Helen (heleninwales) wrote,
Helen
heleninwales

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A heartwarming story? Or is there more than meets the eye?

Really, I don't know what the press is coming too. Someone linked to this heartwarming story:

Author, 93, uses profits from first novel to buy massive house to spare friends misery of care home

Wow! I thought, there's hope for me yet. Fancy having a best seller at 93. You really are never too old to make it as a writer.

I read on, only to stop dead when I got to: She sent it to self-publishing firm AuthorHouse, who put the book on sale as a paperback for £14.95 and a hardcover for £16.95.

Uh, oh...

Now there are circumstances where self-publishing is a perfectly valid option and from their website, AuthorHouse seem perfectly genuine, they offer editorial advice and copy-editing as options, but as we all know, it's vanishingly rare for anyone to make any money as a self-published author and certainly not the £310,000 that the article implies. Quite the reverse, it will have cost the author money to have her book published. As it clearly says on the AuthorHouse website, "For a modest financial investment you can choose what you want for your book. Our products and services vary in price and can be tailored to your specific needs."

I really shouldn't be annoyed by the article, but I am. Firstly because it's hailing Lorna Page as a "published author" when all she's done is paid to have her novel published, secondly because it's promulgating the idea that first time authors get huge advances, when we all know that, except in very rare cases, they don't, and thirdly that headline is a definite untruth, she can't have sold enough copies in the 4 weeks since the book became available to buy a house.

Oh, well... But just don't believe anything you read in the Daily Mail, that's all. Not that the others are any better, the Telegraph carried much the same story and the BBC fails to mention that the publisher is just a self-publishing company and fudges the issue entirely.

*Wanders off shaking her head sadly*
Tags: 93 year-old author, self-publishing
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