present. Believe me the state and federal governments are looking to get money, unfortunately I guess on their parts all of our stuff checked out and was in the auditor’s oppinions [sic] one of the best and well put together as I had every thing she need right there.
It states we have 45 days which are business days Monday thru Friday to get those statements done. You knew that when you signed the contract.
I can not believe that someone would feel that they had to take this to the readers loop, not the authors loop or address this to me, so that tells me either #1- you had no idea, #2- you are out to do the company and your fellow authors problems or #3- You do not care about Red Rose Publishing, your books, sales or the reputation of the company!
I have repeatedly busted my ass so even those WHO DO NOT SELL GET A CHANCE TO GET THEIR BOOKS in print, well F* me, for going out of my way to help any authors, take out ads or even do contests.
I had for the anniversary blow out, with the following prizes for the readers:
Kindle DX- the $499 one
Ebookwise ebook reader
A Netbook
Black Diamond Earrings
Other Jewelry
Perfumes and gift sets made up with Roses
Red Rose Publishing Mouse Pads and a whole lot of other stuff including print books that were autographed!
For the authors who went out there and promote the anniversary sale and contests the following were to be prizes:
Black diamond earrings
Ebookwise ebook Reader
$25 cash
Other Jewelry
Perfume, and body gift sets with Roses
NOW YOU WANT TO KNOW WHAT I WANT TO DO?
I want to take all of that back to the store as I feel now ready to cry and was let down by those who did what they did, plus I am tired of being the one do things and those who do not sell whine about every thing.
I know that some of you authors know much better than to post in the readers loop but I guess you all do not care about your sales, your fellow authors etc….. as well as being unprofessional to boot!
Right now I am so upset I am requesting that NO ONE get in touch with me unless it is an emergency or you are dying, because I am a little pissed off to put it mildly and until my colorful language and being pissed off passes, let me have a few to myself, that is if NO ONE MINDS, otherwise too bad so sad as I am taking it!
Take care and have a great day!
Wendi

I’ll never understand the “be professional” tirade followed by the “I can’t do my job because of family problems” that is trotted out.   It’s always important when signing with a publisher, any publisher, to talk to existing authors, ask questions, and generally, not be afraid to extract all the necessary details before you sign an agreement.   Unusual items like lifelong transfers of copyright and Non Disclosure Agreements or Non Competes should raise a red flag.

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com

261 Comments

  1. Jennifer Armintrout
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 09:28:25

    Yeah, I don’t get how someone complains about people acting unprofessionally, then goes on to say they can’t run their business because of family problems and they’re going to take all the Christmas presents back to the store because they’re so unappreciated.

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  2. fairyfreak
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 09:36:32

    Wow. I don’t think I’ve ever seen such an unprofessional letter. She’s definately sounding like the pot calling the kettle black! You know, email and the internet are not good things for people who can’t stop themselves from ranting.

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  3. Chicklet
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 10:05:23

    Personally I love that the last paragraph goes from “Screw off and don’t contact me” to “Have a nice day!” from one sentence to the next. It’s extremely professional.

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  4. Fiona
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 10:14:03

    Oh…wow. Woooow. Talk about shooting yourself in the foot.

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  5. Janet P.
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 10:23:35

    Holy Moly.

    That is about the most unprofessional whiniest, pissiest I’m going to take all my cool prizes and you’ll be sorry then b*tch fest I’ve ever seen.

    Definitely not an accepted way to do business.

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  6. Charlotte Stein
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 10:27:00

    All caps sentences: the hallmark of professionalism.

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  7. Julie M
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 10:27:41

    OMG – the “take care and have a great day” after that tirade is hysterical…
    “let me end this will some magic words and that will fix everything…”

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  8. Kat Holmes
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 10:47:17

    Oh she’s always like that. Trust me, talking to her on the phone takes courage because she doesn’t come with a volume control button and she’s very fond of profanity. I am so glad to be out of there.

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  9. Mireya
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 10:54:25

    She calls authors unprofessional and then proceeds to have the mother of temper tantrums including the woe is me and the guilt trip attempt … I guess it takes one to know one … *snort*

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  10. Mireya
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 10:57:39

    P.S. The company logo is pretty amusing after reading the above: “Red Rose Publishing, Publishing with a Touch of Class”

    Right …

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  11. Suzanne Rossi
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 11:03:44

    Holy sweet Mother of temper tantrums and just plain bitchiness! With an attitude like that, can this publishing house be long for the world? Who on earth would submit to them now!!

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  12. Shirley Wells
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 11:11:12

    OMG. I can’t believe *anyone* could be so unprofessional.

    Phew, I feel for the authors involved. Thank God I’m not published by RRP!

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  13. Lin Holmes
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 11:12:26

    I am Kat’s Mom, and even though I have never been contracted, technically, with Red Rose, I had to deal with Ms. Felter because when she would call and Kat was ill and could not come to the phone, this woman made me listen to her rants, as I expressed in one of my comments on my daughter’s posts yesterday at her blog. But that is not all. Today on my own blog, Lins Own Speculations, I will be posting more. I hope you all will follow and find out what else Red Rose is guilty of doing. And thank you so much for your blog posting.

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  14. Moira
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 11:13:34

    I resented being called a f***tard and hearing her call other people the same.

    I resented being called via telephone and having to listen to her talk about her staff and authors, badmouthing them, calling them useless, and generally spewing vitriol, blaming everyone for everything and never accepting responsibility that sometimes it may well have been HER fault.

    I resent not being paid royalties since I left. She has disregarded her own contract which states if you work a month’s notice, she will still pay you. She doesn’t.

    I resent having my emails ignored when I have been nothing but polite in asking when or if I’ll be paid.

    I resented being emotionally manipulated into adding extra books onto my workload, and also being told that the books needed to be up for sale now-now-now and it didn’t matter if they weren’t edited to the standard I wanted them to be. It’s all about the money.

    I hated the way, when emails came through with her ranting about us not working fast enough, that she made it appear that we as editors were to blame because it was “our” company, a “family” and that she was trying her hardest to get everything done and we were the ones letting authors down–again, emotional blackmail.

    I was amazed at the chaos on the editor’s loop. Books sitting in the “queue” for months at a time. Contracts lost or never sent out–again, that would be our fault–and the books had to be rushed through.

    There is too much to go into, but that place is an absolute nightmare. Authors will remain silent or stand by her and be supportive because they are afraid of her. It has been alleged the owner has hounded authors and editors behind the scenes when they don’t do as they are told, so those who remain silent are doing so to preserve their names from being tarnished. If the authors aren’t afraid of her, they are still in the phase where they are being treated nicely, where they can’t begin to imagine Ms. Felter is a mean and uncouth woman.

    They’ll learn.

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  15. Kati
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 11:16:29

    I think that a good rule of thumb professionally, is to never, ever use the phrase “too bad, so sad.”

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  16. Courtney Milan
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 12:12:49

    Honestly. Reading that stuff is crazy.

    Even though I’m a lawyer, I don’t believe in suing unless there is no alternative. It’s an egregious waste, and too often leads to scorched-earth tactics.

    That being said, if a publisher ever, EVER takes a manuscript I have submitted and publishes it without a contract–I am registering the copyright that very day, suing, and claiming willful infringement of copyright and statutory damages of $150,000.

    And I would do it because I would want the company to fail, and fail hard, as a service to my fellow authors. That is unethical and egregious. It just blows my mind that some of the authors working with (note that I do not say for) these publishers get so exercised about pirates and then don’t speak out when their own publisher is a bigger thief.

    This is not legal advice; it’s just my recounting what I would do. And I would make sure I had access to statutory damages under 17 USC 412 by registering my copyright the day I learned of the infringement.

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  17. Lin Holmes
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 12:49:01

    Red Rose only has ONE viable contract for the THREE maunscripts with my daughter and that is for her first, stand alone book VOICE IN THE NIGHT. That means they released TWO of her books without valid contracts because the second contract is made out to me writing as my daughetr even though I have never written as her…and despite repeated requests for a corrected contract we were told not to worry it was legal because they’d changed their copy and would get Kat a copy ASAP. The only copy Kat has from RRP is the one in MY name writing under her pen name.

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  18. Moira
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 12:56:48

    I can’t explain the reason why everyone remains silent. There is an underlying threat to her words at times, that makes you know that if you say something publicly or don’t do as you’re told, you’ll regret it.

    People are seriously afraid of her, and if they told anyone, there’s the response that no, surely Ms. Felter wouldn’t say or do that? This is because she is sweet, albeit in a foul-mouthed way, to begin with. You think she’s there for you. You think she cares so much when she tells you if you’re ever in any trouble with money she will help you pay your bills, because she’s done it for other authors–so she says.

    If she paid out royalties, authors, editors and cover artists wouldn’t need her “generous” offer, would they?

    There is the misconception that she only rants about other authors and editors to you. She’s taken you into her confidence; you’re best buddies. After all, she calls you all the time! Then you find out she’s said the same about you to another editor or author, and you end up feeling used and lost, manipulated, and there have been some people this has affected to the degree that they are unable to trust people online and have become depressed and paranoid that the woman is hounding them on groups using false names.

    All this goes very deep and has been going on for a long, long time. All hard to prove. But it is happening.

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  19. SandyW
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 13:03:36

    For those playing the Ebook Publisher Implosion Drinking Game, I'm pretty sure we're all entitled to a double.

    Seriously, what a stunning lack of professional behavior.

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  20. di
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 13:18:41

    Haven’t they pretty much had problems since they opened…with editing, non-payment, contracts getting lost…and it’s always someone else’s fault and/or a health problem?

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  21. Lynne Connolly
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 13:41:45

    The publishing world works like most others do – on networking, which is another way of saying that if you attend conventions, or know other authors, you’ll get to know these things.

    Wendy is a one-of-a-kind. When she started Red Rose, people already knew her and many knew what they were taking on when they chose to publish with her. I enjoy meeting her, sharing a social occasion, but she wouldn’t work for me as a publisher.

    This is why it’s so important to make quiet enquiries before you sign with a publisher. Any publisher. But since the replies you may get are strictly confidential, they can’t be repeated or discussed.

    I knew that Dorchester was in trouble two years ago, as did many other people. Publishing with them was always a risk, but it could be a very rewarding one. That’s why many of their star authors moved on. Better money, more stability, but they lost that edge, the excitement of working with a publisher open to new ideas and new genres.

    I know the publishers that are small but choice, the ones that are cavalier with their authors, and where most of the more eccentric people are. They exist in big publishers and in small ones, and sometimes they’re beneficial, sometimes the behavior goes over the top. It can be a fine line.

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  22. Dawn
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 13:44:45

    Oh my…I am completely speechless. I am glad I never signed with them and went elsewhere with my books.

    I feel for the staff/authors who have to deal with Wendi. Know my sympathies lie with you and I am shaking at my head with the utter contempt with unprofessionalism she spews in the above rant.

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  23. Lin Holmes
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 13:47:57

    @di: From the Google research I did unfortunately after my daughter was havihng trouble getting the contract for the work they were already editing, her second manuscript, this publisher has a long history of issues.

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  24. Shelley
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 14:02:55

    Bills to authors! Horrors! The vampire characters created in the current literary scene should rise up and prowl on behalf of their creators….

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  25. PT
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 14:15:54

    Yikes. Seriously unprofessional and no way to run a business. We own and run a successful small business and have had multiple serious issues come up since we opened the doors. Sure we get frustrated but we don’t curse about our staff to somone on our staff! And if there was illness or problems that made one or both of us unable to work, we’d make arrangements to have one of the staff or someone responsible take over for us. If the issue took longer to resolve, we’d close the doors with a note to all customers that we had to temporarily close for new business. That has only happened once, after Katrina, but still we have a business plan to follow in case of a variety of emergencies (including hurricanes, etc).

    @ Courtney Milan – Way to go Courtney! I’m making note of that statute and I’m not even an author! lol ;-)

    No one can have that kind of power over another person unless they allow it. I’d go Sookie on her. But then I have a short fuse for stupid. However I do totally understand not wanting the extended hassle of dealing with crazypants. Sometimes the best way to deal with that is to just walk away, depending on what’s at stake. It’s an individual choice of course. Good luck to everyone!

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  26. Ridley
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 14:34:34

    Man, that woman could give the folks at 4chan a run for their money in the invective game.

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  27. MarnieColette
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 15:21:43

    Oh boy someone was really professional with that whiny rant. Oh boy…I am no hesitant to purchase a book from Red Rose… I want my author to get what they deserve.

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  28. Denise
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 16:32:18

    Newsflash for the Red Rose owner – when you’re the owner, you’re on-call 24/7 on the job despite family emergencies, bad days, difficult clients/staff/vendors, etc. All that comes with the territory. Keeping it impersonal and objective will save you and everyone dealing with you a lot of grief. You want to reward your authors for their effort and your customers for their business? Pay your authors on time, stick to your contracts and provide your readers with solidly edited, quality books. Perfume, jewelry, stuff animals, etc.–useless foo-foo. As an author, I’m not contracting with a publishing house for the chance of getting a stuffed dolphin. As a reader, I’m surfing your site for a good book not costume jewelry.

    Besides the screaming invectives and CAPSLOCKS of rage, the “no one get in touch with me” line just highlights the fact that professionalism is an alien concept in the running of this particular business. As a consumer, I’d be afraid to give over my credit card number when purchasing a book.

    And this is a timely DA post. About a week ago, I went to order a book from an author published with Red Rose. I kept getting an error message that the book (released in 2009) was not available as the release date hadn’t yet arrived. I sent an e-mail informing RR of the problem. I never heard back. Because of that lack of response/customer service, I decided not to buy the book (sorry, Author!). After reading this, I’m very glad I never handed over any financial information to them.

    My sympathies for the authors, editors and artists who’ve had to deal with this publisher and all the problems associated with them.

    These contracts aren’t worth the paper they’re written on if the author is financially unable to enforce them due to attorney retainer fees, etc. And these houses know that.

    From a personal perspective, I think self-publishing looks better and better all the time.

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  29. Ell
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 16:53:52

    Um… Is she still in middle school?

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  30. Eva_baby
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 17:18:32

    Well apparently she didn’t learn from old mistakes From 3 years ago. The first comment mentions her right off. And apparently this has been building for awhile Scroll down to RRP’s entry

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  31. Courtney Milan
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 18:01:57

    “From a personal perspective, I think self-publishing looks better and better all the time.”

    It would be easier than going through people like this. But don’t judge all publishers by the ones that act like they’re the electronic Mafia. And self-publishing requires trust, too–you still have to believe that your sales will be reported correctly. There are some self-publishing arms where the reporting is doubtful.

    ALWAYS do your research.

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  32. Angel Martinez
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 18:14:54

    I only ask that readers not judge the quality of the writing or the RRP authors by above, aforesaid items.

    Writers work hard. We do our best. But we cannot control the actions of others.

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  33. mizging
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 18:25:03

    How timely…I’ll be doing a one-day workshop at the 2010 Muse Online Writers conference, entitled Publishing Pitfalls.

    Kat’s experience has all the earmarks of an instance where you wished someone had warned you or that you’d done your legwork and checked out those involved with the company. Hindsight is 20/20, but no mistake is a bad one unless you fail to learn from it. This isn’t my first rodeo, and I have stories to tell and warnings to share. Join me, won’t you?

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  34. Yvonne Nicolas
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 18:53:52

    Thank you Angel! Well said. Fortunately, there are some awesome stories from some amazing authors at RRP. As Angel stated, we do work hard to bring the readers our best work, and will continue to do so. Please don’t let this unfortunate incident deter you from enjoying our books :o)

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  35. Lin Holmes
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 19:41:56

    @Angel Martinez: Angel, neither Kat or I have anything against the authors, editors, or artists. You are bound by the vagaries, and irrationalities of the head and the NDA she forces upon all of you.

    Please understand what she forced upon Kat. She ridiculed her work as “JUST LITTLE STORIES” and then because her scheduled releses were not ready,due to her own disorginizational skills rushed Kat’s into release without regard.

    Let me explain. Kat’s first and only validly contracted and stand alone book, VOICE IN THE NIGHT was released on March 18, 2010. We knew back in December 2009 it would be released in March.

    The first in her Gods At Work Series, WORKING UNDER COVERS that was not supposed to be released before July 2010, Ms. Felter called at 10:15 P.M on May 5th and told her would be releasing at midnight. No warning…done deal. Surprisingly for all of us, it released at number nine.

    June 16, at 7:43, Ms Felter called to tell Kat the second in the Gods At Work series, HEART OF THE QUEEN would be released at midnight. Kat was against it, but Ms. Felter was accepting no arguments.

    June 28th at 9:48 P.M. despite knowing Kat had larygitis, Ms. Felter called to let Kat know she wanted to release the third in her Gods At Work that coming Thursday if they could do a quick hatchet edit since no edits had been done and throw a cover together.

    The answer was no, and since I have power of attorney over Kat’s medical health and Ms. Felter was made abudantly aware back on December 28, 2009 when I also made her aware of my daughter’s health issues, (she has seizure disorder) I interceded. My daughter had just spent time in the hospital with kidney stones that she was going to be fighting until her parathyroid, and still are, by myself and my daughter’s editor, Carrie Ro who was fired for insubordination for daring to stand up for her authors.

