A vanity press is an ingenious means of making money from the unwarranted self-importance of others. Though they’ve existed for many years, the explosion of shit writing created by the advent of the internet has made them more popular than ever. Their products can usually be found crammed in the dustier corners of Amazon.com, each with a single glowing five-star review composed by a sockpuppet of the author.
Real book publishers pay authors in advance for their work or a small press model, token payment for short story that's expertly illustrated. By exercising good judgment and quality control, they ensure that their products will sell well enough to make back the initial investment. A vanity press turns that business model around – knowing that
99% at least 100% of what they publish is crap on a stick, they have to make their money on the front end.
A very dead giveaway for these "Vanity Novels" is if the cover looks extremely stupid (you'll know when you see it). They often snag from thinkstock, Lulu.com the authors are the publisher unless they have the free ISBN on the site. Even they lied about being the only players in the game. The small press who work with Lulu.com you will know where the layouts stand out within the 2004-2008 era.
How to run a vanity press
- Accept a manuscript. Any manuscript. The worse the better, really, because good writers are likely not gullible enough.
- Charge the author in advance for printing and distribution.
- Charge more for "special services," like basic proofreading.
- Skip the ???? and go straight to profit!
- Lie to them about other outfits that publish for free or at cost. Vanity Press often confuse those who are true self-publishing. True Self-publishers take their time with the tools they use.
- refuse to admit to the public that you were housing a total racist as in H. Millard on the roster. That will not fly too well with the African-American community.
- Xulon Press will do anything to keep the authors publishing with them. When the growing chances to be in an anthology take it.
"Self-published" = shit (or is it so)
Aware of the negative connotation "vanity press" has acquired, nowadays vanity-published authors like to call themselves "self-published" instead. Whenever someone tells you they "self-published" a prose story, call bullshit on their faggotry immediately and demand to know how much they paid up front. If they admit that their "self-published" work is made from a bunch of Xerox copies, then they're less of a moron than those that use "print on demand" services (see below). Lulu.com the thing that made them is the anthology.
The small press are often vocal opponents of the Author Solutions facade as it's not just iUniverse but they have a slew of scam imprints. Xulon Press is the Fundie version of it in the Orlando Metro area. Lulu.com saw a few noteworthy authors in the anthology wave within the 2004-2008 era. The reason Pacione was featured on this site was someone wasn't pleased with one of his publishers standing up to them, Fandom Wank were trying to lump Lulu.com with the vanity press in some ways. Where Lulu.com for the most part is do it yourself model and they take a cut. The place Pacione is with for example has no setup fees and pays at cost to print, his ISBN for An Eye In Shadows was $25.00 and the one housing his thesis he moved in.
Blurb.com in truth finds fan fiction being printed and published without the ISBN, and as long they say it's not-for-profit and the model was developed for either sale or keepsake, there are noteworthy releases there. Some the authors charge more than iUniverse.com if selling on Amazon.com. They allow for generous preview as much Lulu.com does. Lulu.com managed to have someone sneak on with Final Fantasy fan fiction and Naruto as Lulu.com found out, sending the guilty party bawling bloody murder denying he had a lulu.com account up and down.
In addition to the "self-publishing" smokescreen, vanity publishers prefer to claim that they "offer print-on-demand services."
Pacione told Xlibiris to politely buggar off when he was moving into TheBookPatch.com after being fired from Amazon.com.
Amazon was trying to reconcile with what CreateSpace.com pulled on him when they found out they enabled a plagiarism scandal to occur in 2015-2016.
A Lulu.com author will well they vary, Pacione was the brand-builder and codifier for the small press having some gems. Lulu.com was truthful about IUniverse.com while TheBookPatch.com will point out even Lulu.com and CreateSpace.com lied about a number of aspects in publishing (the services the latter offer -- many of the authors don't know how to arrange a layout. Pacione was Lulu.com's anthology expert before he was fired. Those saying he had many TOS violations but all were lies. Pacione with his thesis called out Way Of The Master and all the Young Earth Creationist collective, nothing that Encyclopedia Dramatica had the balls to do, but Uncyclopedia did.
