Grrr....pisses me off. Sorry for the language, but it does.
Simon & Schuster has gone into business with Author Solutions, a company well known for bilking unknowing writers of hard earned cash in publishing deals. They overcharge, over-sell, take rights that aren't theirs. There's a well-documented list over the past several years.
Read David Gaughran's blog post here. And check out Writer Beware.
Basically, Simon & Schuster created Archway Publishing, a business working in tandem with Author Solutions offering 'self-publishing contracts'.
First off- it's not self-publishing if you contract through a company to publish a book. That's called VANITY publishing. And let's look at what you get when you vanity publish through Archway Publishing.
For only $2000, you get...fluff. You get exactly what you WOULD get if you actually SELF-PUBLISHED yourself, in the truest sense of the term.
- Amazon and Google search programs- okay, basically you're listed with Google and Amazon.
- ISBN- okay, well, several of the publishing sites don't even require an ISBN, but if they do, if you go through Smashwords it's free.
- Personalized Archway Publishing Bookstore Page- Whoo hoo.
- Barnes and Noble- Look inside the book option. Okay, again, if you self-publish with B & N on the Pubit platform yourself you will receive this. FREE.
- Standard cover design- meh, not impressed with their examples. But, of course, you can PAY THEM for a better cover.
- 'Editorial Assessment'- Okay, it even says in their info this is not actual editing. But, of course, YOU CAN PAY FOR EDITING THROUGH THEM. WHICH MAY PUSH YOUR BILL UP TO $5000!!!
For Non-fiction your book package may cost as much as $25000. What the hell!
And then...THEN.... They want 50% of your royalties. Holy crap, Batman, that's so wrong!
I promise you, I have NEVER put $2000 into a book, let alone $5000. I'm too broke to do that. With a little bit of time and energy, you can put out a professionally covered, well-edited, properly formatted book for less than $500. I know, I've done it. Depending upon the size of the book the price may fluctuate for editing and formatting. And that's for PRINT, too! And that includes all the other little doo-dads they have listed on their site.
I know for a fact they will have business from this venture and I feel sorry for the people that fall for the name. Sadly, Simon & Schuster won't even put their name on your book after you've paid all that money. Nope. It'll be under Archway Publishing, which nobody knows.
I sincerely hope that writers investigate this to their full ability before committing to anything. There are resources out there to guide you in self-pubbing yourself. You don't have to hire somebody to tell you what to do when. Defeats the point of self-publishing, right?
If you have questions, ask another self-pubbed/ indie author. I have found as a group that they are the most open writers you will ever meet. Heck, if you have a question or need help, ASK ME!!! If I don't know the answer I will certainly know somebody who does. Read back through my blog. I have a lot of valuable information listed.