    Less than six hours later Ms. Felter removed everything of my daughter’s from the catalog at RRP and banned her from the authors loop and still refuses to return in writing, Kat’s rights.

    Angel, we repsect you, wish you well, honor the path you must walk, and hope for the very best. The authors are NOT the problem. The editors are NOT the problem. The artists are NOT the problem. I truly hope you have a less contentious path than Ms. Felter has shown many others that I have since talked with.

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  36. Rebecca duBois-Guilbert
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 20:34:11

    I am so delighted that there are so many who have never been stretched to the brink and had a little temper tantrum. Ideally no one should have an episode like this, but as one of our authors said on the loop, this is not an ideal world. Humans, even business owners, are fallible.

    My experience (two books) with Red Rose has been stellar. I’ve been published elsewhere, but never have I had a publisher who treated me with such respect or was so straightforward as Wendi. I am very happy at Red Rose, and I suspect I am not the only one.

    To be fair, should the complainers not be subjected to the same fiery scrutiny as Wendi? As everyone should remember, everyone is fallible.

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  37. michelle sullivan
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 20:46:08

    From what I understand only two content edits are allowed and one line edit. And authors don’t always get to see the galleys. I can’t imagine how you can release a book without the author looking at the galleys, and I thought you went back and forth between edits until the work was the best it could be. How can a publisher release work that isn’t topnotch? Red Rose Publishing leaves a lot to be desired as a publisher and gives publishing a bad name. This letter was worse than a child ranting. Unprofessional and just plain nasty. Her authors ought to revolt. This could prove to be her undoing. If authors, editors and cover artists havne’t been paid, I highly recommend reporting her to RWA. They gave thier approval of Red Rose and I don’t think they’d approve of her withholding money from people she owes.

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  38. Franny Armstrong
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 21:17:36

    Red Rose Published author.

    Just an FYI, people. There are always more than two sides to a story. Gossip hurts everyone.

    I’m not on anyone’s ‘side’, but I will say that RRP promised to get me published and they did, on time, and with excellent support from my editors and the art group.

    I know for a fact that Wendi busts her butt every day to ensure we are published.

    There are always embittered people who like to verbally castigate others and while Wendi did also, the person who provided the above email (an INTERNAL EMAIL) is the one responsible for the viscious gossip and harm for not only RRP but for authors like myself who work hard to write, edit, promote, and work with the publisher I, personally, selected.

    Please consider that this type of nastiness is unacceptible and the source who provided the (yes, scathing) email in the first place is the one who set out to harm, not Wendi.

    All excuses aside, even when I have my own issues with someone or a company, I do address this in PRIVATE and never slander someone. That’s just WRONG.

    Thanks for reading. I truly do believe that we are all in this together and I’d like to see a little kindness and understanding from ALL SIDES.

    Hugs
    Franny Armstrong

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  39. Ginny
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 21:37:53

    Welcome to Wendi-world.

    Anyone remember Silks Vault? She got booted from there.

    Midnight Showcase? She got booted there.

    Remember Mardi Gras? Theresa Jacobs beat her to the punch but she screwed up there.

    I’m not surprised.

    She is one of the biggest name droppers in the business. You talk to her and 2 minutes into the conversation she’s telling you about all the authors she “knows” and how she has their personal cell phone numbers, home numbers, what good buds they are. Then you talk to the author and he or she tells you that they made a huge mistake giving her any personal information. Wendi never met an author she didn’t like….to use to name drop. I was stunned at the number of big names who went to her early on. What were they thinking?

    Using the “I’m sick”, “I’ve got family problems” doesn’t work if you want to own and run a successful business, yet with irreponsible people it’s a favorite fall back position.

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  40. Avid Reader
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 21:39:32

    Echoes of Triskelion, eh? Sounds like RRP is circling the drain.

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  41. Cynnara
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 21:55:36

    I’m finding this extremely interesting to follow. More importantly, I wonder if this means that many of the authors who’ve not been receiving responses from Ms. Felter of late will be receiving them now?

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  42. Diamond
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 23:29:51

    Regardless, if you’re a RRP author or not, you have to admit that what she said was unprofessional. There is no reason one adult should be talking to another adult the way she did in that letter.

    Some of the people who received that email were pissed to be talked to like that.

    They may not have been the one to publicly put it on display, but believe me, they’ve talked about it to whoever would listen. It’s good that places like DA expose people like that.

    I would not want to work for a person who did not pay their authors in a timely manner.

    Basically, she’s upset because folks are complaining about not receiving money that is justly theirs. Now what sense does that make? None, whatsoever.

    The solution to her problem is simple. She needs to pay those authors the money she owes them. End of story.

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  43. meoskop
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 00:01:35

    This reminds me of conversations I’ve many times with many women. When someone shows you who they are, you have a choice. You can believe them, or you can make excuses.

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  44. Kat Holmes
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 00:51:48

    I am no longere willing to sugarcoat this for anyone. Sorry if you think it’s me being snide or angry Franny, but I refuse to be silent any longer. It is only slander if anything I say is untrue which it is not. Wendi threatened me more than once. She threatened to charge me with fraud because my mom has limited power of attorney over my health and finances. She threatened to sue me if I dared speak out. Oh, and just for the record, I have sent off an official complaint to the RWA. But the worst thing that happened, because wendi stripped everything I had off the catalogue and terrorized me with threats of criminal and financial ruin, is she nearly drove me to suicide. I am not kidding nor being melodramatic. I was in the bathroom eying the razorblades with too much interest. Knowing I was in a seriously bad place I got online real quick and went into a suicide prevention site. If not for that site I would have ended my life. So excuse me if I am sounding bitter to any of you or it sounds like sour grapes but I WILL NOT allow that woman to put me in my grave.

    I bear no grudges to any of the rpp staff or authors. Many are my friends. But I will not pretend for anyone that wendi is a good person who acts in the best interest of her authors. I am done being silent!

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  45. Moira
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 04:46:35

    To say that I'm appalled that one human being can affect another to this degree, Kat, is an understatement. Everyone handles situations differently, and where one author may have shrugged it off, another can't. I'm so very sorry your experience left you at such a loss that you contemplated suicide. However, I'm also very glad that you came out of this a stronger person, as indicated by your posts. No one should be made to feel this way, yet time and again I hear tales of authors feeling much the same as you did.

    I know of three others who were left very depressed by the shenanigans they experienced. The utter disregard for someone else's feelings is disgusting-’it appears that what Ms. Felter wanted was all that mattered (please note I said “appeared”. Wouldn't want to be accused of slander)-’but these three people have also come through this with a new perspective about trust and publishing they never had before, and I doubt very much they will be burned by another publisher again. They are too wary to go into anything without checking thoroughly first, but it's a shame that they have held back on being too friendly with their new publishers because they are just waiting for the niceness to fade and the craziness to begin.

    While I'm very glad some authors are happy with Red Rose Publishing-’after all, most of the staff are pleasant people who want to do their job properly, but orders and circumstances sometimes prevent that-’it doesn't mean that those of us who are speaking out are wrong or making things up. Too many people have been burned and are now speaking out, so it can hardly be called slander or witch-hunting-’slander is when things didn't happen and experiences are fabricated. In my case, and I don't doubt in everyone else's who have spoken out, they damn well happened. I lived it. I went through cr** because of this woman, and I do not feel in the slightest bit guilty or wrong for speaking out here. Face it, these things have happened, are happening, and if an author is having a pleasant experience with Red Rose and has no complaints, then rejoice. You're one of the lucky ones. Or, and forgive me for being cynical-’being treated like utter shit does that to a person-’have these authors yet to say “No!”? Have these authors so far done as they are told? If they have, then they won't incur any wrath, but you can bet your bottom dollar that when they do, the circumstances change, and suddenly the authors who have done nothing but praise the company will be the ones saying: I wish I'd listened.

    Yes, it all sounds doom and gloom, but that's because it is for some people. Some time in the future it may become clear-’or maybe, if you're really lucky it won't-’that the things reported here are truths as experienced by many.

    All stories have two sides, we all know that. Here we have those who are happy and those who are not. Neither side are lying or making things up. The happy have been treated well and the unhappy haven't. There will always be those who are disenchanted and those who are not, but it doesn't mean the disenchanted haven't got the right to speak out about it just because the happy ones are happy.

    To put it simply:

    One guy loves Walmart, shops there every week. The staff are always polite, he's able to buy everything he wants because the shelves are well-stocked, and he breezes out, pleased with his experience.

    Another guy goes to Walmart and has nothing but hassle. The items on his list always seem to be out of stock, the staff working on the days he visits are rude as hell, and he leaves the shop so frustrated he wonders why he's ever shopped there.

    Both men's experiences are true, leaving them with opposing feelings about the exact same store. Both their opinions are right, because both of them experienced this. The negative aspects for one guy have made him decide he's never going back. Who wants to be treated like dog mess? He has the right to recount his Walmart experience and advise other shoppers not to go there. He wants to save people the wasted journey and hassle he feels they will get when they go there. It doesn't mean these shoppers will feel this way or have the same experience as him, but he wants to warn them all the same, as is his right. The fantastic aspects for the other guy means he'll tell all his friends that Walmart is the best, he's had no problems, BUT he shouldn't say the upset guy's opinion is wrong. It isn't. It's just different to his experience.

    Cr** happens for some at Red Rose, and continues to happen long after they leave. Goodness happens for some at Red Rose. That's the way it is. That's life. Will Ms. Felter come out of this smelling of roses (okay, lame pun there)? Who knows? Maybe if she takes a step back to think, pays her staff and authors-’including those who have left her employ, as stated in her contract-’and apologizes for her somewhat strange behavior and approach, she'll redeem herself. Maybe she won't. I won't apologize now for saying I don't think she'll take the right path and fix all the wrongs. With her track record at other publishing companies, it's quite clear to me she will never act differently. She tried it at the beginning of Red Rose and failed to keep up the façade. I believe she feels she is the one being wronged, targeted, whatever she wishes to call it. But that is my right to feel this way, to believe that nothing will change, will only be covered up better. And that opinion isn't wrong either, just different to other people's.

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  46. Anonymous Author
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 05:24:17

    I’m posting this anonymously because though I split with Wendi Felter and RRP over a year ago, I still don’t underestimate her tendency to retaliate against those who slight her – even on her own authors’ loop where she burns people for including books published by other pubs in their signature lines!

    I left RRP because I was so tired of getting emails like this in my inbox every week. The email you posted above is just one in a long line of hysterics from the owner. As I recall, there was hardly a time when she warned of her unavailability because of family troubles or trips to the casino. Since I canceled my contract, I was not paid royalties for that quarter or given official rights of reversion for the title. Felter even had the audacity to warn me that she would investigate me to see if I had breached my contract by handing off RRP procedures to my other publishers – legitamate pubs who take care of their authors and need no business know-how from anyone. (I’ve heard reports that she has spread rumors about these publishers going under when they are in fact doing better than RRP ever has.) Nothing, of course, ever came of it of the “investigation”, but I know authors at RRP who are fearful of leaving the publisher because of Felter’s behavior.

    THANK YOU for posting her email. I, and I know several authors who have cancelled contracts and feared saying anything and authors who are still with RRP and fearful of leaving, am so relieved all this is finally coming back to haunt her.

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  47. Lin Holmes
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 05:32:25

    @Franny Armstrong: I’m wondering, Ms. Armstrong if you have the courage to seek out the truth. http://linsownspeculations.blogspot.com/
    That is my blog and on it I have posted the truth and copied the only contract Red Rose Publishing sent for my Daughter’s God’s At Work Series. Do you have the courage to go to my blog and see the truth? You were there that night, the night Ms. Felder flipped out on Kat and then pulled all Kat’s works from the catalog and banned her from the Author’s loop. She made you talk to Kat even though you knew from your radio show that Kat was ill…in fact you told her Kat should have been in bed…Kat HAD been in bed, but when Wendi Felter wants one of her minions attention you could be running a fever of a 105 and you’re gonna talk to her. You were right there in her home. So tell me, do you have the courage to be really impartial and see if we’re lying or if we have the proof to back our claim? There’s my link? Will you follow? Should be interesting to see what you do.

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  48. Jenna
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 06:21:55

    @Lin. Is Franny A the woman who interviewed the RRP publisher who kept using the word “fucktard”? If it is, I was listening that night and kept shaking my head. What a class act that woman is. NOT!

    I hear horror stories from author friends all the time about RRP. And all about how eds and cover artists aren’t getting paid if they quit. And I understand that the woman’s on group tirade was all because authors were asking about their royalty statements and basically, “where are they?”

    Yeah, there are two sides to every story. But right now this Franny woman is posting the publisher’s side. Authors just don’t want to have to deal with this crazy woman.

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  49. Kat Holmes
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 06:41:18

    Jenna yeah she was. You heard that show? That show was done only 3 days after I had emergency surgery. I remember it well.

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  50. Another anon on a sunny day
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 07:55:43

    I am speaking as a neutral author in the middle who views this latest fiasco as “Okay been here, done that. Next please!”

    I submitted work to RRP when they were still new. I’m already on board with a few of the top e-publishers. I’m not a dummy and am well-aware of the pitfalls in this industry. I knew I was taking a chance with RRP, so submitted hard-to-place short stories. My only complaint, personally, is low sales, so I had already decided not to submit any future work to RRP. I’m an author first, but a businesswoman second, so hey, you live and you learn.

    I’d noted a lack of organization within the company’s infrastructure, but that seems to have smoothed out in the past year. I will say I’ve cringed at some of the emails Ms. Felter has sent out to her authors. At the same time, I am equally WTF over the authors who took their grievances to the READERS loop? But I suppose these folks are living and learning, too.

    In summary — I’m not surprised, but I’m not in shock. I will neither defend nor condemn RRP. I will simply state the obvious in that things don’t look too good at RRP right now. My advice to new authors would be — don’t submit any work to this house for the time being.

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  51. Jenna
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 08:10:24

    Yes, I heard that show. I’m not with RRP but have friends who are. And a flurry of emails went out that night from those authors to tell lots of people to tune in to what they were hearing from her. They were shocked to be represented by someone like that. Could not believe the way she behaved. They thought it was bad enough to listen to her carry on in private that way, but on a live show?

    There are so many authors and editors and cover artists out there who are no longer with RRP and still waiting on their money. I seriously doubt that this post on DA will shake the money tree loose. But at least it is a major warning to everyone to stay away. So if this publisher believes she was getting away with not paying people she owes, well, I guess she’s found out the hard way that sooner or later you do have to pay up.

    I have to wonder if not being as good as your word, not paying cover artists and editors what they are contractually owed, not treating authors with respect, has been worth it. A good reputation is priceless. What’s hers worth now?

    And the commenter who spoke about Mardis Gras and Silks Vault? You are so right. I remember all of that. The warning was sounded when the doors to RRP opened. And a lot of us stayed far away. But there is no way that you can ever explain to a new author or to an author who has never experienced a publisher not behaving properly, just what it’s all about. It’s one of those things you just have to live through in order to learn how and when to be vigilante.

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  52. Writer Lady
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 08:31:47

    Sometimes authors go into publishing ventures without knowing all that goes on behind the scenes and end up locked in at a place without knowing how to escape. Those authors new to the publishing business especially.

    The good authors are the ones who deserve some positive attention while they try to swim up diarrhea rapids with a thousand conflicting internet guides and no life preserver. Supporting an author doesn’t necessarily mean supporting a specific publisher. Eventually any author worth his/her salt will move on and up in the writing world and become available elsewhere.

    Authors are the life of the business. Without them, a publisher is nothing.

    If you are considering diving into the publishing world, DEFINITELY check out places like the Muse conference mizging talked about, BEFORE signing ANYTHING!

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  53. Mireya
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 09:55:43

    Frankly, I don’t buy the “new authors don’t know better” deal. Why? Well, let’s begin with the fact that I am not an author, just a reader. As a reader, even when I don’t have to protect my work product, I have learned A LOT just by reading posts on other epublishing ventures that collapsed. I have learned A LOT about how to be careful with the contracts you sign. I have learned A LOT about obvious red flags. See what I mean? If, as a reader, I have been able to learn all that, without having a vested interest in learning about the subject as I am not an author, why can’t new authors bother to spend some time researching a bit before they entrust their work to anyone.

    The only answer I have is that those people are either fully aware of the risks (as an author who has her eggs on several baskets expressed above) or the author in question is so desperate to get published, that is willing to risk anything in order to be able to say “I am published”.

    To be brutally honest, I do not buy the excuse of “they are noobs and will learn by experience” any longer. I could say more, but I would end up insulting a good deal of people. I usually tend to lean on the side of authors, however, when certain types show how stupid they can be or are willing to be and then cry “I was blindsided!”, that sympathy thins considerably.

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  54. Anonymous
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 10:07:24

    I’ll just say this. Those authors posted their concerns on the reader’s site by accident. A new author posted her inquiry there by mistake, not knowing she did so. She said this, herself, on the authors’ site, and apologized for the mistake. But others had already followed suit, apparently not realizing which address this was. From what I’ve read, it really was a mistake on their part, but Wendi wouldn’t believe it.

