Book Dreams and Schemes: Questionable Promotion Offers

Victoria Strauss of Writer Beware has a warning for self-published authors about a couple of promotion “opportunities,” part of her series of posts on the topic.

The first of the “suite of services,” the Hollywood Book-to-Movie Treatment, costs a cool $3,299. For that, you get a 7-10 page “creative adaptation” of your book written by a screenwriter. Which screenwriter? What are his/her credits? Sorry, that info is not available. …

It hurts my heart, and my brain, to think that authors might actually shell out this kind of money for services that would likely net them zero results even if performed by skilled professionals at reasonable prices. Selling a book to Hollywood is one of the most fervent writerly ambitions; it’s also one of the most unattainable. And as much as you may roll your eyes and think, “Surely no one would fall for a scheme like this,” the fact is that people do–or the schemes wouldn’t exist.

Maybe you’re too clever to be fooled by the Hollywood dream, but Victoria goes on to discuss book award contests, which sound nice enough on the surface:

The awards sponsor, Jenkins Group (an expensive publishing service provider), also conducts the Axiom Awards for business books, the IPPY Awards for general fiction and nonfiction, the eLit Awards for ebooks, and the Moonbeam Awards for children’s books. Between them, these awards represent over 240 categories, with an average entry fee of $85.

Read the entire article, and be careful out there.

  • I hope every member of SPR reads the entire article cited above. There are so many scams out there for indie authors with the money, in the bank or borrowed, to spend on them. So often, I’ve learned, the winners of the awards contests are the writers who’ve paid the most for the publicity services of the companies in charge of the contests. I can only wonder why. On the other hand, there are companies that realize the need to give awards to writers who truly deserve them. It’s the only way those companies can establish their own legitimacy if they hope to stay in business for very long. The difficult task for the indie writer is to decide which side of the line the company is on.