I’m So Happy My Publisher Dumped Me

After begging for it for more than nine months now, I finally got the letter from my publisher giving me back my rights to my three Summer Westin mysteries: Endangered, Bear Bait, and Undercurrents. The letter was sent to my agent and called my second book Bear Bath, (their reverence for my work is truly overwhelming). But after I quit laughing, I was ready to party at the good news of being cut loose.

endangeredNo longer being published by a traditional publisher does mean that it will be more of a challenge to get my books into bookstores, so why am I excited to get dumped by my publisher? Three reasons:

  1. The publisher never advertised my books.
  2. The publisher never (to my knowledge, anyway) had a sale or special promotion of any kind to help readers find and try out my books. Ebook prices were kept the same as print book prices.
  3. As a consequence of #1 and #2, these three books remain largely unknown to mystery lovers.

bear baitNow I know that some will be saying, “What did you as the author do to promote these books?”

I have a good website, I appear at mystery conferences, I’ve done local talks and even taken out one paid ad. Clearly it wasn’t enough (see #3 above). But really, how much is an author expected to do to market books when she’s getting only 8% of the cover price six months to a year after the sales?

So, I’m happy to get my rights back, and I’m busy reformatting and updating and getting new covers made so I can get these three books back out to readers as soon as possible.

UndercurrentsMy plans include:

  • Publishing in trade paperback size so the print will actually be readable by a greater number of people.
  • Keeping ebook prices low to match current market standards.
  • Having a sale now and then to increase readership.

Yes, it’s a lot of work to republish. But I’m thrilled to have control of my author career again. Stay tuned, you’ll soon see these three mysteries out on the market again.

Don’t get me wrong; I am always on the lookout for good partners in the bookselling business and I am willing to share profits, but I need partners who will shoulder part of the workload. Till I find one of those, I’ll be a way-too-busy indie author who is finally making money from three more books.


I’m So Happy My Publisher Dumped Me — 15 Comments

  1. I’m trying to remember how I learned of these books but I just cannot remember. I loved the books, I bought them from Amazon book sellers. I have already loaned them to two others to read. What I need is a 4th book! Thanks, AW

  2. I love your books and will keep checking Amazon and your emails for new ones. However, I very much dislike the larger paperback size. Harder to hold and store, and how will you sell them in grocery stores, where most of them are the smaller size?

    • Thanks for commenting, Hilde. My publisher has the right to sell their remaining mass market paperback stock–that’s what they call the smaller size. So they’ll probably be around for a while, and I can republish in that size, too. I’ve mainly heard comments that the print is too small in the current editions, so I’m determined to fix that.

  3. I have read & enjoyed every one of your books. We are in a small town 750 people. I donate all your books to our local library. I just printed your article and plan to post it along with my comments on the library bulletin board.

  4. I am a big fan of your Summer Westin stories and I am happy for you in the publisher issue. I have alreadu read all three Summer Westin books and am looking forward to a future one. Nancy

  5. I love the Summer Westin series, although I’ve only read the first two, I’m working on getting the third. When you write future Summer Westin books you could consider taking up the plight of wild horses, since the BLM is pandering to the ranchers and energy companies and not only do they have huge lots of permanent previously wild horses (at taxpayer money), but there are ways to send these once wild horses to slaughter (while the BLM—mandated to protect these animals—does nothing). On the other hand you have movements to privatize these lands which would certainly send the wild horses down the slaughter pipeline. I can see Summer getting involved in the situation. However, that’s just a suggestion.

    • I like that idea a lot, Kaye. I’m working on the fouth Summer “Sam” Westin novel with a different idea, but yours may become the fifth! Thank you so much! -Pam

  6. Hi. I am a lifelong avid reader. And you are right about your lack of “marketing support” because I had never heard of you, which is a crime! I also found your comment of you getting only 8% truly criminal. Don’t those people understand that writing is hard work and takes true talent and skill to create a book from “nothing”? And that it consumes so much of your time and energy and giving up part of yourself?
    I actually found you at Barnes & Noble ebook store. I have been having many problems in my life lately, one big one is financial, so I had looked under Nook’s low cost books. They had the first Westin book on there, and I was completely hooked. I have just finished the 3 Westin books and 2 Neema books. You are a gifted storyteller. I really loved your books. Cannot wait for more adventures in these two series! Please don’t stop now 🙂 I get so “attached” to the characters that I miss reading about them because you have made them so real for us.

    • Thanks so much for your comments, Sandy! I am working on sequels to the Sam Westin series and the Neema series and hope to get them out next year.

  7. I just finished Bear Bait and I will DEFINATELY read the other Sam Westin mysteries. Pamela, I thoroughly enjoyed your book! I am a retired police investigative analyst (detective support) and I deeply love animals, both wild and domestic as well as the mountains and lakes. Your book reminded me of years of hiking, camping and riding horseback in the Rockies. Thank you! V Rucker

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