    She does this thing all the time. Every couple of months or less, she slams all the authors or groups of them for something.

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  55. Jeaniene Frost
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 10:21:25

    “There will always be those who are disenchanted and those who are not, but it doesn't mean the disenchanted haven't got the right to speak out about it just because the happy ones are happy.”

    .

    Exactly this, Moira. I have no dog in the Red Rose fight, having never published with them or met the owner, but I Tweeted the link to this post and Kat Holmes’s post because I thought it was an important head’s up to writers who might consider Red Rose for their manuscripts. This didn’t seem like a case of mere personality incompatibility (which then the argument could be made that it was better settled in private than public), as much as a case of purportedly broken contracts, unpaid monies owed, potential copyright infringement, and professional bullying. Writers are told to do their research before they select a publisher because of scenarios like this. That way, they can decide if the risks are worth the benefits. I strongly disagree with Ms. Armstrong’s assertion that such professional issues should be kept in private. Publishing is a business, and when deciding who to go into business with, you want ALL the information – the good, the bad, and the ugly – not just a wall of misguidedly polite silence.

    .

    And you can bet that if my publisher neglected to pay me owed royalties, published one of my books without a contract, and sent me scalding emails such as the one above, I’d feel obliged to warn other authors about my experience so they’d be aware that it could happen to them, too. Maybe it never would happen, but at least they could make an *informed* decision instead of one based on a censoring mantra of “if you can't say something nice…”

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  56. Jane
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 10:26:20

    I do think it is important for as much information about the good and bad regarding publishers, particularly small press publishers, needs to be out there. You know that most big publishers are publicly owned and must share their quarterly successes and failures. It’s a way to keep track of how healthy those publishing houses are. There is no similar thing for small print publishers and frankly the information about those houses are hard to come by.

    With digital publishing becoming an increasingly attractive option for writers, it becomes even more vital that authors are equipped to make the best possible decision.

    We have all been around to see the spectacular demise of various publishers and they often are predicated by similar instances of unprofessionalism.

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  57. Mari LaCroix
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 10:37:24

    http://mariannelacroix.blogspot.com/2009/10/so-drama.html

    Check out my drama with RRP and the owner.

    I also wish to add that once I had my book removed from the sites, I stopped receiving royalties for any cover art I made and still being used by RRP. I personally can’t be bothered to contact the owner about this issue. The non payment is a small price to pay as opposed to talking to her/dealing with the shit.

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  58. Moira
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 10:41:04

    @Jeaniene Frost: I agree. People have the right to speak out if they want to, regardless of whether they are involved or not. If by doing so it prevents someone possibly going through a bad experience, because, as I said earlier, some have good experiences to report, then speaking out will have been worth it.

    I would love to be able to say it was me who reported this to Dear Author, but it wasn’t because I was still, believe it or not, a little worried about bringing such a thing out into the open. However, I will admit that when I saw this post yesterday, I felt relief. Finally it is out there instead of behind closed doors.

    Although some might be upset that the original query as to the whereabouts of royalties was posted on the Red Rose Reader’s loop, I feel that the error the author made in posting there–and it’s so easily done because the logos for the group confuse you into thinking you’ve posted to the other group (at least they were when I was on them)–was a Godsend. Plus, if emails were being unanswered, at least the authors gained a response this way.

    Also, think about this. Ms. Felter didn’t need to reply on the same group in the way she did. She could have posted her rant to the author group so it remained private, but anger got the better of her. On the reader group she could have simply posted a message that she apologizes for the queries being on that group and the discussion would be continued on the other group. She did not exercize restraint as she perhaps should have done, so I have no sympathy that her public rant was made more public here. She made the decision to respond on that group in such a manner.

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  59. Jane
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 10:42:41

    @Mari LaCroix Mari, at the very least, I hope you contact RWA with your concerns. They should investigate and remove Red Rose Pub from its list of authorized or whatever publishers. If an author’s contract has expired and she is entitled to her rights back, the continual publication, sale, distribution, etc. of that book would not be appropriate and would appear to be violative of the Copyright Act.

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  60. Moira
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 10:51:31

    @Mari LaCroix: I completely understand how you feel. Chasing her for the money would be pointless and upsetting. I feel it’s best for me to just walk away. On the other hand, it makes me cross that if we have all walked away without making a fuss, she’s making an awful lot of money there.

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  61. Yet another... gonna keep my name to myself author... of RRP
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 10:54:29

    First of all: Kat – Hon, please don’t ever let the ramblings of a crazy woman with a seriously out-of-whack ego drive you to take your life. Wendi’s ego is fed by several authors on her list and this is why she continues to rant – Franny… come on!

    RRP is self imploding, and to me this is sad! There are so many wonderful writers who have their work in this house, and for them I am truly sorry. It sickens me that Wendi has power over authors who have waited for “The Call” and get it from her then find themselves stuck. When I first came to RRP this was an RWA approved publisher who wasn’t on the P&E no fly list – RWA hasn’t pulled her that I know of, but P&E has a huge red flag.

    I don’t know if the new author made a mistake on the reader loop or not. But the fact is Wendi has an excuse every royalty period as to why pay is late, or why she can’t get the statements out. Each one is met with a bi-polar… I’m pissed you f***tards! Have a nice day! At this point I laugh.

    I’m glad I don’t live in New York where the woman with a mouth and a twitchy finger (on the send button) could find me. She quite possibly could be placed in a ‘class action’ slander case right now with what… 50+ authors signing on?
    The publishing world is small. People get burned. But when I hear of an author, Kat, wanting to end her life because of a woman like Wendi I wanna cry. Don’t give that woman the power.

    For those authors who stand up and say – ‘Oh, Wendi has the right to be upset… She has had it bad.’ I say, “Shut Up.” You’re only making yourself look like the fool. Her issues are her issues. It is one thing for an author to go on a loop and ask her colleagues for a prayer for a sick loved one, or a ‘send your good Karma my way for my hubby’s new job.’ It’s quite another to dump your life on your employees. Does anyone here think that the head of Berkley or HQN goes around telling their authors about their dealings with Amazon, Fictionwise or the electric company? They sure as hell wouldn’t be boasting about an audit. *shakes head*

    I will still buy RRP books because I love many of their authors… I just won’t do it directly from HER site. That way the author has a record of the book being purchased. The trust with Wendi is gone!

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  62. Mireya
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 10:58:32

    wow, maybe I should just open my own epublishing company and be a complete and utter unprofessional ass to get services from authors, editors and artists, for free and pocketing any monies from book sales … yah, that’s the ticket!

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  63. MaryK
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 11:55:07

    This is all pretty amazingly unprofessional behavior from a businessperson. But the whole “you don’t work here anymore so you don’t get royalties” thing is just mind boggling.

    I find it hard to believe that a company like this would survive an audit.

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  64. Anonymous Editor
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 12:03:04

    I too, shall leave my name out of this, simply because I have edited for Red Rose in the past. Speaking from my experience alone, I have known authors who have had works published without their knowledge or consent, and without ever receiving line edits, or seeing galleys. I don’t know if due to lack of organization or what, but from my standpoint, it began gradually getting worse and worse, until I could no longer stand for it, and so left the company, and advised several of my authors (who had at this point become friends) to do the same. It’s sad that things had to come to this point, but I am not surprised that it has happened, maybe just that it has taken this long to come to light.

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  65. Voirey Linger
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 13:22:25

    I wish I could say that this was the most unprofesional rant I’ve seen. Unfortunately it is not.

    Internal or not, this type of childish fit has no place in a business. If yo are at the helm, you need to be able to remain objective, and a person who cannot control herself cannot be trusted to control others careers.

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  66. Renee
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 14:16:36

    She had an audit of what? And from my experience, she lies A LOT. That’s just one of the reasons I walked away.

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  67. Author who wants out
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 14:33:59

    And for those of you who did manage to walk away… did you leave your work with her? Sounds to me like if I ask for my rights back at the end of my contract I’ll be hard pressed to get them.

    How does one cut their losses here and walk away? I really do need the answer. Call me a rat jumping ship if you like.

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  68. Another Anonymous RRP Author
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 15:29:01

    RWA members, check out the article in the January 2010 Romance Writers’ Report, “The Perils of Author Mills” When I read this, I realized I was contracted with one.

    Constant threats, belittling, and extremely unprofessional behavior from Felter. Firing staff AFTER she’d announced their termination on the authors’ loop and commented about what a terrible job they’d done for RRP. E-mail rants and erratic behavior that made me cringe every time I saw an e-mail from her.

    My advice to Wendi – step back from the business, hire someone to manage the company who can be the main contact person. You can pull RRP’s reputation out of the dumpster. Your authors will be loyal to you – if you show them respect, professionalism, and sincerity.

    Good luck!

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  69. Kat Holmes
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 15:31:42

    Author who wants out, the truth is getting your rights back is next to impossible. Wendi doesn’t honor her own contracts. Your only course is to inform her via a certified letter that you want your rights back. Then, when she doesn’t respond, get a lawyer to write her a letter. That should work, but it will cost you out of pocket for the lawyer intervention.

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  70. not impressed
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 17:30:01

    people are entitled to their thoughts, feelings and perceptions. If some folks are unhappy with a person’s reactions, emails or business practice, it is within your rights not to continue business with them. If a person has a personal issue and feel the strong need to address it, it should be in private. End of story. Loop emails, blog posts or any other public venue to vent or discredit anyone, publisher, author, editor, friend or foe is inappropriate to say the least. In my experience both in publishing, and other areas of my professional and personal life, this detestable behaviour, from every individual offering negative comments, slander and such is completely out of line. Some people should also consider, if an employer is breaching a contract, this personal slamming forum adds to the legal parameters of professional slander that effects every person associated with the company. Bad mouthing someone in public, impacting their business and revenue can be a chargeable offence. It would be wise to conduct yourselves accordingly and keep your b**&$ fests private, where it belongs. Not every person associated with more than 200 authors, and many more editors, cover artists etc. are reporting the same experience, and shouldn’t be subjected to the fallout one negative person can instigate because they are disgruntled.
    If people would put half the effort they do into this type of negativity and slander into their self promotion and writing, perhaps they would find their sales and publishing experience to be more satisfying.
    For those with very inconsiderate comments about “the live show”, let’s just take a step back and ask ourselves, is this show, and the host being attacked a venue you had also accessed for your own personal promotion: at no cost ? If so, you should be ashamed to slam someone who gave you a great opportunity to promote yourself, and asked nothing in return.
    I won’t put my name, because I am ashamed to be associated with this type of conduct.

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  71. Ginny
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 17:32:09

    It’s almost like she went and looked at every fraudulent, bad business act, crooked thing other publishers that have tanked did and thought she could do it too.

    Like I said earlier, she never met an author she didn’t like. She tried writing once — a novella that was pathetic — so the only way to be with as many authors as possible was to open her own publishing house — with someone else’s money. Mari, a lot of us could have warned you before you got caught up in her machinations! She didn’t only sign anyone and everyone who submitted to her for the money, it’s so she can say she knows all these authors. It’s like she gets some kind of validation from saying she knows people — and their phone numbers.

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  72. DS
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 18:00:57

    @not impressed: I have no idea what you are saying, but paragraphs are your friend.

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  73. Lin Holmes
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 18:15:13

    @Mireya: Neither my daughter or I were crying anything. That is not our style…and beleive me, compared to the road we have traveled, the likes of Ms. Felter are nothing more than troublesome gnats. I have taken down scarier bruts with far more power than she could ever hope to have…just ask two former all too powerful, in their own minds, federal agents.

    Kat would have been content moving on…in fact that WAS the problem. Ms. Felter learned that she HAD submitted and been accepted by another publisher days before she began her campaign to destroy.

    She bad mouthed the other publisher with curses, promises of dire things, and also warned Kat that it would have and I quote…(KAT was on speakerphone so I unfortunately, or fortunately depending on your point of view.)…would have SERIOUS consequences.

    Less than two weeks later when Ms. Felter tried to force Kat to agree to release the THIRD book in her brand new series in under 88 days, those SERIOUS consequences manifested. Still Kat would have walked away, let Ms. Felter keep all profits, just return the rights now that SHE, MS. FELTER had removed my daughter’s books from any possibility of being sold on the RRP catalog and banned her from the auhtor’s loop. Wendi Felter wasn’t having any of that!

    Ms. Felter wants EXCLUSIVITY and ABSOLUTE dominance…God help you if she learnes you are not giving that to her.

    Due to my daughter’s SEVERE health issues I, (I almost lost her twice during 2009 and early 2010)…executing my limited power of attorney in that area, I stepped in because of the pressure to speedily meet Ms. Felter’s demands was putting on Kat’s body, mind, and spirit…think about three of your stories being dumped out there in ONLY eighty-seven days…

    My edict? Kat was to sign no more contracts with Red Rose UNTIl…and I am going to STRESS THIS POINT…UNTIL her very concerned SPECIALISTS got her health issues under control. Should I ahve let Ms. Felter have her way and watched my daughter die from the frenetic strain caused by appeasing that woman?

    Is there a mother out there who would not have stepped in when the life of your child, whether that child is an adult or not, is at stake, and say ENOUGH? (We have the medical records to back up everything I am saying here…and we kept everything to prove we are NOT making ANY false statements…you learn that when you want to bring federal agents down to ALWAYS keep the proof.)

    Ms. Felter does not like anyone saying NO to her for any reason and SHE retaliated. Pure and simple.

    Neither Kat or I came here to Dear Author to unleash this firestorm. I am dealing with the Red Rose Issue on my daughter’s behalf in other ways, but I am not sorry this is finally out there.

    Maybe it’ll save other authors from the hell she wields so gleefully.

    Oh and one more thing…I was never employed by or signed to this place…I eman I am the MOTHER of one of your authors,but I had to listen to her call everyone she disagrees with and Ms. A. it seems when you were the temporary webmistress you messed up so she called you a F***tard…cute word…very professional, and mature…Not!

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  74. Author who wants out
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 18:17:10

    @not impressed:
    Really? How private is a loop anyway? I wonder if those Wendi has drug through the mud, publicly, on her loop, would agree to anything you’ve said. Even her private phone calls can be heard across county lines.

    So, she, or he, who is paragraph phobic, you might consider that the words being said here are a way of warning authors to stay clear and offer support to people like Kat who have been clearly wronged. Wendi made this public as far as I see it. Had she kept the conversation between her and the author who posted the wrong thing on the wrong loop, none of this would be out now!

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  75. Lin Holmes
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 18:44:44

    @MaryK: You only have her word that that actually happened and she likes to use exaggeration liberally.

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  76. MaryK
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 18:52:01

    @Lin Holmes: That was kinda my point. ;)

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  77. Lin Holmes
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 18:55:54

    @not impressed: Neither my daughter or I are crying anything. That is not our style…and beleive me, compared to the road we have traveled, the likes of Ms. Felter are nothing more than troublesome gnats. I have taken down scarier bruts with far more power than she could ever hope to have…just ask two former all too powerful, in their own minds, federal agents.

    Kat would have been content moving on…in fact that WAS the problem. Ms. Felter learned that she HAD submitted and been accepted by another publisher days before she began her campaign to destroy.

    She bad mouthed the other publisher with curses, promises of dire things, and also warned Kat that it would have and I quote…(KAT was on speakerphone so I unfortunately, or fortunately depending on your point of view.)…would have SERIOUS consequences.

    Less than two weeks later when Ms. Felter tried to force Kat to agree to release the THIRD book in her brand new series in under 88 days, those SERIOUS consequences manifested. Still Kat would have walked away, let Ms. Felter keep all profits, just return the rights now that SHE, MS. FELTER had removed my daughter’s books from any possibility of being sold on the RRP catalog and banned her from the auhtor’s loop. Wendi Felter wasn’t having any of that!

    Ms. Felter wants EXCLUSIVITY and ABSOLUTE dominance…God help you if she learns you are not giving that to her.

    Due to my daughter’s SEVERE health issues I, (I almost lost her twice during 2009 and early 2010)…executing my limited power of attorney in that area, stepped in because of the pressure to speedily meet Ms. Felter’s demands was putting on Kat’s body, mind, and spirit…think about three of your stories being dumped out there in ONLY eighty-seven days…

    My edict? Kat was to sign no more contracts with Red Rose UNTIl…and I am going to STRESS THIS POINT…UNTIL her very concerned SPECIALISTS got her health issues under control. Should I ahve let Ms. Felter have her way and watched my daughter die from the frenetic strain caused by appeasing that woman?

    Is there a mother out there who would not have stepped in when the life of your child, whether that child is an adult or not, is at stake, and say ENOUGH? (We have the medical records to back up everything I am saying here…and we kept everything to prove we are NOT making ANY false statements…you learn that when you want to bring federal agents down to ALWAYS keep the proof.)

    Ms. Felter does not like anyone saying NO to her for any reason and SHE retaliated. Pure and simple.

    Neither Kat or I came here to Dear Author to unleash this firestorm. I am dealing with the Red Rose Issue on my daughter’s behalf in other ways, but I am not sorry this is finally out there.

    Maybe it’ll save other authors from the hell she wields so gleefully.