Get an account with TheBookPatch.com or Blurb.com; then send them about six releases (keep your debit card handy as you're supporting those authors too by doing this. They need to make a threshold of $40 to get royalty on PayPal or more per release. This is per title they get paid and markup is their money. 100% of that goes right to them either by PayPal.com or check.) The Ethereal Gazette: Issue Five was sent directly to them as a way to say "Look one of your regulars gave this roster a treatment they did not deserve as she's a Xenophobic bitch."
The Ethereal Gazette: Issue Five where it's housed now costs $6.70 to produce and an ISBN that's $9.99 with a nonprofit. So he gets paid from viewers like us. Get about 15-18 of your trusted friends, grab up LibreOffice. Go about 2400-5600 words until each contributor in all adds up to 208 pages overall for a release (format the damn thing properly.) Then arrange with a pdf blender such as PDF Split and Merge, if they slam The Book Patch and a vanity press then have fun with them by dredging up what one can find on Blurb.com, troll Questionable Content by asking them why did they lie to their authors about not getting in bed with Author Solutions.
Then download pdfsam.org and work with docupub.com to merge files, custom your table of contents and arrange everything properly otherwise you have Nathan Shumate (Lousy Book Covers) breathing down your neck. Nathan and Pacione had a showdown on jihad levels. The key thing is Nathan-proofing the covers because many of the authors with The Book Patch are not effective cover designers like Pacione or the boss are.
Lulu.com ask them about The Turner Diaries being on their site and in plain sight to everyone in the public, Pacione was outraged by this as he was by the sneaking on established copyright infringement. The good chance it's White People who are pushing the vanity press further and conning the author out of their cash. The Fundie seems to jump on the cause for the Vanity Press as long it's Jesus-centered and the God of them is busy taking a dump.
- Morton Devonshire
- Gloria Tesch
- Nickolaus (not vanity didn't pay a grand to publish but was paid for his work. Paid at cost to print his material with Lulu.com for ten years but tossed on a lie. He joined TheBookPatch.com and no one wants to even know about the truth. Then borrows his boss' artwork to bring others over. He brought many from that circuit to market. Saw Author Solutions slap a cease and desist on him then blocked him from a majority of their pages over his trolling stunt. The era he was the youngest veteran author, and appearing on Tales of the Talisman still in his twenties with his nonfiction output then a fiction work. He proved he was more than self-published, just wanted full creative control. Moved to Blurb.com with his layouts from Lulu.com. One book decided to engage Fandom Wank and called out the plagiarizing abusers in print. Pacione is true self-publishing in his own right and worked his way outward to appear on a newsstand with his work. So those thinking he sucks, well haven't read his nonfiction. A punishing creative nonfiction author whose fiction work uses the nonfiction output as his framework. Those dismissing him before reading The Cabbie Homicide, will have them doing a double take as he's fact checked.)
- Prince Jeremy (Lulu.com's shared headache with iUniverse.com, Shut up Judge!)
- Susan J. Elliott
- Tucker Max
- Christine Marie Morgan the majority of her work was published herself and it was coined vanity press by the small press when she was outed as a ficcer. She saw Pacione as a mortal enemy and stole his work for bastardized properties ever since she was outed. She is the IRL Troll of Creative Nonfiction.
- Christopher Paolini
- Stephanie Myer
- The Amazing Atheist
- Everyone on the internet - including you. You have to pay electric and line rental bills to get your inane thoughts made visible to others, and make nothing back. In advanced cases, you will pay a designer, an IT guy, and a hosting company so that your inane thoughts can be collected on one website. You will still make nothing back. The small press you get a meager and break even, some hardly have enough for the light bill. Pacione made enough for a nice night on the town when he was 31 but suffered when titles had no ISBN on it.
- iUniverse, your one-stop printed-and-bound fanfic shop
- Lulu, not quite same deal as iUniverse
- you see the fanfic sneaking on site
- Xulon Press see pictured, Angela Deese