Beware the Con Artists

There’s more than one type of scam in the publishing world. Sure, there are crooked “publishers” but there are also other cons to beware of. Contests. There are a TON of contests out there, for any kind of writing you can think of. And that’s well and good, if they’re on the up and up.

Some contests exist only to gather the fees an author pays to enter. Others are sneakier. They contact you and say that your submission was great, but didn’t win. So, since your work was so good, they offer to put it in an anthology. Great! But then they tell you that if you want a copy, you’ve got to buy it. And if you want your profile included, you have to pay even more. And if you want to buy copies for your friends and family, you can do that. At a slightly reduced price.

Don’t fall for it. It’s a scam. The only reason for the anthology is to get you, the author, to pay for books that it cost them nothing to publish.

Contests are a fine thing. They can help an author get notices, and wins look good on a resume. I’m not saying to avoid all of them. I’m just saying to research them. Google’s a good start, but the internet is a big place. It can be overwhelming.

Instead of chasing down each and every contest to see if they’re legit, it’s better to start out with a resource that lists the ones that are legit. I suggest The Writer’s Market. You can find it in the resources section of your local library, or you can subscribe online. It comes out every year, with invaluable information. They list agents (and tell you what they represent and how to approach them), legitimate publishers and how to approach them (most won’t talk to you without an agent, so that’s probably the best section to start with). They give you the contact information for magazines in which you can publish your stories and poems to get a foot in the door.

And they have a whole section of nothing but contests you can enter. What style (poem, shorts, etc), what genre (fiction, horror, erotica, lit fic, YA, etc), how much it costs to enter, and how to go about it.

Be careful, people. The publishing world is a wonderful place, but it’s not without its potholes.

Source: Beware the Con Artists

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6 thoughts on “Beware the Con Artists

  1. Pingback: Welcome | Lepplady

  2. If you see only this reply even though it says “2 replies” it’s because one reply is me linking my pinned post to each new one. I don’t know why it does that, but rest assured. You’re not missing anything.
    🙂

    • I dont usually enter contests that charge unless i talk to the host about if its valid. Which most understand why i do it and are happy to prove they arent cons. I myself am going to host a best author and book competition. Free of coarse. Itll be linked to my publishing house. Already ordered the awards. Its getting there. Just need to do the graphics and certificates. 🙂 going all out because its an opportunity for authors to get their name out. 🙂 however it will be a different kind of voting for this as most contests like these the author only wins due to popularity. So we dont want that. We want winning authors for skill and actual readers. So there will be three stages. The nominations. Then the readers choice. Then the skilled pen of story. Each genre or author will be judged accordingly to our rules and regulations with fairness. Its going to be fun. Im super excited. There will only be disqualifications if authors dont follow rules or regulations and anyone can enter. Im thinking it will happen during HMRPs first year anniversary since opening.

  3. We are hoping to do it annually. So this years will be releases from 2014 to the date it opens in 2016. Then next years will be 2016 day after the opening date to 2017 opening and so on. Next year we will be offering the winners contracts but its not a solid thing. The awards are however a definite thing. As well as a feature on our blog on my publishing house site and a review. So if we do them annually it will no doubt be a big shindig so to speak. And of coarse no one gets these awards unless they earn them in the competition.

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