    Oh and one more thing…I was never employed by or signed to this place…I eman I am the MOTHER of one of your authors,but I had to listen to her call everyone she disagrees with and Ms. A. it seems when you were the temporary webmistress you messed up so she called you a F***tard…cute word…very professional, and mature…Not!

    You may not have identified yourself, but your words identify who you are clearly. Also, slander, libel, and defamation require the person to be telling NON-TRUTHS and not having the documentation to back it up.. I didn’t get five college degrees to do dumb things at this stage of my life.

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  78. Mireya
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 19:00:44

    @not impressed:

    I am not impressed either… by the fact that you are including a threat in your comment to this thread.

    ReplyReply

  79. Lin Holmes
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 19:04:23

    @MaryK: Sorry. I am having problems posting some of the comments. This one came through really late before I had read on. There is so much more we could share. Thank you all who jumped in to acknowledge and support Kat after all RRP put her through. Her seizures have made life challenging enough without having her creativity held hostage by Felter’s ego.

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  80. Jocelyn Devon
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 19:15:35

    I’m an author with RRP.

    Let me say first off the reason I went with RRP is because it was the only house that would consider already pre-published stories.

    I was first published back in 2007 with Star Dust Press that had my story titled Haunted Embrace. I was treated excellently by all the staff there. The ONLY reason it closed it’s doors was the fact the investors wasn’t making a profit on the house. I had absolutely no trouble getting back my rights.

    Then the following publishing house I went with was Twilight Publishing owned and operated by Trista Bane. Yes, I knew that was a huge risk because it was a new house and ran by an author. I was also stupid because I didn’t have enough publishing experience under my belt to go with such a house. All I will say to that situation is that it left such a bad taste in my mouth that I quit getting published until this year with RRP for Wild Souls.

    As I said I believed in my stories and wanted to share them again with the public and readers. It was no fault of mine that my previous houses closed. But what shoved me in the direction of RRP was their willingness to read my pre published story and consider it for republication which many of the other online houses refused to do.If one of them had been willing to look at my pre published story and at least agreed to read it before declining I would most likely not have went with RRP. This is why I became published with RRP. The willingness to at least consider and read my work.

    I wasn’t an author who was DESPERATE and just so I could say I’m published.

    I knew several authors with RRP and they had nothing but good to say about the company. So I signed on.

    It is sad the things being learned but assumptions about everyone elses actions are not always the best on either side of the coin. Don’t assume you know something about me when you don’t know me.

    I love being an author and I hope to continue to be able to share my tales with readers.

    But do not put me down as being desperate or bragging because things in a given situation with a certain publishing house turned on its head backwards when at the time of signing a contract everything was on the up and up.

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  81. Jenna
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 19:17:22

    @not impressed. Threatening to sue, huh? Well, authors make that threat to unscrupulous publishers all the time. What good does it do? None. And they know it.

    And for the record. I personally have never used the referred to “live show”. Nor would I.

    And about authors promoting books? Sounds like you are inferring that the RRP authors don’t work hard enough at promotions. Hmmm…wonder where that little tidbit came from. I think there was something along that line of thought in the rant from the RRP publisher.

    No amount of promotion from any author could ever be enough to gain any momentum against the diluted release pool at RRP. But I am sure that there are happy authors there. Those who are friends of the publisher. But if you ever have to disagree with her, you won’t be her friend for long.

    By the way, it wouldn’t be slander anyway, it would be libel—and, of course, it’s neither because the truth is the truth. Check your facts. Basically, we’re not impressed, not impressed.

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  82. Lin Holmes
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 19:45:53

    @Mireya: These words ring very strongly of the kinds of words and intimdations used against Kat on the phone and IM’s by Ms. Felter. As angry as I am that my daughter was reduced to such desperation, I am no fool. I speak nothing I cannot back up. I took down two federal agents in my past. I learned then you do not put anything out anywhere you cannot prove and we have it.

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  83. michelle sullivan
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 19:58:20

    I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again. Contact RWA especially those of you who have not been paid. RWA will pull their approval from RRP. The rest of you should send your letters to them also. Especially if you have emails to back you up. Maybe once RWA pulls their approval, Wendi will learn a valuable lesson. I read on someone’s website – sorry the name escapes me now – that Wendi bragged about makng 70,000$ last year. If that’s the case, where is the authors, editors, and cover artist’s money?

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  84. Lin Holmes
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 19:59:24

    @Jocelyn Devon: Jocelyn, I pray you will never HAVE to go through any of what Ms. Felter has put Kat through. We have nothing, nothing against the authors, editors, staff.

    Kat became very close to many of the people still there, and is deeply saddened that this entire mess has had to break ties she had cherished. If she were the ONLY one to have posted here, then maybe I would wonder if we were looking at things through confused eyes, but we HAVE the physical proof. We have the DOCUMENTS to back up what we’re saying, and we have the verification of others who either had similar problems before or us, or since us.

    We are NOT alone.

    One snowflake does not a blizzard make, but when thousands relate the same story, the same treatment…?

    I truly wish you well, and hope you continue having a glorious experience with RRP. I would not wish what RRP did to Kat on ANYONE. Unfortunately that is not in my control.

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  85. Suze
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 20:01:33

    Among other bits of WTFery, where did anybody get the impression that authors are the employees of publishing houses? The publisher is not the boss. The author is not the employee.

    @not impressed:

    If so, you should be ashamed to slam someone who gave you a great opportunity to promote yourself, and asked nothing in return.

    Seriously? Authors didn’t come begging for a great opportunity to promote themselves, they contracted with a professional publisher to publish and distribute their work, for which said publisher is getting the lion’s share of any profit from their work. That is NOT asking nothing in return.

    When I sign a contract with somebody, I expect them to adhere to it. And if they don’t adhere to it, they face whatever consequences I can bring about–which are always stated explicitly in the contract (unless the contract really, really sucks).

    If you don’t honour your contracts, you don’t last in your business. The end.

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  86. Lin Holmes
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 20:07:13

    @michelle sullivan: Ours was mailed to RWA on Septmber 1, 2010. A one pound manila envelope filled with much of the proof. Do you have any idea how many photocopies one must make to create ONE POUND of paper? So for those of you who think Kat and I came after Ms. Felter here…wrong…we were busy putting that one pound package together.

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  87. Julia Sullivan
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 20:35:50

    Dear writers: Publishers aren’t doing you a personal favor when they publish your work; they’re establishing a business relationship with you.

    Dear publishers: You aren’t doing writers a personal favor when you publish their work; you’re establishing a business relationship with them.

    Publishers owe writers a duty of professionalism, and when that professionalism is repeatedly breached and contracts are violated, I don’t see how it is inappropriate to share information about that, any more than it would be inappropriate to share information about a supermarket chain that isn’t forwarding payment to the folks who made the cereal on its shelves.

    To the Holmeses, mother and daughter: I strongly urge you to seek legal action for breach of contract and copyright infringement (if indeed what you allege occurred is accurate). I know that that would represent a significant investment of money, money it might be hard for you to come up with, but it would do more to achieve the results you want than continuing to spread the word in blog posts, comments, etc.

    Again, this is a professional dispute, not an interpersonal conflict (or at least, it should be). Engaging in slanging matches with Ms. Felter or her supporters is not going to get you where you want to be.

    Especially where you folks are starting a publishing operation yourselves (and best wishes for that) you could not do better than to take the professional high road, even if Ms. Felter does not.

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  88. Julia Sullivan
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 20:39:19

    @Julia Sullivan: Especially you, Ms. Lin Holmes; I honor and understand your anger and wish to protect your daughter, but fighting her battles for her in public is not conveying the impression that I am sure she (and you) want to convey—that she is a talented writer with a sense of professionalism in a business dispute with a publisher who is behaving unprofessionally.

    Please step back and consider approaching this matter in a different way. I know you must be upset and anxious and angry right now, but what you’re doing is not helping your daughter’s professional image.

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  89. anyonmous
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 20:39:44

    I think that’s like her signature because it’s on every email. In fact they all start out the same. Hi how are you. Doesn’t matter what she wants to say that’s how they start out and end. Almost like a form letter.

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  90. Wow...
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 21:04:35

    @not impressed:
    If people would put half the effort they do into this type of negativity and slander into their self promotion and writing, perhaps they would find their sales and publishing experience to be more satisfying.

    How do you know these people aren’t doing exactly that? It’s nice to hear both sides to this story. Not that I was considering epubbing in the first place, but now I know Wendi is someone I will want to avoid in the future.

    Considering the amount of grief people have expressed in the comments so far, I’d say that getting these issues resolved first would be more important than promoting works they’re no longer receiving royalties for.

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  91. not impressed
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 22:23:22

    @ Julie, well said.@ Jenna, @ Suze & others I’ve appeared to offend, my apologies for offering an honest opinion.

    DS, thank you for the editing. Paragraphs are indeed my friend.

    For the record, I am an RRP author, I too have not yet recieved a statement, I am not a close personal friend of the publisher, I am not making any threats, nor have I been threatened, mistreated or anything else others who have elequently posted have experienced.

    The comments about self promotion, is a direct observation from my own personal results, of not making significant and repeated efforts to boost my own personal sales.

    Blog posting would suggest, welcoming differing points of view in a discussing forum.

    It appears the receptivity of posts expressed by any who may disagree with publicizing the ill gotten feelings on this page, are no better recieved than than how some feel their opinions are recieved by the publisher in question.

    There is a time and a place for everything. There are times we need to be more selective and take the higher road in disagreements, rather than fueling the fire amoungst ourselves.

    The point I offered is this particular stance is that this negativity impacts way more than the intended target. It directly impacts authors, like myself, currently employed editors, cover artists, etc. and others who have posted here.

    Trying to knock down someone’s business when others are engaged in that business takes it to a level that no longer addresses the original issues at hand.

    There are appropriate venues, resources and proceedures to address concerns and any questionable business practices, such as legal consultation, literary lawyers, RWA, and so forth. These are available, because yes, in the publishing business, it is a neccesity for many.

    I agree with @ Julia, that this particular dicussion really does tarnish Kat’s professional reputation, even though the intention was to support her.

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  92. Lin
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 22:53:39

    @not impressed: Kat wanted her rights back. Ms. Felter took her books from the catalog taking away HER source of any income from them ENDING any business association they had.

    But you assume that CIVIL court is the only place to go after a violation of copyright laws…willfully releasing another’s work without a legitimate contract is a federal CRIME.

    This Dear Author posting begean because Ms. Felter is not professional in her own loops and it got out…someohow, someone found KAt’s blog and incorporated that in this, but forgot to add the repsose from the current RRP author to Ms. Felter’s outrageous harrangue…you say Kat and I are showing ourselves to be wrong? Reread what Ms. Felter wrote and then re-read this RRP’s author’s repsonse in your OWN loops:

    Wendi,

    Who in the hell do you think you are? I’m not your child, or someone you own! I’m not your slave! So don’t you EVER dare talk to me, or for that matter, any other authors that way! Are you truly crazy? You can’t just put out this kind of crap to everyone–are you trying to alienate every single author you’ve got in one blow, drive them all away, utterly destroy your business in a petty fit of stupid and callous rage?

    I damn well want an apology and I think everyone else here is entitled to one, too! You’ve gone just too far this time. I’ve ignored some of the other nasty, condescending, public emails you’ve posted, but this is just too much! I, and I’m sure the other authors, are deeply offended at such crass and stupid language on your part! Get a grip!

    First, if you ever answered your damned emails, maybe people wouldn’t raise issues on the loop. Everyone complains about your lack of response that way–EVERYONE and all of the time! I’ve sent you no less than three in a row recently, and not one response and I’m not just an author, but an editor, too! So try answering your emails, lady, just once in a while. They are about matters of business!

    As authors, we have a right to be in contact with our publisher, and it’s your job to respond in a timely matter, like it or not, and family considerations aside. If it’s that bad, then hire someone to do it for you, but respond to those who are making you your money for you! Get it? We don’t owe you–you owe us! This is a business for you and us, and not your personal little stamping ground to treat us as you please, as disobedient children, or however else you please, and when you choose to please!

    In any case, nobody was whining and complaining. They were merely politely inquiring, nothing more. Read the damned emails again, woman! It started on the wrong loop, and I don’t think anyone, including me, even noticed, but there was nothing bad in them, no name calling, no insinuations, no demands–nothing! Again, all of them were just a polite inquiry.

    If you can make the occasional mistake or more (and you do, like this last and incredibly stupid email of yours), why the hell can’t we once in a while! And if you have family problems, a lot apparently, I’m sorry for that, but you aren’t alone, you know! We have them, too, and still have to do our jobs and get on with our responsibilities. So do you! That’s just “business!”

    And understand this; we didn’t come to Red Rose, because it was “your” family. We came to get our books published. And if this is your idea of a “family,” then it’s a damned dysfunctional one with the way you are behaving!

    So get off it! I’ve heard about your family problems for over a year now, and frankly, as sad as they are, I’m tired of it. And in any case, again, this is business. Besides, do you give a rat’s ass about our problems? You’re always giving us your problems, and often as excuses for delays, but do you ever ask us about ours? You’ve never asked me! If so, I haven’t seen any sign of it. So we’ll do our job and you do yours! Okay? And personal matters, as with all business, should just stay out of it completely!

    Frankly, in my opinion, it’s you that’s always whining and complaining about your problems to us, and not us to you! Even if we did, we would never get an email response in private–just public ridicule and castigation here in the group on a regular basis, but no sympathy.

    And you’re beyond furious? Well, I’m absolutely fed up with you talking to us like you do! We have contracts with you, but you don’t own us! You aren’t my parents! You aren’t my slave master! So don’t you EVER, and I mean EVER dare talk to me like this again, or by God I’ll talk back the same damned way every time, as now! As you like to put things, it’s F@#$@@g disgusting on your part to behave this way!

    And I am definitely not pleased at how unprofessional you are as owner and publisher of Red Rose, so how about that! Never mind what you think we should do to bow, kow-tow, and scrape at your heels all the time, you don’t measure up to my standards of a business professional! Get it? You’re volatile, overly emotionally, too damned quick tempered, get out of control to often and too much, and I think we’re all pretty fed up with it!

    A simple polite message to us would have sufficed. But no, you go on a rampage! Well, I’ve had enough. Get over it. Stop acting so paranoid! Nobody is trying to sabotage Red Rose Publishing, most certainly not your authors. If anyone is sabotaging it, and doing a great job of it, it is you and right now!

    My advice, take a chill pill. Do some meditation. Seek some counseling for your problems or something, and then, when you’ve calmed down, you’d better try apologizing to us all. Maybe, just maybe, some might accept it. Because as far as I’m concerned, YOU WENT WAY OVER THE LINE THIS TIME, LADY!

    As for my books, if you want to release them back to me, that’s just fine. Or, you can keep them at Red Rose, the choice is yours. I am quite willing to abide by all the terms of the contract on my end and have, and I’m not requesting their release, because I won’t pay any penalties to do it. So, if you just want to let them go without charge–that’s just fine with me! Otherwise, they can stay.

    But get this and get it good–I’m not taking anymore of this stupid crap from you! Not Now! And not ever!

    When you talk to me, at least, you will do so in a polite, calm, considerate, and adult manner, or there won’t be any talking at all! I will not be spoken to, or written to, like this anymore, in such a demeaning, offensive, and condescending manner. You get that??? No more! And you needn’t consider contacting me unless you are ready to apologize, because I will not respond until you do–how about that for a change? I don’t need this soap opera and melodrama in my life. I just want to write in peace, without some hysterical acting publisher ranting and raving at us all on a periodic basis!

    If you want to cut me off the loop, that’s fine with me! I don’t want anymore of these emails of yours coming into my home in any case. They are obscene! I won’t tolerate them. And don’t worry about me submitting any more books to Red Rose. The price to have books with RR is just too damned high!

    Grow up!

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  93. Ginny
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 23:46:58

    @michelle sullivan: That was on Piers Anthony’s site. This must have all happened after his deadline this past month because normally he’d have some sort of comment.

    I’m surprised she hasn’t put up some sort of “I’m innocent” message on the publishing site.

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  94. Laura Shinn
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 01:44:13

    I believe the author(s) who complained in the reader’s group are as equally wrong and unprofessional as Wendi’s rant. If an author is having a problem with anything regarding their book, contacting the publisher directly is professional and expected. If the publisher refused to keep to the contract, then a lawyer needs to be involved. Any publisher that is in the wrong must be held liable through the contract.

    Having been involved as an author with four different publishers and on staff with five, I’ve seen my share of difficulties between authors and publishers. I’ve discovered that 95% of problems can be resolved and taken care of if the situation stays between the author(s) in question and the publisher.

    I’ve had problems before and contacted the publisher directly. I did NOT take my problems to the reader’s or author’s group. Very unprofessional. I did contact one or two authors privately who I trusted to ask their opinions and advice. But bringing this before the public reduces both sides to a high school brawl. As adults, I think both parties should’ve acted with more maturity that what they showed.

    Wendi, it seems, is upset with everyone, even those who did not complain. This is also wrong and unprofessional. My mother used to tell me “don’t speak to anyone in anger.” I suggest, calm down, think things through then work towards a resolution. If one can’t be found, allow the law to work in your favor.

