The Fine Print: Sue’s Close Call

The Fine Print: Sue’s Close Call

You’ve heard me talk about the publishing pirates that roam today’s publishing seas. Those companies that charge upwards of $5000 to publish a book, whereas at Book Cover Cafe we help authors become independent publishers, empowering them to publish their book far more cost effectively.

I recently helped a client who I’ll name ‘Sue’ for the purpose of sharing this little story. That’s not her real name, but for confidentiality reasons I won’t disclose her real name.

Sue had paid $5,700 for the premium package with a vanity publisher. She had signed up and accepted their book publishing agreement. Sue was referred to me after being told about the way I encourage authors to independently publish. We proceeded to have a lengthy discussion about the differences between vanity presses and independent publishing.

Sue could now see that there were other ways to publish her book. Without going into further detail, I pulled up the terms of agreement of this vanity publisher and did a little digging. The good news was that Sue hadn’t yet handed over her final manuscript and as it turns out, Sue could get a full refund, minus a small processing fee.

The terms stated that if a package is paid in full, but the manuscript has not been forwarded to the vanity press, the customer is able to request a cancellation and get back their full payment.


It wasn’t too late for Sue, and it was well worth taking the extra few minutes to double check the fine print. Needless to say, that Sue was relieved with her focus shifting to cancelling her commitment with the vanity press.

I painted a different picture of publishing and Sue could see the huge advantage of maintaining control and independently publishing under her own publishing imprint name. The benefits of having the flexibility of pricing, printing and distribution was too hard to ignore.

After our discussion and chatting about her goals, Sue was eager to pursue independent publishing becoming both the author and publisher.

Sue’s publishing future has never looked brighter.

This is a perfect example of why it’s so important to check the book publishing agreement fine print, or any information that pertains to a joint agreement for services, products or partnerships, as scary as it can be.

This was a reminder to me of why I started Book Cover Cafe, it’s the ability to help people like Sue that makes this journey so fulfilling.

Here’s to Sue!

Be the captain of your own ship.

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