    I think the authors who complained in such a public way should apologize and I think Wendi owes those authors and the ones who did NOT complain a serious apology. She, above everyone else, is the one in charge of the company. It’s her responsibility to remain professional in the face of any unprofessionalism. She did not do this. Shame on her for speaking before thinking.

    Knowing all of this and seeing it unfold, ask me again why I self-publish…

    Laura Shinn
    http://www.laurashinn.com

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  95. laurashinn
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 01:52:55

    I believe the author(s) who complained in the reader’s group are as equally wrong and unprofessional as Wendi’s rant. If an author is having a problem with anything regarding their book, contacting the publisher directly is professional and expected. If the publisher refused to keep to the contract, then a lawyer needs to be involved. Any publisher that is in the wrong must be held liable through the contract.

    Having been involved as an author with four different publishers and on staff with five, I’ve seen my share of difficulties between authors and publishers. I’ve discovered that 95% of problems can be resolved and taken care of if the situation stays between the author(s) in question and the publisher.

    I’ve had problems before and contacted the publisher directly. I did NOT take my problems to the reader’s or author’s group. Very unprofessional. I did contact one or two authors privately who I trusted to ask their opinions and advice. But bringing this before the public reduces both sides to a high school brawl. As adults, I think both parties should’ve acted with more maturity than what they showed.

    Wendi, it seems, is upset with everyone, even those who did not complain. This is also wrong and unprofessional. My mother used to tell me “don’t speak to anyone in anger.” I suggest, calm down, think things through then work towards a resolution. If one can’t be found, allow the law to work in your favor.

    I think the authors who complained in such a public way should apologize and I think Wendi owes those authors and the ones who did NOT complain a serious apology. She, above everyone else, is the one in charge of the company. It’s her responsibility to remain professional in the face of any unprofessionalism. She did not do this. Shame on her for speaking before thinking.

    Knowing all of this and seeing it unfold, ask me again why I self-publish…

    Laura Shinn
    http://www.laurashinn.com

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  96. Anonymous Author
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 02:05:29

    @Laura I kept my issues with Felter quiet because at the time I cancelled my contract with RRP I thought I was one of few who had problems with her management. I also warned her via private email that if rights for the work weren’t reverted back to me, I would take legal action. Not only did she not respond; she took it public by dragging my name through the mud on the authors’ loop. I am prepared to take legal action, but whether any of Felter’s authors handle her misdeeds in as businesslike a manner as possible or if they are forced to take it to a more public platform – like Kat – nothing seems to work with this woman.

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  97. Moira
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 03:47:57

    @ An author who wants out

    Look at your contract. If it states that when the contract expires the work automatically reverts to you, then you are free to sell that work elsewhere once the contract has expired. Of course, send an email first stating your contract is up and you do not wish to sign again for that book. You may possibly get no response to this email. If the publisher continues to sell it after this date, you can take whatever steps needed to get the work taken down. Bear in mind that affiliate sites take longer to remove the work, so if the publisher has removed it from her site yet you still see it elsewhere, this may be due to a time issue.

    However, if you wanted your books back now while they are still in contract, you would have to pay a sum of money for their release. I’m not sure how much that is at present. I know the works are released in a timely fashion when paying these fees are involved, but I also know for a fact that editors and cover artists very rarely, if ever, get a portion of that money, which they are entitled to (speaking from experience).

    Sometimes it’s a case of leaving your books where they are and waiting for the contract to expire. The aggravation of fighting for your rights back before this leads to stress and upset.

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  98. Moira
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 03:52:18

    @ not impressed

    It would be wise to conduct yourselves accordingly and keep your b**&$ fests private, where it belongs

    As I said in one of my earlier comments: Such a shame Ms. Felter didn’t do this. She responded in public. Such an action was bound to have fallout.

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  99. DS
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 08:04:34

    This is not legal advice, but there are certain actions (such as notice that you do not wish to a novation of a contract) that need to be done via certified return request or just certified US mail with a print out of the post office site showing the mail was delivered.

    Also, here’s a trick. If you think someone is not going to pick up a certified return request letter, send one certified return request and then send one just certified. The return request has to signed for at the PO desk and if someone is trying to avoid you they will often refuse to do this.

    The fact that one is not picked up but the other one that is usually placed in the mail box or post office box is not returned as undeliverable (action by post office) is pretty good evidence that the second one was received. As always keep a copy with the certification number and print off a copy of the page showing it was delivered as soon as it is delivered. If you forget to print it out during the time it is available on line, the post office keeps all of these records and you can receive this information from your friendly post office counter staff.

    Also the FBI is usually not interested in copyright issues, not even when it involves piracy.

    If I was in the position of some of the authors whose work was being sold I would file a request for an injunction or restraining order with a court. Find out if they are incorporated and where. Check the Secretary of State’s web site for that state.

    A court Order would help with getting resellers to comply with taking a book down quickly. If you can’t afford court filing fees then you may be eligible for a waiver of those by filing an affidavit of inability to pay. Check with the clerk of the court.

    You may also be able to file DMCA take down notice with whoever is hosting the web site.

    People in the US, this is your legal system, learn how to use it. And if anyone tells you “You need a lawyer”, they are expressing an opinion not making a statement of fact. Except for a very narrow range of actions that are undertaken by legal entities such as corporations or LLC’s, an individual does not have to have a lawyer.

    Sorry about the rant. I’ll just wipe the froth off my monitor now.

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  100. Anon RRP Author
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 08:45:15

    As per my RRP contract you can request via certified mail the reversion of rights AFTER 120 days and not pay the fee.Check your contract. Also, my contracts are for 3 years, which is why I signed there–if I was miserable, 3 years isn’t too long.

    When I first contracted with RRP it was all before the Lecroix mess. Everything has gone downhill from there. Not an author -friendly e pub and I won’t submit there again.

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  101. Anon-E-Mouse
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 08:51:02

    @DS, thanks for the excellent, practical information

    FYI, the Red Rose contract I received does have decent wording as to rights reverting quickly back to the author if the company implodes, explodes or simply disappears under the wash of mud I see rising.

    ReplyReply

  102. Lynne Connolly
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 09:06:41

    Wow, it’s like Jerry Springer in here.

    ReplyReply

  103. Kat Holmes
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 10:39:38

    @not impressed: Okay I am going to say this just once and be done with it. In spite of what you people think, I did NOT submit this to Dear Author. The only thing I did was outline my own personal issues with rrp on my own personal blog. They somehow found it and included it. I have no problem with that because everything I have said is true.

    Having said that though, I am not the instigator of this firestorm and Ms. Felter really has no one to blame but herself for this. If she’d only controlled her temper on her own loops that I have no access too this wouldn’t be happening. I doubt my own little blog entry would have drawn as much interest as Dear Author has done.

    @notimpressed thank you so much for your concern for my professional image. It’s not needed. Since this broke I have received dozens of emails from people thanking me for speaking out when they couldn’t. My professional image hasn’t been tarnished in the slightest.

    ReplyReply

  104. Author who wants out
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 11:17:12

    @Lin – And all the authors said… AMEN!

    @not impressed – Back up the boat a tiny bit. RRP authors have to bust their butts to sell anything these days because of how hard Wendi makes it. I actually had a reader contact me to ask if I would be paid if she purchased my book from them!! This reader was also an author with another publisher, but she knew enough about RRP to ask. Funny, at the time I was in the shoes of the author who was waiting on bated breath to see if all her work was going to manifest into a little bit of cash, only to not see any statement or payment when payday rolled around. I told this reader to hold off. Sad, considering the amount of promo I do. This rant of Wendi’s, as you know, is one of many. They all come around payday. Robbing Peter to pay Paul is hard when Peter is broke. This public forum is exactly what Wendi needs to see and bask in to hopefully shake her into some serious changes. If her authors all fled ship, she’d be forced to do something. Taking the higher road is great… but she has our babies and she isn’t playing by the same rules. Kinda like showing up to a gun fight with a fist.

    @Laura Shin – On some level I hear what you’re saying but consider this. The mistake the author made was just that. On more than one occasion I’ve sent a e-mail to an author loop that was meant for the author herself. Many of us have author loops that begin with our pen names. For argument sake lets say that the author knew exactly what she was doing… She posted something on the reader loop knowing that Wendi would have to respond to it. “Hey Wendi, can you contact me privately, it’s urgent.” No response – weeks go by, you find your messages on the loop not showing up… (I can’t tell you how many of her authors are restricted from posting on her loop, the list is staggering) – Said author has one, maybe two books with RRP and the amount made on these books is less than one hour of a lawyer’s time. And that is the bottom line here. But, dammit, I spent months writing that story. I wanna know if people are reading it, if I’m going to make any money for my efforts. When payday rolls around in our day jobs, and the check isn’t issued, you simply don’t show up to work the next week. In the case of publishing it isn’t that simple. I truly think Wendi is banking on authors just walking away… Then she gets all the money. How sweet a deal is that? If this were a house where an author stood to make thousands of dollars, none of this would be in the public forums. The author would take your advice, hire a lawyer, and deal with all of this legally. But it isn’t!

    @Moria – And this is exactly what I will do. Wait the tide. Our contracts don’t truly expire, however, you have to ask that they not continue after their expiration date… by a certified letter… x number of months before the contract is up. So for the authors who are lurking here and writing stuff down, take a good look and circle the date on your calender so you don’t miss the deadline and end up in purgatory longer than necessary.

    Pirates pilfer our work outright – We handed it to her on a silver platter and came back for more.

    ReplyReply

  105. LOL
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 11:26:40

    @Lynne Connolly:

    fight – fight – fight.

    ReplyReply

  106. Cafe Writer
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 11:42:46

    @not impressed: Good thing you figured out the paragraphs because for a few minutes there, your post, complete with its bad spelling and grammatical errors, made me think you were Wendy.

    ReplyReply

  107. No Name
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 11:58:09

    I still think “not impressed” is Wendi.

    ReplyReply

  108. Author who wants out
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 12:12:24

    I’ve tried to leave a long message a couple of times here and it isn’t taking it, not sure why… so if it comes up and this is a repete than I’m sorry… I’ll break it down in sections.

    @not impressed – Back up the boat a tiny bit. RRP authors have to bust their butts to sell anything these days because of how hard Wendi makes it. I actually had a reader contact me to ask if I would be paid if she purchased my book from them!! This reader was also an author with another publisher, but she knew enough about RRP to ask. Funny, at the time I was in the shoes of the author who was waiting on bated breath to see if all her work was going to manifest into a little bit of cash, only to not see any statement or payment when payday rolled around. I told this reader to hold off. Sad, considering the amount of promo I do. This rant of Wendi’s, as you know, is one of many. They all come around payday. Robbing Peter to pay Paul is hard when Peter is broke. This public forum is exactly what Wendi needs to see and bask in to hopefully shake her into some serious changes. If her authors all fled ship, she’d be forced to do something. Taking the higher road is great… but she has our babies and she isn’t playing by the same rules. Kinda like showing up to a gun fight with a fist. And if you are Wendi take some advice… hire someone to do this for you and save RRP and the authors who are with you.

    And boy…

    ReplyReply

  109. Ridley
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 12:29:51

    @Lynne Connolly:

    /popcorn

    ReplyReply

  110. Wow...
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 14:14:01

    @No Name: I was thinking that too.

    Oh, and abusing exclamation points (you know, using them at the end of every sentence or every other sentence) does not help your case. You can sound mature, but chances are, most people don’t take you seriously. Just saying.

    ReplyReply

  111. Renee
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 15:10:14

    @Lynne and Ridley

    Jerry! Jerry!

    ReplyReply

  112. Jean Luis De Rothchild
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 15:51:22

    @Rebecca duBois-Guilbert: You are just so ridiculous! She has these “temper tantrums” all the time, every other month. She is impossible to deal with, on the phone, by email, or off, and all the time. She has used the term “f***tard” about others when talking with me every time I deal with her and far worse language. Is that a temper tantrum, or just bad constant manners? Say one word wrong to her, and she goes after you. You’ll see.

    And she still doesn’t answer her emails. Right now, an author, Tierney, this minute, has just emailed her twice on the group, begging her to call her, because it is very important. Two emails in a row. This from an author who supported Wendi. And no answer.

    ReplyReply

  113. Anonymous
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 18:09:08

    @Anonymous Editor:
    I, too am a Red Rose author. My book was published without my seeing the galleys and I was quite upset because I had identified a couple of errors between the last round of edits and the release date. I had a contract for a print version and when I did a reading at a sci-ficonvention, learned that some of my details about the Moon were wrong and decided to change them for the print version. Wendi went ballistic when I told her that. I later learned that she went ballistic anytime an author decided to make changes to the galleys. She went ballistic on me again when I said something on a loop that she perceived as an attack and I’ve been quietly waiting out my contract so that my rights would revert back to me and I could start submitting the sequel I’ve written, but reading one of the posts here, I see that I may have difficulty getting my rights back. Not only have I not seen any editing royalties since she fired me after her last tirade, but she claims that in the past year I have not cleared $20 worth of sales (the minimum one needs to get a check for sales royalties)–despite the fact that people have told me that they’ve bought my book. I do not trust Ms. Felter, nor do I wish to invoke her ire again. But if anyone wants to start a class action suit, please post it on here. I’ll be watching and I will join you.

    ReplyReply

  114. RRP Author Too
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 21:30:53

    ” But if anyone wants to start a class action suit, please post it on here. I'll be watching and I will join you.”

    Add me to that list.

    ReplyReply

  115. Anon RRP Author
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 21:42:50

    Me, too.

    I track my sales on Amazon–I’ve made them. I can see how many ratings there are on Fictionwise, I’ve been on different best seller lists–so where is the money? I’m sure that it would be at least 20 dollars! Plus I’m with other epubs and my experience has been that the book ratings on Fictionwise are often quite a bit times lower than the actual sakes.

    ReplyReply

  116. Another Anon RRP Author
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 22:08:20

    Tell me about it. I’ve been with other publishers and I know I sell regularly with them and yet, mysteriously, I don’t seem to sell any of my books at RRP? I don’t think so, especially as I do as others do- check my rankings. Yet for over a year, I’ve received nothing and when I’ve contacted our illustrious owner since my contracts were completed and never renewed by her– she’s yet to answer a single letter- email or otherwise I’ve sent. Since this started, I’ve emailed her once again demanding my books be removed as per the contract states, we’ll see if anything comes of it. If not, I might have to put out my hard earned money for a lawyer. I’m not sure what else I can do.

    ReplyReply

  117. staying out of it but???
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 22:23:18

    @ Anon RRP Author

    Just wondering, how do we track our sales on Amazon & ratings on fictionwise??? That would be interesting to investigate

    ReplyReply

  118. anon RRP author
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 22:25:41

    I’ll put mine up as free reads on my website. At least I’ll get some traffic from them!

    ReplyReply

  119. Another Anon RRP Author
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 22:30:32

    You go to fictionwise.com and you can type in your name and look by author. See how much feedback you’ve gotten on your books. Plus, you can also look under the bestsellers page(http://www.fictionwise.com/topstories.htm) to see if you’re in the top standings when your books are uploaded there.

    ReplyReply

  120. Anon RRP Author
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 22:33:11

    Amazon–google Novelrank and set your books up.

    Fictionwise–I’m with a couple other small pubs(and yes, I too get consistent sales with them! Odd I don’t with RRP.) All you can do there is look at your reader ratings. With my other pubs the reader ratings tend to be way lower than actual sales–75 ratings, but 300 sales etc.

    ReplyReply

  121. Ginny
    Sep 04, 2010 @ 22:59:30

    @Cafe Writer: I thought so too. The first post from them sure sounded like her.

    ReplyReply

  122. Courtney Milan
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 02:58:29

    I just want to point out that if your copyright is registered within the lesser of one month of infringement/three months of publication, and you bring a copyright suit, the court may award you attorneys’ fees in addition to whatever you might collect.

    This is not legal advice. But personally, if I had a book coming out from them, particularly a book not under contract, and I knew about it, I would register my copyright. Just saying. Lotsa benefits to registering your copyright.

    Also, you know what else? If I ever started a publishing company, assuming I was smart enough to incorporate in the first place, I’d be really careful not to ever do anything totally dumb. For instance, I’d be sure to keep my corporate governance up to date, and I’d never commingle corporate and personal funds. I would have regular shareholder meetings and I would keep my nose clean.

    Because if it turns out that I didn’t do all those things–if, for instance, I was so slipshod that I let my corporate governance go by the wayside, as well as my sending out of contracts and royalty statements–it would really suck when I got slapped with a million dollar judgment for copyright infringement, and the court decided to pierce the corporate veil, and I became personally liable for the judgment.

    Because man, it would really suck to have someone get a lien on my house.

    ReplyReply

  123. Lane
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 05:04:56

    @Mari LaCroix: Marie, Lin and others:

    If any of you do contact a lawyer, do ask this: If RRP is publishing works without contract, or with expired contracts, wouldn’t that count as willful infringement of contract?

    If this were true, then wouldn’t be up for criminal charges under the NET Act?

    -up to 5 years in prison and $250,000 per infraction

    ReplyReply

  124. JustSayin'
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 09:14:03

    Prior to pissing off The Good Goddess of Publishing, I had the hellish experience of talking to her on the phone and learned she knew everything about everyone. Authors who jumped in bed with cover models. Review sites she had in her pocket. Publishers going belly up. Ratings she leaves for authors she hates. Authors she claims to have on conference call when the author probably wouldn’t give her the time of day. Publishers she contacted to warn of authors they signed. Authors she's made. Authors she's ruined. Authors to avoid because they were ruthless and slandered her. Slander=Avoiding her. Food for thought: When has she hung up the phone long enough to make these fabulous connections she claims to have? I don’t understand why anyone fears this woman.

    ReplyReply

  125. No Name
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 09:46:17

    Not only have I had many phone calls with Wendi, I have met her in person and she was so loud and abrasive in person it made me cringe to be around her. I’m sure others had the same experience out there.

    ReplyReply

  126. Another Anon RRP Author
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 10:27:26

    Or suddenly you wake up to find you’re no longer on the author’s loop to respond to a fellow author whose town in NZ has had a major earthquake. Yet, you’re invited to a separate group entitled RRP-to-be-dealt-with. Interesting, eh?

    ReplyReply

  127. Author who wants out
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 11:18:50

    @Courtney Milan:
    That would really suck! Signed, your newest fan.

    @Anon RRP – Truly funny stuff, isn’t it? Did you see the threat in that mail? Lawyers and such?

    ReplyReply

  128. Anonymous
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 12:01:25

    I would like to clarify something. The author who first posted a query about statements on the readers’ loop made a mistake. She intended to e-mail Ms. Felter privately and when the e-mail showed up a moment later on the readers’ loop she had an “Oh frak” moment. The post wasn’t even a complaint. She had been having posts bouncing and asked whether her statement had been sent and might have bounced and if so could it be re-sent.

    The logos for the authors’ and readers’ groups are the same and a few other authors responded thinking they were on the in-house group. None of the posts were whiny or compliants. More than one suggested their e-mail might have bounced and gave Ms. Felter the benefit of the doubt, but they were all met with the same tirade.

    ReplyReply

  129. joanne
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 12:14:24

    @Courtney Milan:Aww, you sweet talker you!

    Like my Uncle Louie always said: speak softly and carry a shit-load of lawyers in your back pocket.

    ReplyReply

  130. Another Anon RRP Author
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 12:20:15

    @Anonymous:

    That might be, but you’re not so anon– check out your name– it clearly shows your email addy. But here’s the thing, if she’s using an email client or even bookmarking it on the web- she could have clearly bookmarked them differently. Once– that’s a mistake, twice– no, that’s just not being proactive and not fixing things.

    ReplyReply

  131. Jane
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 12:30:24

    If you choose to remain anonymous, you should not enter a web address. Emails are never revealed.

    ReplyReply

  132. RRP Author #2000
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 12:56:32

    Sorry I couldn’t resist a little humor with this being such a serious subject.

    I just have to say that I am appalled by Ms. Felter’s words/behavior, but not surprised. I have heard about her rants and terroristic threats from several fellow authors. I can’t believe she has stayed in business this long. But with all of the dirty laundry being aired. I have a feeling this might change soon. These are some serious allegations that are being repeated over and over and over again.

    I really do hate this for the authors that currently have books with her> They may be innocent casualties of the fall-out. I will definitely be keeping up with this debacle and waiting for the explosion, since the implosion has already occurred…

    ReplyReply

  133. Moira
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 13:08:22

    @ RRP Author #2000

    Terrorist threats? That’s a new one on me. I can’t stop laughing.

    ReplyReply

  134. RRP Author #2000
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 13:23:44

    @Moira:

    Moira, this entire situation is insane. She definitely seems to be a terror…

    ReplyReply

  135. Another RRP Author
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 13:46:45

    I wonder what it’d take to get her to let those of us who want out to leave without any further crap. Honestly, that’s what most of us want- to leave without any harassment, without any problems, we just want our books back and just go. No fanfare, no fuss– we just want out so we can go forward and live our life and write our stories. But instead, we’re having to fight to get our books returned, even when they’re due us.

    ReplyReply

  136. Devyn Quinn
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 14:17:09

    I have a couple of short pieces that the contracts expired quite a few years ago. Have requested they be removed from sale, but have received no reply.

    ReplyReply

  137. Another RRP Author
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 14:26:13

    Doesn’t bode well for me then, does it? Wonder what’ll take? I’m asking a few lawyer friends what my options are, since the reality is, I don’t have tons of money and honestly, I just want to leave the company and go my way in peace.

    I knew about your time with them, Devyn, and I’m sorry you’re still not free from RRP. Really, I am.

    ReplyReply

  138. RRP Author Too
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 14:42:56

    This was waiting from Ms. Felter when I woke up a bit ago:

    “I am asking you that please refrain from posting any place public on Dear Author or any place else. I am meeting with an attorney this week to put a stop on this.”

    ReplyReply

  139. RRP Author #2000
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 14:58:05

    Hmmm….more terroristic threats…

    I wonder what her attorney is going to think when he sees what the allegations are against Ms. Felter and that most of them are probably legitimate.

    Also, I am left to wonder if that attorney will be hired/paid with funds that authors are complaining about not receiving.

    Well, this should be very interesting…

    ReplyReply

  140. Concerned author
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 16:16:17

    @RRP Author Too:

    I wonder what she is going to put a stop on? People talking about it out in public? or the fact that she is doing a shotty job at running her business?

    ReplyReply

  141. Michelle
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 16:25:48

    Hmm, that was what I was thinking, if she doesn’t have the money to pay authors, how is she going to pay her attorney?

    Sounds like people should join together to fight her, but I would be concerned if she has their addresses. She sounds very unstable, and possibly violent.

    ReplyReply

  142. Concerned author
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 16:30:42

    It is my hopes that the issues can be resolved without legal routes having to be taken. It would be cheaper for everyone. HOWEVER, I do think that authors should get paid and their emails should get a timely response.

    ReplyReply

  143. Jenna
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 16:55:51

    Has anyone considered contacting the attorney general’s office in the state where RRP is incorporated? If authors, editors, and cover artists who have been harmed by the publisher send in their complaints against the company, showing proof of those claims–giving exact details of the breach of contract–then the state’s attorney would have to take up the cause.

    And that wouldn’t cost authors a dime. But it WOULD require several complaints to be filed before any notice would be taken of the situation.

    All of you RRP authors, editors, and cover artists know one another. Since the publisher is obviously already threatening legal action against this blog and anyone who commented, I’d say it’s a good time for all of you to reach out to each other and discuss this matter amongst yourselves. The formation of a private Yahoo group to do so might be the way to go. Get organized.

    ReplyReply

  144. RRP Author #2000
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 17:00:34

    Great suggestion Jenna! I hope the authors, cover artist, editors and anyone else who has been wronged are paying attention to your suggestion.

    There is power in numbers. And don’t be concerned if you think there aren’t enough of you. It is based on the size of the company as well. So if there are 100 staff total and 50 of them bring forth complaints. Well…

    ReplyReply

  145. RRP Author #2000
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 17:13:50

    Hit the send button before I meant to. So to continue my prior statement. The only downside would be is if anyone where willing to step forward and organize it.

    Then, who do you invite? How? It is clear that even from this post that Ms. Felter has a few people on her side because they haven’t felt the wrath of the dictatorship. What if these people pretend they are for the cause just to report back to the “holy terror”?

    Yep, this is a very stick situation all around…

    ReplyReply

  146. Jenna
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 17:24:05

    @ RRPAuthor2000

    I think those here know exactly who to invite and who not to invite. I’m sure emails are flying back and forth across the Net. And there would really be no concern for having a spy in the midst would there? Why? Because you’re simply organizing and getting your information together. Researching and developing a plan of action. Who cares if she does have someone on the inside. It wouldn’t change anything, would it? The truth would still be the truth.

    No different than everyone who has posted here. They would simply need to join with names on that group. But does that make a difference when you get that far? At some point in time, authors, cover artists, and editors have to stand tall. And if they aren’t alone? Well, maybe they all can. There is safety in numbers. Safety in sharing information, helping one another.

    ReplyReply

  147. Ginny
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 17:29:19

    @RRP Author Too:

    Hmmm, is there a clause in the contract that says in Wendiville you leave your first amendment rights at the front door?

    As to her threats of ruining authors careers or making sure they never publish again, if you read back in the demises of other houses that’s a favorite line before they fold. They also love to pull the “we publishers talk about problem authors” and try to use that to silence them. If a publisher is on the up and up, doing everything legally, people are generally happy. It’s when they start to have problems instead of coming out and saying it (and I don’t mean the family or health problems that way too many people rely on as excuses to not do their jobs) and then say what you are doing to deal with it. In business I’ve found one of the poorer approaches to a bad situation is to walk in and dump a problem on a supevisor or manager. However, if you walk in and say I have this problem and this is what I’m thinking might work, it shows you have taken some responsibility and are looking for a workable solution.

    But Wendi isn’t the type to listen. It’s the Wendi-way or the highway except she puts tremendous roadblocks out so you can’t get to the highway.

    And the attorney threat? Hey, go ahead, talk to all the attorneys you like. Anyone can talk to an attorney. It’s called legal aid. ohhhhh I’m so scared, someone is going to talk to an attorney. And do what?

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  148. RRP Author #2000
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 17:29:33

    I couldn’t agree more Jenna!

    I definitely wish the RRP authors, cover artists and editors luck with this. I know they are following along because they are the one’s who brought this blog to my attention.

    Best of luck to all of you!

    ReplyReply

  149. Ginny
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 17:31:17

    @RRP Author #2000: Word is when Mardi Gras was folding a group of authors set up a separate loop to talk about what to do and how to do it. You can talk to someone and find out who’s happy and who isn’t.

    The problem with a book factory like Red Rose is that you have what? Over 300 authors?

    ReplyReply

  150. Jenna
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 17:36:25

    @RRP Author #2000 @Ginny

    Start with a core group. It will balloon from there. Everyone has a friend and sooner or later you’ll know that this problem is so much bigger than you ever imagined.

    And you’re right, Ginny. Each time one of these pubs screws up, a group gets together and privately discusses the matter and their plan of action. Been there, done that. It’s the way to go.

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  151. RRP Author #2000
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 17:45:35

    @Ginny:

    Yes Ginny, I have heard it is an author factory which is why I chose to post under the name that I did. I am not a RRP author but know several who are. I easily could have been one if it weren’t for an editor who gave it to me straight as soon as I mentioned the name.

    Then again, are all of these author’s active or are they hostage victims that she refuses to release to go on with their lives?

    I am infuriated behind the entire situation because it does affect some of my author friends. I had no idea how bad this woman could be until I was talking to a fellow author who was literally shaking at have to deal with Ms. Felter. I could hear the tremor in her voice!

    My mouth gaped at some of the horror stories she relayed to me about what was going on in the loop.

    I can only hope that the author took my advice and printed out copies of all these infamous rants and threats and kept them for their records.

    It just might come in handy now as proof as to why no one has come forward before now or the repercussions they feared if they did…

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  152. Mireya
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 17:59:11

    Anyone involved and interested in doing anything, should first get ALL of their documentation together. Print out emails, all correspondence, documentation of any sort, etc. Prepare a summary, to the best of their recall, from the moment submissions were sent and contracts exchanged. For any good case, you need a foundation, if this explodes into a litigation, evidence and federal law (federal law because if this explodes, there will be multiple jurisdictions involved).

    I am not an attorney, but have 23 years of hands in litigation experience both in Puerto Rico and the United States. Document everything, dig out every single piece of paper involving your association with that company, and research. Make your case a SOLID one as that is what it will come down to, if this does explode (which at this point, is early to say despite the threats brandied).

    Another suggestion: No Yahoo group, not even to organize. Establish all communications via email.

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  153. rrp author regretfully
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 18:20:23

    Long ago I dropped the loops but still have stories there. With all this I’m so embarrassed. I’m no longer promoting. I’m dropping list I was on. This is horrid.

    ReplyReply

  154. Jenna
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 18:25:11

    Yahoo groups work via email. Why no Yahoo group? Because everything is there for each of the members to see? What’s wrong with that? It’s not like private emails can’t be passed on.

    That’s part of the problem with this industry in general. No one is willing to shed light on these problems. We are expected to keep everything to ourselves and then we have a huge explosion on a blog.

    As long as you have the truth on your side, shedding light on it is the way to go every time. And there are a lot of private Yahoo groups that have worked beautifully in helping authors resolve their conflicts with publishers.

    Not meaning to disagree with anyone in a combative way. I simply feel strongly that it’s time for authors to come out of the darkness–to take a stand.

    I do wholeheartedly agree about documenting everything. That’s a good point. No matter how inconsequential you might think an email is, it could be helpful to your case. And writing it all down to keep it straight in your mind is most important.

    And ya know? I have received three emails today telling me that a few authors at RRP are beginning to see statements when they hadn’t seen any in quite a while. Interesting, isn’t it? Maybe some cover artists and editors will get paid now too. Even if it’s not much–it DOES belong to them, doesn’t it?

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  155. No Name
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 18:39:47

    In my contract it says if I don’t ask for my rights back my contract automatically renews. What I’m not clear on is if it renews for a year, or for another three like the contract originally was for.

    ReplyReply

  156. Another Anon RRP Author
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 18:57:02

    http://www.ag.ny.gov/bureaus/internet_bureau/internet_complaint.pdf Just in case people wanted to know where to start.

    ReplyReply

  157. Mireya
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 19:06:48

    Honestly, because it can be hacked, or you can end up with a Yahoo burp and not have access for hours and even days, other than that, if that is what you want to use for purposes of making things easier, simply bear in mind that every single post that you write in that group involving the issue will be considered part of the discovery if things implode, so don’t delete the group if it comes down to that. Only communications with your attorney(s) will be privileged.

    Again, I am not an attorney, but even if things are solved amicably (if that word can even be applied given all of the above postings), it is always a good idea to keep copies of everything and document every single communication you have with the owner or an authorized rep of the publisher you are dealing with. If the communication it was via phone, you can write a short letter confirming your conversation with whoever it was, briefly stating what was said/agreed, and email it to the person you spoke with, then print a copy. This is a good move when doing any sort of business, and fact is that from the moment a contract is signed and exchanged, it becomes business.

    It sounds like too much, but it’s a matter of making a habit of it.

    ReplyReply

  158. Jane
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 19:07:46

    I remembered an Attorney General in Indiana suing a publisher for non payment of royalties.

    ReplyReply

  159. Another Anon RRP Author
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 19:29:22

    Another avenue to pursue is also to write to the host server in regards to RRP not paying royalties and that RRP is not upholding its part in honoring contracts, if it voids their contract with the web server.

    Administrative Contact:
    Private, Registration

    [email protected]
    Domains by Proxy, Inc.

    DomainsByProxy.com
    15111 N. Hayden Rd., Ste 160, PMB 353
    Scottsdale, Arizona 85260 United States
    (480) 624-2599 Fax — (480) 624-2598

    ReplyReply

  160. Jane
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 19:34:30

    @Another Anon RRP Author Why would a hosting service stop hosting an entity for non payment of other contractual obligations? That would be like the water company turning off your water because you didn’t pay your electrical bill.

    I think that there have been plenty of suggestions on what authors can do to take action against a publisher for non payment of royalties and failure to live up to their contractual obligations.

    ReplyReply

  161. Another Anon RRP Author
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 19:38:44

    As it was explained to me- just like you’d complain to a host site about a pirate, it’s the same principle. Which means there would be an investigation into the contracts, whose been paid, who hasn’t been paid and more. It’s not a long term solution, but it can start things in motion. The more information you have, the more you can work with, especially when it comes to dealing with all things at RRP.

    ReplyReply

  162. Jenna
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 19:42:57

    Once your rights have been reverted to you or you can prove contractually that your contract has expired and the publisher continues to sell your books, then yes, you can complain to the hosting company because it’s then a violation of copyright laws. The publisher has no right to publish the book. Other than that, I’ve never seen a case where a hosting site will suspend a pub site.

    And yes, Jane, an attorney general, with enough complaints, will take action.

    ReplyReply

  163. Jane
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 19:47:31

    @Jenna Continuing to sell books without a contractual right of distribution is one thing but non payment of royalties is breach and breach doesn’t always void a contract.

    ReplyReply

  164. Another Anon RRP Author
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 19:55:50

    It does when they’re notified of said breach and they don’t rectify it within 30 days of their receiving word of the breach. This is per my contract.

    ReplyReply

  165. Jane
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 20:00:35

    @Another Anon RRP Author I would attempt to explain the concepts of breach, cure, contract remedies/damages but feel it would be fruitless so good luck to you and all the other RRP authors.

    ReplyReply

  166. RRP Author Too
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 21:11:18

    I’m consulting a solicitor. Luckily I’ve a friend who’s one.

    ReplyReply

  167. Courtney Milan
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 22:09:49

    Once your rights have been reverted to you or you can prove contractually that your contract has expired and the publisher continues to sell your books, then yes, you can complain to the hosting company because it's then a violation of copyright laws.

    First, in general, a complaint to the hosting company about a copyright violation must take the form of a DMCA takedown notification, not some random complaint.

    Second, this touches on what is AFAIK still an open question in some jurisdictions, but IIRC the ninth circuit decided against your interpretation. If there’s an underlying contract that might grant rights to a copyrighted work, it’s always a contract claim and not a breach of contract. I haven’t looked this up–and this is never legal advice–so really don’t take my word for it, but suffice to say that I don’t think this is necessarily the case.

    ReplyReply

  168. Ginny
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 23:16:20

    @Michelle: And, their social security numbers; possibly their bank routing numbers as well if she paid by check or did direct deposit. .

    ReplyReply

  169. Jenna
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 23:44:49

    All I can say is that I’ve seen a hosting company suspend a publisher site once authors sent documentation that the publisher was selling books without the right to do so. The complaint was made to the hosting company and authors were told to present proof. They did and the site went down. But simply not paying an author is not copyright infringement. I never said that. It was suggested by someone else.

    And I still say the best route is to complain to the attorney general’s office in the state where the company is incorporated. Sooner or later someone has got to take notice and take action.

    ReplyReply

  170. Renee
    Sep 05, 2010 @ 23:48:01

  171. Neutral maybe
    Sep 06, 2010 @ 00:06:01

    This entire situation is pretty disheartening. As I sifted through each comment, I kept thinking…have any of the people who have complaints ever worked directly with the heads of their companies? In their every day lives what do they do? Do they work in high stress environments or are they drinking lemonade all day shooting the breeze at the water cooler.

    I hope no one takes this personally because I don’t know Wendi personally, but I believe everyone running a business has the potential to make mistakes, and a lot of them. It’s unfortunate that her words were posted in the environment they were, and even worse that they seemed to have been used not just against her, but her company, and as a result will affect the authors that work with her.

    Authors and publishers work hard at their respective jobs, and I find the few complaints listed here can be listed for almost any company…if you go high enough up the food chain.

    In corporate america everyday, phone calls are not returned, emails are ignored, and inappropriate conversations are had. If you have not had the experience then, you (I believe) would be the exception. I’m not saying it’s right, but I am saying that nothing listed here aside from publishing someone’s work without a valid contract really bother me.

    BP’s President referring to American’s as “little people” bothered me more.

    If someone recorded any of you or read your emails, or worst yet, caught you in horrible rush hour traffic while on your way to work late (the email provided by Lin Holmes is an example)what would it look like or sound like?

    When we feel wronged, we all want to be heard, but I think all of this could’ve, and should’ve been handled differently.

    P.S., regarding the bills received for cover artists, editing or whatever…in my experience, contracts from other publishers have the same clauses as well as music contracts. The clauses may read differently, but they boil down to having done a certain amount of work for the writer, and needing to receive compensation for the work done if the writer (artist) pulls out after a certain point, and before a certain point (publication/album release). Just as the author wants to be paid the people who were working on that author’s release want to be paid.

    I have no comments on the statements about health, suicide or anything else. These all seem so extremely personal and fragile that I am not sure I understand their place on these venues. I can only hope proper care and help has been received.

    For the people who have been affected, I would ask…what was the nature of your relationship before it was severed? All of this sounds extremely personal like a divorce or bad break-up.

    ReplyReply

  172. Moira
    Sep 06, 2010 @ 03:24:19

    @RRP Author Too: Re: Ms. Felter’s comment: “I am asking you that please refrain from posting any place public on Dear Author or any place else. I am meeting with an attorney this week to put a stop on this.”

    Putting a stop on people’s right to comment anywhere public? I can’t imagine a lawyer will be able to make thousands of people all over the web not write comments wherever they please. I’m assuming everyone here has told the truth, has given an inkling of their experiences with this company, so we have nothing to worry about regarding what we have said. Will a lawyer ask us to refrain from speaking the truth as we know it? Would it come under some act someone mentioned earlier, where what we have said may cause the ruin of Ms. Felter’s business? I just can’t see that people who have been wronged in whatever way have no right to express their feelings about their experiences. I’d be inclined to remember that if:

    1. Royalties were paid on time or even paid at all

    2. Contracts were adhered to

    3. Rights were reverted when the contract has expired and the author has a right to have them back

    4. Supposed threats were not made

    5. Ranting, unprofessional emails were not sent

    6. Emails were answered

    7. Acknowledgement of registered snail mail was given

    8. A host of other complaints

    …then none of this would have happened.

    If the business was run how it should be, there would be no revolting authors, editors, or cover artists because everyone would be happy. There would be one big, happy “family”. The choices made in how the business is run is down to one person–the owner. We are not to blame for the treatment we have been given. It is Ms. Felter’s choice to ignore emails, to not pay people, to rant at authors as though they are thorns in her side, when, in fact, they are the people making her money. It is not an author’s fault that Ms. Felter chose to take out ads to promote her company, yet time and again it is implied authors are ungrateful because she works so hard. Yes! I should think she should! It’s her business, for God’s sake. She chose to start it! Isn’t that what all publishers do? Work hard to ensure books sell?

    People only have a limited tolerance when dealing with something like this. If they have suffered weeks, months, or even years of being ignored, it stands to reason eventually someone is going to make a stand and shout very loudly.

    Another thing that I forgot to mention is that despite the way some emails have been worded, authors have not been done a favor by having their books published by Ms. Felter. Their books should have been accepted because they were good. To say a favor has been done, or something along those lines, and authors should be grateful is, quite frankly, insulting.

    ReplyReply

  173. Moira
    Sep 06, 2010 @ 03:34:38

    @Neutral maybe: …what was the nature of your relationship before it was severed?

    Amicable, which is why my not being paid and getting no response to emails is so frustrating and confusing. The unfairness of my situation has saddened me. The unfairness of other people’s situations has opened my eyes and made me realize many things. One being: However nice a publisher may seem, never trust them.

    Since leaving RRP, I have kept every single email from publishers and also the ones I have sent to them. They’re all in seperate folders, even down to the ones where a publisher is just asking how I feel today.

    I also have a “Wendi” folder, and every single pass of every single manuscript I edited for her.

    ReplyReply

  174. Amused
    Sep 06, 2010 @ 09:49:46

    First, I’ll say that I’m not on Wendi Felter’s side. She clearly made a very big error with that email, one which I’m sure she recognizes now.

    But I’ll also say I find it ironic to see Renee Rocco here throwing gasoline on the flames, when every time I’m at a convention and I encounter a Lyrical Press author, I hear horror stories regarding that company, as well. Non-payment of royalties, rudeness, insults, statements that are clearly incorrect…(for example, an author purchases 10 copies of her own book for various appearances – full price. Her royalty statement later reflects 2 copies sold that quarter. 2, when she knows it was at least 10).

    I just find it amusing that the pot is here to tar and feather the kettle…

    ReplyReply

  175. Nic
    Sep 06, 2010 @ 11:09:04

    Why doesn’t Red Rose employ a payroll clerk and give out her internal email address?

    ReplyReply

  176. Renee
    Sep 06, 2010 @ 12:44:56

    @Amused

    I find it amusing that you assumed I’m Renee Rocco and find it even more amusing that you felt compelled to let everyone know of your assumption.

    ReplyReply

  177. Renee Rocco
    Sep 06, 2010 @ 13:42:27

    @Amused: The Renee who commented was not Renee Rocco and that’s something I’m sure Dear Author can verify if they track IP addresses.

    As for your slanderous remarks regarding Lyrical Press, even Piers Anthony reported, per his site, that such comments against Lyrical Press have proven to be, in his opinion, a hate campaign. Your same negative comments about Lyrical Press stretch back years, all of which remain unfounded and further prove that point. If your false continued allegation that our authors are being mistreated, or worse are not being paid by Lyrical Press, would have reported to author advocates by now. Of course, they have not, as our reputation thrives. In fact, Lyrical authors are sent statements the first week of each month and paid by the 15th. Amused, I’m sure you realize that these payments can be verified through Lyrical’s bank and Paypal accounts.

    Further, if an author purchased copies of their print books from a vendor it is reported via Lightning Source. When Lyrical is paid for those sales, so too, is the author (there is a 90 day delay of payout from Lightning Source/ This means if a book was purchased in January, we are not paid for that sale until roughly March or even April). We have no way of knowing where each purchase came from, only that X number of books were sold per month. Now, if an author purchased books via Lyrical Press, they pay in advance at a discount of list price. So again, your allegations regarding payments of books can be proven slanderous. As stated above, as I’m sure you realize our correct accounting of books sold can be proven by comparing Lightning Source statements against our author’s royalty statements.

    - Frank Rocco
    Publisher, Lyrical Press

    ReplyReply

  178. Lynne Connolly
    Sep 06, 2010 @ 14:16:20

    @Renee Rocco: Actually, no,not slanderous. Libelous, maybe.

    ReplyReply

  179. Shiloh Walker
    Sep 06, 2010 @ 15:14:59

    @not impressed:

    In my experience both in publishing, and other areas of my professional and personal life, this detestable behaviour, from every individual offering negative comments, slander and such is completely out of line. Some people should also consider, if an employer is breaching a contract, this personal slamming forum adds to the legal parameters of professional slander that effects every person associated with the company. Bad mouthing someone in public, impacting their business and revenue can be a chargeable offence.

    Man, I so wasn’t going to comment on this one, but damn it, now I just can’t stop myself.

    As I was just saying on twitter…

    I’ll be nice to kids and animals. I won’t be nice to people who’ve screwed me over.

    I will be professional.

    Now… I don’t write for RR. Never have, not going to, so I’m basing my opinions on what I’ve skimmed here.

    From what I’ve read, it sounds like some authors are being screwed over. It sounds like their rights are being trampled on. It sounds like there is some harm being done. Books being released without a contract, royalties not being paid…

    If it was a professional disagreement-lousy cover art, editor problems, they couldn’t agree on commas or a release date? Oh, yes-that should stay private.

    But if their rights-ie: their copyright, their right to make a living *not getting paid* is being impacted?

    Well, for me, that’s where the gloves would come off and I’d stop worrying about being ‘nice’.

    If this is a problem for a business, then the best way for the business to handle it would be to always act in an ethical manner-treat their authors well, make sure contracts are handled appropriately and that royalties are paid.

    If that is done, then there’s no reason to worry about people who might decide to not be nice.

    As to impacting their way to make a living being a chargeable offense-actually, releasing a book without having contracts in place is also a chargeable offense, one that sings to the tune of many dollar signs in fine. You know that nifty little COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT notice we see at the beginning of movies, on software and stuff? Well, books are also copyrighted. Somebody releasing a book with a signed contract-as in… getting the author’s okay…well, it’s a big no-no.

    And… I can’t resist.

    “Slander is spoken…”

    Libel is written.

    Plus, if somebody decided to try and make issues of their business being impacted, I suspect that somebody’s affairs would be trotted out-and if any of what’s been said here is true, well… then does this person really have a leg to stand on? I’m not a lawyer, but it wouldn’t seem so to me.

    Just my opinion, take it as you will…

    ReplyReply

  180. anon
    Sep 06, 2010 @ 17:43:57

    @No Name:

    I am not an attorney but do spend my days working with contracts, especially contract with what are known as “Evergreen clauses”.

    These clauses state that if prior notice of non-renewal is not given to the other party of the contract then they may renew, normally in one year increments.

    However, there are some states that Evergreen clauses are illegal and therefore, I recommend that you authors who have contracts with RRP, check with your state to see if there is an “Anti-Evergreen Law” in your state. If there is then there is a chance that your contracts can be voided and your rights and works be turned over to you.

    ReplyReply

  181. Amused
    Sep 06, 2010 @ 19:46:53

    @anon: Actually, they’d have to check the laws in New York, where the publisher is based, because there is a forum selection clause in the contract, as well as a severability clause, if I remember correctly, which means that if one portion of the contract is deemed unenforceable, it doesn’t affect the rest of the document.

    And Frank, the legal terms you’re looking for are “libelous,” or “defamatory.” Either are appropriate to hurl at me for your legal threats, but “slanderous” just makes you look ignorant.

    Now, as far as the author copies go, I’m referring to an author who purchased their books through amazon.com, NOT LSI. And when they received their statement, it said they’d made 2 amazon.com sales that quarter.

    Some of the other stories about Lyrical I’ve heard I know for a fact are true, but I won’t give details because then you’d know who told me and you’d be even nastier to them than you already are.

    As far as Piers Anthony goes, he is a nice man, who maintains a useful database for writers, but he’s not omniscient, and just because he’s stated in his opinion that Lyrical Press is okay doesn’t make it so. I recall a few years ago when he gave his stamp of approval to Mardi Gras Publishing and, well, we all know how that story went, don’t we?

    ReplyReply

  182. Kat Holmes
    Sep 07, 2010 @ 06:27:03

    @Amused: I find it interesting that you state you are not on Wendi’s side and yet for some unknown reason you seem to know what the RRP contract states even down to whether the rest of the contract is still intact if one clause is declared invalid? Hmm now how can this be? Could it possibly be @Amused that just maybe, you work for RRP? Maybe, just maybe you might even be Ms. Felter?

    As for where you state that your sure Ms. Felter made a mistake and realizes it but then you turned around and attacked Lyrical, it seems to me that you are just doing whatever you can to divert attention away from what RRP and Ms. Felter has done by throwing smoke. It’s an old trick. What Ms. Felter did on her own loop is far from a mistake. No one has the right in person or in letters, especially in a business, to talk to anyone else the way she spoke.

    Her authors are not her employees, not her children, and not her personal property. And as I believe the many comments on this blog have shown, Ms. Felter is doing much more than just mere temper tantrums. She’s not paying people, she’s publishing manuscripts without contracts, and she’s sending people via their emails threats. Yes I saved my emails so I can validate what I just said.

    And @Amused, if you actually know facts and can prove them, then have the guts to say them otherwise you just make yourself look petty and nasty. As for Piers Anthony I’ve checked his site and Lyrical is in good standing while RRP is anything but. I’ve also checked Preditors & Editors. Hmm once again, the one in very bad standing is RRP. I wonder why that is?

    This is getting long so I’m going to end this with this last thought. Every time I’ve commented here on I’ve had the courage to speak out in my own name and face both the support and the snipes of everyone else. Except for two people, I haven’t seen anyone, @Amused included, who has dared to speak out in defense of RRP as themselves. If you truly believe in your convictions and the nasty things you say about me then have the guts to say it as the person you truly are!

    ReplyReply

  183. Doing Your Homework « Nadia Lee :: Romance Writer - Blog
    Sep 07, 2010 @ 09:09:21

    [...] of you are probably aware of the less-than-ideal situation at Red Rose Publishing. It is so critical to do your homework, especially when you're dealing with small presses and/or [...]

  184. Amused
    Sep 07, 2010 @ 11:20:08

    @Kat Holmes:
    I had a lengthy reply to this typed up, then the server burped and I lost it all. So I’ll just recap:

    I’m not sure where you got the impression I was attacking you or your claims. You seem a bit paranoid to me.

    I’m not Wendi Felter. It’s a bit ridiculous for you to even say so.

    I don’t have to be an RRP author to have seen the contract, just like you don’t have to be a current author to have seen the current author loop emails.

    What I am is an attorney, and people who know this show me things. Like contracts. In response to all the (“non”)legal advice being tossed around here, I thought it prudent to add more facts. Wouldn’t you want to know the facts, including those that might be problematic for you? The existence of a severability clause would be a FACT, not a defense of RRP or Wendi Felter.

    I’ve been around long enough to have witnessed the endless parade of publisher implosions over the years. Irrational tirades are usually a precursor to the true death, and they get wilder the closer it looms.

    I’ve already talked about why Piers Anthony is not infallible, and I won’t repeat myself.

    You’ve got a lot of anger, and if what you claim happened is accurate, you have a right to be. But if I may suggest: you’ve got to let it go at some point. I’m not saying drop what you’re doing, I’m saying let the emotion go. Follow up with the RWA, go to Victoria Strauss at Writer Beware, consult an attorney, but getting yourself wrapped around the axle any time someone says something you perceive to be in support of Wendi Felter, not to mention seeing Wendi Felter in every dark corner, isn’t healthy for you. In the end, you’ll only wind up hurting yourself if you stay so full of rage.

    ReplyReply

  185. Guest
    Sep 07, 2010 @ 15:07:38

    My sympathies to everyone caught up with RRP. I’ve been trying to get out of a contract with them since early this year.

    Just a word here about the BBB and the office of the Attorney General. I went both routes in May, to no avail. Wendi simply ignored all communication from the BBB, and they ended up closing the file. And the Attorney General’s Office would not get involved. I received the following response from them:

    “Thank you for sending me the follow-up letter to your previous correspondence regarding your dispute with Red Rose Publishing.

    Although our office does not provide legal advice to individuals, upon receipt of your letter and accompanying e-mails from the Better Business Bureau, I contacted our Consumer Frauds Bureau to see if this is a matter with which we could help. I have been advised that we are unable to be of assistance. We suggest that you contact a private attorney.

    I am sorry we cannot be of assistance.”

    The letter was signed by Richard Jurewicz, Associate Director for Correspondence.

    With any luck RRP will go out of business, it looks like a sinking ship right now (fingers crossed) and all our contracts will go down with them. That is, unless Wendi sells them to someone else.

    ReplyReply

  186. Guest
    Sep 07, 2010 @ 17:42:24

    Don’t fall for the certified letter thingy in order to get your rights back. Wendi is just playing games, and fully intends to ignore it.

    It costs almost twenty dollars to send a certified letter to New York from where I live, and I wasn’t about to throw the money away like that just to be scammed.

    I knew that if she intended to cancel my contract, she would simply have done so via email. I mean this isn’t Random House. It’s a downmarket shoddy little epub with grubby hands and delusions of grandeur.

    Would anyone be interested in organising and filing a class action suit against Wendi?

    Meanwhile, the community newspapers around Forestport, NY should be informed about what’s going on here. I’m sure Wendi’s neighbours will be interested. :-)

    ReplyReply

  187. Rochelle Weber
    Sep 08, 2010 @ 01:38:08

    Wendi must know that I’ve posted here since I have apparently been kicked off of the author loop over at RRP. It is disheartening to read that the Attorney General refuses to get involved since that is where we would need to go in order to file cease and desist orders if she continues to sell our books after we’ve pulled them.

    According to our contracts, we have to give her ninety (90) days’ notice that we are pulling our books, and if we do not wish to renew our contracts, we have to give notice 90 days prior to their expiration. Otherwise, we have tacitly renewed them for another three years.

    I was hoping that I could accuse her of breach of contract because the contract reads that we would be provided “a proofing copy” that would need to be returned within a “specified time” and she released my book without sending me a copy of the ARC, but I suppose she could argue that the last round of edits I received could be considered “a proofing copy.”

    At any rate, if anyone would like to join me on a somewhat more private list, here’s the URL: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/RRPImplosion. We can discuss how to proceed from there.

    ReplyReply

  188. Jeanette
    Sep 08, 2010 @ 08:59:37

    @Rochelle Weber: No it was probably just a lucky guess on her part.

    Or maybe you said something about your personal experience that made her realize it was you, which would seem to validate whatever comment you left previously.

    Or again, it could have been a lucky guess. Why? Because I know at least 4 other authors that have posted here and they still have access to all of the groups.

    ReplyReply

  189. Guest
    Sep 08, 2010 @ 20:18:30

    All the information about RRP has been gathered together in the one spot.

    http://redrosepublishingwarning.blogspot.com/

    ReplyReply

  190. DA
    Sep 08, 2010 @ 22:50:57

    So far I see lots of gossip and accusation with no proof.

    Anyone who is willing to commit suicide over someone else’s comments is in need of professional evaluation and counseling as they would have to be unstable to begin with.

    If you’re going to talk about it, back it up.

    I’ll believe it when I see it.
    DA

    ReplyReply

  191. Lin
    Sep 09, 2010 @ 00:16:47

    @DA: No matter how many direction you attempt to use to divert attention from what really beagn this firestorm, let me bring you back to what started it all AGAIN:

    Authors posted enquiries on the RRP reader’s loop as to why they hadn’t been paid and were having their emails ignored. See Wendi’s response, then the response of an author. Go that author. Cracked me the hell up!

    This is not intended for the authors who did not go in the readers loop to whine and complain!

    I am beyond furious at those who have done it, and lets say I am not pleased and how unprofessional can you get!

    Checks were issued for those that had made over $20 and those who made over $20 per the contract.

    Yeah, I am behind getting out the statements to those who have not sold $20 because I have been dealing with some serious family issues and for that I am sorry. I apologize for having some serious family issues going on with me.

    In addition to that we had a full audit on Red Rose Publishing from the day we opened the doors to present. Believe me the state and federal governments are looking to get money, unfortunately I guess on their parts all of our stuff checked out and was in the auditor’s oppinions one of the best and well put together as I had every thing she need right there.

    It states we have 45 days which are business days Monday thru Friday to get those statements done. You knew that when you signed the contract.

    I can not believe that someone would feel that they had to take this to the readers loop, not the authors loop or address this to me, so that tells me either #1- you had no idea, #2- you are out to do the company and your fellow authors problems or #3- You do not care about Red Rose Publishing, your books, sales or the reputation of the company!

    I have repeatedly busted my ass so even those WHO DO NOT SELL GET A CHANCE TO GET THEIR BOOKS in print, well F* me, for going out of my way to help any authors, take out ads or even do contests.

    I had for the anniversary blow out, with the following prizes for the readers:

    Kindle DX- the $499 one
    Ebookwise ebook reader
    A Netbook
    Black Diamond Earrings
    Other Jewelry
    Perfumes and gift sets made up with Roses
    Red Rose Publishing Mouse Pads and a whole lot of other stuff including print books that were autographed!

    For the authors who went out there and promote the anniversary sale and contests the following were to be prizes:

    Black diamond earrings
    Ebookwise ebook Reader
    $25 cash
    Other Jewelry
    Perfume, and body gift sets with Roses

    NOW YOU WANT TO KNOW WHAT I WANT TO DO?

    I want to take all of that back to the store as I feel now ready to cry and was let down by those who did what they did, plus I am tired of being the one do things and those who do not sell whine about every thing.

    I know that some of you authors know much better than to post in the readers loop but I guess you all do not care about your sales, your fellow authors etc….. as well as being unprofessional to boot!

    Right now I am so upset I am requesting that NO ONE get in touch with me unless it is an emergency or you are dying, because I am a little pissed off to put it mildly and until my colorful language and being pissed off passes, let me have a few to myself, that is if NO ONE MINDS, otherwise too bad so sad as I am taking it!

    Take care and have a great day!

    Wendi

    Wendi,

    Who in the hell do you think you are? I’m not your child, or someone you own! I’m not your slave! So don’t you EVER dare talk to me, or for that matter, any other authors that way! Are you truly crazy? You can’t just put out this kind of crap to everyone–are you trying to alienate every single author you’ve got in one blow, drive them all away, utterly destroy your business in a petty fit of stupid and callous rage?

    I damn well want an apology and I think everyone else here is entitled to one, too! You’ve gone just too far this time. I’ve ignored some of the other nasty, condescending, public emails you’ve posted, but this is just too much! I, and I’m sure the other authors, are deeply offended at such crass and stupid language on your part! Get a grip!

    First, if you ever answered your damned emails, maybe people wouldn’t raise issues on the loop. Everyone complains about your lack of response that way–EVERYONE and all of the time! I’ve sent you no less than three in a row recently, and not one response and I’m not just an author, but an editor, too! So try answering your emails, lady, just once in a while. They are about matters of business!

    As authors, we have a right to be in contact with our publisher, and it’s your job to respond in a timely matter, like it or not, and family considerations aside. If it’s that bad, then hire someone to do it for you, but respond to those who are making you your money for you! Get it? We don’t owe you–you owe us! This is a business for you and us, and not your personal little stamping ground to treat us as you please, as disobedient children, or however else you please, and when you choose to please!

    In any case, nobody was whining and complaining. They were merely politely inquiring, nothing more. Read the damned emails again, woman! It started on the wrong loop, and I don’t think anyone, including me, even noticed, but there was nothing bad in them, no name calling, no insinuations, no demands–nothing! Again, all of them were just a polite inquiry.

    If you can make the occasional mistake or more (and you do, like this last and incredibly stupid email of yours), why the hell can’t we once in a while! And if you have family problems, a lot apparently, I’m sorry for that, but you aren’t alone, you know! We have them, too, and still have to do our jobs and get on with our responsibilities. So do you! That’s just “business!”

    And understand this; we didn’t come to Red Rose, because it was “your” family. We came to get our books published. And if this is your idea of a “family,” then it’s a damned dysfunctional one with the way you are behaving!

    So get off it! I’ve heard about your family problems for over a year now, and frankly, as sad as they are, I’m tired of it. And in any case, again, this is business. Besides, do you give a rat’s ass about our problems? You’re always giving us your problems, and often as excuses for delays, but do you ever ask us about ours? You’ve never asked me! If so, I haven’t seen any sign of it. So we’ll do our job and you do yours! Okay? And personal matters, as with all business, should just stay out of it completely!

    Frankly, in my opinion, it’s you that’s always whining and complaining about your problems to us, and not us to you! Even if we did, we would never get an email response in private–just public ridicule and castigation here in the group on a regular basis, but no sympathy.

    And you’re beyond furious? Well, I’m absolutely fed up with you talking to us like you do! We have contracts with you, but you don’t own us! You aren’t my parents! You aren’t my slave master! So don’t you EVER, and I mean EVER dare talk to me like this again, or by God I’ll talk back the same damned way every time, as now! As you like to put things, it’s F@#$@@g disgusting on your part to behave this way!

    And I am definitely not pleased at how unprofessional you are as owner and publisher of Red Rose, so how about that! Never mind what you think we should do to bow, kow-tow, and scrape at your heels all the time, you don’t measure up to my standards of a business professional! Get it? You’re volatile, overly emotionally, too damned quick tempered, get out of control to often and too much, and I think we’re all pretty fed up with it!

    A simple polite message to us would have sufficed. But no, you go on a rampage! Well, I’ve had enough. Get over it. Stop acting so paranoid! Nobody is trying to sabotage Red Rose Publishing, most certainly not your authors. If anyone is sabotaging it, and doing a great job of it, it is you and right now!

    My advice, take a chill pill. Do some meditation. Seek some counseling for your problems or something, and then, when you’ve calmed down, you’d better try apologizing to us all. Maybe, just maybe, some might accept it. Because as far as I’m concerned, YOU WENT WAY OVER THE LINE THIS TIME, LADY!

    As for my books, if you want to release them back to me, that’s just fine. Or, you can keep them at Red Rose, the choice is yours. I am quite willing to abide by all the terms of the contract on my end and have, and I’m not requesting their release, because I won’t pay any penalties to do it. So, if you just want to let them go without charge–that’s just fine with me! Otherwise, they can stay.

    But get this and get it good–I’m not taking anymore of this stupid crap from you! Not Now! And not ever!

    When you talk to me, at least, you will do so in a polite, calm, considerate, and adult manner, or there won’t be any talking at all! I will not be spoken to, or written to, like this anymore, in such a demeaning, offensive, and condescending manner. You get that??? No more! And you needn’t consider contacting me unless you are ready to apologize, because I will not respond until you do–how about that for a change? I don’t need this soap opera and melodrama in my life. I just want to write in peace, without some hysterical acting publisher ranting and raving at us all on a periodic basis!

    If you want to cut me off the loop, that’s fine with me! I don’t want anymore of these emails of yours coming into my home in any case. They are obscene! I won’t tolerate them. And don’t worry about me submitting any more books to Red Rose. The price to have books with RR is just too damned high!

    Grow up!

    ReplyReply

  192. DA
    Sep 09, 2010 @ 04:36:50

    Thank you Lin, that’s 1 email.

    “@DA: No matter how many direction you attempt to use to divert attention from what really beagn this firestorm, let me bring you back to what started it all AGAIN”

    I am very clearly not looking for a diversion, I want hard, factual evidence.

    Where’s the proof of ALL these accusations?

    Back it up.

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  193. Cornbread
    Sep 09, 2010 @ 08:06:28

    I may just be a reader and ignorant of what exactly it takes before hearsay can legally qualify as “factual evidence” (as DA termed it) but I do have something called common sense. And I have tried to use that common sense in determining how I feel on this matter.

    Firstly, we have posted here a quote from said publisher saying, “NOW YOU WANT TO KNOW WHAT I WANT TO DO?
    I want to take all of that back to the store as I feel now ready to cry and was let down by those who did what they did, plus I am tired of being the one do things and those who do not sell whine about every thing.”

    Does this remark qualify as either unprofessional, reactionary, abusive or spiteful? Probably in itself, no, although the term childish comes to mind.

    Then there are the warnings from other sites not affiliated with said publisher. What, I ask myself, do Predators & Editors, Writers Beware and that Piers Anthony guy have to GAIN if they are indeed -as some may suggest- conspiring against this publisher? Now I could say a great big fat conspiracy, that’s what! But then my common sense argues yeah right dummy, and Glenn Beck was the lone gunman on the grassy knoll.

    Lastly, it is clear that most authors who have replied here are scared of using their names. Now I can imagine, if my knack for imagination was that purely creative -that they are scared for no better reason than to get a free trial prescription for Xanas. Or I can imagine that just maybe they are scared of breaking some clause in their respective contracts and this publisher has reminded them often enough that to break said clause will result in legal retribution.

    So taking all these things into consideration, I can either be swayed to think its all hearsay against one poor singled out publisher, or to think hell yeah there seems to be a few too many allegations for it all to be nothing more than pure conspiracy. Perry Mason may not concur, but I think Jack McCoy would probably be swayed to take the latter view.

    ReplyReply

  194. Kat Holmes
    Sep 09, 2010 @ 09:17:12

    @DA: Thank you for your amature diagnosis of my stability. I didn’t realize someone had to already be unstable to be driven to the brink. Gee glad you cleared that up for me.

    And guess what, though I haven’t posted it here for you and others to peruse, I can back up EVERYTHING I have said. I can prove my book was published without a contract. I can prove Wendi Felter threatened me if I dared to speak out. I can prove she’s refusing to give me my rights back. I am not an idiot who just got off the boat. I keep copies of everything. So, if it comes to a court of law, I have all the evidence I need. Oh, and others have seen that evidence too. The RWA and the BBB just to name a few.

    If you want to attack me that’s fine. But I’ll thank you to keep your amature psychology to yourself. Unless you are a licensed practitioner of psychiatry, you really have no idea what you’re talking about.

    ReplyReply

  195. Shiloh Walker
    Sep 09, 2010 @ 13:16:46

    Just tossing this out there…but when you let anger do the talking for you, no matter how justified your anger may be-it doesn’t help you.

    Readers are reading these threads-readers who don’t know what happens behind closed publishing doors, and readers who don’t always care-nor SHOULD they.

    They’ve got their own full plates to deal with and they shouldn’t have to concern themselves with the workings of a possibly failing epub.

    No matter how upset, and how justified a person may be?

    If you can’t maintain your professionalism, it might be worth it to take a deep breath and back away from this for a few days. I understand the anger but remember… the web lasts a long, long time.

    And um…nothing personal, but while I can respect the desire to protect my kids-I am a mom-unless it was a mother/daughter writing team, I don’t know if’s doing a writer’s professional image any good for her mother to be speaking on her behalf. I’m sorry, I just don’t.

    Image counts in this business, so very, very much-to other authors, to readers, to editors. The image you’re building now is the foundation of what you’ll have for your career-you want it solid, and you want it to be your own.

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  196. Anon RRP Author
    Sep 09, 2010 @ 13:46:22

    I hope authors looking for a publisher will think twice about submitting to RRP. The tone of Wendi’s email alone should wave a red flag. RRP also has a heavy publishing schedule so your book will be one of more than a dozen pubbed the same month–thus making it harder to get reviewed and get your name out.

    Other publisher loops are straight forward– blogs, promo’s, calls for submission, that type of business.

    I have two items tied up for a year or two longer as per contract. I will not be sending any more submissions to RRP. I have other publishers that are not only professional, they make more sales.

    ReplyReply

  197. DA
    Sep 09, 2010 @ 14:46:04

    You may not like what I have to say, you may disagree with me, but I have as much right to say it as you have to disagree.

    Still 1 email.
    No other proof of anything.

    ReplyReply

  198. Shiloh Walker
    Sep 09, 2010 @ 15:20:55

    Personally, if it was me, I’d only be showing whatever proof I possessed to a lawyer and the like.

    There’s no reason to post it here-and I wouldn’t feel to the need to post it on a politely phrased dare, either.

    I also wouldn’t feel the need to show ‘proof’ in order to justify voicing concerns and complaints.

    Regardless of what proof may or may not exist, I can tell you that all the proof I would have needed would have been the email from Ms. Felter.

    There is a problem when somebody who is supposed to be in charge handles something that unprofessionally.

    So if there aren’t problem now? It won’t surprise me in the least if there are problems very, very soon.

    Again, to those authors who are pissed-I suspect you’ve got reason to be.

    Don’t let people jerk your chains, don’t speak in anger. It won’t do you any good I think the point has been made, loud and clear…

    Even if some people feel the need to get the last word..so what? Rise above it, you’ll come out looking better in the end.

    ReplyReply

  199. Guest
    Sep 09, 2010 @ 18:08:38

    “I have two items tied up for a year or two longer as per contract. I will not be sending any more submissions to RRP. I have other publishers that are not only professional, they make more sales.”

    Just because your contract expires does not mean you get your rights back at RRP. That’s what a lot of the furore and rage are all about. You have to contact Wendi by registered mail, and then she simply ignores the letter and continues to sell your book, and doesn’t send you any royalties.

    ReplyReply

  200. DA
    Sep 09, 2010 @ 18:28:27

    @Kat Holmes
    “I was in the bathroom eying the razorblades with too much interest. Knowing I was in a seriously bad place I got online real quick and went into a suicide prevention site.”

    This was you, post#44,correct?

    I’ve seen several people trot out health issues and then deny the same to this Pub.

    If you’re not fit enough to write a book, how do you maintain a blog?

    ReplyReply

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